Wrangell Sentinel -

By Don Thompson
The Associated Press 

Debate heats up over tree thinning to slow wildfires

 

October 14, 2021

AP Photo/Nathan Howard

The Bootleg Fire in July destroyed this home near Bly, Oregon. Each year thousands of acres of dense timber are thinned near remote communities, all designed to slow the spread of massive wildfires. While most scientific studies find such forest management is a valuable tool, environmental advocates say data from recent gigantic wildfires support their long-running assertion that efforts to slow wildfires have instead accelerated their spread.

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - Firefighters and numerous studies credit intensive forest thinning projects with helping save communities like those recently threatened near Lake Tahoe in California and Nevada, but dissent from some environmental advocacy groups is roiling the scientific community.

States in the U.S. West and the federal government each year thin thousands of acres of dense timber and carve broad swaths through the forest near remote communities, all designed to slow the spread of massive wildfires.

The projects aim to return overgrown forests to the way they were more than a cen...



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