California lawmakers are apparently just now discovering that controlled burns to prevent future wildfires might be the new prescription as decades-old policies of progressive-driven ‘conservation’ and reactive fire suppression have failed.
Democratic state lawmakers are suddenly in agreement with former President Trump who said in August 2020 that the state needs “to clean its forest floors more than anything else.”
At a rally in Pennsylvania last August, Trump told supporters:
“I see again the forest fires are starting. They’re starting again in California. I said, you gotta clean your floors, you gotta clean your forests — there are many, many years of leaves and broken trees and they’re like, like, so flammable, you touch them and it goes up.“
And now, Sen. Bill Dodd, D-Napa, praised a new $20 million controlled burn pilot program that won legislative approval and could soon be signed by Gov. Gavin Newsom, according to local Napa County news East County Today.
“If we want to reduce the frequency and destructiveness of wildfires, we must remove combustible fuels from our tinder-dry forests and woodlands,” Sen. Dodd said.
“Prescribed burning is a time-tested solution to this worsening problem. I am thrilled to see this come to fruition and thank my legislative colleagues for supporting this worthwhile investment.”
By starting controlled fires, forest managers can eliminate fuels, such as thickets, brush, branches, and young trees that supercharge fast-moving blazes. This allows older trees to survive and keeps forest floors free and clear of fuels for the next season of wildfires.
Decades of progressive (and reactive) policies (not global warming) have made California’s woodlands overgrown, and when hot temperatures and drought arrive, the forests are tinder boxes ready to ignite.
Today’s reactive wildfire response to deploy thousands of firefighters, helicopters, planes, drones, bulldozers, and firetrucks to suppress fires is a failed policy, and lawmakers are quickly learning the hard way with more than three million acres burned in the state this fire season, displacing thousands of households and pushing first responders onto the brink of exhaustion.
*CALIFORNIA GOVERNOR NEWSOM SAYS OVER 3M ACRES HAVE BURNED
— zerohedge (@zerohedge) September 14, 2021
President Biden visited California on Monday and said: “These fires are blinking code red for our nation.” He promoted two spending bills in Congress that would fund forest management and more resilient infrastructure.
So Trump was right when he criticized California for mismanaging its wildfire management program that has been the culprit of these mega-fires. Meanwhile, liberal media continues to toe the establishment line that climate change is at fault, not just bad policymaking.
As H.Sterling Burnett recently noted,in late July, President Joe Biden held a virtual joint planning meeting and press conference with the governors of various Western states to discuss how to handle 2021’s wildfire season.
Every leader blamed catastrophic human climate change for the severity of recent wildfire seasons.
The New York Times allowed Oregon’s Democratic Gov. Kate Brown to follow up that event with an editorial titled “The West Is on Fire, It’s Past Time to Act on Climate Change.”
Biden and the governors are wrong.
Wildfires have been common throughout the West historically, often burning more acres than they’ve burned in recent years. To the extent that wildfires have increased in intensity recently, it isn’t due to modest warming, but rather to decades of federal and state mismanagement of publicly owned forests throughout the Western United States, leaving those forests in tinderbox conditions.
So, for political reasons, Biden and the governors want to blame modest recent warming for the scope and intensity of wildfires in Western states in 2020 and 2021. The true culprit is more than 30 years of forest mismanagement.
Contrary to Biden and the governors’ assertions, state and federal efforts to address racial disparities, increase electric vehicle usage, and stop using fossil fuels to generate electricity will do nothing to prevent wildfires.
Wildfires are natural. They can’t be stopped. They can be managed. The damage they cause to the forests and the people living near them can be dramatically reduced.
Wise management of forests is required, either through regular, widespread, low-intensity burning, as the Native Americans did, or through active forest management, including intensive logging and brush clearing and firefighting efforts, as governments did prior to 1990. These tools, not massive, misdirected spending on climate change, are the best hope of preventing Westerners’ lives and livelihoods from being consumed by flames.
It appears California Democrats are maybe finally willing to accept that truth… of course with the knowledge that no mainstream media outlet will point out their hypocrisy.