The practice delays restoration work that makes forests find out more resistant to devastating fire, placing large swaths of Oregon’s federal timberland and nearby Your Domain Name communities at risk. “Again and again, the three of us have pointed out the cost to the rural West and to America for this broken, dysfunctional mess of a budget, which is how we fight fire in America today,” Wyden said this week at a press conference with two Republican senators from Idaho. Holding a copy of The Oregonian/OregonLive’s investigation ” Burned ,” Wyden stood inside the same building in Boise where he and the other lawmakers made the same pitch last year. Since that meeting, the Canyon Creek wildfire burned through more than 110,000 acres parts of which had been slated in 2006 for thinning, logging and controlled burns aimed at helping to prevent such a catastrophic fire. Read the Burned series. The Oregonian/OregonLive spent a year deconstructing Oregon’s most devastating wildfire in the last 80 years. Reporters found the Forest Service has fallen behind in its work to maintain and restore ecological balance to the nation’s forests in recent years, leaving timberland across the West primed to burn. The project also examined missteps made by Malheur National Forest fire managers leading up to the blaze. Timber harvests and restoration work on the Malheur national forest have increased in recent years due to state and federal funding of collaborative groups designed to build consensus around such projects. But the work still falls well short of what the Forest Service says it needs to complete to return the Malheur to ecological health.
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