Bill Gabbert at Wildfire Today has a helpful post with links on the Congressional hearing tomorrow on wildfire.
Remembering that Congressional Hearings are political theater.. it’s only appropriate that Carole King will be talking about how to deal with wildfires. I guess the only witnesses who have worked directly with fire suppression are Chief Moore (they had to ask him, I guess) and the (one) minority witness, Jim Hubbard. Not a good look, majority. Not to disrespect TEK or scientists.
Here’s the witness list:
Mr. Randy Moore
Chief, U.S. Forest Service
U.S. Department of Agriculture
Ms. Carole King
Celebrated Singer-songwriter, Land Conservation Advocate
Ms. Ali Meders-Knight
Mechoopda Tribal Member
Traditional Ecological Knowledge Practitioner
Dr. Michael Gollner
Associate Professor of Mechanical Engineering
University of California, Berkeley
Deb Faculty Fellow
Berkeley Fire Research Lab
Dr. Dominick A. DellaSala
Chief Scientist, Wild Heritage
Project of Earth Island Institute
Mr. James Hubbard (minority witness)
Former Under Secretary, Natural Resources and Environment
Department of Agriculture
I thought that this was rather odd:
While wildfires are an important part of maintaining healthy forest ecosystems, careful prevention work is crucial to mitigating the damage from increasingly dangerous fires. The hearing will examine several strategies the Forest Service employs to prevent wildfires including prescribed burns, thinning, and commercial logging, as well as the challenges the Forest Service faces, such as a tight budget and an influential commercial logging industry.
I wonder how exactly the commercial logging industry is a problem.. for those of us in Colorado and the SW, a lack of logging industry is a problem, let alone an influential one. If you look at the map above, you’ll see lots of firesheds at risk with minimal timber industry. Santa Rosa, Santa Cruz, LA, San Diego, the Front Range of Colorado, around Santa Fe, Albuquerque and so on.
But perhaps members of the House Committee on Oversight and Reform Environment Subcommittee aren’t familiar with these areas. Let’s look at the composition of the majority..
Ro Khanna, California, Chair- representing Silicon Valley
Jim Cooper, Tennessee – Nashville
Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, New York City
Rashida Tlaib, Detroit
Jimmy Gomez, LA
Raja Krishnamoorthi, Chicago
Cori Bush, St.Louis
Then there’s the fact that this is usually the biz of the Natural Resources Committee, so it seems unlikely that this will yield anything substantive.
But maybe these folks will learn something about our world (she said optimistically). Might be interesting.