Witness old growth logging on the North Kaibab
From Kim Crumbo, Conservation Activist, who is guiding trekker John Davis through the Kaibab National Forest north of Grand Canyon. They just encountered old growth logging as part of the Jacob-Ryan timber sale, which Sierra Club and partners opposed for many years. The logging is just one more reason to support National Monument designation in this region.Here’s what he had to say:
A once-famous quote from the Vietnam War came to mind as Trek West’s John Davis and I surveyed the carnage of old growth logging on the North Kaibab, the ecological heart of conservationist’s proposed Grand Canyon Watershed National Monument: “We had to destroy the village in order to save it.”
Now the Forest Service is hell bent on cutting down old growth ponderosa pine to save it from the threat of catastrophic fire (see attached photos).
The Forest Service resumed logging ancient trees from the Southwest’s largest remaining old growth ponderosa pine forest outside of Grand Canyon National Park and the Gila-Blue Range wilderness complex. Scientists have long considered these forests “endangered ecosystems” with an estimated 95% now lost regionally, and with nearly 50% removed from the North Kaibab Ranger District. Conservationists recently lost a decade-long legal battle to stop the logging, and now the forest’s best, probably only hope, lies with Presidential intervention through National Monument designation. One primary objective of the proposed monument is protection and restoration of old growth forest.
To be sure, a century of mismanagement of the Kaibab’s forests has resulted in conditions ripe for high intensity fire, with responsible management focused on restoring natural fire regimes through prescribe fires, and most likely thinning of dense understory. BUT NOT LOGGING ANCIENT TREES!!!
These events highlight the Forest Service’s arrogant disregard for resilient forests, and the urgent need to get the Obama administration to protect this imperiled, vanishing ecosystem.
KimKim Crumbo, Conservation Director Grand Canyon Wildlands Council