Brevia

Post-Wildfire Logging Hinders Regeneration and Increases Fire Risk

Science  20 Jan 2006:
Vol. 311, Issue 5759, pp. 352
DOI: 10.1126/science.1122855

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Abstract

We present data from a study of early conifer regeneration and fuel loads after the 2002 Biscuit Fire, Oregon, USA, with and without postfire logging. Natural conifer regeneration was abundant after the high-severity fire. Postfire logging reduced median regeneration density by 71%, significantly increased downed woody fuels, and thus increased short-term fire risk. Additional reduction of fuels is necessary for effective mitigation of fire risk. Postfire logging can be counterproductive to the goals of forest regenration and fuel reduction.

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