March 30, 2012
The Forest Service has used hand thinning and controlled burns to create buffer zones, but costs can run to more than $800 an acre.
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Salvaging millions of fire-killed trees will likely overwhelm limited capacity of mills and power plants
The debate about salvaging millions of board feet of lumber left behind by the state’s largest wildfire has illuminated the challenging economics of the plan to use a revived timber industry to protect Rim Country from catastrophic wildfires. “We’ve flooded the market already,” said Apache-Sitgreaves National Forests timber manager Ray Rugg of the demand for wood from burned trees cut down along nearly 200 miles of roads in the area burned by the Wallow Fire last summer.