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Letter: Environmentalists are not helping our national forests

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Posted: Saturday, August 31, 2013 12:00 am

It’s been some years since I read a report on national forests and the danger of mega-fires due to neglecting forest undergrowth. Seems our environmental nuts feel that clearing out this undergrowth wouldn’t be “natural,” especially if the evil species of mankind had anything to do with it.

In this article it had quotes from the early settlers of this country that described the forests as park-like — even manicured. Why? Because the Indians used this undergrowth for building and heating their lodges, cooking their food, etc. The early settlers continued this practice. The article said that if the environmentalists succeeded in keeping man out of wilderness areas, as they have, there would be fires the size of whole states. And with that kind of fuel from the undergrowth, there would be nothing our brave firefighters could do to stop it.

Like the majority of liberal ideologies, the extreme environmentalists who push junk science — like global warming — on us always end up harming or killing the very things they say they’re trying to save. But they mean well, they say. Tell that to the people in the Sierras whose lives and homes are threatened by “enviro-crazies’” regulations.

These “experts” tell us that the greatest enemy of the earth is humankind. For once, I agree; they’re called environmentalists.

Ron Portal


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  • Frederick Goethel posted at 8:38 pm on Mon, Sep 2, 2013.

    Frederick Goethel Posts: 51

    Fire ecologists (i.e. environmentalists) have been advocating allowing natural fires to burn since the seventies. It is the man made fires that need to be stopped, as they are not natural.

    The irony in this letter is that the National Park Service is not allowing much fire fighting in Yosemite, as they recognize the need for such fires. It is the National Forest Service that is working in double overtime. The reason is simple...fires cause a loss of timber that they can sell. So, in reality, it is not the environmentalists that are causing the extinguishment, but the capitalists. And, as for clearing out the under brush etc, it is an impossible task without fire...there is simply too much acreage to do it with any technique other than fire.

  • Joanne Bobin posted at 3:48 pm on Mon, Sep 2, 2013.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4488

    I know the feeling, Mr. Paglia.

    I've been there before when a now infrequent commenter enjoyed calling me "Ms. Collateral Damage."

    Tragedies occur, and fortunately my family has not been subjected to things like hurricanes, floods, wildfires, earthquakes, etc.

    But when one trades the downside to living in areas subject to these occurrences they MUST know the possibilities that exist.

    I was listening to an interview on NPR the other day with a woman who owns a bar in Groveland. Asked if she ever considered giving it up and moving to an area free from the hazards of fires like the Rim fire, she responded, "Absolutely not!" I don't care how many times we have to rebuild, we are not leaving. We couldn't imagine living anywhere else."

    If someone wants to call me heartless, fine. Heartless would be forcing this woman and others like her to move somewhere else.

  • Joanne Bobin posted at 3:39 pm on Mon, Sep 2, 2013.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4488


  • Kevin Paglia posted at 4:57 pm on Sun, Sep 1, 2013.

    Kevin Paglia Posts: 2108

    My College background was in Forestry (outdoor recreation) and it was emphasized the need for BALANCE. Many things in nature NEED fire as Ms. Bobin said. It opens ground up for fresh growth, allows seeds to germinate and even recycles nutrients back into the growth cycle. BUT when mankind interferes and suppresses fires to the point that wildfires don't happen then we get the result of the Rim fire or The Yellowstone fire in 1988 (I was fortunate to get a behind the scenes look at the long term affects of the fire). Wiki has a great write-up on Yellowstone fire as well.

    Mankind need to learn to work WITH nature not against it.

  • Kevin Paglia posted at 4:52 pm on Sun, Sep 1, 2013.

    Kevin Paglia Posts: 2108

    "If they lose property in the process we can only say that they knew the risks."

    Careful Ms. Bobin. When we still posted under made-up user names I made a similar statement and the anonymous liberals attacked me for being heartless and a horrible person.

  • Joanne Bobin posted at 9:50 am on Sun, Sep 1, 2013.

    Joanne Bobin Posts: 4488

    Ron...would love to have a link to this "article," or at least a clue what the publication was.

    Seriously...the forests were "groomed?" Perhaps by previous fires?

    Did you know that forest fires are beneficial and are natures way of renewing the forest? That sequoia's cannot reproduce without fire?

    The fact is that humans have chosen to insert themselves into this environment.

    If they lose property in the process we can only say that they knew the risks.


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