Richard Fox

Ron Wenrich woodtick at lebmofo.com
Sat Jan 18 11:00:45 EST 1997


The issue which has been running through this thread is not is the
relevancy of the SAF to the consulting profession.  Environmental issues
are taken seriously by most consultants.  But where does states rights end
and individual rights begin?

Most consultants have a large base of private landowners.  These people pay
the taxes and sustain the risk of ownership..disease, fire, market
flucuations.  Government lands do not usually pay local property tax, and
are, therefore, a burden to the rest of the taxpayers.  Since they have the
ultimate risk, should they have the ultimate say in how their property is
managed?  Remember, non-managment is a management option.

I think that any consultant worth his salt, does take into account the
environmental considerations for that site.  Unfortunately, envrionmental
standards are painted with a broad brush, and areas which should not be
included are included.  There is little to no leeway given to the manager. 
Still, the taxes must be paid, even though the utility of the property has
been robbed.

Does the SAF address these issues?  If not, then they have little relevancy
to most consultants.  

Forest management is a very inexact science.  Managers are constantly
trying to manage an environment which will have importance 20 years and
more into the future.   I remember when you couldn't even sell red oak.  At
that time, we managed for tulip poplar.  I also remember when you could
clearcut wetlands.  It wasn't wise then, and it isn't wise now.

Does this mean we can't utilize the resource?  If a landowner says to
clearcut, and all options have been explained, then a clearcut will occur,
whether I do it or someone else does.  

A lot of the environmental problems do not start in the forest.  Nitrate
deposits are caused by air pollution, not by removing boles from the
forest.  If air pollution was black instead of clear, people would be more
concerned, since they can see it..much like a logging operation.  I have
engaged in unevenaged management to a high degree of success.  The
ecosystem remains in tact, the landowner has received an income, the
remaining trees are still healthy, biodiversity can be achieved, everyone
wins.  Unfortunately, 5 years later, someone else comes and eliminates my
work, because the landowner has changed his mind.






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