*Environmentalists should allow professionals to do their work

Editor’s note:  This opinion piece, by Rufus R. Kimrey, was published on line in the BILLINGS GAZETTE on Aug. 23rd.  I initially saw it listed on Nick Smith’s circular.

This is a response to the Aug. 1 article concerning the proposed logging by the Forest Service near Red Lodge.

The U.S. National Forests were created around 100 years ago to protect the natural resources of the watersheds of every major river system in the United States. The U.S. Forest Service was created to insure the proper management of these resources, forests, wildlife and water. This agency has traditionally been staffed by individuals educated and trained in the appropriate biological sciences such as forest management, wildlife management, fisheries management, range management, etc.

(continue reading at source)


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3 Responses to *Environmentalists should allow professionals to do their work

  1. Robin Stanley says:

    My only concern is that after several decades of being beat up on by the so called environmentalists, (I say “so called” because if they really cared about the environment, they would want forests managed and not left to nature), the Forest Service has become soft on forest management and has shifted toward recreation, wildlife, fisheries, and anything else to avoid the battle over timber harvest. If the Forest Service could go back to doing what they were commissioned to do in the beginning “managing our forests” things would be different. But Congress has given the anti-forest manage group the “veto stamp” to kill any logging project they are not happy with either at the collaborative level or in the courts. So things will only continue to get worse as long as Congress allows it.

  2. 2ndLaw says:

    The forest professionals are driven by federal timber targets and poor training in forestry schools that confuse agriculture with forestry. It was “forest professionals” who planned (and nearly succeeded) in converting virtually all of the NW old growth forests to tree farms, that lead to the listing of the northern spotted owl. It was “forest professionals” who removed all the wood and complexity from our salmon streams. It was “forest professionals” who suppressed fire for decades and allowed fuel to build up. It was “forest professionals” who built a vast an unmanageable road network that ruined the public wilderness. It is forest professionals who still recommend post-fire salvage logging which conflicts with ecological science.

  3. Robin Stanley says:

    It was these professionals that thinned the forests with logging projects to decrease the amount of fire fuel to help reduce the potential for catastrophic fires. It was professional foresters that built a road system that provided fire fighters access to fires with equipment to build fire lines. It was the professionals that built a road system that allowed the elderly, the handicapped and those who could not afford horses the opportunity to access our woods to pick huckleberries, to fish, to hunt, and to just the chance to experience our forests rather than saving them as wilderness areas so only the young, healthy and affluent can have their own private forests to experience. The only way to stop catastrophic fires is to reduce the amount of fuel. If the professionals had been allowed to continue doing their jobs by “Logging” (their I said it), and decreasing the amount of fire fuel, the risk of catastrophic fire is also decreased. Roads serve as access and fire breaks, kinda like the trenches the fire fighters dig by hand and with bulldozers during a fire event. But there will always be some who prefer to lock up the forests, deny the elderly, handicapped and less affluent the opportunity to experience our forests and would rather see them burn up with catastrophic fires, destroying wildlife habitat, destroying water systems, destroying endangered species, killing wildlife, burning up public and private property and ruining lives rather than see forests managed.

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