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#46053 - 05/01/16 11:16 PM Re: Wag Bags [Re: eje67]
Steve C Offline


Registered: 09/22/09
Posts: 7233
Loc: Fresno, CA
eje67, I can accept that Wasson's crap was waste. And so is feces once it is deposited into a WAG bag. In both of those situations, that waste must be removed from the forest. And I don't think saltydog would disagree either.

But as saltydog pointed out with Forest Service and National Park instructions above, human waste (aka feces) that is NOT collected in a container falls outside of the waste and sewage that must be removed. When it is deposited directly into a cathole and buried, where it can then decompose naturally, it is not the same thing as the waste you are talking about, or what the Wasson case was about.

If you disagree that poop deposited directly into a cathole and buried is waste that violates 261.11(d), then there is no point in debating any more. We just plain disagree. And I don't think a judge would agree with you.

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#46054 - 05/02/16 12:01 AM Re: Wag Bags [Re: Steve C]
eje67 Offline


Registered: 07/09/14
Posts: 68
Loc: Los Angeles County
Originally Posted By: Steve C
But as saltydog pointed out with Forest Service and National Park instructions above, human waste (aka feces) that is NOT collected in a container falls outside of the waste and sewage that must be removed.


Wasson did not collect feces in a requisite receptacle...yet somehow a handful of judges all decided that he violated 261.11(d) because he did not remove the feces. They didn't seem to think that the feces "fell outside of the waste and sewage that must be removed" did they? I'm agreeing with them lol.

Quote:
When it is deposited directly into a cathole and buried, where it can then decompose naturally, it is not the same thing as the waste you are talking about, or what the Wasson case was about.


Does poop not also decompose when not buried in a cathole? I know you're not saying that you could leave your poop sitting on the main trail without violating 261.11(d), but that's what you're saying if your argument is that feces is not "waste" for purposes of the regulation if it is decomposing.

Paper decomposes too, so go ahead and bury it because it's no longer "garbage." You're not saying that, are you?

Poop decomposes in wag bags ("Our toilet kit is the ONLY solution that traps, encapsulates, deodorizes and breaks down waste with a NASA-developed gelling agent") so poop would no longer be "waste" once you squeeze it out into the bag, right?

Quote:
If you disagree that poop deposited directly into a cathole and buried is waste that violates 261.11(d), then there is no point in debating any more. We just plain disagree.


Poop deposited directly into a cathole and buried is waste that violates 261.11(d) only in forest areas where the burying of poop is not authorized. Otherwise, the poop must be carried out under the default, national Forest Service policy. There are plenty of areas that have "Forest Service and National Park instructions" authorizing cat holes, but Whitney Zone isn't one of them. You'd agree with that right?

You're all over the place analytically, and your decomposition argument, the "cat holes are authorized in some areas, so they must be authorized in all areas," and the "they're talking about RVs" arguments aren't persuading me, so yeah, I agree there's no point in debating further.

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#46055 - 05/02/16 12:23 AM Re: Wag Bags [Re: eje67]
wagga Offline


Registered: 10/07/09
Posts: 2212
Loc: Humbug Reach (Pop. 3)
The wag bag is not necessarily un-natural. The Sunbird (Nectarinia jugularis 261.11(d)) displays this at 4:50.

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#46056 - 05/02/16 05:36 AM Re: Wag Bags [Re: eje67]
saltydog Offline


Registered: 02/03/11
Posts: 1549
Loc: Valley Ford CA!!!!
eje67

Go to law school.

Pay particular attention in Legal Reasoning and Analysis, Legislative Construction, Administrative Law, and Jurisprudence.

Or, write a letter to each of the Forest Superintendents where burying of human waste is recommended to hikers (you could start with Inyo) informing them that the practice violates 36 CFR 261.11.

Then get back to me.

Dog out.


Edited by saltydog (05/02/16 06:39 AM)
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#46061 - 05/02/16 07:11 AM Re: Wag Bags [Re: saltydog]
eje67 Offline


Registered: 07/09/14
Posts: 68
Loc: Los Angeles County
So, do you still say that "feces isn't waste"? lol. Misstating my position is a great response, congratulations you win! I didn't expect a credible comeback, and you did not disappoint.

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#46066 - 05/02/16 08:43 AM Re: Wag Bags [Re: eje67]
SierraNevada Offline


Registered: 09/05/11
Posts: 1100
Loc: NorCal
This always seems to become a controversial topic at some point. eje67 found an interesting legal case to discuss, thank you.

How well that case applies to Whitney is a legitimate debate. Looking at the big picture, Mr. Wasson established "permanent residence" living at his mining claim for 12 months. He was also cited for unlawful residence on Forest Service lands, claiming that the FS has no right to remove his permanent residence because he made a mining claim. He was basically an irresponsible squatter. It wasn't just the bucket full of crap he left behind, the FS removed all his other belonging as well. He claimed his bucket was an alternative to the port-a-potty that he agreed to use.

A permanent mining residence where one agrees to install a port-a-potty is very different than trail hiking and backpacking. Yes, the definition of "waste" could be stretched to include "human waste," I'll give you that. "Sewage" must also be "conveyed" so that would not apply. So it comes down how "human waste" is described and regulated in common practice. A reality-based definition if you will.

As to a national policy requiring hikers and backpackers to remove their human waste, that is just not the case in standard practice. Some people might want such a policy, but there would be a huge backlash from the millions of hikers who have been told to bury their human waste for decades, with specific "leave no trace" directions.

Special rules in a National Forest require a regulation, typically a Forest Order, which must comply with NEPA. Many of them are so minor they fall under pre-established exemptions, and that exception is cited in the FO. Requiring removal of human waste creates unintended impacts due to non-compliance (bags left behind). Inyo has established a voluntary pack-out system that is creating environmental impacts without specific regulation and without completing the NEPA process that was started and aborted. If they want to force this into a legal proceeding by writing citations, that would get very interesting. Maybe it will eventually lead to a more effective solution than what we have now.

In the mean time, I again urge everyone to do the right thing for the environment. Don't use an ineffective cat hole, don't leave bags behind. If you want to protest, there are clever ways to do that without impacting everyone else. If you really care a lot about this, get involved in some way to make things better.

Edited for minor typos.


Edited by SierraNevada (05/02/16 09:11 AM)

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#46069 - 05/02/16 09:22 AM Re: Wag Bags [Re: SierraNevada]
eje67 Offline


Registered: 07/09/14
Posts: 68
Loc: Los Angeles County
The regulation that was used to cite Wasson is the default general prohibition that applies across the board to national forest users, whether they be miners, hikers, backpackers. The analytical framework is straightforward: (1) is it garbage? (2) was it removed from the site or area? (3) was it deposited in receptacle or place provided for the purpose of disposal of garbage? Depositing waste in a cat hole in an area where cat holes are allowed satisfies (3); depositing waste in a cat hole in an area where cat holes are not allowed does not. Cat holes are allowed/tolerated/permitted/recommended in a lot of places...but not all of them.

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#46070 - 05/02/16 09:32 AM Re: Wag Bags [Re: eje67]
Whitney Fan Offline


Registered: 12/02/09
Posts: 213
Loc: Las Vegas
Great news! Not confirmed yet, but the word is that SCOTUS has agreed to hear this case!

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