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Sunday, December 16, 2007


Controlled burns causing sprawl???

This article talks about the training program the certain fire officials go through in order to execute "controlled burns". The program manager talks about "allowing fire to return to its natural role." The makes no sense when used in context with the idea of "controlled burns."

What the program manager is implying is that in ecosystems, in natural growth and destruction, cycles, fire serves the purpose of a destroyer, of a crop thinner, of a wheat-from-chaff separator. In addition they say that this natural function it provides is a good one to make sure that things do become overgrown or that things don't grow, or "sprawl" where they shouldn't.

The problem I have though, is that these burns are meant to r3educe the amount of fire that is actually in it's natural role. Controlled burns get rid of the fuel for the growth-inhibiting fires. If regions are deemed safe by way of controlled burning, then people are more likely to sprawl into them, not only hurting themselves, but ruining and crowding the forest.

Yes, fire has a natural role, but controlled burning does not let it do its natural job. It takes the natural role out of nature's hands.

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