California is a tinderbox and arsonists are lighting fires. Meanwhile, the governor is blaming global warming.
The following was written two years ago and remains true today. Of course, radicals starting fires and politicians blaming global warming to deflect from their own culpability is why California is in the condition it's now in.
▪ Access: There has long been a push to block access and create wilderness areas. This makes access more difficult during emergencies. This stops firewood scavenging in the national forests. Firewood collection creates mini fuel breaks along any open forest road. Only dead and down trees are legal to collect.
▪ Logging: If we never logged and we allowed the natural fire cycle to occur, we wouldn’t have to log now. Over the last century, we prevented the natural fire cycle. This wasn’t a problem until recently because logging thinned the forest as fire used to. Logging died at the hands of the misguided environmentalists in this state over the last 30-40 years. Fuels have accumulated. Logging thins forests and prevents wildfires from becoming catastrophic.
▪ Grazing: Grazing has been opposed for many suspect environmental reasons. Grazing thins brush. Grass fires are easy to fight and stay small. Brush fires are hard to fight and grow large quickly. In this way fire climbs to larger and larger fuels until it races through the crowns of the trees, leaving behind something eerily reminiscent of a nuclear blast.
▪ Endangered species: The constant “discovery” of “subspecies” by scientists whose funding and careers depend on finding them is dubious at best. Often good management practices are halted at the order of a court when one of the “subspecies” is “discovered” on a parcel of land.
▪ Water quality: Water quality is frequently used to halt grazing, logging, access, and other effective management tools.
▪ Air pollution: Air districts have a narrow window of air quality in which controlled burns are allowed. It would be much better to allow a little more air pollution from controlled burns then to wait for massive wildfires with extreme air quality problems.