Sarah Rolph on Public Scoping

Rolph defends rehash

Ed Nute calls my piece “Weaponizing NEPA” a rehash. That was by design; the repetition seemed necessary to fully make my point that the Park Service at Point Reyes seems to be using the same dirty-tricks playbook against the ranchers that it used against the oyster farmers.

The second half of the story contained new information:  My analysis of the public scoping comments on the Ranch CMP, over half of which were generated by a coordinated effort and sent in by people who have almost certainly never heard of either West Marin or the Ranch CMP. Over 1500 people were duped into believing that greedy ranchers in a national park somewhere are trying to kill off the wildlife.

Instead of setting aside these clearly irrelevant comments, the Park Service tallied them in a report and released it to the public. Just as it did with the 45,000 non-substantive comments about the DBOC Draft EIS–until the very end of the process, when those same comments were quietly discarded, categorized as non-substantive as the law requires.

Abuse of power by a federal agency is not something that should be swept under the rug. If it disturbs anyone’s “healing” process to read about this, I recommend skipping my op-eds. I don’t plan to shut up any time soon.

Sarah Rolph
Carlisle, MA