SACRAMENTO (BRAIN) — A group of trail and forest advocates filed a lawsuit against the U.S. Forest Service for allowing Class 1 e-bikes on non-motorized trails in the Tahoe National Forest without first conducting a public study.
The lawsuit filed Oct. 23 cites a violation of the Travel Management rule, which limits motorized access to certain U.S. Forest Service trails. Before opening non-motorized trails to e-bike use, the Tahoe National Forest should have had a public study that includes analysis under the National Environmental Policy Act to assess the impact of the decision, according to the suit filed in federal court.
Class 1 e-bikes are pedal assist only with no throttle and have a maximum powered speed of 20 mph.
A U.S. Forest Service spokesperson said it will not comment on impending litigation. The Tahoe National Forest is located northwest of Lake Tahoe.
The plaintiffs in the suit include The Wilderness Society, the Gold Country Trails Council, Backcountry Horsemen of California, Back Country Horsemen of America, and the Forest Issues Group. The groups are represented by the Western Environmental Law Center.
“We’re not opposed to e-bikes on federal land,” said Michael Carroll, senior director of The Wilderness Society’s People Outdoors Program. “We want to …read more