Science confirms fuels reduction policies needed to stem wildfires – Free Range Report:
"Across the country, particularly in the west, national forests have millions of dead and dying trees. Growth and mortality rates far outpace fuels reduction and timber harvesting.
Forests have become unnaturally dense and overgrown, and insect epidemics have laid waste to entire landscapes.
Unsustainable fuel loads are resulting in larger wildfires, which helps explain why more than half of the Forest Service’s budget is now dedicated to wildfire suppression.
...There’s plenty of science that shows fuel reduction helps reduce the size and severity of fires. ...Congress must also place reasonable limits on activist lawsuits that obstruct efforts to improve forest health, reduce the risks of catastrophic wildfires and enhance and protect wildlife habitat for vulnerable species.
...The Chetco Bar Fire is an example of the limits of the “let-it-burn” philosophy that has come to influence federal land management, and how arbitrary land “protections” can easily become counterproductive.
It also shows that federal spending alone won’t stop the spread of catastrophic wildfires.
New policies are needed to promote science-based, active forest management that is desperately needed on federal lands to protect our forests and communities.
Nick Smith is the executive director of Healthy Forests, Healthy Communities, a non-profit, non-partisan grassroots coalition that advocates for active management of America’s federally owned forests.