Bipartisan. Unanimous. Two words not heard often in contemporary politics describe a pair of bills passed by a divided Washington Legislature to revitalize forests in the face of climate change and megafires that have killed firefighters and cost the state many millions of dollars.
Now comes the real test: Will the Legislature provide the money needed to carry out these plans? The same can be said for two other young but high-profile efforts to restore Washington ecosystems in coastal and flood-prone areas. Most at risk is the restoration program for flood-prone regions, which could lose more than half of its funding under the Senate’s budget plan.
Continue reading at Investigate West
By Dominick DellaSala
This Earth Day, I am giving thanks for the lingering effects of our cold-wet winter and the beautiful snow-capped mountains. Reservoirs are filling up, fisher-people are casting away in streams with hopes of bountiful catches, and kayakers are bucking the rapids again. We should all enjoy this wet winter that used to be the “norm,” while remembering that we have much work to do to make the climate safe for our children.
I would like to share my family’s story because it concerns all parents, hikers, hunters and other outdoor enthusiasts in the region.
Join us for a free public talk on the importance of science in combating climate change.
When: Saturday April 22, 2017 at 1pm (right after the Science March)
Where: Science Works Museum (1500 E. Main St, Ashland, OR)
Speaker: Dr. Dominick DellaSala, Chief Scientist of the Geos Institute and Director of the Forest Legacies Initiative
To restore a forest and reduce the risk of severe wildfires, a conservation group is cutting down trees.
The Nature Conservancy is selectively logging dry forests in Washington's Central Cascades as part of a long-term plan to make thousands of privately owned forestland more resilient to fire, disease and climate change.
A century of wildfire suppression has resulted in overgrown tree stands that are ripe for fire, so the group is weeding out smaller trees that can serve as kindling for fires. They're leaving bigger, older and more fire-resistant ponderosa pines while removing tree species such as grand fir that are more susceptible to fire.
Dominick DellaSala, chief scientist of the Geos Institute in Ashland, Oregon, said thinning that's done right can be a good tool but it's not the only one.
"I don't see it as a panacea and it should be strategically used to defend homes and lives and get into the truly flammable area," he said. Often missing from the equation is letting fires burn naturally under safe conditions, he added.
Keep reading the full article in U.S. News & World Report