Oversight: Exploring Solutions to Reduce Risks of Catastrophic Wildfire and Improve Resiliency of National Forests

Oversight and Investigations Date: Wednesday, September 27, 2017 Time: 03:00 PM Location: Longworth House Office Building 1334

Democratic Topline Messages:

  • Extreme weather due to climate change is driving the increase in forest fires. It has dramatically altered the conditions in the western United States and around the world. Higher temperatures have led to earlier snowmelt, more drought, and longer and hotter fire seasons.
  • Trying to stop major forest fires by increasing commercial logging will only worsen both forest fires and climate change. Mature forests sequester more carbon than younger ones; younger trees grow faster but older trees hold more carbon. Tree plantations of commercial logging operations burn hotter and more easily.
  • Budget constraints, not the NEPA, Endangered Species Act or any other bedrock environmental law, are the principal strain on the agency’s ability to conduct forest management projects.