Don’t ignore; help
It has been said: “The quality of mercy is not strained” (Shakespeare); “Whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers and sisters of mine, you did for me” and “Do unto others as you would have them do unto you” (The Bible).
Why should we be concerned with ancient wisdom? Because it is to our advantage.
Think about it: If you help someone who is desperate, they are typically grateful. If you ignore someone who is desperate, they get more desperate! I find gratitude more rewarding to deal with than desperation. This is why I volunteer with the North State Shelter Team (NSST), because it has a fruitful purpose and it is rewarding.
NSST has a plan before the Chico City Council now for a managed and monitored campground on the outskirts of town (that needs no city money) based on successful programs that have been working in other towns for years. Why not give it a try? There is vacant land. NSST has a plan. We have a crisis.
Only 4 percent of Plumas National Forest has permanent protections. Friends of Plumas Wilderness aims to change that.
The Feather River is headwaters of the State Water Project, supplying water to 27 million Californians. The rugged Middle Fork Feather is one of eight rivers protected in 1968. Plumas National Forest staff have identified another 200 miles along 21 more rivers for Wild and Scenic designation. This would ensure our free-flowing rivers remain without dams or diversions.
The Upper Feather River watershed’s biodiversity is exceptional: conifer forests; mammal, bird, and insect diversity; and the potential for protection are all special. California’s only gray wolves make their home here. It’s a hot spot for three rare or endangered frogs and a stronghold for western bumble bees.
Fuels reduction is essential to maintain and restore healthy conifer forests of Northern Sierra Nevada, as is protecting large, fire-resilient trees that capture most carbon. Fires on private industrial forest land are nearly twice as likely to be high severity as fires on public lands. Humans start more than 80 percent of wildfires, and more than 4,000 miles of roads in Plumas National Forest provide abundant access. New roads are unnecessary.
If you like the forests, rivers and canyons of the Upper Feather River watershed, now is the time to protect them. Protection doesn’t restrict existing access or prevent forest health work, fire fighting and post-fire restoration.
Explore Friends of Plumas Wilderness website (plumaswilderness.org) and join the field trip series to learn more about increasing protections.
Editor’s note: The author is the executive director of Friends of Plumas Wilderness.
Grateful for Joe
Right-wing pundits discuss President Biden’s “dementia” as fact. These folks were not concerned when their President Trump was throwing spaghetti sauce against White House dining room walls or ignoring the COVID-19 threat. But they like to spread rumors about any Democratic president.
Joe Biden continues his presidential duties in orderly fashion, meeting each problem as it occurs with intelligence and logic. We owe this president a debt of gratitude for bringing common sense back to Washington after a chaotic four years of Trump.
Appreciate President Biden’s steady leadership. He will get us through the severe challenges.
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