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Forest Service removes 15-Acre stand from Southside Project

ASHEVILLE, N.C., June 21, 2024—The following statement is from James Melonas, Forest Supervisor for the National Forests in North Carolina, regarding the Southside Project on the Nantahala National Forest:

“The USDA Forest Service has proactively removed a 15-acre stand under litigation from the Southside Project—a series of planned management activities to promote healthy forest restoration on a portion of the Nantahala National Forest in North Carolina.

“Rather than continue a lengthy legal process, the Forest Service will now focus on the successful implementation of the remainder of this important project. This change only impacts a small 15-acre stand within the Southside Project, and proposed activities outside of the stand will continue.”

The Southside Project was designed to reestablish hardwood forests and natural plant and animal communities that have declined due to past settlement patterns, 20th century timber activities, fire exclusion and invasive species. The 15-acre area that had been under litigation includes an artificially high white pine population due in part to past land use and nearby white pine plantations

For the latest information about the Southside Project, visit

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