Radio Interview: “Southwest Oregon forest management plan draws backlash”

Here’s a 15-minute interview by Oregon Public Broadcasting (well, two separate interviews), about a planned BLM timber sale in southern Oregon. Intro text:

The Bureau of Land Management recently approved a controversial forest management project in southwestern Oregon. The plan, called the “Late Mungers” project, includes roughly 7,500 acres of prescribed burning and tree thinning, as well as 830 acres of logging. It’s one of the first projects approved under the BLM’s Integrated Vegetation Management plan, which the agency says will allow it to increase the “scope, scale and pace” of its wildfire prevention efforts.

But as Jefferson Public Radio has reported, the plan has faced significant backlash from environmental groups in the region. They argue that the accelerated project timeline cuts out opportunities for public comment, and that the timber sales included in the project will actually increase fire risks and endanger wildlife.

For more details about the plan, we’re joined by BLM Medford District Manager Elizabeth Burghard and Luke Ruediger, conservation director for the Klamath Forest Alliance and executive director of the Applegate-Siskiyou Alliance.

It would have been interesting to have two two folks on at the same time, for rebuttal and clarification. For example, I suspect that some “large” trees are being removed from near much larger trees. Regardless of the diameter of the trees to be cut, this may well be warranted — see our recent discussion of the “eaetside screens.”

FWIW, here’s BLM’s project FAQ.

2 thoughts on “Radio Interview: “Southwest Oregon forest management plan draws backlash””

  1. Wouldn’t it follow that delaying fuel removal, and instead availing the stated land to stand removal “natural” events becoming the needed and certain path to “disturbance renewal,” increasing the odds of the vagaries of man, and nature, to have fire of any origin to remove the ecosystem and environmental outcomes that are the basis for the Congressional statutes and regulations to that “end” that are the basis for legal opposition and appeals? The historical record of man on this continent is land management humanly created to “sustain the necessities of human survival” and those have evolved and changed with exponential gains in, for the lack of a better word, “technology” that changes needs to wants and expedited human effort to “control” and gain more from the landscape in which they live and work to survive on. A fire brand has been replaced by the trial bar and litigation. Bison by cattle. Digging camas with digging spuds improved by plant breeder for eons.

    • It’s hard for me to understand the objections to the project, though I have not visited any of the treatment units. The thinning is much needed if these stands have any chance of surviving fire, insects, drought, etc. And the small openings — 4-acre “clearcuts — are very similar to the Jerry Franklin/Norm Johnson “ecological forestry.” In the interview, the activist says private landowners are concerned about harvests along their property lines. If I live in the area, I’d welcome the treatments, as if would help protect my home and timber.


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