In January, Wilderness Watch formally objected to the Forest Service’s (FS) draft decision on the Pacific Northwest Electronic Warfare Range. This project, which includes flying supersonic military aircraft at low altitudes, would negatively impact five Wildernesses in Washington state: the Colonel Bob Wilderness, the Olympic Wilderness, the Washington Islands Wilderness, the Lake Chelan-Sawtooth Wilderness, and the Pasayten Wilderness. Additional Wildernesses likely to be affected include: the Stephen Mather, Glacier Peak, Mount Baker, Noisy Diobsud, Boulder River, Henry M Jackson, Wild Sky, Alpine Lakes, and San Juan Islands Wildernesses.
Military training exercises have no place in Wilderness. The Environmental Assessment (EA) the Navy prepared for its proposed warfare range fails to name any Wildernesses within the project area, let alone analyze impacts to these Wildernesses—from military jets, their noise (including sonic booms), or the emitters, some of which would be sited near Wilderness. As such, the EA violates the Wilderness Act and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). We are asking the Forest Service to issue an Environmental Impact Statement (EIS), and if the project is approved, to make
sure impacts to Wilderness are reduced, if not eliminated.
• Read our objection
Photo: Colonel Bob Wilderness by USFS