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Sun Jul 1, 2012, 03:26 AM

Fantastic picture. Like your narratives over the last several years.

I was USFS 1969-1986 and have done consulting work in your area.

My experience in the USFS and corporate consulting grew my cynicism and despair.

There are far less USFS Lookouts than in the 1970s and aeriel technology has not kept up.

There is less local (USFS RD or Guard Stations with Engine Crews) and KV/BD crews that were also regional smokejumpers or hot shot crews as needed now than in the 1970s.

There are larger and less controlled wildfires because of negligence compared with prior to 1980 or so. One could even conclude that wildfires were allowed to grow to justify abusive timber salvage and removal of Federal lands within National Forests from Wilderness consideration. Many tracts of land have been treated post "wildfire" to preclude any economic use as timberlands and also greatly decreased the carbon storage potential within the soil and subsequent forest / vegetation for generations.

The fire suppression $$ could be more than replaced by net management $$ if silviculturists, engineers, and economists were not trumped by politics and short term cash flow.

The same is true for Tribal, BLM, and corporate forest lands with rare exceptions. Too many professionals do not even see much less comprehend their own institutional propoganda, the public is clueless for lack of understanding of scale and practice. The politics and PR trump reality.

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