Logging of NJ’s Healthiest Forests Resumes -Despite Climate Science

NJ Forest Watch States

“There is NO Science that supports removal of timber is “good” for the forest”- It is a SHAM

UDPATE  April 2023….Sparta Mountain  has once again has been logged, and this time it is in another “Natural Heritage Priority Site”, adjacent the Edison Bog area.  The  logged area is in “Stand 18a” and is in a steep slope area, where the DEP has  created a NEW road to access the timber they want to harvest.   This is an area deemed of great ecological resource value, and yet the Division of Fish & Wildlife has logged it! 

This is unacceptable! Our Public Lands deserve better!

For the past year, our group has been involved in a forestry task force trying to create higher standards for our public forests, but the push by the groups to log for profit from ‘public lands management’ is great. 

There is pressure to log NJ public lands for purported benefits under false claims, such as stating that it is for ‘ecological health’ of the forest.  The fact is that there is NO Science that supports logging and removal of timber as being  ‘good’ for the forest!  

Governor Murphy has allowed this logging to continue. He has stated that “Climate Change is an Existential Threat” and yet he is allowing the NJDEP Division of Fish & Wildlife to continue to log our best healthiest forests- even, High Conservation Value Forests– like on Sparta Mountain.

This runs counter to ALL  Climate Science and goals to reduce Greenhouse Gas (GHG)  emissions by 2050.  The 2018 NJ report on Statewide Greenhouse Gas Emissions Inventory states that NJ forests sequester approximately 8% of total GHG emissions in the state.  If the state continues to log and clear-cut our NJ public forests, the state will not make its goal to increase that percentage to 10% by 2050!

So now that we got your attention, about the logging that’s happening on all NJ Public Lands- What can you do?

Our group, NJ Forest Watch/Friends of Sparta Mountain, has been working for over 6+ years with many other environmental groups on the protection and preservation of our NJ Public Forests.  We are now asking the public to get further involved, as our NJ Forests are being cut down by our own DEP, Division of Fish and Wildlife, and their private partners, including NJ Audubon Society (not a chapter of National Audubon). These logging activities run counter to any good climate science and threaten our future.

Below is a map of this recent area where they logged.  Over 130+ Rare, Threatened/Endangered and Special Concern Species have been documented on Sparta Mountain.  The State Endangered forest interior dependent Red-shouldered Hawk, and State Threatened Barred Owl, who both reside by the Edison Bog, will be negatively impacted. Logging will certainly destroy their habitat.  Help to protect their habitat from being destroyed.

Below are some actionable items that you can do today. Be a part of the solution!

Thank you for your support!


Contact the  DEP Commissioner Shawn LaTourette at  shawn.latourette@dep.nj.gov

Call his office and tell him to STOP the logging on Sparta Mountain 

We need rules and regulations to protect areas like Sparta Mountain from further logging

(609) 292-2885

Gov. Murphy can be reached at M-F 9-5 pm at (609) 292-6000
as we are asking for a moratorium on the logging of our NJ Public Lands!  His office doesn’t seem to be answering the phones lately…

So write an email to the Governor at constituent.relations@nj.gov

• NJ should not be allowing the logging of public lands by the DEP Division of Fish & Wildlife. Our forests provide NJ residents with clean air and, water, prevent stormwater runoff and sequester carbon. Over 70% of NJ’s population and a large sector of NJ’s industry rely on the intact, contiguous canopied Highlands forest for the production of a plentiful supply of clean water. Because this forest is so efficient at producing clean water, NJ has the fourth-lowest cost of water in the nation!
• More than 6.2 million NJ Residents, including the cities of Bayonne, Hoboken, Jersey City, Montclair, Newark, etc., rely on the Highlands Forests for potable drinking water. Logging destroys the ecological values this forest provides, including water resource values.
• Governor Murphy’s 2050 climate initiatives will never be accomplished until we protect and preserve our Highland and Pineland forests from clear-cutting. These forests must remain intact and must be allowed to mature to sequester the most carbon.
• The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change(IPPC) has stated, “…the carbon mitigation benefits of reducing deforestation are greater than the benefits of afforestation”(tree planting & reforestation). Source: www.IPCC.ch IPCC Executive Summary on Forestry p543

1) Go to our Facebook Page and Like Us, then Sign and Share our Petition
2) Join our email list by emailing us at njforestwatch@gmail.com
3) Share via social media with family and friends as ALL NJ’s Public Forests are at risk
4) Support our group by donating to our cause at GoFundMe Campaign