No forest management a recipe for disaster
The news reports that temperatures have increased during the past 30 years, causing global warming. Actually, global temperatures have increased for the past 14,000 years as ice glaciers recede.
Various conservation groups have lobbied Congress (with generous donations) to create many laws to stop timber harvesting on federal land.
Ironically, 30 years ago, the spotted owl was designated as an endangered species and required old growth to survive. So all logging operations, truckers, and sawmills were shut down and thousands of employees lost their jobs.
In the past 30 years, federal forest trees grew older and larger. They reproduced by sprouting or seeding, so forests became thicker. Lots of overmature trees died and dried. Bugs also attack trees, causing more dead foliage. This lack of forest management is a recipe for future forest fire disaster.
The giant western wildfires we see today have overabundant dry fuel to generate enough smoke to cover the whole continent. There is more air pollution generated from these fires to easily exceed all U.S. cars and factories. The staggering, unnecessary destruction of wildlife populations is shameful and tragic. Citizens out west are losing their lives and homes.
The conservation clubs were pushing this same old growth program for our local Pigeon River State Forest. If a fire started in the old growth area, then that fire must be left to burn until the boundary is reached. This is nature’s way. Who wants this? Not the deer, bears, birds, insects, fish, reptiles, and even the endangered species and the people that use the forest for recreation. I believe that anyone that wants this lives in a fantasy world.
The Forest Service should return to a wise forest management program and reduce fire fuel loads by at least 50%. Remove dead, overmature trees, and clear strips to slow fires.