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25' buffer around ponds

KMorrisD kmorrisd at aol.com
Sat Aug 15 10:01:43 EST 1998

Joseph Zorzin <redoak at forestmeister.com> wrote:

>Bad logging results in such potential damage as-
>1. fire hazard
>2. silvicultural degradation- (long term financial impact)
>3. aesthetic impact
>4. possible minor damage to streams

We know the impacts are minor relative to industrial pollution and large scale
development.  But there are many people who just hate logging, even carefully
done logging.  They and the environmental (DEP) burros that they complain to
are the big problem.

Of course the DEP burros love these complaints because it gives them more to
do--and more power.  In recent years they've used the threat to water quality
(negligible in this region) as a tool to try to control forestry and logging to
the point of virtually shutting us down.

The cutting practices law in MA was designed expressly to head off the people
who hated logging, and prevent them from writing different restrictive rules
for each town, and to keep the DEP burros out of the woods.  The timber
industry and all stripes of foresters were responsible for that law.  They
wanted one set of rules for all towns and no DEP.  That was progress.

But unfortunately we were left with a situation where `our` burros (DEM) are
supposedly defending us foresters, loggers and landowners against `their`
burros (DEP).  

What you say makes perfect sense, but the political reality is such that, in
the absence of a VERY STRONG consulting foresters' organization, we're going to
have rulebooks and burros.

> If the licensed forester really fouls
>up- such that there is a negative impact on the neighbors, then the guy
>who hires the licensed forester and/or the neighbors have to deal with
>the problem like they deal with a problem with any contractor.

The lawyers would like the sound of this. <G>  I think there is a need for
dispute resolution that doesn't involve lawyers, but can involve other
foresters--preferably not burro foresters.

> If a licensed forester doesn't do his/her job correctly, he
>will be subject to losing his license- 

But who defines `correctly`?  Even with clearly written laws and regulations,
there will be differences of interpretation.  That needs to be anticipated and
dealt with by foresters, not lawyers and burros.

It's imporant to realize in discussions about these issues that burros have
historically served a purpose in society.  They have served as buffers between
private and public (or other private) interests.  They have kept the lawyers
out of the picture (and have enriched themselves almost like lawyers in the

Now that consulting foresters and professional loggers are coming of age, the
burros are no longer necessary.  But the FUNCTION they served--mediating
conflict--still needs to be performed.  The big question is who will perform
that function and how? 

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