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Fuel Reduction Hot Topic at County Meeting

Nevada County Supervisors and a chamber full of curious visitors  turned out yesterday afternoon to listen to Doyel Shamley,  a natural resources consultant,  on how he helped initiate a stewardship program in Apache County, Arizona to reduce fuel loads on National Forest lands.  Following the  2011 Wallow fire- the largest to burn in Arizona,  Apache County claimed jurisdictional authority over public lands in order to protect the public and reduce the risk of fire.   Shamley argues that counties can take authority over the US Forest Service based on the 10th Amendment.

2013-02-26-Doyel-Shamley

click to hear Doyel Shamley

Shamley compared the conditions in the Tahoe National Forest, BLM, and private lands in Nevada County to the situation that led to the Wallow fire.
click to hear Doyel Shamley

During Public Comment Grass Valley resident Boots Rusk drew applause when she suggested the county should take the lead in clearing fuels and reducing fire danger in Nevada County.
click to hear Boots Rusk
Tahoe-National-forest-MapThe Tahoe National Forest presented a checkerboard map of U.S. Forest Land in Nevada county that is  interspersed with private and BLM managed parcels.  Board Chair Hank Weston said they all need to work together.
click to hear Hank Weston

Supervisor Terry Lamphier who sits on the Bio-fuels Advisory Committee for the county says progress is being made to reduce fuels buildup in the forest by using it to generate energy.  Supervisor Nate Beason after the hearing  said he didn’t find anything in the presentation that broke new ground, but did say private enterprise was key to clearing the downed fuels.
click to hear Nate Beason

Board Chair Hank Weston  said he would review possible action with County Counsel.
click to hear Hank Weston

Shamley was invited to speak to the county Board of Supervisors by  the California Association of Business Property and Resource Owners who paid his expenses to come here.

2 Comments

February 28, 2013

terry lamphier

Re: Local biomass utilization, hurdles are still big and energy use competes with fracking gas (so cheap they are burning off enough gas in North Dakota fracking fields to provide heat for 500,000 homes per day, according to March edition of Harper's magazine, "Bakken Business").

Next local step: analysis of "feedstock" (available raw materials) to document that there would be a sustainable supply of biomass locally for a commercial operation.

February 28, 2013

terry lamphier

If folks can make it to our biomass task force presentation to the Board of Supervisors March 26 (1:30 pm), there will be an opportunity to a)see just how bad our fire danger is and b)get an update on our local biomass task force.
Included will be a very compelling power point from Malcolm North, UC Davis, that clearly shows nexus of good forest management, wildfire danger and importance of altering slash usage for power.
Also will have a report on current local biomass task force status/projects and update from fire safety folks.
Should be a good, informative presentation. Very timely with historical drought unfolding in our mountains…

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