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The Sierra Forest Voice Newsletter


Scientific Thinking on Salvage Logging and Reforestation is changing rapidly...

NPR Radio Show: See Reforestation at its worst! Broadcast June 12, 2007
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Cleveland Fire 1992

Fred's Fire 2005, 13 years after the Cleveland fire.

Saint Pauli 2002

The Saint Pauli fire 2002--burned up the Cleveland fire plantation of 1993.

Fred's Fire 2005

Fred's Fire Salvage logging in 2005 created erosion, left high fuel loads, & the best wildlife trees were removed.

Star Fire Salvage 2

Star fire salvage logging, Tahoe National Forest--take the best, leave the rest.

Key findings from recent research:

(1) In J.P.A. Shatford et al. 2007 Conifer Regeneration After Forest Fire in the Klamath-Siskiyous: How Much, How Soon? Journal of Forestry (Society of American Foresters) a recent paper discussing the success of conifer regeneration after forest fires in northern California with no salvage logging and only natural regeneration (regrowth of forests).

"...our findings suggest that the prognosis for achieving reasonable conifer densities is fair to excellent, even on sites with high cover of broad-leaved shrubs and hardwoods. Although conifer growth may be delayed by competition over the short term, benefits in terms of wildlife habitat and site-fertility should be considered."

"...assertions that burned areas, left unmanaged will remain unproductive for some indefinite period seems unwarranted."

"In contrast to expectations, generally, we found natural conifer regeneration abundant across a variety of settings."

(2) In Donato et al. 2006. Post-Fire Logging Hinders Regeneration and Increases Fire Risk. Science January 5, 2006 published online.

"Our data show that postfire logging by removing naturally seeded conifers and increasing surface fuel loads, can be counterproductive to goals of forest regeneration and fuels reduction. The results presented suggest that post logging may conflict with ecosystem recovery goals."

"Postfire logging subsequently reduced regeneration by 71% (767 seedlings per hectare to 224 seedlings per hectare) due to soil disturbance and physical burial by woody material during logging operations."

"Postfire logging significantly increased both fine and coarse woody fuel loads...this pulse far exceeded expectations for postfire logging generated fuel loads."

Industrial Tree Farm

Industrial tree farming = High fire hazard and biologically sterile landscapes.

Eco Plot

The Cleveland fire area where forest diversity survives in isolation.