A wilderness protection group has filed a lawsuit to try to block construction of a 2.2-mile long (3.5-kilometer-long) gondola that would pass through a national forest to connect the ski resort that hosted the 1960 Winter Olympics with a neighboring Lake Tahoe ski resort.
The conservationists want a California judge to set aside Placer County’s approval of the project they say would destroy critical habitat for a rare, federally protected frog and lead to irreversible loss of natural landscape on the edge of a high Sierra wilderness area.
“This will desecrate a wilderness sanctuary,” said Huey Johnson, chairman and founder of the Resource Renewal Institute, a nonprofit organization that oversees the Granite Chief Wilderness Protection League.
The lawsuit said the county’s approval in July was based on an environmental review that hid the cumulative impacts anticipated in conjunction with an associated housing development in the works.
“The project represents the first step…
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