This article was originally published at Public Policy Institute of California


“California needs to increase the pace and scale of efforts to improve the health of its headwater forests—the source of two-thirds of the state’s surface water supply. Management techniques including prescribed fire, managed wildfire, and mechanical thinning can help rebuild resilience in these forests and prepare them for a challenging future.

These are among the key findings of a report released today by the PPIC Water Policy Center. Decades of fire suppression have increased the density of trees and other fuels in headwater forests to uncharacteristically high levels and resulted in massive tree die-offs and large, severe wildfires. Improving forest health will require reducing the density of small trees and fuels on a massive scale.

This will require changes in the regulation, administration, and management of forests. Many of the recommended reforms in forest management can take place at low or no cost. But implementing them will require vision, determined leadership by state and federal officials, and the backing of an informed public…”

Read on at: Public Policy Institute of California.