US Forest Service

On This Green Earth, Mary Mason, a Forest Geneticist with the US Forest Service, comes on the show.

Mason discusses the issues that are facing the North American ash trees. The ash borer invasion that slipped into the US around the turn of the millennium, most likely on a container this, is now is 35 states and responsible for the deaths of hundreds of millions of trees.

Mason shares what is being done to save our ash trees.

On today's episode of This Green Earth:

Mary Farnsworth was recently named the Acting Regional Forester for the Intermountain Region of the U.S. Forest Service.

Farnsworth addresses the responsibilities of this position and what the Intermountain Region faces with a new administration.

US Forest Service

The Summit County Council on Wednesday approved a draft letter to the Governor’s office, with recommendations about the state’s effort to get a Utah-specific plan to manage the national forests.

But one council member voted against it, and his colleagues said they have major concerns about the proposal. They said while they want to have input to manage the forests against fire danger, they also don’t want to be co-opted into any state plan to undermine federal supervision.

US Forest Service

The US Forest Service has announced a plan for a prescription burn in the Uintas.

In a statement the U.S. Forest Service announced that the Upper Provo prescribed burn will take place starting Saturday October 27th and will run the whole month of November, ending on the 30th.

The 6,000 acre burn area will be approximately 10 miles east of Kamas and on the northeast side of Mirror Lake Highway, between Norway Flats road on the east and Upper Setting road on the west.

Summit County

Some members of the Summit County Council Wednesday were apprehensive, when they were asked to support an effort, from the Governor’s office, petitioning the U.S. Forest Service to allow a policy, tailored for Utah, to more actively manage the forests.

While the changed policy would ostensibly reduce fire hazards by clearing out deadwood, Council member Roger Armstrong said he’s concerned that it might be “another plank” as he said, in the state’s attempt to take control of federal land.

Although the U.S. Forest Service has approved a master development plan for the Alta ski resort, the environmental group Save Our Canyons says it still opposes a tram on Mount Baldy and helicopter landings in wilderness areas. Rick Brough has the story:

An opportunity to provide comment on a proposal to capture and collar mountain goats in three wilderness areas on the Uinta-Wasatch-Cache National Forest is now available to the public.

The 30-day comment period started Wednesday and will run through June 23rd.  The proposal, submitted by the Utah Division of Wildlife Resources to the Forest Service, includes landing helicopters in the Twin Peaks, Lone Peak and Mount Timpanogos wilderness areas to capture and collar the animals, allowing DWR personnel to take biological samples and track goat movement.

The deadline to submit comments to the U.S. Forest Service on the proposed Tesoro pipeline is this Monday, March 17th.  Given that, the  Summit County Council Wednesday reviewed their concerns and comments, and directed their staff to pass those on to the Feds.

Originally aired July 29, 2013.  

A Summit County rancher is seeking compensation for a US Forest service controlled burn went awry and torched his grazing lands. Lynn Ware Peek has more.