Currently viewing the category: "Wildfire"

The timber industry and its advocates continue to promote a number of myths designed to garner public support for increased logging. These myths are being repeated by many in Congress, including all western Republicans and some western Democrats who are advocating new legislation that would weaken environmental protections, reduce public review of the Forest Service timber […]

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It is now wildfire season in Montana and in the rest of the western states. It is similar to recent years. This means quite a few wildfires in August. The year-to-year differences are almost entirely accounted for by the weather (forest dryness, the temperature, thunderstorms, and presence of wind). August is the prime month because […]

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Last week a Associated Press article proclaimed that the rehabilitation taking place after the Soda Fire, which burned 225,953 acres along highway 95 on the Oregon/Idaho border in August, was going well. Not so fast. According to a report from Roger Rosentreter, a retired PhD botanist who worked for the BLM for 38 years, things aren’t going […]

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The Forest Service solution to large wildfires is more logging, but this prescription ignores the growing body of scientific research that suggests that logging/thinning/prescribed burning does not work under severe fire conditions.

Why is this important?

Because the vast majority of all fires self-extinguish whether we do anything or not. However, all large fires — […]

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Please read the news article I have pasted below. Then come back and read my commentary.  There are some great quotes from Chad Hanson and a few others that counter the industrial forestry perspective that we can and need to log our way out of large fires. However, the idea that most historic fires were small […]

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The standoff in Harney County Oregon highlights one of the great ironies of the rural West. More than any other people, western rural residents are more heavily dependent on government (read taxpayer) largesse than any other part of America. Yet the average rural resident sees himself/herself as a  “rugged and independent” individual and by […]

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Conservationists, if they wish to succeed in legislating more wilderness and parks in the West, must actively counter the misinformation and flawed logic surrounding forest health, thinning and wildfires. It may seem counter-intuitive, but fighting the fear of fire is, often, the best way to promote new wilderness/park designation.

There is an on-going effort by […]

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The Ecological Importance of Mixed Severity Fires: Nature’s Phoenix Edited by Dominick DellaSala and Chad Hanson.

340 pages $89.95

This important new collection of essays in The Ecological Importance of Mixed-Severity Fires presents some of the latest research and thinking about wildfires by some of the most respected fire ecologists and other thinkers in the […]

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A common assertion, oft repeated by the timber industry, the Forest Service, and even far too many conservation groups (like The Nature Conservancy) is that a hundred years of fire suppression has contributed to the large wildfires we are seeing around the West.

The logic goes like this. […]

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One of the assumptions behind federal legislation like the Resilient Federal Forest Act is that more thinning of our forests will halt or significantly reduce large wildfires. Yet the scientific evidence for such a conclusion is ambiguous at best.

Any number of studies have find that thinning usually fails under severe fire conditions.

First, the […]

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October 2016
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‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey