In western scholarship, Africa’s so-called sacred forests are often treated as the remains of primeval forests, ethnographic curiosities, or cultural relics from a static precolonial past. Their continuing importance in African societies, however, shows that this “relic theory” is inadequate for understanding current social and ecological dynamics. African Sacred Groves challenges dominant views of these landscape features by redefining the subject matter beyond the compelling yet uninformative term “sacred.” The term “ethnoforests” incorporates the environmental, social-political, and symbolic aspects of these forests without giving undue primacy to their religious values. This interdisciplinary
book by an international group of scholars and conservation practitioners provides a methodological framework for understanding these forests by examining their ecological characteristics, delineating how they relate to social dynamics and historical contexts, exploring their ideological aspects, and evaluating their strengths and weaknesses as sites for community-based resource management and the conservation of cultural and biological diversity.
Nearly 430 million acres of forests in the United States are privately owned, but the viability, and indeed the very existence, of these forests is increasingly threatened by population growth, sprawling urbanization, and patchwork development. Scientists, policymakers, and community leaders have begun to recognize the vital role of private forests in providing society with essential goods and services, from sustainable timber supplies to clean water. Yet despite the tremendous economic and ecological importance of private forests, information about their status and strategies for their protection have been in short supply.
America's Private Forests addresses that shortcoming, presenting extensive data gathered from diverse sources and offering a concise overview of the current status of privately owned forests in the United States. As well as describing the state of private forests, the book sets forth detailed information on a wide range of approaches to conservation along with an action agenda for implementing those strategies likely to be most effective. The book:
identifies the major threats to private forests in the United States
considers barriers to conservation
outlines the available tools and programs for promoting conservation
presents a "road map" to guide collective efforts for the conservation of private forests and their native biodiversity
Based on extensive research of existing literature as well as interviews and consultation with leading forestry and conservation experts, America's Private Forests is a unique sourcebook that offers a solid basis for discussion of threats to private forests along with an invaluable compendium of potential solutions. It will serve as an invaluable reference for all those working to conserve and steward forest resources, including forest owners and their consultants, conservation organizations, and agency personnel, as well as researchers and students involved with issues of forestry, biodiversity, land use, and conservation.
Winner of the Wallace Stegner Prize in American Environmental or Western History
Fredrick Swanson tells the story of Guy M. Brandborg and his impact on the practices of the U.S. Forest Service. As supervisor of Montana’s Bitterroot National Forest from 1935 to 1955, Brandborg engaged in a management style that promoted not only the well-being of the forest community but also the social and economic welfare of the local people. By relying on selective cutting, his goal was to protect the watersheds and wildlife habitats that are devastated by clear-cutting, and to prevent the job losses that follow such practices. Following his retirement, he became concerned that his agency was deviating from the practice of sustained-yield management of the forest’s timber lands, and led a highly visible public outcry that became known as the Bitterroot controversy. Brandborg’s behind-the-scenes lobbying contributed materially to the passage of the National Forest Management Act of 1976, the single most important law affecting public forestry since the creation of the Forest Service.
Meticulously written, The Bitterroot and Mr. Brandborg articulates Brandborg’s Progressive-era idealism and is based on extensive archival research in collections throughout the Rockies and the Northwest, including the Brandborg family papers. Swanson’s crisp narration of how one national forest supervisor understood the intricate connection between the grasslands and forests under his care and the communities that were so dependent on these invaluable resources, opens a much larger story about the meaning of public lands in a democratic society.
Winner of the Western Writers of America Spur Award for Best Western Nonfiction-Contemporary.
Drawing on more than thirty years of meticulous research, Kay Rippelmeyer details the Depression-era history of the simultaneous creation of the Civilian Conservation Corps (CCC) and the Shawnee National Forest in southern Illinois. Through the stories of the men who worked in CCC camps devoted to soil and forest conservation projects, she offers a fascinating look into an era of utmost significance to the identity, citizens, wildlife, and natural landscape of the region.
Rippelmeyer outlines the geologic and geographic history of southern Illinois, from Native American uses of the land to the timber industry’s decimation of the forest by the 1920s. Detailing both the economic hardships and agricultural land abuse plaguing the region during the Depression, she reveals how the creation of the CCC under Franklin Delano Roosevelt coincided with the regional campaign for a national forest and how locals first became aware of and involved with the program.
Rippelmeyer mined CCC camp records from the National Archives, newspaper accounts and other correspondence and conducted dozens of oral interviews with workers and their families to re-create life in the camps. An extensive camp compendium augments the volume, featuring numerous photographs, camp locations and dates of operation, work history, and company rosters. Satisfying public curiosity and the need for factual information about the camps in southern Illinois, this is an essential contribution to regional history and a window to the national impact of the CCC.
Guatemala's Maya Biosphere Reserve (MBR), the largest protected area in Central America, is characterized by rampant violence, social and ethnic inequality, and rapid deforestation. Faced with these threats, local residents, conservationists, scientists, and NGOs in the region work within what Micha Rahder calls “an ecology of knowledges,” in which interventions on the MBR landscape are tied to differing and sometimes competing forms of knowing. In this book, Rahder examines how technoscience, endemic violence, and an embodied love of wild species and places shape conservation practices in Guatemala. Rahder highlights how different forms of environmental knowledge emerge from encounters and relations between humans and nonhumans, institutions and local actors, and how situated ways of knowing impact conservation practices and natural places, often in unexpected and unintended ways. In so doing, she opens up new ways of thinking about the complexities of environmental knowledge and conservation in the context of instability, inequality, and violence around the world.
Because of their enormous size, elephants have long been irresistible for kings as symbols of their eminence. In early civilizations—such as Egypt, Mesopotamia, the Indus Civilization, and China—kings used elephants for royal sacrifice, spectacular hunts, public display of live captives, or the conspicuous consumption of ivory—all of them tending toward the elephant’s extinction. The kings of India, however, as Thomas R. Trautmann shows in this study, found a use for elephants that actually helped preserve their habitat and numbers in the wild: war.
Trautmann traces the history of the war elephant in India and the spread of the institution to the west—where elephants took part in some of the greatest wars of antiquity—and Southeast Asia (but not China, significantly), a history that spans 3,000 years and a considerable part of the globe, from Spain to Java. He shows that because elephants eat such massive quantities of food, it was uneconomic to raise them from birth. Rather, in a unique form of domestication, Indian kings captured wild adults and trained them, one by one, through millennia. Kings were thus compelled to protect wild elephants from hunters and elephant forests from being cut down. By taking a wide-angle view of human-elephant relations, Trautmann throws into relief the structure of India’s environmental history and the reasons for the persistence of wild elephants in its forests.
Emerging Threats to Tropical Forests
Edited by William F. Laurance and Carlos A. Peres University of Chicago Press, 2006 Library of Congress SD247.E44 2006 | Dewey Decimal 634.90913
Emerging Threats to Tropical Forests reveals the remarkably diverse panoply of perils to tropical forests and their biota, with particular emphasis on recent dangers. William F. Laurance and Carlos A. Peres identify four categories of emerging threats: those that have only recently appeared, such as the virulent chytrid fungus that is decimating rainforest amphibians throughout the tropical world; those that are growing rapidly in importance, like destructive surface fires; those that are poorly understood, namely global warming and other climatic and atmospheric changes; and environmental synergisms, whereby two or more simultaneous threats—such as habitat fragmentation and wildfires, or logging and hunting—can dramatically increase local extinction of tropical species. In addition to documenting the vulnerability of tropical rainforests, the volume focuses on strategies for mitigating and combating emerging threats. A timely and compelling book intended for researchers, students, and conservation practitioners, Emerging Threats to Tropical Forests will interest anyone concerned about the fate of the world’s most threatened tropical ecosystems.
In Kumaon in northern India, villagers set hundreds of forest fires in the early 1920s, protesting the colonial British state’s regulations to protect the environment. Yet by the 1990s, they had begun to conserve their forests carefully. In his innovative historical and political study, Arun Agrawal analyzes this striking transformation. He describes and explains the emergence of environmental identities and changes in state-locality relations and shows how the two are related. In so doing, he demonstrates that scholarship on common property, political ecology, and feminist environmentalism can be combined—in an approach he calls environmentality—to better understand changes in conservation efforts. Such an understanding is relevant far beyond Kumaon: local populations in more than fifty countries are engaged in similar efforts to protect their environmental resources.
Agrawal brings environment and development studies, new institutional economics, and Foucauldian theories of power and subjectivity to bear on his ethnographical and historical research. He visited nearly forty villages in Kumaon, where he assessed the state of village forests, interviewed hundreds of Kumaonis, and examined local records. Drawing on his extensive fieldwork and archival research, he shows how decentralization strategies change relations between states and localities, community decision makers and common residents, and individuals and the environment. In exploring these changes and their significance, Agrawal establishes that theories of environmental politics are enriched by attention to the interconnections between power, knowledge, institutions, and subjectivities.
The Amazon rain forest covers more than five million square kilometers, amid the territories of nine different nations. It represents over half of the planet’s remaining rain forest. Is it truly in peril? What steps are necessary to save it? To understand the future of Amazonia, one must know how its history was forged: in the eras of large pre-Columbian populations, in the gold rush of conquistadors, in centuries of slavery, in the schemes of Brazil’s military dictators in the 1960s and 1970s, and in new globalized economies where Brazilian soy and beef now dominate, while the market in carbon credits raises the value of standing forest.
Susanna Hecht and Alexander Cockburn show in compelling detail the panorama of destruction as it unfolded, and also reveal the extraordinary turnaround that is now taking place, thanks to both the social movements, and the emergence of new environmental markets. Exploring the role of human hands in destroying—and saving—this vast forested region, The Fate of the Forest pivots on the murder of Chico Mendes, the legendary labor and environmental organizer assassinated after successful confrontations with big ranchers. A multifaceted portrait of Eden under siege, complete with a new preface and afterword by the authors, this book demonstrates that those who would hold a mirror up to nature must first learn the lessons offered by some of their own people.
"This is not a simple or ordinary history of a conservation crusade. Schrepfer very ably traces the changes in scientific wisdom from nineteenth-century romanticism and teleological evolutionism to more current ecological dynamism—and the influence of those intellectual developments on political history. . . . The subject is important—much broader than the title suggests—and so is the book."—American Historical Review
Forest Conservation in the Anthropocene provides thought-provoking insight into the ongoing environmental crises that climate change is generating and raises critical questions about how public and private land managers in North America will adapt to the climatological disruptions that are already transforming the ecological structures of these forests.
In this pathbreaking anthology, a team of leading environmental researchers probes the central dilemmas that ecologists, forest land managers, state and federal agencies, and grassroots organizations are confronting—and will continue to confront—in the coming century. Each chapter examines strategies that are currently being tested across the country as scientists, citizen-scientists, policy makers, academics, and activists work to grasp their options and opportunities for a future that will be shaped by ongoing environmental upheaval.
Successful adaptation to the challenges of climate change requires a transdisciplinary perspective. Forest Conservation in the Anthropocene provides a compelling set of arguments and case studies that underscores the need for innovative policies and energetic actions.
Contributors: Craig D. Allen, Mark Anderson, Susan Beecher, R. Travis Belote, Timothy J. Brown, Anne A. Carlson, Tim Caro, Grace K. Charles, Dave Cleaves, Dena J. Clink, Ayesha Dinshaw, R. Kasten Dumroese, Jonas Epstein, Alexander M. Evans, Todd Gartner, Jessica E. Halofsky, Nels Johnson, Linda A. Joyce, Paige Lewis, Laura Falk McCarthy, Heather McGray, Constance I. Millar, James Mulligan, Chadwick Dearing, David L. Peterson, Will Price, Janine M. Rice, Jason Riggio, Tania Schoennagel, Mark L. Shaffer, Curt Stager, Scott L. Stephens, Thomas W. Swetnam, Gary M. Tabor, Christopher Topik, Monica G. Turner, Thomas T. Veblen, Alexandra M. Weill, Anthony L. Westerling, Carolyn Whitesell, Mary I. Williams
"While tropical forests are being cleared at an alarming rate, the clearing is rarely complete and is often not permanent. A considerable amount of tropical forest exists as remnants that have significant value both for the conservation of biological diversity and for meeting the needs of local people.This volume brings together world-renowned scientists and conservationists to address the biological and socio-economic value of forest remnants and to examine practical efforts to conserve those remnants. An outgrowth of a year-long study by the policy program at the Smithsonian Migratory Bird Center, Forest Patches in Tropical Landscapes provides a broad overview of theory and practice, and will help foster both interdisciplinary research and more effective approaches to tropical conservation and development.
Forests for the People tells one of the most extraordinary stories of environmental protection in our nation’s history: how a diverse coalition of citizens, organizations, and business and political leaders worked to create a system of national forests in the Eastern United States. It offers an insightful and wide-ranging look at the actions leading to the passage of the Weeks Act in 1911—landmark legislation that established a system of well-managed forests in the East, the South, and the Great Lakes region—along with case studies that consider some of the key challenges facing eastern forests today.
The book begins by looking at destructive practices widely used by the timber industry in the late 1800s and early 1900s, including extensive clearcutting followed by forest fire that devastated entire landscapes. The authors explain how this led to the birth of a new conservation movement that began simultaneously in the Southern Appalachians and New England, and describe the subsequent protection of forests in New England (New Hampshire and the White Mountains); the Great Lakes region (Michigan, Wisconsin, and Minnesota), and the Southern Appalachians.
Following this historical background, the authors offer eight case studies that examine critical issues facing the eastern national forests today, including timber harvesting, the use of fire, wilderness protection, endangered wildlife, oil shale drilling, invasive species, and development surrounding national park borders.
Forests for the People is the only book to fully describe the history of the Weeks Act and the creation of the eastern national forests and to use case studies to illustrate current management issues facing these treasured landscapes. It is an important new work for anyone interested in the past or future of forests and forestry in the United States.
Developed by the pioneering landscape design firm of Andropogon Associates, world-renowned for their innovative approach to integrating environmental protection and restoration with landscape architecture and design, The Once and Future Forest is a guidebook for restoring and managing natural landscapes. Focusing on remnant forest systems, it describes methods of restoring and linking forest fragments to recreate a whole landscape fabric.The book begins by explaining the history and current situation of forest ecosystems in the eastern United States. Following that is an in-depth examination of the restoration process, with thorough descriptions of ecological strategies for landscape management along with specific examples of how those strategies have been implemented in various sites around the country. The final section provides hands-on information about the many specific details that must be considered when initiating and implementing a restoration program. All aspects of the restoration process are considered, including: Water -- opportunities for increasing infiltration, reducing pollutants, promoting habitat values Ground -- methods of protecting existing vegetation, removing fill, rebuilding soils Plants -- strategies and procedures for planting, maintenance, propagation Wildlife -- guidelines for preserving wildlife resources, management techniques to favor selected specie.The Once and Future Forest presents a comprehensive approach to assessing sites, detailed guidelines for determining management goals, and a thorough overview of appropriate management and restoration techniques. It is an important guide for professional planners and landscape architects, government agency personnel at all levels, land managers, scientists involved in restoration work, and citizen activists who wish to do something constructive about our deteriorating forest patches.
The People's Forests
Marshall, Robert University of Iowa Press, 2002 Library of Congress SD143.M35 2002 | Dewey Decimal 333.750973
Devoted conservationist, environmentalist, and explorer Robert Marshall (1901-1939) was chief of the Division of Recreation and Lands, U.S. Forest Service, when he died at age thirty-eight. Throughout his short but intense life, Marshall helped catalyze the preservation of millions of wilderness acres in all parts of the U.S., inspired countless wilderness advocates, and was a pioneer in the modern environmental movement: he and seven fellow conservationists founded the Wilderness Society in 1935. First published in 1933, The People's Forests made a passionate case for the public ownership and management of the nation's forests in the face of generations of devastating practices; its republication now is especially timely.
Marshall describes the major values of forests as sources of raw materials, as essential resources for the conservation of soil and water, and as a “precious environment for recreation” and for “the happiness of millions of human beings.” He considers the pros and cons of private and public ownership, deciding that public ownership and large-scale public acquisition are vital in order to save the nation's forests, and sets out ways to intelligently plan for and manage public ownership.
The last words of this book capture Marshall's philosophy perfectly: “The time has come when we must discard the unsocial view that our woods are the lumbermen's and substitute the broader ideal that every acre of woodland in the country is rightly a part of the people's forests.”
Following the 1917 Mexican Revolution inhabitants of the states of Chihuahua and Michoacán received vast tracts of prime timberland as part of Mexico's land redistribution program. Although locals gained possession of the forests, the federal government retained management rights, which created conflict over subsequent decades among rural, often indigenous villages; government; and private timber companies about how best to manage the forests. Christopher R. Boyer examines this history in Political Landscapes, where he argues that the forests in Chihuahua and Michoacán became what he calls "political landscapes"—that is, geographies that become politicized by the interactions between opposing actors—through the effects of backroom deals, nepotism, and political negotiations. Understanding the historical dynamic of community forestry in Mexico is particularly critical for those interested in promoting community involvement in the use and conservation of forestlands around the world. Considering how rural and indigenous people have confronted, accepted, and modified the rationalizing projects of forest management foisted on them by a developmentalist state is crucial before community management is implemented elsewhere.
Evidence is mounting that redwood forests, like many other ecosystems, cannot survive as small, isolated fragments in human-altered landscapes. Such fragments lose their diversity over time and, in the case of redwoods, may even lose the ability to grow new, giant trees.The Redwood Forest, written in support of Save-the-Redwood League's master plan, provides scientific guidance for saving the redwood forest by bringing together in a single volume the latest insights from conservation biology along with new information from data-gathering techniques such as GIS and remote sensing. It presents the most current findings on the geologic and cultural history, natural history, ecology, management, and conservation of the flora and fauna of the redwood ecosystem. Leading experts -- including Todd Dawson, Bill Libby, John Sawyer, Steve Sillett, Dale Thornburgh, Hartwell Welch, and many others -- offer a comprehensive account of the redwoods ecosystem, with specific chapters examining: the history of the redwood lineage, from the Triassic Period to the present, along with the recent history of redwoods conservation life history, architecture, genetics, environmental relations, and disturbance regimes of redwoods terrestrial flora and fauna, communities, and ecosystems aquatic ecosystems landscape-scale conservation planning management alternatives relating to forestry, restoration, and recreation.The Redwood Forest offers a case study for ecosystem-level conservation and gives conservation organizations the information, technical tools, and broad perspective they need to evaluate redwood sites and landscapes for conservation. It contains the latest information from ground-breaking research on such topics as redwood canopy communities, the role of fog in sustaining redwood forests, and the function of redwood burls. It also presents sobering lessons from current research on the effects of forestry activities on the sensitive faunas of redwood forests and streams.The key to perpetuating the redwood forest is understanding how it functions; this book represents an important step in establishing such an understanding. It presents a significant body of knowledge in a single volume, and will be a vital resource for conservation scientists, land use planners, policymakers, and anyone involved with conservation of redwoods and other forests.
Roadless Rules is a fast-paced and insightful look at one of the most important, wide-ranging, and controversial efforts to protect public forests ever undertaken in the United States.
In January 2000, President Clinton submitted to the Federal Register the Roadless Area Conservation Rule, prohibiting road construction and timber harvesting in designated roadless areas. Set to take effect sixty days after Clinton left office, the rule was immediately challenged by nine lawsuits from states, counties, off-road-vehicle users, and timber companies. The Bush administration refused to defend the rule and eventually sought to replace it with a rule that invited governors to suggest management policies for forests in their states. That rule was attacked by four states and twenty environmental groups and declared illegal.
Roadless Rules offers a fascinating overview of the creation of the Clinton roadless rule and the Bush administration’s subsequent replacement rule, the controversy generated, the response of the environmental community, and the legal battles that continue to rage more than seven years later. It explores the value of roadless areas and why the Clinton rule was so important to environmentalists, describes the stakeholder groups involved, and takes readers into courtrooms across the country to hear critical arguments.
Author Tom Turner considers the lessons learned from the controversy, arguing that the episode represents an excellent example of how the system can work when all elements of the environmental movement work together—local groups and individuals determined to save favorite places, national organizations that represent local interests but also concern themselves with national policies, members of the executive branch who try to serve the public interest but need support from outside, and national organizations that use the legal system to support progress achieved through legislation or executive action.
Though seasonally dry tropical forests are equally as important to global biodiversity as tropical rainforests, and are one of the most representative and highly endangered ecosystems in Latin America, knowledge about them remains limited because of the relative paucity of attention paid to them by scientists and researchers and a lack of published information on the subject.
Seasonally Dry Tropical Forests seeks to address this shortcoming by bringing together a range of experts in diverse fields including biology, ecology, biogeography, and biogeochemistry, to review, synthesize, and explain the current state of our collective knowledge on the ecology and conservation of seasonally dry tropical forests.
The book offers a synthetic and cross-disciplinary review of recent work with an expansive scope, including sections on distribution, diversity, ecosystem function, and human impacts. Throughout, contributors emphasize conservation issues, particularly emerging threats and promising solutions, with key chapters on climate change, fragmentation, restoration, ecosystem services, and sustainable use.
Seasonally dry tropical forests are extremely rich in biodiversity, and are seriously threatened. They represent scientific terrain that is poorly explored, and there is an urgent need for increased understanding of the system's basic ecology. Seasonally Dry Tropical Forests represents an important step in bringing together the most current scientific information about this vital ecosystem and disseminating it to the scientific and conservation communities.
President John F. Kennedy officially dedicated the Pinchot Institute for Conservation Studies on September 24, 1963 to further the legacy and activism of conservationist Gifford Pinchot (1865–1946). Pinchot was the first chief of the United States Forest Service, appointed by Theodore Roosevelt in 1905. During his five-year term, he more than tripled the national forest reserves to 172 million acres. A pioneer in his field, Pinchot is widely regarded as one of the architects of American conservation and an adamant steward of natural resources for future generations.
Author Char Miller highlights many of the important contributions of the Pinchot Institute through its first fifty years of operation. As a union of the United States Forest Service and the Conservation Foundation, a private New York-based think tank, the institute was created to formulate policy and develop conservation education programs. Miller chronicles the institution’s founding, a donation of the Pinchot family, at its Grey Towers estate in Milford, Pennsylvania. He views the contributions of Pinchot family members, from the institute’s initial conception by Pinchot’s son, Gifford Bryce Pinchot, through the family’s ongoing participation in current conservation programming. Miller describes the institute’s unique fusion of policy makers, scientists, politicians, and activists to increase our understanding of and responses to urban and rural forestry, water quality, soil erosion, air pollution, endangered species, land management and planning, and hydraulic franking.
Miller explores such innovative programs as Common Waters, which works to protect the local Delaware River Basin as a drinking water source for millions; EcoMadera, which trains the residents of Cristobal Colón in Ecuador in conservation land management and sustainable wood processing; and the Forest Health-Human Health Initiative, which offers health-care credits to rural American landowners who maintain their carbon-capturing forestlands. Many of these individuals are age sixty-five or older and face daunting medical expenses that may force them to sell their land for timber.
Through these and countless other collaborative endeavors, the Pinchot Institute has continued to advance its namesake’s ambition to protect ecosystems for future generations and provide vital environmental services in an age of a burgeoning population and a disruptive climate.
Stretching across southern Mexico, northern Guatemala, and Belize, the Maya Forest, or Selva Maya, constitutes one of the last large blocks of tropical forest remaining in North and Central America. Home to Mayan-speaking people for more than 5,000 years, the region is also uncommonly rich in cultural and archaeological resources.Timber, Tourists, and Temples brings together the leading biologists, social scientists, and conservationists working in the region to present in a single volume information on the intricate social and political issues, and the complex scientifc and management problems to be resolved there. Following an introductory chapter that presents GIS and remote sensing data, the book: considers perspectives on managing forest resources and the forestry and conservation policies of each nation examines efforts by communities to manage their forest resources explains the connections between resource conservation and use by local people highlights research projects that integrate baseline biological research with impact assessments explains the need to involve local people in conservation effortTimber, Tourists, and Temples explores methods of supporting the biological foundation of the Maya Forest and keeping alive that unique and diverse ecosystem. While many areas face similar development pressures, few have been studied as much or for as long as the Maya Forest. The wealth of information included in this pathbreaking work will be valuable not only for researchers involved with the Maya Forest but for anyone concerned with the protection, use, and management of tropical forest ecosystems throughout the world.
Tongass Odyssey is a biologist’s memoir of personal experiences over the past four decades studying brown bears, deer, and mountain goats and advocating for conservation of Alaska’s Tongass National Forest. The largest national forest in the nation, the Tongass encompasses the most significant expanse of intact old-growth temperate rainforest remaining on Earth. Tongass Odyssey is a cautionary tale of the harm that can result when science is eclipsed by politics that are focused on short-term economic gain. Yet even as those problems put the Tongass at risk, the forest also represents a unique opportunity for conserving large, intact landscapes with all their ecological parts, including wild salmon, bears, wolves, eagles, and other wildlife. Combining elements of personal memoir, field journal, natural history, conservation essay, and philosophical reflection, Tongass Odyssey tells an engaging story about an enchanting place.
Jim Furnish joined the U.S. Forest Service in 1965, enthusiastic and naive, proud to be part of such a storied and accomplished agency. Nothing could have prepared him for the crisis that would soon rock the agency to its foundation, as a burgeoning environmental movement challenged the Forest Service’s legacy and legitimacy.
The Forest Service stumbled in responding to a wave of lawsuits from environmental groups in the late 20th Century—a phenomenon best symbolized by the spotted owl controversy that shut down logging on public forests in the Pacific Northwest in the 1990s. The agency was brought to its knees, pitted between a powerful timber industry that had been having its way with the national forests for decades, and organized environmentalists who believed public lands had been abused and deserved better stewardship.
Toward a Natural Forest offers an insider’s view of this tumultuous time in the history of the Forest Service, presenting twin tales of transformation, both within the agency and within the author’s evolving environmental consciousness. While stewarding our national forests with the best of intentions, had the Forest Service diminished their natural essence and ecological values? How could one man confront the crisis while remaining loyal to his employer?
In this revealing memoir, Furnish addresses the fundamental human drive to gain sustenance from and protect the Earth, believing that we need not destroy it in the process. Drawing on the author’s personal experience and his broad professional knowledge, Toward a Natural Forest illuminates the potential of the Forest Service to provide strong leadership in global conservation efforts. Those interested in our public lands—environmentalists, natural resource professionals, academics, and historians—will find Jim Furnish’s story deeply informed, thought-provoking, and ultimately inspiring.
Wars over natural resources have been fiercely fought in the Humboldt Bay redwood region of Northern California, a situation made devastatingly urgent in recent decades of timber war that raised questions of economic sustainability and ecological preservation. In Trouble in the Forest, Richard Widick narrates the long and bloody history of this hostility and demonstrates how it exemplifies the key contemporary challenge facing the modern societies-the collision of capitalism, ecology, and social justice.
An innovative blend of social history, cultural theory, and ethnography, Trouble in the Forest traces the origins of the redwood conflict to the same engines of modernity that drove the region's colonial violence against American Indians and its labor struggles during the industrial revolution. Widick describes in vivid detail the infamous fight that ensued when Maxxam Inc. started clearing ancient forests in Humboldt after acquiring the Pacific Lumber Company in 1985, but he also reaches further back and investigates the local Indian clashes and labor troubles that set the conditions of the timber wars. Seizing on public flash points of each confrontation-including the massacre of Wiyot on Indian Island in 1860, the machine-gunning of redwood strikers by police and company thugs during the great lumber strike of 1935, and the car bombing of forest defenders in 1990-Widick maps how the landscape has registered the impact of this epochal struggle, and how the timber wars embody the forces of market capitalism, free speech, and liberal government.
Showing how events such as an Indian massacre and the death of a protester at the hands of a logger create the social memory and culture of timber production and environmental resistance now emblematic of Northern California's redwood region, Trouble in the Forest ultimately argues that the modern social imaginary produced a perpetual conflict over property that fueled the timber wars as it pushed toward the western frontier: first property in land, then in labor, and now in environment.
Wild Forests presents a coherent review of the scientific and policy issues surrounding biological diversity in the context of contemporary public forest management. The authors examine past and current practices of forest management and provide a comprehensive overview of known and suspected threats to diversity.
In addition to discussing general ecological principles, the authors evaluate specific approaches to forest management that have been proposed to ameliorate diversity losses. They present one such policy -- the Dominant Use Zoning Model incorporating an integrated network of "Diversity Maintenance Areas" -- and describe their attempts to persuade the U.S. Forest Service to adopt such a policy in Wisconsin.
Drawing on experience in the field, in negotiations, and in court, the authors analyze the ways in which federal agencies are coping with the mandates of conservation biology and suggest reforms that could better address these important issues. Throughout, they argue that wild or unengineered conditions are those that are most likely to foster a return to the species richness that we once enjoyed.