Old-growth trees to fall in the Sierra

Larry Harrell lhfotoware at hotmail.com
Wed Mar 10 23:55:20 EST 2004

wolfbat359 at mindspring.com (Donald L Ferrt) wrote in message news:<b9eb3efe.0403100145.199cea65 at posting.google.com>...
> http://www.hcn.org/servlets/hcn.Article?article_id=14591
> WESTERN ROUNDUP - March 1, 2004
> Old-growth trees to fall in the Sierra
> by Cosmo Garvin
> The cover of the Forest Service brochure announcing the "Forests With
> a Future" plan for Sierra Nevada forests. US FOREST SERVICE
> The Forest Service ditches a collaborative forest plan in favor of
> getting out the cut
> SACRAMENTO, CALIFORNIA ? When U.S. Undersecretary of Agriculture ? and
> former timber lobbyist ? Mark Rey praised California's Sierra Nevada
> Framework as the "the best effort to date to lay out a blueprint to
> manage the forests of the Sierra Nevada," nobody was more pleasantly
> surprised than Craig Thomas.
> "I just thought, holy shit. It was beautiful," recalls Thomas, who, as
> director of the Sierra Nevada Forest Protection Campaign, had worked
> for years on the unprecedented agreement to balance logging, fire
> management and natural habitat on 11 million acres of national forest
> in California (HCN, 8/27/01: Restoring the Range of Light).
> The plan was held up as a model of public participation and
> collaboration involving environmental, timber and recreation groups.
> But it was approved in the last days of the Clinton presidency, and
> Thomas feared the Bush administration might try to water it down.
> Instead, Rey and the Forest Service not only defended the plan against
> a slew of appeals by timber and off-highway vehicle groups, "they were
> even eloquent about it," says Thomas. So eloquent that, after Rey held
> a press conference promising the Bush administration's commitment to
> the plan, Thomas was moved to proclaim, "Today the sun is shining on
> California's Range of Light."
> The sun didn't shine for long. Three days later, on New Year's Day
> 2002, the Forest Service's new regional forester, Jack Blackwell,
> quietly announced that he was beginning a major overhaul of the
> Framework (HCN, 5/12/03: New forest plan leaves owls in a lurch).
> Two years later, the Sierra Nevada Framework has never been
> implemented, despite the Bush administration's early promises, and the
> plan's widespread popularity. Instead, the Forest Service appears to
> have abandoned the broad public participation that marked the creation
> of the Framework, in favor of a slick marketing campaign that touts
> logging big trees as a way to combat wildfire.

The Framework was only modified into something that was not impossible
to implement. YEARS before the original plan was approved (as a
Clinton fantasy), many forest professionals questioned the balance
between mechanical removal and prescribed fire. There are not enough
burn days in the fall to burn the nearly tripled acreage targets
<----- (circa 1993) called for in the old plan. At the same time,
annual timber targets dropped from 60 million board feet (1989) to 45
million board feet (1991) to 16 million board feet (1993) to a mere 2
million board feet of timber annually on my old Ranger District.
Contrast that with the 300 million board feet of dead timber which was
harvested there from 1989 to 1993 (green timber was not sold during
those years). What is wrong with this system?
> Big trees will topple
> The "Forests With a Future" proposal, unveiled by Blackwell in late
> January, would allow the logging of some 450 million board-feet of
> timber a year ? almost triple the amount allowed under the Framework.

Try focusing on what we leave in the forest. Superior leave trees (and
all trees above 30" dbh) will be spaced out at approximately 22-30
foot triangular spacing. Separating the crowns and reducing stocking
will reduce catastrophic fires and improve forest health. Fuels
reduction projects will remove trees mostly in the 9-18" dbh range.
Hardly "old growth". Most 30" trees growing on the west side of the
Sierra Nevada are barely middle-aged.

> The deadline for administrative appeals of the plan is April 29. If
> the Forest Service doesn't make significant changes, Forests With a
> Future most likely has a future in court.

I'd say that it's a 100% certainty. I'm looking forward to it!
> California Attorney General Bill Lockyer has said he will sue the
> Forest Service if necessary to protect the Framework. "The original
> Framework was the product of years of work by every group that had a
> stake," says Lockyer spokesman Tom Dresslar. "Before it ever had a
> chance to work, the Bush administration came in and changed it."

What does an attorney general know about ecosystem management, anyway?

> The author covers the environment for the Sacramento News and Review.
> U.S. Forest Service 707-562-8737, www.forestsfuture.fs.fed.us. 
> Sierra Nevada Forest Protection Campaign 530-622-8718,
> www.sierracampaign.org.

Oh, yeah....he's a REAL authority....lol
> Click for more stories about Forests.
> Click for more stories about National Forest Service.
> Search HCN's Archives for more stories like this one.
> Search the complete archives.

Just the reference to the "National Forest Service" shows his
ignorance. At least he didn't call us the "Forestry Service". We are
the "US Forest Service".

Larry,    the truth is out there.....in the woods.....where I work

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