National Forest Roads and Wildfire Adam Rissien, Sep 25, 2020
Forest roads increase wildfire risk, affect fire behavior, and cause serious ecological impacts when fire strikes. See also WildEarth Guardians’ Wildfire and Forest Roads Fact Sheet
New research confirms ‘megafires’ not increasing: Large, high-severity fires are natural in western U.S. forests Geos Institute, Wild Nature Institute, Sep 11, 2019
A peer-reviewed study by leading experts of forest and fire ecology recently published in the science journal Diversity disputes the widely held belief that “megafires” in U.S national forests are increasing, preventing forests from re-growing, and that logging is necessary to prevent these wildfires.
Don’t be fooled by fake forests Dominick DellaSala, Oregon Wildblog, Feb 25, 2019
Dr. DellaSala explains the difference between a real forest, a natural forest that has ecological integrity, and a fake forest, that has been logged, thinned, replanted, or otherwise re-designed by humans.
Treat homes, not forests, to reduce wildfire risk George Wuerthner, The Wildlife News, Feb 17, 2019
Recently Trump used his executive authority to mandate increased logging and thinning of our public lands with the goal of reducing wildfire threat to communities, However, the latest fire science suggests that starting from the home and working outwards is the most effect way to reduce the risk of fire to communities, and that logging and thinning out in the forest does not significantly help.
Common Myths about Forests and Fire John Muir Project, Jan 27, 2019
Fact sheet by the John Muir Project of the Earth Island Institute concerning topics such as effects of wildland fire, home protection from wildland fire, are forests “overgrown,” and does prescribed burning reduce smoke particulates in our air overall.
Forest Protection in the Trump Era Douglas Bevington, Jun 19, 2018
While the Trump administration is weakening NEPA, our bedrock environmental law, a schism is developing between conservation organizations. Some are accepting the “logging, thinning and burning is beneficial for our forests” paradigm, while others are embracing the scientific view that mixed-severity fire is natural and promotes biodiversity in our forests, and that protected forests burn less severely.
Everything you wanted to know about wildland fires in forests but were afraid to ask: Lessons learned, ways forward Dominick A. DellaSala, PhD, Timothy Ingalsbee, PhD, Chad T. Hanson, PhD Mar 30, 2018
This white paper summarizes some of the latest science around top-line wildfire issues, including areas of scientific agreement, disagreement, and ways to coexist with wildfire.
Let Forest Fires Burn? What the Black-Backed Woodpecker Knows Justin Gills, Aug 6, 2017
Is it worth trying to fight fires away from structures, or should they be left to burn? The ecological value of burned forests.
Open Letter to Decision Makers Concerning Wildfires in the West Geos Institute, Aug 27, 2018
200 scientists with backgrounds in ecological sciences and natural resources management express concern about proposals to speed up and expand logging on public lands in response to the increase of wildfires in the West. They recommend pragmatic and science-based solutions that can maintain biologically diverse fire-dependent ecosystems while reducing risks to communities and firefighters.
Exploring Solutions to Reduce Risks of Catastrophic Wildfire and Improve Resilience of National Forests Testimony of Dr. Dominick DellaSala, Chief Scientist, Geos Institute, Before the U.S. House of Representatives Natural Resources Committee, Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, Sept 27, 2017
Dr. DellaSala makes the case that proposals calling for increased logging and other forest fuel treatments and decreased environmental review in response to wildfires and insect outbreaks are not science driven, in many cases may make problems worse, and will not stem rising wildfire suppression costs.
Caring, Killing, Euphemism and George Orwell: How Language Choice Undercuts Our Mission David Johns and Dominick DellaSala, Portland State University, Political Science Faculty Publications and Presentations, Jul 1, 2017
Discussion of how forest and fire ecology euphemisms mask the indefensible, and those in the conservation community should not engage with the use of such misleading terms.
Air pollution below EPA standards linked with higher death rates Harvard School of Public Health news release, Jun 3, 2015.
A 2015 study by researchers at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health found that death rates among people over 65 are higher in zip codes with more fine particulate air pollution (PM2.5) than in those with lower levels of PM2.5. PM2.5 is the most harmful component of wood smoke, including smoke from prescribed burns. The harmful effects from the particles were observed even in areas where concentrations were less than a third of the current standard set by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).
Revisiting Fire History Studies George Wuerthner, 2013
Describes methodological flaws that can occur in fire scar studies and contribute to a shorter fire rotation bias.
The Forest Advocate
Santa Fe, New Mexico