19 Jun 2009, 7:15pm
Saving Forests
by admin

Evergreen Magazine Reborn Online

Over the last twenty-plus years there has been one clear, consistent, and surprisingly infallible advocate for forests, Mr. James Petersen of the Evergreen Foundation. Jim is the founder, publisher, and editor of Evergreen Magazine, the voice of the Foundation.

We heart Evergreen. Jim has published some of the best commentary, interviews, and in-depth reporting about forests. We have previously discussed some of our favorite issues [here, here, here]. We have posted some of the perspicacious speeches by Jim Petersen [here, here, here, here].

Sadly, Evergreen has been silent while undergoing a refurbishing. But now, finally, after a year-long hiatus, Evergreen Magazine is now online [here] in a brand new format!!! Hooray!!!

It’s all there: back issues, Jim’s speeches, commentary and news, quotable quotes, and fresh new content. There are even some essays by yours truly.

Please spend some time cruising around the new Evergreen site. Share the new/old website address (http://evergreenmagazine.com) with your e-mail lists.

Make a tax deductible contribution if you are able.

Longtime Evergreen Foundation and W.I.S.E. member, SAF Fellow and National Assn. of Forest Service Retirees director John F. Marker writes:

If you haven’t heard, Evergreen Foundation’s web site is about to launch, so break out the champagne for our long time friend and colleague, Jim Petersen.

Jim, a writer of superior skill and a journalist of the highest order, has been supporting professional forest management, family owned forest product firms, and forest communities for over a quarter of a century. Those of us who have known him for many of these years and know his work, welcome him to the world of electronic communications and back to the never ending fight for the forests and the people they support.

Yes sir. Tip one for Jim and the rebirth of Evergreen. We are very glad to have him back in the fray.

20 Jun 2009, 1:20pm
by Bob Zybach


Nice column (and links to earlier columns!) on the digital rebirth of Evergreen Magazine. I hope your readers follow your advice to spend some time at the new site, and to share links with their friends and associates.

Jim Peterson is one of the true heroes in forestry over the past 20 years. His work has resulted in one of the finest bodies of forest and fire science and commentary in existence, for any timeframe. Graduate level classes could (and probably should) be taught with this material as a basis.

You have done a fine job of bringing Jim’s work and thoughts to the attention of your readers throughout the existence of your website, and this column is a good continuation of those efforts.

Please keep up the good work (Evergreen and WISE)!

20 Jun 2009, 3:21pm
by Larry H.

Alas, he is not going to gain many converts by having a pro-clearcutting link on his main page. Although I personally don’t think that clearcuts should be banned (as it IS useful as a management tool), most people will not accept them under any circumstances. As soon as they see the pro-clearcutting stance, they will quickly discount ALL the information coming from the site.

Just some constructive criticism, here.

20 Jun 2009, 5:30pm
by Mike

I don’t see any pro-clearcutting link. But if there is, so what? I don’t have a problem with it. I’d rather see a 50 acre clearcut than a 500,000 acre Burn.

The idea that Jim (or I for that matter) are seeking converts is not accurate. We both tell the truth, the whole story, and let the chips fall where they may. Good forest stewardship is not a religion or a movement.

I personally don’t care if people “discount” me. That’s their problem.

We are moving the pendulum, the elephant, the meme, or whatever you want to call it, anyway. Please read Doug MacCleery’s monograph just posted at W.I.S.E. Colloquium: Forest and Fire Sciences. Note the story he tells on the last page. A former Earth First!er who has a long record of sabotaging forest health projects via lawsuits is now calling for restoration forestry. How about that?

It doesn’t matter who likes us (or doesn’t like us) or who discounts us (or not). The fact is we cannot be ignored any longer because we are informed, authentic, expert, and right.

20 Jun 2009, 5:37pm
by Bob Zybach


You are probably right, and it is too bad. It just shows the power of propaganda over time. As you know, certain species, such as Douglas-fir, lodgepole pine, and juniper, require or thrive under clearcutting-type harvesting and clearing regimes. Other species don’t, or don’t necessarily.

It is kind of weird that the same people that “can’t stand” the sight of a clearcut (never mind the economics, ecology, or biology), also can’t stand partly-mowed lawns, partly-pruned shrubs, rose bushes with all ages of blooms on them, or fruit trees with only some of the fruit picked. Go figure!

The anti-clearcutting lobby has been dealing almost entirely in aesthetics that past 30 years and, as you point out, have apparently won. Personally, I have seen, worked in, hunted, created, and reforested thousands of clearcuts during my lifetime and kind of like them, all in all. Certainly a lot better than that “New Forestry” junk they were (are still?) doing for a time.

21 Jun 2009, 7:37am
by Larry H.

We DO need to worry about public opinion, folks. You people up in Oregon should know that best of all! Public referendum is a tactic that will likely succeed one of these times. Elimination of clearcutting, logging on steeper slopes and old growth preservationism are issues that could be put on a ballot for formar Californians and Greenies to vote on. We need to de-politicize our efforts to save our forests from the hardcore preservationists.

Good forest stewardship NEEDS to be a movement!!

21 Jun 2009, 11:02am
by Larry H.

Here is a link to the Grist article about Mitch Friedman and the possibility of collaboration of eco’s and the Forest Service.


I got into the comments about halfway through the discussion but, I definitely held my ground and showed that working together is the way to true restoration. My nickname in the comments is “Backcut”. It’s very interesting reading to see how polarized the issues were, and surely, still ARE.

The comments showed the intense aversion to the collaboration issue for some folks. I’m still not seeing much change in the debate, as preservationists are still unwilling to budge, see the facts or even have discussions about it, willing to accept catastrophic fire instead of a few stumps. The Quincy Library Group is a perfect present-day example of how one class of eco’s will bash another class.

21 Jun 2009, 11:12am
by Mike

Tragically and ironically the Grist discussion (including Friedman’s essay) fails to define or explain what forest restoration is, its historical background and connections, or the how and why of it.

Instead there’s a lot of ignorant comments based on political mythologies and emotions. It’s clashing ontologies, the trap of uncontrolled equivocation (see the next post), and political grandstanding.

The overriding theme of W.I.S.E has been the science and technology of forest stewardship and its historical basis. The same is true of Evergreen. The theme of Grist is politics, and a limited viewpoint on politics at that.

Ideologies do NOT replace reality. They may try, but then the dog bites, the bee stings, and reality intrudes.

W.I.S.E. and the refurbished new Evergreen deal with the realities of forests and rural culture in a direct fashion. That’s our purpose, our strength, and our charm.

21 Jun 2009, 1:18pm
by Larry H.

While Grist was a bastion of political dissent back then, it has now stumbled into the morass of deciding which deodorant is “greener”. The few of their loyalists left (heavy on the LEFT) preach to their dwindling choir about strictly partisan politics on the rest of their threads. These “reverse-dittoheads” love to be told what to think by their political idols. Their lives are much more “faith-based” than they would ever like to admit.

I nearly got banned from there because I was relentless in pursuing and presenting the scientific truth about our forests and our world. They ARE, decidedly, as irrelevant as an idealistic town idiot, babbling about conflicting and impossible political scenarios and to try and change our way of life. All the while, hypocritically squandering essential resources and proving to the rest of America that they ARE the ultimate in ridiculous elitism. I particularly relish in their Obama-bashing, even with his short time in office.

After re-reading the comments, it’s rather telling that everything I said back then still rings true today, and even more so. They didn’t choose to listen and understand, and now we all are seeing the results of their ignorance and the lack of collaboration we needed to save forests.

We are still fighting those attitudes today, despite warnings about the current-day disasters happening right now. In fact, they seem to always want to do just the opposite. They spit upon our rural culture and wonder why we all don’t want to join them in their dirty concrete jungles ridden with vermin, human or otherwise. I almost pity them.

Politics cannot “save the planet”, no matter how much of our money they throw at it.



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