Look at the big picture | TheUnion.com

Look at the big picture

January’s “Conversation about the Forest” was informative and nicely done. The caliber of speakers was remarkable. A majority of them hold Ph.D.’s and have spent years doing scientific research in fields related to forestry. It was great to see the seminar sponsors draw such knowledgeable candidates from across the country to share their expertise with us.

One point I came away from the conference with is what the pre-settlement forests used to look like. Ancient forests of the Sierra Nevada were not solid closed canopy forests; rather there were semi-open with groups of large trees, kept open in part because of frequent fires.

Society today wants sustainable ecosystems and affordable wood products at the same time. There is no reason why both objectives cannot be met using sound science and reasonable forestry practices. We live in a global environment and consideration of where our wood products will come from should be part of the discussion.

As we wrestle with how the Sierra Nevada Forests should be managed or not managed, we need to look at the big picture.

Ken Wilde

Grass Valley

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