Letter to the editor: Let new county commissioners decide forest fate | SummitDaily.com

Letter to the editor: Let new county commissioners decide forest fate

Howard Brown

I was very disheartened to see the Sept. 6 article “Joint fuels mitigation project to begin outside Breckenridge” on planned multiagency clear-cutting (more than half) and other “thinning” in the Golden Horseshoe area. The U.S. Forest Service is on a binge to destroy our forests just for the sake of giving contracts to regional (but by no means local) forest industry and the Colorado State Forest Service is just in love with cutting. 

But county open space director Brian Lorch should know better. Lorch says 100-year-old forests have little diversity, but in fact that is precisely when Summit lodgepole pine forests start to foster spruce and fir growth that will make them truly diverse, healthy, beautiful and resilient forests as they once were prior to previous clear-cutting. Setting the recovery process back 100 years to foster identical-age, wind-, fire- and beetle-susceptible, monoculture lodgepoles — the antithesis of diversity and forest health — is the exact wrong thing to do. 

Wellington and other Summit residents should check out Keystone Gulch Road to see what this unholy alliance has in store for their forest. Please ask our current county commissioners to postpone this forest destruction a few months so that the incoming county commission can consider the choice being made for the next 100 years.

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