We “fiddle” while the West burns — while also suffering droughts, weed invasions, violent weather, water calls, etc. Yet we don’t get it — or at best, refuse to acknowledge it. Earth as a “ball of rock” will likely continue in the absence of an apocalyptic event. What is being lost is Earth’s productivity and ecosystem services — its ability to sustain living organisms. And we of any species are not well equipped to survive — having morphed into largely sedentary animals with faces glued to the latest com-tech fad. In our inability to comprehend or admit the danger we approve new wells in overtaxed aquifers, fail to curtail public grazing — the use that established cheat grass, and now maintains and expands it. So the same ranges just keep burning. Since society’s “in” thing remains moving further into the “sticks,” we are ringing our hands through another damaging fire season. It appears the common sense of a population majority — inclusive of resource managers, permittees, and politicians — wouldn’t cover the head of a proverbial pin. But don’t let me divert your attention from those iPads or whatever — unless of course you want to become informed, speak up, and help do something before it’s too late.
Jim Prunty, Twin Falls
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