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[ft-l] President's Bush's new forest policy for logging and forest fires

I guess there is something to be said about the definite and major
differences in being a true Conservationist and
the "IN" practice of being an Environmentalist.

Brad Grant

----- Original Message -----
From: "J Bryan Kramer" <jbryankramer@msn.com>
To: <ft-l@mailman.backcountry.net>
Sent: Tuesday, September 03, 2002 6:55 PM
Subject: RE: [ft-l] President's Bush's new forest policy for logging and
forest fires

> Thinking on this I don't understand how anyone can logically oppose a
> program of reducing the fire load of the forests. I had a long talk with a
> Ranger at Bryce when we were out there. He said that Bryce and a lot of
> other National Parks are doomed unless drastic action is taken. The fire
> load is so high, something like twenty times historical values, that once
> fire gets started the whole park will be reduced to ashes. Fire fighters
> will have no chance of stopping such a fire he said. Flames would be over
> hundred feet high, and old growth trees will be completely destroyed along
> with most of the wildlife.
> All this can, as I'm sure you know, back to the NPS and Forest Service
> policies adopted back before WWII after some major fires demolished a
> of towns with great loss of life. But it's rather obvious now that the
> policy was just wrong. But even tho just about everyone admits that the
> policy was wrongheaded some groups refuse to consider taking corrective
> action so that the natural cycle of wild fires every 20 years or so can be
> allowed to start again.
> I work near Gainesville at the Deerhaven Generating Station, you may be
> familiar with the site. Its between Gainesville and Alachua and we have
> about 1200 acres of land. Most of it is forested. The City has gone thru a
> wise policy of getting the UF Forestry people to help reduce the fire load
> in these woods. Over 3 or 4 years they have thinned the woods ( having a
> commercial logger do the work), done controlled burns and created a system
> of woods and meadows on the property. All of this was done in sections so
> the critters living there (and there are a lot of them on site: deer,
> turkey, otter, eagles, osprey and so on.) have been able to move to a
> unaffected section of the site when work or burns were being done.
> The site still looks a bit ugly but I think that after another year or two
> it will look rather good as the litter decays off and the burns fade. I
> assume this is the same thing that the feds want to do in the National
> and forests. The creation of meadows in the solid block of trees is
> to benefit the wildlife population, the biological productivity of forests
> is supposed be much less than that of meadows. Also if this area was open
> for hiking I think a mix of trees and meadows would be more attractive. By
> meadows I mean that they thinned something like 80-90% of trees from
> wandering strips of land leaving large blocks of trees in between. They
> the largest trees behind.
> The political aspect of your complaints is pointed out by the fact that NO
> environmental organizations raised a cry when Senator Daschle exempted all
> of South Dakota from any lawsuits which would prevent the same process
> occurring in his state. Environmental groups have blocked fire load
> reduction in the Black Hills for more than 25 years IIRC. He slipped a
> proviso in some unrelated legislation to do this. The silence is even
> since his opponent, a republican, suggested doing the same a couple of
> ago and drew outraged  opposition, just like yours, just for suggesting
> Daschle does it and only silence is heard from people like you.
> How do you justify that?