On Monday of this week, I presented at oral argument at the 9th Circuit in our challenge to the Forest Service’s closure of over 90% of the historical user-created motorized routes in Tahoe National Forest. The Forest Service closed the routes without complying with the requirements for alternatives analysis, which is the heart of the environmental impact statement process under the National Environmental Policy Act. The panel was composed of Judges Hawkins, Murguia, and Breyer. I argued for the Plaintiffs/Appellants, a group of individuals and organizations that have enjoyed Tahoe National Forest for decades. They have been effectively shut out of the forest because the trails they had used for decades may no longer be used lawfully. The judges raised numerous questions for both sides, and the argument was thorough and grueling.
A more detailed description of the case background can be found here.