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Timeline of The WECAN Tongass Women for Forests Campaign



October 2020 - the USDA releases it's Final Ruling to Rollback Roadless Rule Protections in the Tongass Forest

On October 23, 2020, at the behest of the Trump Administration, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) and U.S. Forest Service (USFS) released the final ruling to exempt the Tongass National Forest from the 2001 Roadless Rule, opening up all 16.7 million acres of Alaska’s Tongass National Forest to logging and other forms of development, stripping protections that had safeguarded one of the world’s largest intact temperate rainforests for nearly two decades. More information is available in our full press release here



September 2020 - U.S. Forest Service Pushes Ahead to Gut Protections for America’s Climate Forest

Despite the ongoing and overwhelming COVID-19 crisis, the U.S. Forest Service did not slow its push to allow a new wave of logging in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest. On September 24, 2020 the agency announced a Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) advancing its proposal to eliminate the Roadless Rule in the Tongass, opening vast swaths of irreplaceable old-growth temperate rainforest to clearcut logging. Learn more here.



September 2020 - Trump Administration Launches New Assault on Alaska’s Tongass Old-growth Forest

On September 4, 2020, The Trump administration announced plans for yet another massive timber sale that would destroy more than 5,100 acres of critical old-growth habitat in the Tongass National Forest in Southeast Alaska. Please see the press release for further detail



August 2020 - Third Indigenous Women’s Delegation Advocates to Protect Tongass Forest Homelands in Alaska

In the midst of a global health pandemic and climate crisis, Indigenous women advocated for the protection of their communities and defense of their homelands. On August 12, 2020, a third Women’s Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN) Indigenous Women’s Tongass Delegation from Alaska will meet with Washington, D.C. legislators virtually to advocate for the protection of the Tongass. Read the full report back on our website here.



March 2020 - Indigenous Women Call for Systemic Changes to Subsistence Regulations for Further Protection of Indigenous Sovereignty and the Tongass Forest

On March 25, 2020, a Women’s Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN) Indigenous Women’s Tongass Delegation participated in the Southeast Alaska Subsistence Regional Advisory Council (SERAC) in Alaska to advocate for changes in interpretation to and implementation of federal subsistence, land conservation, and environmental policies and regulations. Please see the press release for further details.



December 2019 - 400,000-plus Blast Trump Administration Plan for Old-growth Clearcutting in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest

More than 400,000 people and dozens of local tribal, government, business, and national recreation groups have flooded the U.S. Forest Service with comments opposing its plan to undo safeguards that prevent clearcutting and road building in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest.



November 2019 - Second Tlingit Women’s Delegation Travels to Washington, D.C. to Protect Their Forest Homelands in Alaska

From November 12 through November 15, 2019, the Women’s Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN) Indigenous Women’s Tongass Delegation from Alaska will be in Washington, D.C. to advocate for the protection of over 9 million acres of Alaska’s rainforest, and the continuation of the Roadless Rule, an important measure to protect Alaska's Tongass National Forest, which falls within the traditional territories of the Tlingit, Haida and Tsimshian Peoples. Read the full report back on our website here.



October 2019 - Trump Administration Paves Way for Old-growth Clearcutting in Alaska’s Tongass National Forest with release of Draft Environmental Impact Statement

The Trump administration unveiled a Draft Environmental Impact Statement (DEIS) that will devastate long-standing protections against logging and road-building in the Tongass National Forest. Alaska-based and national organizations, including the Women's Earth and Climate Action Network, released a statement of opposition in response to the DEIS, finalized weeks after revelations that President Trump exerted pressure to allow new clear-cuts in the Tongass.

The DEIS was open for public comment last year and thousands joined us in submitting a comment calling for the protection of over 9 million acres of ancient forest, the defense of the climate, and standing with Indigenous land defenders and all forest protectors by submitting a comment demanding the administration keep the federal 2001 Roadless Rule intact and current protections in place for national forests in Alaska.



June 2019 - Turn Out for the Tongass Rally: Southeast Alaskans Advocate in Support of the 2001 National Roadless Rule

Southeast Alaskans alongside, State Representative Sara Hannan, Southeast Alaska Conservation Council (SEACC), and the Women’s Earth and Climate Action Network (WECAN) gathered on the steps of the Alaska State Capitol to show local support for the 2001 National Roadless Rule on the Tongass National Forest. Attendees then marched to a local waterfront park, stopping first at the Governor's Mansion for a group photo, to ensure Alaska state elected officials know that Southeast Alaskans support keeping the National Roadless Rule on the Tongass. The march made it clear that it is within both Alaskan and national interests and values to ensure the National Roadless Rule protections remain on the Tongass.



May 2019 - New Legislation Protecting Roadless Rule is Key for Preserving America’s Forests

Sen. Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Rep. Ruben Gallego (D-NM) introduced the Roadless Area Conservation Act today to protect the Roadless Rule, a land conservation measure established in the early 2000s to prevent logging and destructive road-building in America’s treasured national forests. The Roadless Rule is especially critical in areas like Southeast Alaska, where a wave of new old-growth logging – something the forest is still recovering from – would irreversibly harm the Tongass National Forest. Learn more here.



March 2019 - First Indigenous Women’s Delegation to Washington, D.C. to Advocate for Tongass Rainforest and Roadless Rule

On March 12 and 13, 2019 a Delegation of Indigenous Women from the Tongass Rainforest in Alaska will be in Washington, D.C. to advocate for the continuation of the Roadless Rule—an important measure to protect Alaska's Tongass National Forest, which falls within the traditional territories of the Tlingit, Haida and Tsimshian Peoples, and is a vital forest ecosystem. Read the full report back on our website here.