If Mike Burkett’s article of Oct. 29, 2002 is correct, then all of us have a lot to do starting right away in this holiday season.
Have you been up to Strawberry lately? Have you taken a ride on the Rim Road? Thousands of brown dead pine cover the hills of Pine and Strawberry. In some ways these areas look worse than bombed out regions of Europe after WWII or Korea after that conflict. And, it’s not going to get better without some sort of intervention. In fact, it will get far worse.
Our trees are the backbone of our Rim country tourist industry. They wash our air giving this area one of the cleanest ozone regions in the world. Green Valley wouldn’t be much without these wonders, and neither would we.
OK, let’s just say we all agree that we need to somehow stop the bark beetle in his tracks. What’s to be done? The beetles have already killed more than 2 million trees. We do know that spraying treatment is most effective in early spring. And, removal of infected trees can take away the young larvae. There are things that can reduce this infestation.
We need to draft people who know how to put together a campaign to eliminate the bark beetle. They need the authority and money to make it happen. We need all the help we can get from the Forest Service, county, state and national agencies. We need to get the information of how serious this situation is, in front of all these authorities as well as Congress.
Of course, we don’t know how to solve this problem, but if each of us communicates with our political leaders, we can put on the pressure necessary to get the money, plan, and people together, in time to solve this issue and save our trees.
Bob Breen, Payson