Timber sale at 2 Indiana forests goes ahead despite 200 protesters

Commercial logging inside Yellowwood State Forest
This photo was taken following commercial logging inside Yellowwood State Forest. (Photo Provided 2014/Indiana Forest Alliance and Hoosier Forest Watch)

NASHVILLE, Ind. (AP) — About 200 protesters chanted as state officials oversaw the sale of timber rights on 300 acres of two state forests in southern Indiana.

The rights to about 1,700 trees sold for nearly $109,000 Thursday morning at Yellowwood State Forest near Nashville. That’s less than the $150,000 that the Department of Natural Resources expected before environmental activists began calling on Gov. Eric Holcomb to stop the sale.

Indiana Forest Alliance director Jeff Stant says the state is losing a precious part of its old-growth woodland in Yellowwood and Morgan-Monroe state forests.

State officials say the logging is part of a well-researched forest management plan.

A DNR spokesman didn’t immediately respond to questions about what the agency would do with protesters who have set up an encampment in the logging area.