Wildfire smoke from poor management, not climate change

Print Article

Don’t be fooled by Wednesday’s article in the DIL (Smoke from western wildfires) which attributes more smoke in our region to “climate change” (whatever that is). In reality, the cause is the poor management practices of the Forest Service relative to our forests who fail to realize that first and foremost, there must be a commitment to put the fires out immediately. There is no such thing as “managing” a forest fire.

In the fifties and sixties, the Forest Service knew the key to controlling wildfire — put them out and put them out immediately. They knew if a fire got over ten acres, the chances of it getting out of control increased astronomically. They also knew forests needed to be logged in a way to emulate nature’s use of fire to clear cut and selective cut our forests. And finally, they knew that access to our forests with roads was mandatory if fires were to be kept to a minimum.

In those days, the forest service and the logging community worked together to accomplish the goal of healthy forests and minimal wildfires. When a fire was spotted, everyone got to it as quickly as possible to put it out before it spread. Now, the forest service evaluates a wildfire for up to as much as 24 hours (or even longer) before even getting someone to respond. Frequently, in that period of time fires grow exponentially getting to a size where putting them out is beyond question. On top of that the forest service has actively destroyed roads and other access so that getting people and resources to the fire is nearly impossible. With all that bureaucratic incompetence it’s no wonder we now have months of smoke from wildfires.

Active management of our forests through scientific logging with road access to all parts of our public lands is particularly mandatory if you believe in the narrative of “global warming”. If you think it is getting warmer and drier out, then the need to initiate policies that minimize wildfires if even more imperative. As the article dramatically points out, the smoke from wildfires is a terrible health hazard, far worse than smoking.

No, it’s not global warming that is creating all that smoke every year — it’s the inept policies of the Forest Service which bows to the environmental extremists who want to manage our forests as wilderness. We can have pure air again in our summers but not until we, the citizens of Montana take over management of all of our public lands or, at the very least, demand some sanity from the Forest Service in its approach to our forest’s health. After all, as the liberal left likes to say, pure air is our natural right and shouldn’t be just a hope.

— Mark Agather, Kalispell

Print Article

Read More Letters to the Editor

Impact on grizzlies of current and alternate PNT routes

July 19, 2019 at 1:33 pm | Western News Arguments about the relative merits of the current and alternate proposed Pacific Northwest Trail (PNT) routes for grizzly bear conservation center on costs and benefits of the two routes vis-à-vis p...

Comments

Read More

PNT reroute would be a win for the bears; a win for us

July 19, 2019 at 1:33 pm | Western News In light of the recent article “Defending the Yaak,” by Tristan Scott, I would like to say that rerouting the Pacific Northwest Trail out of core grizzly bear recovery zones in Yaak would be a win fo...

Comments

Read More

The U.S. Climate Alliance

July 16, 2019 at 12:12 pm | Western News What is the U.S. Climate Alliance? It is a domestic group formed specifically to undermine President Trump’s excellent decision to pull out of the Paris Climate Agreement. Now, by executive order, pa...

Comments

Read More

A letter from Missoula

July 09, 2019 at 4:19 pm | Western News Not long before he passed away at the age of 100, my father wrote a letter to President Trump. In the letter, Dad, a lifelong Republican and former legislator, discussed how essential it was to democ...

Comments

Read More

Contact Us

(406) 293-4124
311 California Ave.
Libby, MT 59923

©2019 The Western News Terms of Use Privacy Policy
X
X