Kerry's forest ideas out of step with sound ecosystem management

Fresno Farms brutus at u.com
Sat Jul 10 11:56:08 EST 2004


 On 8 Jul 2004, Larry Harrell:
> (Lloyd Parker)
> >    (Larry Harrell) wrote:

> All I've seen is "preservationis rhetoric" from the Democrats who
> didn't vote for "Healthy Forests". I would be interested in specifics
> on how they would deal with 12 million dead trees on the San
> Bernardino and a similar number on the Bitterroot.


"Healthy Forests" (ha ha) is largely a market solution. 
It could work ?? in ideal conditions such as the PNW, where
fire danger is hardly a major theat compared to SW forests.
This is due to the economics of moist fast growing forests.

Thus, Healthy Forests is analogous to when you wrote:
>  Congress keeps passing laws that are imposed on 
> east slope pine forests and coastal spruce alike, to 
> the detriment of both.

...it attempting to apply PNW solutions to all Western forests,
but using the SW fire danger to market it. 
  
             from another post in this thread: 
   ============================

---------  On 5 Jul 2004 Larry Harrell:

> 10 years now. The San Bernardino National Forest has been
>  "hugged" to death (12 MILLION TREES!).

---------  On Sat, 10 Jul 2004, Fresno Farms:
The San Bernardino National Forest is a good example since it's
hot, dry, and subject to emmense suburban development from the
expensive Los Angeles area.  The South Western forests are
headlines waiting to happen. 

The part of San Bernardino National Forest that I'm most familiar
with, near Idyllwild, elv about 6,000 ft, is indeed overcrowed
with trees (and people), but I understand that's not due to
tree-hugging, but to market forces.
  About 70- to 90 years ago it was clearcut.  The thick regrowth
and dry slow growing conditions (12 inch ponderosa pines,
70-years old is not uncommon) is now exhausting the limited soil
moisture, causing a (bark beetle) die back.  Indeed, the local
trout-bearing lower Stawberry Creek has dried up in recent
decades. It seems to be reverting back to natural conditions --
low density quasi-desert forest.  Many areas have 30% standing
dead flags - and worse.  (This fire threat has the locals
trembling in fear, which as we all know, makes them highly
suseptible to (anti-enviro) propaganda.)

(This die-off is also causing beetle swarms, which seem to be
having some effect in moister? soils such as near meadows, but
these areas tend to be more densely forested, with larger trees,
hence they may no longer be moister.)  

  But they can't GIVE that forest away to timber.  The
combination of small size and rugged terrain, and local market
saturation makes it economically unfeasable. Nobody wants that
wood. 

This seems to be the perfect example of where market solutions
are not just doomed to fail, they simply don't exist, period. 
   ============================end insert

The happy solution is, there is no happy solution.
Our forests have been ruined by Timber (includes USFS, BLM, etc).
You ask -- My house burned down, what's the happy solution?

The solution is, we pick up the pieces, do the best we can, and
recognize that 400 years (since the Spanish) of damage is not
going to be undone in a few decades.

You want to spead up the solution?  Refund the government.     

> All I've seen is "preservationis rhetoric" from the Democrats who
> didn't vote for "Healthy Forests". 

And some people see flying saucers.  Diane Feinstein's proposal
was hardly "preservationis rhetoric."   It would have been ideal
for the people of say, Iydllwild....Focus the money to protect
human structures and towns, and let the forest repair itself,
largly via wildfire. That is a pragmatic approach, but since it
doesn't satisfy the Repubs simple hollywood movie view of happy
endings, they seem to be saying (again) do ANYTHING, even its
wrong. 
Keep in mind she has to work within the constraints of a Repub
Congress, which is why even her proposal was shot down.  Nobody
can proprose the real solotion: refund government, in this
free-lunch political climate. 

> I would be interested in specifics on how 
> they would deal with 12 million dead trees on the San
> Bernardino and a similar number on the Bitterroot.

You've seen mine.  Now tell us how HF (or any other attempted
quick fix) would help San Bernardino.  First, explain the funding
for all these magic tricks. 

************************
  The insane twist the facts to fit their world view.
  The rational twist their world view to fit the facts.






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