MTPR

Helena National Forest

The Southwestern Crown Collaborative visits a burn site from the Rice Ridge Fire near Seeley Lake.
Brittany Greeson, Crossing The Divide

Wildfires burned more than a million acres across Montana this year, making it one of the most expensive fire seasons since 1999. While the smoke has cleared, the debate over wildfires and forest management is ongoing. Some Montana lawmakers are blaming what they call "environmental extremists" who've managed to stop some logging. But ecologists say it's more complicated than that. In an effort to learn how to live with wildfires, the Southwestern Crown Collaborative is one group trying to find common ground.

Ten thousand square miles. That’s roughly how much public land in Montana the US Forest Service is making new plans for at the moment.

Three National Forests, the Flathead, the Helena-Lewis and Clark and the Custer-Gallatin are all writing the basic governing documents that lay out what can and can’t happen, and where, in their vast territories. In January the Helena-Lewis and Clark is holding a series of public input meetings on their new forest plan.

All this new planning is happening under new forest planning rules. University of Montana Professor of Natural Resource Policy Martin Nie is on a national advisory committee about those rules. 

Montana Wildfire Roundup For August 17, 2016

Aug 17, 2016
A helicopter returns from dumping water on the Roaring Lion Fire on August 15, 2016
Inciweb

The latest on wildfires around western Montana.

Flathead National Forest to update forest plan, seeks public input
Nicky Ouellet

The forest in the Flathead is about to see some big changes – or not. It all depends on how proposed changes to the Flathead’s National Forest Plan shake out.

The Flathead National Forest is hosting an open house on a proposed timber sale near Bigfork.
Flathead National Forest

Supervisors for the Flathead National Forest held an open house in Kalispell on Monday to answer questions about proposed revisions to its draft forest plan.

The plan provides long-term management goals and standards, and outlines the forest’s projected timber sales.

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