Well many of you already know about the Lawsuit FSEEEvsUSFS-2022 filed against the USFS for the dropping of LC95 into drainages, waterways, etc etc and who knows what else, filed by the FSEEE.
The article on wildfiretoday.com here: https://wildfiretoday.com/2022/10/12/environmental-group-files-lawsuit-against-us-forest-service-over-use-of-fire-retardant/
And then a follow up article with photo’s and a video here: https://wildfiretoday.com/2022/10/14/photos-of-retardant-dropped-in-sespe-creek-during-howard-fire/
So everyone has their comments ranging from one end of a spectrum to the other. So here is WAE’s perspective. It does not matter what the opinions are of you or I when it comes to LAW, COURTS and Tangible and Direct Evidence. I am not going to pick a side over another, it is as one of my coworkers stated, the US Govt suing the US Govt. So with that let us play a game. Let us assume for the moment that the FSEEE WINS this lawsuit and they are granted their demands.
Those are on page 9 & 10 of the complaint.
WHEREFORE, Plaintiff Requests the Following Relief:
A. Declare that the Forest Service’s continuous, on-going, and
unpermitted discharges of retardant pollutants into waterways from
aircraft point sources violate the CWA;
B. Grant Plaintiff injunctive relief to compel the Forest Service to
comply with applicable environmental statutes, prevent irreparable
harm, and satisfy the public interest;
C. Award Plaintiff its costs, expenses, expert witness fees, and
reasonable attorney fees under applicable law; and
D. Grant Plaintiff such further relief as may be just, proper, and
Let us further assume that there is a reduction in the use of Retardant, either as a result of policy change due to the lawsuit, due to the judgement of the lawsuit, or as a result of “stuff”. It does not really matter. the only thing that is relevant is if there is a severe reduction in the availability of retardant. As to its effectiveness, that is not the issue. The issue is we have an entire industry trained to think in one manner only and if that is removed? I personally would advocate that folks really understand the writing on the wall here! If you look at the photo’s every single piece of the Global Landscape is a drainage and therefor subject to the NO pollutants clause so let that one sink in. The judgment could be made that all retardants are pollutants and therefor rendered unlawful and therefor no longer available, well then what? There is another way to use aircraft though.