forester licensing regs in Massachusetts

Ron Wenrich woodtick at lebmofo.com
Tue Dec 29 16:55:19 EST 1998



Joseph Zorzin wrote:

> I think the bottom line for me is that- at this time- most forest land
> around here is not managed and there are a lot of qualified foresters
> who would like to be doing just that.

I think that's a true statement for most of the Northeast.

>
>
> It seems that nothing less than a miracle is going to solve this
> situation. I've not proposed destroying landowner rights, and I've not
> proposed forcing anyone to do anything. But there is a great deal of bad
> logging, so there is a problem; but if most people, including the
> forestry profession don't see this as a problem, then I guess there
> isn't a problem, like the fact that our "leaders" don't feel that global
> warming is an issue; until the ice caps melt.
>
> I think there is a forestry problem, and I don't know the answer.
> Throwing out various suggestions is an attempt to get a discussion going
> to find an answer.
>

I don't see it as a forestry problem, I do see it as a harvesting
problem.
The problem we have with forestry is that the vast amount of
landowners
don't like what we are trying to sell.  The crop takes too long to
grow, and
in this day of instant gratification, most landowners are turned off
by the
idea of saving something for the next generation.  Besides, timber
production is low on their priority list.  Is it a function of govt to
raise
that level of priority?  And if they do, how can govt defend not
having it
as a high priority on their own lands?

High grading is a harvesting problem.  If there is to be regulations,
then
it should be on the industry and not the landowner.  This does away
with the
landowner rights issue.  If a landowner wants to high grade, he can;
however, he will have to do the harvesting by himself.  The problem
with
most regulations is who will oversee the loggers?  This should be a
function
of govt, since they have set the mandate.  Most state agencies
couldn't
manage the workload.  They could certify and license foresters,
however,
industrial foresters will also qualify.  The regulation would than be
that
all commercial harvesting of timber will require a harvesting plan
registered by a licensed forester.  Commercial logging on self owned
lands
would be exempt, as well as state and federal lands..  Harvesting
plans
would be within the BMPs designated by the area, subject to state or
local
govt review.

These laws are tough to get at the state level.  But, it is much
easier to
impose at the local level.  The problem is that the enforcement of
these
regulations are by the local engineer, who just rubber stamps whatever
the
logger wants.  It may be easier to implement the regs that you want at
a
local level.  Consultants then would be the ones who would review the
harvest plans on a fee basis to the local govt which would be
reimbursed by
the cost of filing a plan.  On a county level, it may be cost
effective for
the county to have a forester.  I think this should be the thrust of
the
revolution.  Grassroots instead of trying to get to the top.

Industry knows that there is starting to be some problems.  That is
the push
behind SFI.  I don't see it to be anymore than an advertising ploy for
many
of those who use it.  Its self-governing and , IMO its useless.

RDW



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