An Idaho-specific plan meant to replace President Clinton’s national roadless rule in the state was agreed to Friday by the Bush administration, timber interests, and a few environmental groups. If approved by the Secretary of Agriculture after a public-comment period, the revised rule would protect just 3.3 million acres of forestlands in the state, down from 9.3 million in Clinton’s original roadless rule. Over 400,000 acres of current roadless areas in the state would be open to development with no restrictions, worrying environmental groups who are opposed to the plan that those areas could be mined and subjected to other destructive practices that were restricted under the original rule.

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