People nationwide are advocating for funding bills which would provide more federal dollars to integrate hazardous fuels reduction into management plans, but is fuel reduction the best method for mitigating forest fires? Ecosystems vary from place to place in many different aspects including: forest type, the requirements for biological maintenance, in the historic role that fire has played in an area, in the effects that past management practices have had, and in climate and local weather variability. Because of this variability, fuel reduction treatments may be beneficial in some forests but not in others. In order to maximize taxpayer dollars and minimize harmful environmental effects that may result from applying fuel treatments where they are not necessary, a local and regional approach to assessing the needs of a forest must to be taken. Background The current state of forests in the U.S., more specifically forests of the southwest (CO, NM, UT, AZ), is a reflection of many factors including land u... ... middle of paper ... ...Ecological Applications 12.5 (2002): 1418-1433.
The Importance of Fire in Ecosystems Fire is an important part of many ecosystems, affecting wildlife populations in various ways, such as by changing habitat, affecting food supply or quality, or by altering interactions of species. Fire suppression has allowed forested areas to achieve a climax state, which provides less forage for wildlife. While terrestrial wildlife is benefited by fire, large fires through the increase in sediment flow negatively impact aquatic ecosystems. Fire is essential in maintaining biological diversity in the Northern Rocky Mountain forests. Nutritional Effects Fire affects nutrition of wildlife in the short-term by increasing the quality of their diets or by alteration of plant content.
The thinning will occur in priority areas that are in close proximity to homes and watersheds. The Healthy Forest Initiative also aims at developing a more efficient response method to disease and insect infestations that sabotage our forests. Finally, if fully enacted, the Healthy Forest Initiative would provide the loggers with what is known as “goods for services”. This will compensate the loggers for the financial burden that will surface as a result of this aggressive thinning (http://www.sierraclub. org/forests /fires/healthyforests initiative.asp).
Populations of the white-tailed deer have increased in great numbers. These will increase if the death rate is low and the food supply is high. A single doe can reproduce every year until they die (7). Because of this, the average herd can double in size every two to three years (3). Deer are also adaptable to the changing ecosystem around them.
In the same way that natural fires aren’t always good for their environment, unnatural fires aren’t always bad for their environment. Prescribed burns to a forest are actually a very effective form of wildfire control, because they eliminate excess growth that could pose a greater risk to communities if left untouched. These controlled fires also help to restore health to an ecosystem that depends on wildfires to grow and thrive. Because prescribed fires can still be dangerous if they breach a designated area, they are always painstakingly planned. Certain conditions - weather, topography, equipment, and the type of fuel - must be very specific before any fires are initiated (“Prescribed Fires”).
If more lives can be saved as well as land and wildlife, prescribed burns may be the better way to go about forest fires. Although, prescribed burns are better for the environment in order to prevent drastic forest fires, severe damage to timber and extreme death of wildlife; some people feel it affects the health of a firefighter too much and it causes too many long term effects. It is so sad to see the horror of forest fires and how they corrupt our beautiful land. So much damage comes out of what started so small. At least 603 square miles of land were burned in the early stages of the Arizona fire only a couple of years ago (BBC 2).
Opposition to Prescribed Burns Forest fires kill many animals and usually destroy a large amount of land. Prescribed burns seem like they would be the best idea, but are they? Their claim to fame is to clear out land in order to decrease the burning space for when an actual forest fire occurs. Yet this may seem like a brilliant idea, but one must look at the negative aspects of controlled burnings. People might have a change of heart when they realize the damages and effects of such an interesting act.
On the other hand, environmentalists think using too much forests or natural resources for any demands or commodities will impact native animals and plants life. Animals and plants habitat will be extinct soon if we still do cutting off the trees space in the world. First of all, deforestation is one of the biggest issues in the world. There are many problems as the result of deforestation. First impact is pollution gases, these gases will be affect the atmosphere in the world because trees always absorb carbon dioxide gas which is really benefit for trees (National Geographic, n.d., pp.
All of these components constitute an intricate web with many biological interconnections. A bird may depend on the upper branches of a tree for nesting, while the tree may depend on the fungi surrounding its roots to obtain water and nutrients. A forest performs a number of vital environmental services, such as cleansing the air, moderating the climate, filtering water, cycling nutrients, providing a habitat for animals and provides humans with recreation and beautiful scenery. Resources from the forest supply raw materials, such as lumber, paper products, greenery and pharmaceuticals. Some of the developing issues today concerning forests are fires and what we as a society can do to restore the natural ecosystems within the forests around our world.