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Forests, fire and politics take center stage at Sierra Cascade Logging Conference

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The annual Sierra-Cascade Logging conference is happening at the Shasta District Fairgrounds in Anderson, through Saturday.

Besides the activities and displays, there are several forums, including this afternoons "Forest, fires and politics". The panel included Steve Brinks, California Forestry, Shasta County Supervisor Mary Rickert, Matt Diaz, Executive Officer, California Board of Forestry and Fire Protection, and California 1st District Congressman Doug LaMalfa.

Steve Brinks reviewed some statistics, including that 88% of all fire starts are human caused, and 95% of human caused fires were near a road, which led to his solution .

"We gotta have fire breaks. Suppression crews have a chance to jump on that and suppress it in a fire break, an excellent chance in catching it, that to me is what we have to focus on in the next five years at least, so we have a chance and if it happens to be an evacuation route you have a much safer opportunity to utilize that evacuation route, if you have fire breaks on both sides," Brinks explained.

Congressman LaMalfa said "the bottom line on this, timber harvest and fuel reduction is a key component to having survivability for these lands that have had an inventory that has built up so intensely over the last hundred years."

In 2005, there were 266 softwood trees per acre compared to 302 per acre in 2015.

Congressman LaMalfa expressed his concern that we keep endangering our communities, as well as air and water quality.

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