Researcher: Wild California just a memory

Mar 01, 2008

A California researcher said nearly all of California's 31 million acres of forest have been changed in some way by humans.

Pollution, roads, mining, logging and development have left obvious marks on the California wilderness but urbanization and fire suppression are the greatest threats to forest health, the San Francisco Chronicle said Friday.

Forest fires near homes have to be controlled, removing fire as a natural method of keeping the forest understory -- the area of a forest which grows in the shade of forest canopy -- from becoming overgrown. State fire officials said development in "wildland-urban interface zones" contributed to the devastation from last wildfires.

The U.S. Forest Service said the overly dense forests combined with drought have played a part in recent bark beetle infestations. Studies have shown that 25 percent of California's forestland, close to 4.9 million acres, are at risk of deadly insect infestations and disease during the next 15 years.

Copyright 2008 by United Press International

Explore further: EPA staff says agency needs to be tough on smog

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Feds allows logging after huge California wildfire

Aug 28, 2014

The U.S. Forest Service has decided to allow logging on nearly 52 square miles of the Sierra Nevada burned last year in a massive California wildfire, a move contested by environmentalists.

Image: Fires in California and Oregon

Aug 04, 2014

The Little Deer fire in California began as a lightning strike on July 31, 2014. Currently it has burned 4,700 acres and is 43% contained however there has been increased humidity over the fire the last 24 ...

Recommended for you

Shell files new plan to drill in Arctic

20 hours ago

Royal Dutch Shell has submitted a new plan for drilling in the Arctic offshore Alaska, more than one year after halting its program following several embarrassing mishaps.

Reducing water scarcity possible by 2050

21 hours ago

Water scarcity is not a problem just for the developing world. In California, legislators are currently proposing a $7.5 billion emergency water plan to their voters; and U.S. federal officials last year ...

User comments : 1

Adjust slider to filter visible comments by rank

Display comments: newest first

bigwheel
not rated yet Mar 03, 2008
so what