The United States Forest Service (USFS) is planning a large project of logging, spraying, and road work over the next 40 years through the year 2063. Treatments would occur on 9,800 acres (15.3 square miles) across 256 stands in the Jellico Mountain area of Daniel Boone National Forest in southern Kentucky.
JMLOGGING.com is not a logging company!
This website was created by private citizens NOT AFFILIATED with the U.S. Forest Service, logging companies, or preservation groups. Our mission is to provide information to affected residents, so they can give informed feedback to the USFS, to help ensure this project truly benefits the forest, wildlife, and community, including the use of local businesses and labor.
For the official record on the Jellico Vegetation Management Project (#63037), please consult the U.S. Forest Service project documentation.
Please sign our petition for no clearcutting in the Jellico Mountains.
Cumberland Darter 5K Run/Walk – Postponed until later this summer!
Two-dimensional maps are useful, but they can be misleading when trying to visualize the effect of logging on steep, mountainous terrain like the Jellico Mountains. A logging tract nearby on the map might not even be visible because it’s on the other side of a mountain ridge, whereas a more distant logging tract might loom prominently in a resident’s view.
We have created a comprehensive set of detailed 3D maps that bring to life the large, flat USFS map. For example, here are the planned logging areas for Little Wolf Mountain:
We must always remember each large colored area on the map represents hundreds of trees that will be logged. Here is a similar view in real life:
The U.S. Forest Service plans to log the Jellico Mountain area using five main treatment methods on a total of ~10,000 acres. The types of treatments are represented by colored areas on the map: Clearcut 1,016 acres, Two Aged Shelterwood 1,869 acres, Deferment Harvest 2,462 acres, Midstory Removal 524 acres, and Commercial Thinning 4,449 acres.
The USFS says most of the Jellico Mountain project area is trending towards mature forest. “While desired structures, species compositions, and age classes occur in mature forest, the biodiversity provided by young (0-30 years old) and mid-aged (31-80 years old) forest is being lost.” The Jellico Project is to “counteract this loss and increase project area biodiversity by providing a mix of habitat for flora and fauna.”
Logging operations in national forests can have a significant detrimental impact on the ecological health of these vital forest systems. Erosion, sedimentation, altered stream flow patterns, disturbed and compacted soils, reduction of biodiversity, introduction of invasive species, spreading tree disease, and fragmentation of wildlife habitat are some downsides of large-scale logging operations.
The community has many questions about this project that we would like the U.S. Forest Service to answer. For example:
- When evaluating how much mature forest to log, did the USFS consider the entire ecosystem surrounding the national forest? Did the USFS take into account that most of the surrounding private land has been logged, is already immature forests and is cleared land?
- Will local logging and survey companies have a chance to benefit financially from doing this work? How else can the community benefit from this project?
- Out of concern for honey bee colonies and other wild pollinators, how much herbicide will be applied and using what methods and when? Will the community be notified prior to spraying so we can lock our bees in so they are not killed by herbicides?
- Why is clear cutting required and why is so much of it on mountain tops?
This website provides information related to the Jellico Mountain Project. To discuss this project with other residents and stakeholders, please check out the Facebook group:
JMNRA — pronounced jam-rah — is a grand vision to create a Jellico Mountains National Recreation Area in the Daniel Boone National Forest along I-75 in southern Kentucky, and transform Whitley and McCreary counties into an outdoor recreation destination that will be the envy of rural America.
JMNRA is a key part of our proposed citizens’ alternative to the U.S. Forest Service project to log nearly 10,000 acres of the Jellico Mountains, including herbicide use and over 5,000 acres of effective clearcut on mostly steep slopes.
Kentucky Heartwood is a National Forest watchdog group that “seeks to protect and restore the integrity, stability, and beauty of Kentucky’s native forests and biotic communities through research, education, advocacy, and community engagement.” The non-profit organization recently sued the USFS over a similar logging project in the South Red Bird area.
We likely would have never heard about the Jellico Project if it wasn’t for a newsletter we received from Kentucky Heartwood. The authors of this website are not affiliated with Kentucky Heartwood except as donors.
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- Study shows replanting logged forests with diverse mixtures of seedlings accelerates restoration
We are not anti-logging, however we are against irresponsible logging. We understand that selective logging and other treatments — when done in a balanced way in the right places with follow-up care — can improve forest health, reduce fire danger, and remove invasive species.
However, we are concerned with the size and scope of this project, its impact on old-growth forests and wildlife, clear cutting, herbicide use, and the potential for erosion, landslides, flooding, water quality, noise, traffic, endangered species, increased invasive species introduction, and loss of biodiversity in our community.
U.S. National Forests belong to the American people. Each American citizen is a joint owner of these natural treasures, so it’s in all our best interest to use them wisely. The U.S. Forest Service must balance recreation, resource extraction, and preservation in our national forests. Big business naturally favors extraction, so it’s important that affected residents and other concerned citizens are also represented in planning the Jellico Mountain Project.