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Pacific Northwest Research Station
Blue Mountains National Resources Institute

Forestry and Range Sciences Laboratory
1401 Gekeler Lane
La Grande, OR 97850

United States Forest Service.

BMNRI Home > Publications > Abstract: Forest Management in The Blue Mountains



Forest Management in the Blue Mountains: Public Perspectives on Prescribed Fire and Mechanical Thinning

by B. Shindler and M. Reed

Most Blue Mountains residents are receptive, and in many cases strongly supportive, of both prescribed fire and mechanical thinning as fuels reduction techniques in the region. In many cases, the general public seems willing to support a Forest Service program that increases its use of these practices. To address problems, most citizens would like to see the agency take a stronger leadership role on local forests, particularly if this direction increases interaction with communities.

However, because natural resources issues are often complex, long-term solutions will need to be more sophisticated than opinion polls about whether people are for or against a single management practice. For example, public agreement in this region will probably be linked with how a decision affects the local economy, how a practice detracts or contributes to people's understanding of sustainable forests, the visual quality of fire and thinning treatments, and how final management decisions are made. In concluding remarks, five factors that are likely to influence the public's judgement are discussed:

  • people need to see things with their own eyes.
  • people want natural conditions and forest products too.
  • credible information is essential.
  • pay attention to agency/public barriers.
  • people will only support what they understand.

US Forest Service - Pacific Northwest Research Station, Blue Mountains National Resources Institute
Last Modified: Monday, 16 December 2013 at 14:18:42 CST

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