Letter to the Editor: Chipping does not remove dangerous fuel
December 19, 2011
I realize many people who have decided to live in the Lake Tahoe area have not moved here from a forest ecosystem, nor do they have any real understanding of forest ecology.
It is important to remember that fire is a natural and healthy process that has existed in the Lake Tahoe Basin since before homes were built here. Fire has long been scientifically proven to benefit forest ecosystems; in fact many of our native species are fire-adapted and require regular fire to remain healthy.
Although chipping may reduce smoke impact, there are a host of other impacts it creates that may not be beneficial to the forest, not to mention the cost to taxpayers to treat an area mechanically.
The act of chipping does not remove the fuel it merely changes the array. I would recommend those opposed to prescribed fire in the basin to do some research on forest ecology before being so bold as to suggest treatment options. Remember Angora.