I live in Colorado and ride my bike up in the mountains every week. As always, there are some patches of dead trees from forest fires, disease, bark beetles etc. I also worked two summers as a wilderness ranger for the USFS thirty years ago, and I don’t see anything alarming going on in the forests. Overall, they are as healthy as they have ever been.
Yet we have this bizarre subculture of “experts” who have convinced themselves that the forests are doomed and falling apart. The only thing I can figure is that they have no sense or awareness of history. Cycles of drought, fire and disease are a normal and essential part of the forest ecosystem. It is called “natural selection.”
Gore says that four million acres of forest has been lost to pine park beetles over the last 15 years. Put in perspective, that much forest was lost to fire during one week in Wisconsin 140 years ago, when CO2 was 290 ppm.
What a load of whoooey. The areas where Pine beetles have been a nuisance are very often COLDER in recent years, not warmer.
If we’re concerned what they could do to forests, we could solve this the old fashioned way – with a carefully selected insecticide.
Everything bad that happens is due to so-called climate change, and insects would be much more compliant to what man wants had The Supreme Court somehow allowed Algore to steal an election in 2000.
Will some troll please come onto this thread and explain when this era of climatic stability reigned where nature was perfectly compliant to man’s wishes, unicorns ran freely, and every tree lived an eternity.
How many millions of acres were burned in CA alone the last 15 years, because controlled brush burning was banned?
These bark beetle epidemics are accelerated and expanded by warmer winters (falls actually) but their ultimate cause is fire suppression. These beetles need mature trees (the cambium layer must be a certain thickness) for their habitat. No matter how warm it gets, no huge areas of habitat, no huge beetle epidemics.
These beetles are always present in the ecosystem, attacking mature trees, but they normally can only kill the weakened ones… unless there so many many beetles, from so much mature forest, than they come in numbers to overwhelm the tree’s defence.
Blame Smokey the Bear.