Rim Fire Update

Apparently, enough of the hazard trees within the Rim Fire on the Stanislaus NF have been cut so that the travel ban has finally been lifted, after more than a year. I heard one report that says that the litigation has failed at the District Court level, losing their pleas to stop the logging three …

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Rim Fire Salvage Logging, by SPI

Bob Zybach and I went on a field trip to the Rim Fire. The first stop on the tour showed us the Sierra Pacific Industries’ salvage logging results. I’m posting a medium resolution panorama so, if you click on the picture, you can view it in its full size. You can see the planted surviving giant …

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Natural amenities, “the creative class” and economic success

This map got my attention because of the disproportionate amount of “green” in the rural intermountain west.  In this case it means counties have a disproportionately high number of employees in jobs like management, finance, technology, engineering, science, sales, entertainment and non-primary education (and of course lawyering). “The creative-class thesis holds that communities that attract …

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Elliot State Forest Parcels Are Sold

Photo by www.facebook.com/LarryHarrellFotoware An update from Bob Z. Elliot State Forest Sale Closes Amid Controversy Elliott State Forest Sale Statesman Journal  The Oregon Department of State Lands has completed the controversial sale of three parcels of Elliott State Forest totaling 1,453 acres to Seneca Jones Timber and Scott Timber Co. The Wednesday sale fetched $4.2 …

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Ski Areas and the Headwaters Study

A Denver Post article today here talks about ski visits being up this year in Colorado. Below is an excerpt: Thanks to a 5.6 percent surge in visitation for the final three months of the 2013-14 ski season at its Colorado resorts — Vail, Beaver Creek, Breckenridge and Keystone — as well as increased guest …

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Why Sierra Fuel Treatments Make Economic Sense

Sometimes it is useful to validate common sense with careful study. Here’s a report that does so: Mokelumne Watershed Avoided Cost Analysis: Why Sierra Fuel Treatments Make Economic Sense The study was conducted in an area just north of the Rim Fire. An April 10 press release announcing the publication of the report follows: Study: …

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Balanced Post-fire Treatments in the Rim Fire

I ran across this excellent article from  Eric Holst, Senior Director of the Environmental Defense Fund’s “working lands program”. Here’s the link: https://www.edf.org/blog/2014/02/18/after-rim-fire-surprising-role-salvage-logging This picture is a view looking down into the Tuolumne River Canyon, from the “Rim of the World” overlook. Down there is where the fire started. I’d bet the spin on this wildfire would …

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4FRI: “$127 per acre in environmental study and contract costs”

Article from the Arizona Journal yesterday. I thought this line was interesting: “The problem boils down to a projected gap in the number of forest acres available to timber industries that are currently thinning forests in Northern Arizona between the end of the White Mountain Stewardship contract and the beginning of the 4FRI project. In …

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Power Fire 2014

We’ve seen pictures of the Power Fire, on the Eldorado National Forest, before. I worked on salvage sales until Chad Hanson won in the Ninth Circuit Court, with issues about the black-backed woodpecker. The court decided that the issue needed more analysis, as well as deciding that the Forest Service’s brand new mortality guidelines were …

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Selling Natural Resources and Land to People in Other Countries

(Note: this post is more philosophical than usual. I’m interested in what people think, as I can understand both sides.) We’ve had something before on this blog about wood exports to China. I think some people have brought up selling coal and oil and gas products, although not necessarily on this blog. I thought this …

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