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H.R. 4574 (117th): SALVAGE Act

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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress, and was published on Feb 24, 2022.

Salvaging American Lumber Via Action with Greater Efficiency Act or the SALVAGE Act

This bill provides for certain activities related to salvage operations and certain reforestation activities conducted on National Forest System lands or public lands.

The bill categorically excludes salvage operations carried out by the Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Department of the Interior, on certain National Forest System lands or certain public lands, respectively, from the requirement to prepare an environmental assessment or an environmental impact statement.

Each salvage operation covered by the categorical exclusion may not contain treatment units that exceed a total of 10,000 acres.

An environmental assessment for a salvage operation or reforestation activity proposed to be conducted on National Forest System lands or public lands that are adversely impacted by a large-scale catastrophic event shall be completed within 60 days after the conclusion of the event. In the case of such reforestation activities USDA and Interior shall, to the maximum extent practicable, achieve reforestation of at least 75% of the impacted lands during the five-year period following the conclusion of the catastrophic event.

No later than 60 days after a wildfire is contained on National Forest System lands, USDA shall convert any timber sales on lands impacted by such wildfire to salvage sales.

No restraining order, preliminary injunction, or injunction pending appeal shall be issued by any U.S. court respecting any decision to prepare or conduct a salvage operation or reforestation activity in response to a large-scale catastrophic event.