Oregon Beach News, Friday 10/1 – Chinook Salmon Fishing on Columbia Reopens, Health Advisory Lifted at Cannon Beach, Bi-Mart Sells Its Pharmacies

The latest news stories across the state of Oregon from the digital home of the Oregon coastal cities, OregonBeachMagazine.com

Friday, October 1, 2021

Oregon Beach Weather

Today– Sunny, with a high near 65. Windy, with a north northwest wind 7 to 12 mph increasing to 17 to 22 mph in the afternoon.

Saturday– Mostly sunny, with a high near 66. Breezy, with a northeast wind 5 to 10 mph becoming northwest 11 to 16 mph in the afternoon.

Sunday– Sunny, with a high near 67. Light north northeast wind becoming north 5 to 10 mph in the afternoon.

Monday– Partly sunny, with a high near 64.

Tuesday– A chance of rain. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 63.

Chinook Salmon Fishing on Columbia Reopens

Oregon and Washington agreed Wednesday to reopen chinook salmon retention on Friday, Oct. 1, from Buoy 10 to Warrior Rock on Sauvie Island.

Chinook season had been closed, but fishing those areas was open for hatchery coho salmon.

Wednesday’s decision means chinook retention now will be legal from Buoy 10 upriver to Pasco.

From Buoy 10 upstream to the Tongue Point/Rocky Point Line, the adult bag limit will be three salmon, only one of which may be a Chinook.

From the Tongue Point/Rocky Point Line upstream to Warrior Rock, the adult bag limit will be two salmon, only one of which may be a Chinook.

Only hatchery coho may be retained. All other previously adopted regulations remain in effect. Always check the WDFW website at wdfw.wa.gov/fishing for the latest fishing rules and regulations as seasons can change or close quickly if necessary.

Health Advisory Lifted at Cannon Beach

The state has lifted a health advisory for Cannon Beach and Tolovana Beach State Recreation Site.

The Oregon Health Authority issued the advisory on Tuesday after water samples off the Gower Street storm outflow and in the ocean water off Tolovana showed high levels of fecal bacteria.

Further testing revealed those levels had dropped back down on Thursday.

“Contact with the ocean water no longer poses a higher-than-normal risk,” according to the Oregon Health Authority.

Cannon Beach officials say a spike in fecal bacteria is expected when heavy rains follow a long stretch of dry weather. In these cases, the higher-than-usual amount of fecal bacteria in the water is often tied to wildlife.

The advisory came after a rainy weekend on the North Coast.

Bi-Mart Sells All Its Pharmacies to Walgreens

Bi-Mart announced Thursday that the company will leave the pharmacy business, selling all 56 of its pharmacies in Oregon, Idaho, and Washington state to Walgreens.

The sale includes all of Bi-Mart’s prescription files and inventory. Bi-Mart stores aren’t going anywhere, but the company’s pharmacies will either shut down and transfer prescriptions to nearby Walgreens locations or remain operating under the Walgreens brand in “select areas where Walgreens does not have nearby stores,” primarily in rural Oregon.

Bi-Mart said that pharmacies in the Portland metro area and in several other markets have already been closed, with prescriptions transferred to Walgreens. Transfer of most prescription files is set to begin in October and be completed by January, “subject to customary closing conditions.” Pharmacists and pharmacy staff at Bi-Mart locations will have an opportunity to apply for open positions at Walgreens. Patients whose prescriptions are being transferred will be notified by mail, the companies said, and both Bi-Mart and Walgreens pledged to work together on a smooth transition for patients.

Oregon Missing Persons

https://www.facebook.com/pg/Have-You-Seen-Me-Southern-Oregons-Missing-People-161249961222839/posts/

Oregon reports 1,896 new confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases, 20 new deaths

There are 20 new COVID-19 related deaths in Oregon, raising the state’s death toll to 3,791. The Oregon Health Authority reported 1,896 new confirmed and presumptive cases of COVID-19 bringing the state total to 330,054.

The new confirmed and presumptive COVID-19 cases reported today are in the following counties: Baker (11), Benton (40), Clackamas (130), Clatsop (13), Columbia (32), Coos (36), Crook (34), Curry (9), Deschutes (161), Douglas (76), Gilliam (1), Grant (18), Harney (10), Hood River (7), Jackson (76), Jefferson (17), Josephine (23), Klamath (78), Lake (7), Lane (142), Lincoln (9), Linn (115), Malheur (50), Marion (169), Morrow (7), Multnomah (212), Polk (23), Sherman (3), Tillamook (3), Umatilla (102), Union (26), Wallowa (7), Wasco (44), Washington (158) and Yamhill (47)

OHA releases new COVID-19 vaccine breakthrough report

OHA’s most recent update on COVID-19 breakthrough cases, released today, found that 79.2% of the 11,567 reported COVID-19 cases between Sept. 19 through Sept. 25 occurred in people who were unvaccinated. There were 2,401 breakthrough cases, accounting for 20.8% of all cases.

The average age of the breakthrough cases during that period was 48. Sixty-eight breakthrough cases involved residents of care facilities, senior living communities or other congregate care settings. There were 85 breakthrough cases in people aged 12 to 17.

To date, there have been 25,347 COVID-19 vaccine breakthrough cases in Oregon. The average age of all cases is 48. Breakthrough cases have been reported in all 36 counties.

Cases of COVID-19 are far more common in unvaccinated people. The report shows that the rate of COVID-19 in unvaccinated people is currently approximately five times higher than in vaccinated people.

To date, 4.6% of all vaccine breakthrough cases have been hospitalized and 0.9% have died. The average age of vaccinated people who died was 80.5.

Vaccination remains the most effective tool to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

The number of vaccine breakthrough cases identified in Oregon remains very small when compared to the more than 2.7 million Oregonians who have completed their COVID-19 vaccination series.

The latest breakthrough report can be found here.

Hospital Capacity Crisis Reflected in Q2 Data Report

Usage and Length of stay increased, revenue still not covering expenses  

The impacts of the hospital capacity crisis created by the surge in infections from the Delta variant and a staffing shortage continued in the second quarter of 2021, according to a newly released financial performance report from Apprise Health Insights. 

Hospital patient visits from every category – inpatient, outpatient, and emergency room – showed an increase over the first quarter of this year. Many patients admitted to the hospital are very sick with COVID and are staying longer, continuing a rise that began with the start of the pandemic (up 11 percent when compared to 2019 levels). While such cases are contributing to revenue increases, any gains are offset by higher care costs for treating patients with more severe conditions.

Those longer hospital stays have a negative impact on Net Patient Revenue, which for the fourth quarter in a row fell short of Total Operating Expenses. Another major contributor to the rise in Total Operating Expenses is the high cost of labor (up 20 percent over the past three years). Hospitals continue to report significant staff shortages as some health care workers are leaving jobs and others are taking time off due to illness, exhaustion, or stress. Hospitals report some recent success recruiting replacements but incentives such as higher pay and sign-on bonuses are adding to expenses.  

Apprise analysts expect these negative trends to become even worse in the next quarter, as case numbers and hospitalizations continued to break records through the summer. Hospitals are reporting staffing and bed shortages, the cancellation and deferral of thousands of elective (non-urgent but needed) procedures, and limited community placements after hospitalization leading to delayed care. 

“The data tell the story of our overwhelmed hospital system, which has been pushed to the breaking point by the recent surge,” said Andy Van Pelt, CEO of Apprise Health Insights. “Adding to the stress of the staffing shortage taking its toll on patient care is the financial pressure from rising labor costs and lower Net Patient Revenue. We believe these trends will continue into the next quarterly reporting period.” 

Median Operating Margins and Median Total Margins (which includes investment income) both improved in Q2 after declining for two consecutive quarters. However, further setbacks for hospitals’ recovery are expected in the wake of the rapid spread of the Delta variant between July and September of 2021, which will be in Q3’s data. Furthermore, other operating revenue, including grants and federal CARES Act funds, continues to show up on hospital balance sheets. Margin figures could be affected as hospitals finish their reporting requirements and those funds no longer appear. 

For more details on the Q2 financial analysis, click here.

About Apprise: Apprise Health Insights is the most reliable and complete source of hospital data in Oregon. As the data subsidiary of the Oregon Association of Hospitals and Health Systems (OAHHS), Apprise staff have gathered and analyzed data about Oregon hospitals and health systems since 1985. We strive to provide data, tools, and expertise to help hospitals understand the healthcare landscape in the Pacific Northwest. — Oregon Assn. of Hosp. and Health Systems (OAHHS)

Campfire ban lifted on state-managed forests and state parks east of I-5, but local restrictions may still apply.

The Oregon Department of Forestry and Oregon State Parks are lifting a blanket ban on campfires in state-managed forests and state parks east of Interstate 5, but restrictions on individual parks may still be in place due to fire danger in the local area.

Recent rains and cooler temperatures have dampened fire danger in many parts of the state, and this decision allows local forest and park managers to make decisions about fire restrictions based on conditions in their area.

Much of Oregon is still in fire season, and restrictions such as only allowing fires in designated campfire rings may still be in place at your destination. Should fire danger rise again this fall, it is possible that these restrictions may increase. State agencies strongly encourage checking fire danger levels and associated restrictions in a given area before traveling. 

For information on state parks, visit https://stateparks.oregon.gov/. To check public use restrictions due to fire danger throughout Oregon, visit https://www.oregon.gov/odf/fire/pages/restrictions.aspx.

Effective tomorrow, Friday, October 1, the agencies of the South Central Oregon Fire Management Partnership (SCOFMP) will be lowering the Fire Danger from “Extreme” to “High”.  Even with rain early this week and cooler temperatures, fuels are still dry and caution is needed to prevent wildfires.

Public Use Restrictions, which regulates things like the use of campfires, chainsaws and other activities that could start a wildfire, are being lifted tomorrow, Friday, October 1, on the Fremont-Winema National Forest, Sheldon-Hart Mountain and Klamath Basin National Wildlife Refuge Complexes and most of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) Lakeview District. 

Restrictions remain in place in the Klamath River Canyon.  Oregon Department of Forestry (ODF) Regulated Use Closures also remain in effect.  More information on ODF Regulated Use can be found at https://www.oregon.gov/odf/fire/pages/restrictions.aspx.

Area residents and visitors are also reminded that the Emergency Fire Closure Orders for the Bootleg and Cougar Peak Fires are still in effect on the Fremont-Winema National Forest.

The Bootleg Fire is referenced as Closure Order Number 06-02-21-09 and on September 2 was reduced to the fire perimeter.  The interior of the fire will remain closed until August 31, 2022, unless it can be rescinded earlier.  This includes all roads, recreation sites and facilities.  

Recreation sites closed within the area include Gearhart Wilderness Area; Mitchell Monument Historic Site; Currier Guard Station; Deming Creek, Horseglades, Lookout Rock, North Fork Sprague, Augur Creek, Deadhorse Lake, and Lee Thomas Trailheads; and Corral Creek, Campbell Lake, Deadhorse Lake, Lee Thomas and Sandhill Crossing Campgrounds.

The Cougar Peak Fire Closure is referenced as Order Number 06-02-21-10.  The closure area generally north of Oregon State Highway 140 between Lakeview and Quartz Mountain; east of Forest Roads 3660, 34 and 28; south of Forest Road 3315, also known as the High Road, and Oregon State Highway 31 between Paisley and Valley Falls; west of U.S. Highway 395 between Valley Falls and Lakeview; as well as a section of the Warner Mountains northeast of Lakeview.

Numerous recreation sites are closed within the area, including North Brattain, Brattain Butte and South Brattain Recreation Areas; the Fremont National Recreation Trail and Oregon Timber Trails within the closure area; Cottonwood, Cottonwood Creek, Cox Pass, Moss Pass, Hanan/Coffeepot, Bear Creek, and Mill Trailheads; and Cottonwood, Clear Springs, Happy Camp, Dairy Point, Jones Crossing, Chewaucan Crossing, Marster Spring, and Moss Meadow Campgrounds.

While progress is being made on the Cougar Peak Fire, there is not an estimated time for the closure area to be reduced.

“There are still hundreds of wildland firefighters and large equipment working on the Cougar Peak Fire,” said Interagency Deputy Fire Management Officer Coley Neider.  “We understand this is an area a lot of people enjoy in the fall, especially for hunting and camping, but it is necessary for the area to remain closed right now for public and firefighter safety.  Cooperation from area residents and visitors while we continue to work in the area is greatly appreciated.”

There will be public notifications when these closure orders are modified or lifted.  Both closure orders, including maps, are posted at www.fs.usda.gov/fremont-winema.

Violations of either of these closure orders are punishable by a fine of not more than $5,000 for an individual or $10,000 for an organization, or imprisonment of not more than 6 months or both.

For personal use and commercial woodcutters planning to cut firewood this weekend, the Industrial Fire Precaution Level (IFPL) is lowering to Level II tomorrow, Friday, October 1. 

This means chainsaw use is now permitted between 8 p.m. and 1 p.m. on federal lands, including the Fremont-Winema National Forest and Lakeview District BLM.  Chainsaws can be used at loading sites or on roads at any time of day.

Personal and commercial woodcutters are reminded of their responsibility to stay informed of current IFPLs and all restrictions that apply to activities conducted on public lands.  Failure to comply with precautionary fire requirements may result in the issuance of a Violation Notice.

“This weekend is going to be great for getting outside and we are happy to be able to allow campfires and chainsaw use starting Friday,” said Neider.  “Even with conditions improving, fuels are still very dry and can carry fire. We need the continued efforts of the public to prevent wildfires this fall.”

  • Make sure campfires are never left unattended and are dead out and cold to the touch before leaving.  Use plenty of water to drown the fire.
  • If you are using a portable stove, make sure the area is clear of grasses and other fine fuels. Prevent stoves from tipping and starting a fire.
  • Ensure chainsaws and other equipment, including generators, are maintained and have an approved spark arrester in good condition.
  • Make sure off-road vehicles have a properly functioning catalytic converter or approved spark arrester.
  • Never park a vehicle over dead grass and avoid driving through tall grass – your vehicle can ignite the fuels and start a fire.
  • If towing a boat or trailer, ensure safety chains are properly secured and not dragging.

“Fire season is continuing in Klamath and Lake counties and while the risk is reduced, current conditions can still carry wildfire quickly,” said Randall Baley, ODF Protection Unit Forester in Klamath Falls.  “There is a need to remain vigilant over the coming weeks while conditions continue to gradually improve on public and private wildlands.”

Suspected wildfires should be reported to 911 as soon as possible.  Visit https://scofmp.org for more information on restrictions and IFPL.

Conditions Really Dry Even Though We Have Had Some Rain

Part of why the recent rains are a good sign, but not enough, is because there is a substantially lower reserve than usual. Scott Oviatt of the Oregon Snow Survey warns not to celebrate too quickly.

“The common perception is: ‘Well, it rained, so now the drought is over,’” Oviatt said. “Unfortunately, it doesn’t work that way.”

Even with the heavy snow events that dampened much of the Hood, Sandy and Lower Deschutes region this February, Oviatt said that since March 1, there has been very little precipitation, so it’s going to take more than a few good showers this fall to prevent a repeat of dry conditions next year.

“The conditions are still pretty dry,” Oviatt said, pointing out that while the Northwest portion of the state has seen steady seasonal showers in recent weeks, just over the mountain in Hood River and farther in Wasco County, the land is still fairly parched.

“After the dry time we’ve had, all SNOTEL sites are at all-time lows,” Oviatt said, including the Mount Hood SNOTEL site at Timberline Lodge. “We haven’t seen a low like this in 20-40 years of records.”

What reserved moisture is in the Hood, Sandy and Lower Deschutes basin, Oviatt added, is mostly left over from the beginning of the year’s heavy snow and still only at 92% of average. Last year the precipitation level on Sept. 30 was very similar, sitting at 89% of average.

“Before these past two weeks, all of our streams were at 70% of average,” Oviatt said, adding that while the dry period for most of 2021 doesn’t bode well, he’s hopeful that these “typical fall patterns” of showers are “promising.”

“We want those good flows going into winter,” Oviatt said of the streams in the basin, which have received some help from recent rains. “Predictions show above normal precipitation (in this upcoming water year, which starts Oct. 1). If that comes true, we’re headed in the right direction. We just need to keep getting these systems coming in. November through January are crucial; we get our majority of rainfall and snowpack accumulation then.”

Otherwise, Oviatt said, “if we are below normal precipitation again this winter, we’ll be back where we were this summer next year.

“We should be guarded at this point because of how dry it’s been the past few years,” Oviatt said. “We need to keep that moisture coming in through winter.” https://www.nrcs.usda.gov/wps/portal/nrcs/main/or/snow/

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Correction: Oregon approved to issue an additional $167 million in Pandemic EBT food assistance to 430,000 children

Note: A version of this press release sent Sept. 1, 2021 incorrectly reported the $389 would be received as two payments in September and October. It will actually be received as two payments in October. This has been corrected below.

  • Current recipients of P-EBT benefits for the 2020 – 2021 school year will automatically receive an additional $389 per child in food assistance that will be received as two payments in October. There is no need to apply. 
  • Oregon will provide approximately $591 million in food assistance for children from July through October 2021.
  • P-EBT is a benefit program separate from meals currently provided at no charge to children and students. These meals do not impact P-EBT eligibility or benefits.

(Salem) – The State of Oregon received approval from the federal government to expand the Pandemic EBT (P-EBT) program and provide an additional $167 million in food assistance to approximately 430,000 children in Oregon. 

Oregon was previously approved to provide approximately $424 million in food benefits to children in Oregon. Combined with the summer expansion of the program, Oregon will provide approximately $591 million in food assistance to children from July through October 2021. 

P-EBT provides food benefits to families whose children were eligible for free or reduced priced meals at school or daycare, but did not have access to these free meals because of COVID-19 closures. 

Children currently receiving P-EBT benefits for the 2020 – 2021 school year will automatically receive an additional $389 per child in food assistance that will be received as two payments in October.

On Oct. 1, 2021, all P-EBT recipients will receive $129 in food benefits. 

Between Oct. 22 and Oct. 30, recipients will receive an additional $260 in food benefits. 

Eligibility for additional P-EBT food assistance

  • Students eligible to receive P-EBT benefits for the 2020 – 2021 school year will receive additional P-EBT food assistance for the summer of 2021. There is no need to apply. 
  • Children age six or younger whose families participate in the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) or Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program will receive P-EBT food assistance for the summer of 2021. There is no need to apply.

Two ways children receive P-EBT food assistance

There are two ways children receive benefits: 

  • If the child’s household currently participates in SNAP or TANF, their P-EBT benefits will be deposited into the household’s EBT account. 
  • Children who already have a P-EBT card will continue to receive food assistance on their current card. 
  • Children new to the P-EBT program whose household does not participate in SNAP or TANF will receive a P-EBT card in the mail at the address on file with their school.

P-EBT cards look different than the Oregon Trail EBT cards issued to SNAP households. 

Visit pebt.oregon.gov for more information about the P-EBT program.

P-EBT does not replace any child nutrition program already offered and families are encouraged to continue to participate in meal programs in their communities.  

P-EBT is separate from SNAP benefits including emergency allotments that are also being issued due to the impact of COVID-19. P-EBT benefits are not considered in a public charge test.

Resources to help meet basic needs

About SNAP

Administered by ODHS, SNAP is a federal program that provides food assistance to approximately 1 million eligible, low-income families and individuals in Oregon, including many older adults and people with disabilities. Oregonians in need can apply for benefits, including SNAP, child care, cash assistance and Medicaid. Learn more at https://govstatus.egov.com/or-dhs-benefits. For local resources in your area, such as food or shelter, please call 2-1-1 or reach out to the state’s Aging and Disability Resource Connection (ADRC) at 1-855-ORE-ADRC or 1-855-673-2372.

About the Oregon Department of Education 

The Oregon Department of Education fosters equity and excellence for every learner through collaboration with educators, partners, and communities. ODE oversees the education of over 560,000 students in Oregon’s public K-12 education system. While ODE isn’t in the classroom directly providing services, the agency (along with the State Board) – focuses on helping districts achieve both local and statewide goals and priorities through strategies such as:

  • Developing policies and standards
  • Providing accurate and timely data to inform instruction
  • Training teachers on how to use data effectively
  • Effectively administering numerous state and federal grants
  • Sharing and helping districts implement best practices

Oregon Women Veteran Photo Exhibit ‘I Am Not Invisible’ Earns National Award for Excellence 

The Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs (ODVA) is honored to announce it received a prestigious national award earlier this month for a leading, innovative project spotlighting the diversity and contributions of women veterans.

Oregon was one of seven states to receive the 2021 Abraham Lincoln Pillars of Excellence Award. Deputy Secretary of the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (USDVA) Donald Remy presented the award to ODVA Director Kelly Fitzpatrick at the National Association of State Directors of Veterans Affairs (NASDVA) annual conference held in Reno, Nev. The award was developed in partnership by the USDVA and NASDVA to create programs that effectively deliver seamless, high‐impact continuum of care and services at the federal and state levels.

“I Am Not Invisible (IANI),” a traveling photo exhibit featuring portraits and bios of 20 Oregon women veterans from diverse backgrounds and eras of service, was a joint effort of the Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs and Portland State University’s Veterans Resource Center in 2017.

The project debuted at the Portland Art Museum in February of that year and has since exhibited nationally, touring dozens of cities in Oregon and other states. In October 2017, the IANI photo exhibit was honored to be displayed in the rotunda of the Russell Senate Office Building near the U.S. Capitol Building in Washington, D.C. 

The project aimed to increase awareness of the women veterans who live among us in our communities and to highlight the contribution that women veterans have made to our nation while they were in uniform — and after their military service.  The campaign resonated with women veterans across the nation who celebrated the theme “I Am Not Invisible” by volunteering to participate in photo exhibits duplicated by 42 cities and 25 other state DVAs as well as the USDVA, whose project encompassed all 50 states, 75 cities, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico and 27 Native American/Alaska Native nations to capture images of more than 3,000 women veterans.

“Words cannot express my pride that this ODVA concept has made such a deep and meaningful impact, raising the profile of so many outstanding women veterans and service members and helping shift the conversation on the role of and outreach to women veterans,” said Fitzpatrick, the first woman to lead the Oregon Department of Veterans’ Affairs in its 76-year history.

“As far as we have come, successes like this also bring into focus how far we have yet to go. Since the Revolutionary War, women have served their country with the same courage, dedication and sacrifice as their male counterparts, yet they are still too often denied the recognition and access to health care and other benefits that they have earned. Projects like ‘I Am Not Invisible’ are part of the necessary conversation to truly open the aperture of who we innately recognize, and therefore serve, as a veteran of the United States Armed Forces.”

As a leader in special advocacy services for veterans, Oregon in 2016 became one of the first states to create a veteran services program to serve and advocate for the unique experiences and needs of the estimated 28,000 women veterans across the state. 

For more information about resources and benefits available to Oregon women veterans and their families, or to connect with the Women Veterans Coordinator, visit www.oregon.gov/odva/resources/pages/women-veterans.aspx or email inquiries to  WomenVets@odva.oregon.gov“>ODVA_ORWomenVets@odva.oregon.gov.

For more information about “I Am Not Invisible,” visit www.iani.oregondva.com. — Ore. Department of Veterans’ Affairs

Red Cross Urging Blood Donations

The American Red Cross said Thursday that it is experiencing the lowest post-summer supply of blood and platelets since 2015, as patients remain high but donors have dropped.

The organization urged donors of all blood types, but especially type O, to make an appointment to give blood in order to overcome the current shortage. When COVID-19 cases spiked in August, the Red Cross says that blood donor participation decreased about 10 percent — but blood product distributions to hospitals have remained strong, significantly outpacing blood donations in recent weeks.

The national Red Cross blood inventory has reached its lowest level for this time of year since 2015, with less than a day’s supply of certain blood types in recent weeks. Types O positive and O negative, the most critical blood types for hospitals, dropped to less than a half-day supply at certain times within the last month. The Red Cross said that a five-day supply is usually what they strive to have on hand.

Face masks are required for both donors and staff, regardless of vaccination status. Donors are asked to schedule an appointment before arriving at a drive. Make an appointment to give blood by using the Red Cross Blood Donor App, visiting RedCrossBlood.org or calling 1-800-RED CROSS (1-800-733-2767).

Federal Judge Halts Central Oregon Timber Sale

A federal judge has halted a 78-acre commercial timber harvest in central Oregon near Walton Lake in Oregon’s Ochoco National Forest at the request of an environmental group. U.S. District Judge Michael Mosman granted the preliminary injunction sought by the Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project against logging in the recreational area that was to start in October.

Mosman said at the end of oral arguments in Portland on Wednesday that the nonprofit group was likely to prevail on the merits of its claim that the project violated the National Environmental Policy Act. The group also met the other requirements for a preliminary injunction, such as demonstrating immediate and irreparable harm from the project, the judge said.

The logged trees would be lost for generations, if not permanently, Mosman said. The Blue Mountains Biodiversity Project filed a complaint last year against a 178-acre (72-hectare) timber project at the Walton Lake recreational area, but its request for a preliminary injunction focused only on the 78 acres.

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