"The wild fires of 2015 were the greatest in Washington State history, consuming entire landscapes. But fires did not always do this.
In 1910 the largest wild fire in recorded American history swept through the West, covering nearly 3 million acres. The US Forest Service regional director, William Greeley, elevated firefighting as the overriding mission of the Forest Service.
As fire suppression became policy, the logging industry saw the opportunity for larger yields. With the development of the modern chainsaw in the 1920's, clear cutting became the largest funding source of the US Forest Service. When Greeley left his position as Western Regional Director in 1928 he became an executive with the timber company, West Coast Lumberman's Association.
Fire suppression for the past 100 years has made the growth after clearcuts congested. The trees grow thickly together, competing for water, sunlight, and nutrients. Unable to develop bark thick enough to protect against fire, these trees become an unnatural supply of fuel for the flames." -Kai Hoffman-Krull, CEO, Forage
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