[env-trinity] The Mercury News: The reason that California wildfires are worse than ever

Brian Hill bhill at igc.org
Tue Aug 7 17:23:10 PDT 2018


comments in text


Brian Hill
bhill at igc.org



> On Aug 7, 2018, at 4:36 PM, Denise Boggs <denise at conservationcongress-ca.org> wrote:
> 
> I agree the projects were ill conceived and poorly executed. Unfortunately they were implemented and often with collaborative support. I encourage anyone to take a road trip through McCloud  and look at the logging on that District. It is some of the worst logging I have ever seen. It looks like private lands (SPI) logging. You will be hard pressed to find much wildlife on that District. In 14 years I have seen 1 Bald eagle and a few deer - that’s it. This thread began with my criticism of the the 1st 48 project on the SRNF. The Trinity Collaborative signed off on this project. I have spoken with two members of the collaborative and they both said what the documents describe is not what they agreed to.

please document or bring up in next Collaborative meeting


> The FS has been caught lying to the public more times than I can count. And a federal investigation showed the FS often does not implement collaborative projects as agreed to.

please document so that action may be taken


> When I review a project I read every document: all specialist reports; the CE/EA/EIS/DN/ and/or FONSI; LOC and/or BiOp - the entire record. It is amazing what you will find. And I would bet anyone on the collaborative that the projects they agree to are not implemented as they believe they will be implemented.  And they won’t reduce fire risk…..

only with good documentation can accusations be turned into action - thanks.  I know documenting is a lot of work, but it can help save our forests and prevent future fires.
> 
> Denise Boggs
> Www.conservationcongress-ca.org <http://www.conservationcongress-ca.org/>
> 
> "Some of them were angry at the way the Earth was abused; By the men who learned how to forge her beauty into power; And they struggled to protect her from them, only to be confused; By the magnitude of the fury in the final hour."
> 'Before the Deluge' Jackson Browne
> 
> On Aug 7, 2018, at 3:21 PM, lrlake at aol.com <mailto:lrlake at aol.com> wrote:
> 
>> Denise,
>> 
>> You have not seen results because many of the plans, to which you refer, were either illconciived  or poorly executed; or never done at all.
>> 
>> 
>> Lawrence Lake, RPF
>> Redding, CA
>> 
>> 
>> -----Original Message-----
>> From: Denise Boggs <denise at conservationcongress-ca.org <mailto:denise at conservationcongress-ca.org>>
>> To: kristi bevard <kbevard at gmail.com <mailto:kbevard at gmail.com>>
>> Cc: env-trinity <env-trinity at velocipede.dcn.davis.ca.us <mailto:env-trinity at velocipede.dcn.davis.ca.us>>
>> Sent: Tue, Aug 7, 2018 9:13 am
>> Subject: Re: [env-trinity] The Mercury News: The reason that California wildfires are worse than ever
>> 
>> http://www.latimes.com/business/hiltzik/la-fi-hiltzik-trump-fires-20180806-story.html#nws=mcnewsletter <http://www.latimes.com/business/hiltzik/la-fi-hiltzik-trump-fires-20180806-story.html#nws=mcnewsletter>
>> 
>> “But those policies fall within the jurisdiction of the federal government, as well as the state, since national forests and their environs are where much of the encroachment — the so-called wildland-urban interface — has taken place. Among other factors, federal spending on fire suppression in the national forests has effectively subsidized the expansion of the interface <https://heinonline.org/HOL/LandingPage?handle=hein.journals/bcenv42&div=21&id=&page>, by taking the costs of fire control off the shoulders of the residents.”
>> 
>> With all due respect I don’t think this discussion is about “blaming” people for where they live. I do think it’s about pointing out some facts  many people aren’t aware of.  You are right - living in the forest doesn’t cause fires - but it does cause inherent risks that are largely ignored by many people. People choose to live in in a WUI or in the forest (inholdings) - they don’t have to live there. That decision carries an inherent risk and should also carry a personal responsibility to implement fire-wise practices. I don’t see much of that happening. When I do my field work I often come across places with firewood stacked next to the house; trees next to the house with branches hanging over the roofs; no metal roofs; shrubs not cleared from within 100 feet of the home; etc. These places are going to burn if a wildfire hits and whose fault is it? The Forest Service? No. That’s not blaming - that’s pointing out the truth and why many houses that burn didn’t have to. As this article states, logging used as fire suppression is subsidizing the expansion of the WUI when we should be zoning areas out of consideration for home construction. Instead the opposite is happening. And fire suppression increases wildfires as we have all seen for over a decade now. FS policy on wildfire is insanity. Logging to suppress fires increases fire risk so let’s log more. Wash, rinse repeat. 
>> 
>> Why does this matter? Because many people believe the answer lies in National Forest’s logging more to prevent wildfire. The FS propaganda machine, supported by the timber industry, is in full action causing a false sense of security for the people who live in these areas; and for some, a reason not to implement fire wise practices. Logging obviously does not prevent wildfire - never has and never will - as your list well points out. I esp. appreciated you mentioning #2 (Santa Rosa sub-divisions) which Zinke, industry and the FS used as a whipping boy to increase public lands logging, when that fire had nothing to do with public lands. 
>> 
>> For 14 years I have been working on the Shasta-Trinity (for many years the largest timber producing forest in the state); Mendocino; Six Rivers; and Modoc NFs. I have personally seen the results of these projects to “prevent catastrophic wildfire”, that actually increase the risk by opening up the canopy making the area hotter, drier, and windier, and then leaving slash piles 20 feet high to dry out and provide tinder. This increases fire risk - it doesn’t lower it. They take the largest, oldest, most fire resistant trees because that is what industry wants. They don’t want the plantations the FS has created that ARE a fire hazard.
>> 
>> Look at photos of our National Forests pre WWII before the FS started “managing them.” They were beautiful; more acreage burned in the 20s, 30s and 40s than now; and we had far more wildlife (and far less people living in these areas).  Look at the areas of the Rim Fire that burned and weren’t salvaged log to see beautiful natural forest recovery. Western forests and wildlife evolved with wildfire. That always seems to get lost in these discussions. Wildfire in itself is not ‘unhealthy’. Humans living in or near the forest can be ‘unhealthy’, and it must be recognized that that with climate change, some fires will not be able to be stopped. They are climate driven and they are going to burn. The Carr fire is an example. I feel terrible for the people who have lost their lives and their homes, but logging more NFs would not have stopped this fire. That needs to be acknowledged. But just wait until the politicians are unleashed after this fire - salvage sales will be planned right and left which is the worst thing that could be done. 
>> 
>> So this isn’t about blaming people. It’s connecting the dots because these issues are all related. This discussion needs to happen and it should have occurred 20 years ago. Saying the discussion is about blaming people appears to me to be a way to shut the conversation down, when we need to turn it up. If not now, when? 
>> 
>> Denise Boggs
>> Www.conservationcongress-ca.org <http://www.conservationcongress-ca.org/>
>> 
>> "Some of them were angry at the way the Earth was abused; By the men who learned how to forge her beauty into power; And they struggled to protect her from them, only to be confused; By the magnitude of the fury in the final hour."
>> 'Before the Deluge' Jackson Browne
>> 
>> On Aug 6, 2018, at 9:35 PM, kristi bevard <kbevard at gmail.com <mailto:kbevard at gmail.com>> wrote:
>> 
>> My two cents.
>> 
>> Many opinions are being expressed about fires, responders and land use planning in California.
>> 
>> Many contributing factors to fires in California exist. It makes no sense to chastise others for choosing to live near the forest. 1. As it turns out, some of the most devastating fires in Trinity were caused by government sponsored agencies burning meadows during a dry, windy day.
>> 2. If some folks remember the Santa Rosa fire, all of the incinerated homes (with the exception of a few wineries) were in subdivision designed neighborhoods, not wildland fire hazard areas.
>> 3. We, who pay insurance, pay for all catastrophes, including disasters caused by flooding, tornadoes and other maladies. For those of us who live in the forest, our insurance is extremely limited.
>> 4.  There are many reasons why our lands are burning;
>> A) little or no weed control from asphalt shoulder to 12 ft inland on both sides of all roads
>> B) people who improperly chain up when pulling a trailer
>> C) people who toss lit cigarettes out of their windows, into dry grass
>> D) transients who have unattended, out of season fires to keep warm
>> E) lightening strikes
>> F) people driving after their tire has shredded and their rim throws flames into dry grass which was never cut by the state, county or fed.
>> 
>> The list above are some reasons we are on fire. Stop making generalized judgements about people who live in the country or the forest. Living here doesn't cause fires.
>> 
>> Trust me when I say; we pay for the privilege in spades.
>> 
>> Kristi A Bevard
>> Former TAMWG member
>> Trinity County Resident
>> 
>> On Sun, Aug 5, 2018, 18:26 Denise Boggs <denise at conservationcongress-ca.org <mailto:denise at conservationcongress-ca.org>> wrote:
>> The National Forests aren’t the problem. It’s people living in areas they shouldn’t be. Interesting stats on CA and the wildfires throughout the state over time. Some of these areas have burned multiple times and people keep rebuilding in the same place. The state’s landscape is prone to fires and they are going burn regardless. Climate change only makes it worse.
>> 
>> “The Carr Fire burning in Shasta County was started by a single spark from a towed trailer on a road in Whiskeytown National Recreation Area. It then quickly raced into high-end new residential subdivisions such as Lake Redding Estates, where it destroyed 65 upscale homes.”
>> The reason that California wildfires are worse than ever
>> The Mercury News
>> As California grows, people are moving into the rural edges of cities where we weren't before -- creating an "expanding bull’s eye’ effect" of higher wildfire risk, according to a new study by geographer Stephen M. Strader of Villanova University. Read the full story <https://apple.news/AO3JyVOhZQvS4W7C_ou3raQ>
>> Denise Boggs
>> Www.conservationcongress-ca.org <http://www.conservationcongress-ca.org/>
>> 
>> "Some of them were angry at the way the Earth was abused; By the men who learned how to forge her beauty into power; And they struggled to protect her from them, only to be confused; By the magnitude of the fury in the final hour."
>> 'Before the Deluge' Jackson Browne
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