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How Logging Could Help Save California's Redwood Forests

SANTA CRUZ MOUNTAINS (KPIX 5) -- Some environmentalists say it's time to start logging in some areas to prevent overcrowding in California's forests.

A project is being talked about near Davenport, just north of Santa Cruz, where the forest is home to towering California Redwoods.

Not everyone likes the idea.

For anyone concerned about the fate of California's majestic Redwoods, the plan likely sounds counterintuitive. Save the forests, by logging it?

Save The Redwoods President Sam Hodder said, "Using science-based methods to thin those forests and accelerate the growth of the dominant trees, you can actually restore the natural function and bring back the healthy forest ecosystem."


San Francisco's Save The Redwoods League is planning to open thousands of acres of forest near the California-Oregon border to logging for the first time in decades.

The environmental group says the area was logged heavily a century ago and is now a thick, tangle of younger trees that are at risk of wildfire and unlikely to become a majestic Redwood forest again without some help.

But not all environmentalists are on board.

Environmental activist Jodi Frediani said, "I'm very concerned that doing any kind of commercial logging in our state parks or national parks has the potential to open up a can of worms."

Environmentalists like Frediani says they want details about how trees will be cut and which ones will go.

Bryan Largay, a spokesperson for the Land Trust of Santa Cruz County said, "A lot of attention needs to be paid to the details of forest management."

The Land Trust of Santa Cruz County is running a similar, targeted logging program in the Bryne-Milliron Forest.

Largay said, "The practice of logging thins the forest, resulting in fewer, larger trees, over time, getting it back to the conditions that existed prior to those devastating clear cuts."

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