“So were Flagstaff officials prescient when they proposed what, at the time, was one of the first municipal partnerships with a national forest to have lands outside city boundaries thinned at city expense?”
“Hindsight is 20-20, but it sure looks that way to us. Armed with a $10 million budget, the Forest Service immediately went to work on an environmental study that mapped the most fireprone timber stands as well as nests of endangered Mexican spotted owls. Steep slopes most prone to erosion were pegged for less-harmful cable logging, and some stands of old-growth ponderosas were declared off limits. Using collaborative tactics learned from 4FRI, the draft EIS containing a thinning plan was ready in near-record time and drew no lawsuits that would cause delay.”
Could that be because there’s no revenue or profit motive driving more destructive logging practices?