My esteemed and educated friends promote forest management by fire, even creating a prestigious name: “Fire Science.” However, they are flummoxed by logic.
We spend a billion dollars to burn a billion dollars’ worth of renewable resources and accidentally burn another billion dollars of private property. In the process we cause extensive erosion lasting for many years, damaging streams, reservoirs, roads, habitat and costing at least hundreds of millions of dollars. But most of all is the unnecessary deaths to achieve this fire experiment.
There is little difference between most controlled burns and wildfires as to cost or results.
We do this to improve habitat while incinerating lots of critters in the process. Somehow we believe that critters like black trees better than green trees. I sense they may disagree.
We manage forest as wild forests; they are not. Instead most have become urban forests. No amount of “science” will change that. We have no right to smoke and burn people out, threaten their property and endanger their lives or the lives of firefighters sent out to engage in this experiment.
We once achieved the healthiest forests and habitat in history by the 1960s; we can do this again without deadly fire.
Terry Platts, Gooding