Forest Health and Wildfires
If managed wisely, America’s national forests can provide clean water, wildlife habit, recreational opportunities, and abundant domestic supplies of wood products and support thousands of jobs in the timber industry.
Unfortunately, this year’s current wildfire season like recent past wildfire seasons, has produced several catastrophic fires that have resulted in the tragic loss of life and property. However, in many cases it’s possible to reduce the risk of catastrophic wildfire through proactive, healthy forest management. While factors such as prolonged drought continue to raise the risk of wildfire, it is imperative that the federal government actively address the one issue within its control: hazardous fuels. Unnatural, overgrown, and unhealthy forests increase the risk of wildfire. Active management; e.g., thinning the forest, helps protect and restore forests while also helping local economies and creating jobs.
The inability of the Forest Service to thin forests due to overly cumbersome and lengthy environmental processes, certain environmental groups filing litigation as well as lack of sufficient agency focus on this challenge has led to a preponderance of overgrown, fire-prone stands of trees. This condition has resulted in deadly and catastrophic forest fires that endanger communities, hurt local economies and release massive amounts of emissions into the atmosphere.
Get the Facts:
Congressman Tipton Discusses Wildfire Amendment with KOA, KOA News (June 20, 2013)