Breaking: APA will vote on new clear-cutting rules

Photograph of a clear-cut with some white pine remaining as seed stock near Speculator in the southern Adirondacks, provided by Lyme Timber (Used by permission)

The Adirondack Park Agency will bring a measure to the board of commissioners next week which, if approved, would establish an easier process for landowners and loggers seeking to clear-cut timber stands larger than 25 acres.

The measure sparked controversy earlier this winter, when Adirondack green groups blasted the proposal.

It was withdrawn from consideration at the APA meeting in January.

The latest draft of the “general permit” has been changed substantially.

The new version would limit the streamlined process only to those landowners whose lands are covered by a certified sustainable forestry plan approved by the APA.

Currently the APA’s list of approved certification regimens includes only two organizations:  The Forest Stewardship Council and the Sustainable Forestry Initiative.

The Adirondack Council, Adirondack Wild and Protect the Adirondacks are still expected to oppose the new policy.

But the revamped guidelines are drawing support from the Audubon Society.

Supporters of the change argue that most landowners in the Park who use clear-cut logging are currently harvesting stands smaller than 25 acres, with almost no APA oversight.

They believe that the new general permit would entice more woodlot managers to seek sustainable forest certification, adopting standards that are superior to those required by the Park Agency.

But one sticking point that is likely to resurface next week is the lack of a clear system for notifying the public or adjacent landowners when a clear-cut is proposed to the APA.

Under the latest draft of the guidelines, notice of the clear-cutting general permit request will be posted on the APA’s website, but no pro-active measures will be taken to alert neighbors of the property slated for harvest.

The new measure also fails to impose any new regulatory oversight over clear-cuts under 25 acres in size.

According to numerous sources, these smaller but still aggressive clear-cuts have damaged the quality of commercial forest stands in many parts of the Adirondacks.

NCPR will have more on this story tomorrow morning here on NCPR.org, as well as on the air during Morning Edition and the 8 O’clock Hour.

Tags:

49 Responses to “Breaking: APA will vote on new clear-cutting rules”

Leave a response
  1. Paul says:

    As far as I can tell from what I have seen in the woods is that many places are basically clear cut anyway. In the areas where they don’t take all the large trees the ones that remain simply blow over? It seems to me that to meet some FSC principals it may actually be best to clear cut as opposed to selectively cut since it may be ecologically better for the stand. Maybe some people with more knowledge can comment.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  2. dave says:

    “But one sticking point that is likely to resurface next week is the lack of a clear system for notifying the public or adjacent landowners when a clear-cut is proposed to the APA.”

    This seems like a big deal to me. What is the argument against such notification?

    I have friends up here who owned property that lost an absurd amount of value when the owner of the lots surrounding them obliterated all of the standing trees. Took them all down, Lorax style. Over the course of a week, the property went from a desirable secluded Adirondack home in the woods to an undesirable house in the middle of an awkward open field.

    Fortunately for them, they sold that property JUST before this happened. Unfortunately, of course, for the family who bought it. But point is, no one knew this was coming!

    I imagine all of us would just about freak if we woke up one day and the woods around our houses were dropping in a clear cut.

    Of course, I guess the question is, if you did get notification, what could you do about it? Maybe that is why people oppose notification, cause they don’t want their neighbors trying to stop it?

    Hot debate. Like/Dislike Thumb up 7 Thumb down 3

  3. Two Cents says:

    my best advice, get a consulting forester before you log. a good one is worth their weight.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  4. Michael Greer says:

    A forest with a bit of logging is generally more diverse in it’s animal populations, but an ancient, uncut forest has special populations of things not seen anywhere else. This is a discussion for the foresters more than the property owners and neighbors.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  5. Paul says:

    Dave, how are they “going to stop it”. If it is legal the owner can do it. I guess they could get notice but they can’t do anything. If you don’t want logging next to your property I don’t think you should buy property next to where it is legal??

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  6. Paul says:

    Dave, I have had the same thing happen across the lake from property I own it is a bummer when it happens but if it is legal what are you going to do.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  7. jeff says:

    There are presently definitions of what a clearcut is within the park. I see more woodlands than most people across the park and clearcutting is rare. In fact only recently have I seen an increase for the purpose of specific wildlife enhancement which is impossible on public land in the park. There are heavy cuts but few clearcuts. A lot of cutting has been done prior to transfer to state ownership. Last winter I saw 3 and 4′ hemlocks cut for pulpwood. That, I thought, was stupid as that was their only commercial value and their size held a lot of intrinsic value and they were within a couple of miles of public roads.

    That neighbors need to be advised of what is happening on adjacent properties is a sign of nozy neighbors. If you don’t own it you shouldn’t have control of it- respect that. The farm field across from my house now has a house that blocks my view. I didn’t control that field. If people want that life they can build vacation house in a homeowner’s association- a collective of communist management. Stop using government to limit the rights of others.

    What is needed more is the use of herbicides, once in the life cycle of 100 to 150 years in some stands to remove excess vegetation that inhibits regeneration to create a more diverse or commercially viable forest resource. The forest has many areas with an overabundance of beech, understocked white pine and limited aspen. The limited tools presently available in the private lands of the park is fostering the lack of variety.

    I understand the value of consultants. Some of these lands have so many layers of consultants between the landowner and the land that ownership, longterm, is not feasible. The FSC in particular nescitates multiple verifiers and itself extracts a fee to fund its stamp of approval and the landowner gets the dregs. Few Adirondack privare acres hold a per acre timber value of $2000 but these certifications force a yer year fee on every acre certified. Compensation to the landowner comes only when there is a harvest.

    Popular. Like/Dislike: Thumb up 6 Thumb down 0

  8. Lily says:

    The issue here is not whether clear cutting happens or not, it is whether the APA gives individual technical review to each clearcut over 25 acres (the current practice) OR, if landowners can do those clearcuts WITHOUT the individual APA review by using the general permit. Also, as noted above, there is NO individual neighbor and ENB notice with the General Permit. Park residents should be very concerned that the APA is willing to rubber stamp this type of activity without indivudal site-specific oversight. Don’t be fooled by the new friendly name APA applied to the permit – seems they hoped nobody would notice this was one and the same clearcutting permit roundly criticized just 2 months ago. Trying to fly under the radar again. Have any of the advocacy groups even evaluated if the APA General Permits meet their own legal requirements ?

    Hot debate. Like/Dislike Thumb up 6 Thumb down 2

  9. Justin says:

    Ecologically speaking, clear cutting isn’t necessarily bad, and it can greatly improve tree species composition where beech is a problem. Aesthetically though, it is a disaster, and aesthetics matter. As shown by the cell tower regulations, the APA has the power and precedent to regulate on the basis of aesthetics.

    The Adirondack environmental NGOs should get together and create their own independent certification program. The fundamental problem with FSC and SFI is that the entity doing the logging is the one paying the hefty fees of these supposedly independent groups. It is exactly like the arrangement between the rating agencies and the banks that led to the financial crisis.

    Popular. Like/Dislike: Thumb up 8 Thumb down 1

  10. Arlan says:

    Most loggers don’t clear cut because it is better business to take the best and leave the rest. You could easily get around clear-cut rules by leaving the minimum in the form if decaying, crooked and dying trees. You’ll degrade the forest forever, but you won’t need a permit. It costs money to cut trees that aren’t valuable.

    Popular. Like/Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 1

  11. Rancid Crabtree says:

    This is part of why we left the Park- the esthetics for passersby outweighs the needs of the guy that owns the land, pays the taxes on it and takes responsibility for managing the land. IMO that’s so wrong on so many levels it shouldn’t even be worthy of discussion.

    People keep coming out with these responses involving their mythical “ancient, old growth forests”. There may be stands of true old growth forest that exist, but the vast majority of the Park has been cut off at least once if not multiple times. Of course you can exclude the impossible terrain in some areas, but overall there is little “old growth” int he Park. I have first hand experience with people claiming they have “old growth” forest that were fields when I was boy! And I’ve had people talk about the “ugly clearcuts” that were the result of the Microburst in the 90′s. When you see allegedly informed, educated people spout off like that it colors your opinion of the rest of the supposed experts.

    I’ve always wanted to see State lands in the Park managed for timber production. It makes little sense to me to have all that land and all that timber go to waste.

    Hot debate. Like/Dislike Thumb up 3 Thumb down 8

  12. Arlan says:

    R. Crabtree. Thanks for leaving. Lots of complaining about the rules in the park but the zoning rules are weaker here than anywhere I have ever lived. So many landowners using their front yard as a junk yard. Delapidated houses (even with new snow machines and satelite dishes) . This would never fly in
    Most urban and suburban places in the country. Aesthetics are a major factor in all zoning ordinances. I live here for the abundance of public land, snow and small towns. I don’t like the environmental group picking fights, delaying progress just to raise money. I also am sick of people fighting the 40 year old battles. You supposedly left, and you still complain! No straw men where you live now?

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 4

  13. Paul says:

    Arlan since a lot of the wood being cut now is being chipped anyway I am not sure that they want to “leave the rest”.

    I am seeing very heavy cutting on the easement lands that I hunt. For all intensive purposes many of these “selective” cuts amount to a clear cut. And when you do this stuff what is left is blown down, that can’t be good for business?:

    http://www.protectadks.org/2013/02/protect-releases-satellite-photographs-showing-heavy-cutting-of-forests-on-state-conservation-easement-lands-in-the-adirondack-park-that-raise-many-questions-about-long-term-sustainable-forestry-manag/

    If these changes that require FSC certification limit some of this kind of activity than maybe the APA knows what they are doing.

    ” Park residents should be very concerned that the APA is willing to rubber stamp this type of activity without indivudal site-specific oversight”

    Lily, general permits individual individual site specific oversight. I got a general permit for some activity that went on my property and it included an extensive site visit with the permit administrator and a wetlands biologist. It also included other staff visits while the work was going on. This isn’t a rubber stamp. Since the rules for how to deal with a clear cut are pretty standard it probably makes sense to use a general permit. If there are site specific issues discovered when the staff visit the site then they would make them apply for a regular permit.

    But here is what I really think we can expect. Most of these easement lands are now held under things like TIMOs. Their shareholders have about a 10-15 year window for expectation of returns on these investments. Now that much of this cutting is done I suspect that we will see much of this land come back on the market. With the restrictions placed on the land by the conservation easements and the lower value based on the young timber stands this land will have very few, if any, interested buyers. In comes someone like the TNC and NYS and the land heads for the Forest Preserve. Groups like Protect should maybe be happy with what is happening?

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 1

  14. Arlan says:

    Taking the best and leaving the rest is a serious problem in forestry. Those easement lands are managed by professional foresters with college degrees. High grading is a problem that has lead to severely degraded stands in the north east. Selective harvests should be done by a careful silvicultural prescription. Many fly by night loggers “selectively” harvest the best and take the best genetics out. This usually happens on private non industrial forests. There are no laws preventing this. A clear cut removes all trees, not just trees that can be sold. Severely crooked and certain types of decay can’t be used for pulp or osb, yet are still cut in a clear cut. Timberland value is also based on quality of residual trees, not just size, and if you want to maintain quality, clear cutting should be one of the tools for the forester who wants quality shade intolerant species.

    Popular. Like/Dislike: Thumb up 7 Thumb down 0

  15. Paul says:

    I totally agree. The land where I see all the bad practices you describe going on are on industrial timberland. I am only looking at 10 or 15,000 acres so this maybe not a widespread issue. Maybe this idea of requiring certification will help deal with some of these issues. I seriously doubt that the APA wants to encourage some kind of large scale free for all on clear-cutting like some of these groups are saying.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  16. dave says:

    “but if it is legal what are you going to do.”

    If there is regulatory oversight, you can address your concerns to whoever is doing the oversight… and hope they take them into consideration when overseeing what happens.

    This is basic zoning and community living. Nothing more. It is no more or less than what I would expect living anywhere. In Lake Placid when someone tried to build a really tall building that would affect the properties around it, there was a zoning and oversight process that kicked in. The affected property owners were able to express their concerns and the community enforced limits on the size of that new building. If my neighbors back in the city made drastic changes to their property that would affect mine, I would have lots of ways to make my concerns known and take action to either stop them, mitigate the affects, or come to some sort of compromise. At the very very least, I would have notice and could try to sell and get away from what they are doing before I lose a huge chunk of my life’s investment.

    Why would a situation like this be any different?

    “the rules in the park but the zoning rules are weaker here than anywhere I have ever lived. So many landowners using their front yard as a junk yard. Delapidated houses (even with new snow machines and satelite dishes) . This would never fly in most urban and suburban places in the country. Aesthetics are a major factor in all zoning ordinances.”

    Arlan, I agree completely! I’ve made the same observation since moving here. No way would you get away with some of these things in the other places I have lived. Fact is, there is not a place in the country where you can buy land and just do whatever the heck you want to it without regard to how that might affect the people around you. And what a selfish, selfish attitude to have anyway!

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  17. knuckleheadedliberal says:

    On zoning and regulation I agree. People who live in the Park complain about heavy handed ness, but I’ve found that many towns outside the Park are much tougher on zoning and regulation. And the ones that don’t have zoning are pretty much all in varying states of decline with little hope for economic rebirth.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  18. jeff says:

    Paul has the access and thus opportunity to inventory the lands on which he hunts to methodically determine the diversity of the younger forest. Harvests are set up for income and to manipulate the next forest. It is for the landowner to decide what she/she wants to gain by the course of their actions. Zoning is in place already in the Adirondacks as the whole park is a multiply zoned district. Lake Placid is not the park. It is not private forest land.

    While harvests may seem heavy he must first review the quality of what was removed. Some heavy cuts are a removal of trees left 20-30 years ago and the future stand is now 25 feet tall. Some heavy cuts are getting rid of a lot of dying sugar maple and in taking that stuff the landowner may take pressure of better timber elsewhere allowing it to get bigger.

    Most people look at the forest and if it is green that is good. That is fine on public land. Remember private forest land is like farmland, owned for a purpose. There is no manure run-off and there should be minimal to no silt run-off. Farmers these days grow monocultures and fallow periodically. That is not the forestry practice. Diversity is good but if what is growing doesn’t have value then one hopes to own enough property to financially carry the “non-productive land.” Most of the TIMOs are certified in some fashion and ecological issues such as water and wildlife are a consideration in management.

    If you are going to encumber these properties with impediments to ownership because of cosmetic reasons then buy it yourself and pay the taxes. Smaller properties cannot be as flexible in avoiding harvesting to the property line as large tracts because buffering the perimeter doesn’t leave enough of a value to allow an economic harvest in 20-30 years plus what stiffer regulations will be dreamed up by that time?

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  19. Two Cents says:

    I own about 40 acres of woodlot. I use it for recreation and hunting, which has a lot to do with how its logged. if I wanted to pant 10acres of a single species where too much shade is an issue, I would clear cut.
    I also have a large corridor that will never be cut (not by me anyway) which in time would become old growth. this is only one plan that a consulting forester can help with. the best plans provide a balance of techniques.
    http://extension.psu.edu/private-forests/tools-resources/webinars/upcoming .

    http://www2.dnr.cornell.edu/ext/forestconnect/

    in general and inside the park specifically, the state of new York does not follow a sustainable management plan, that even remotely resembles the very stewardship plans they promote.
    rancid is right, it’s a waste.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  20. Two Cents says:

    Michael Greer, that forest of which you speak does not exist currently in NY state.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  21. dave says:

    “If you are going to encumber these properties with impediments to ownership because of cosmetic reasons then buy it yourself and pay the taxes.”

    This is the same general argument I hear people make about zoning, everywhere.

    Thing is, we live in communities… not bubbles. If what you do to your land affects your neighbors, that should be taken into consideration.

    “If you don’t like it, too bad” doesn’t strike me as a very productive or friendly way to approach such issues.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  22. ironwood says:

    Did you get notice when the ’95 microburst clear cut so many acres? The 1950 hurricane? Hurricanes Irene or Floyd more recently? Did people stop coming to the mountains? Did property taxes go down? The general permit means more scrutiny of large scale harvests by the agency and not less. Get real.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  23. Paul says:

    We are not talking about no regulatory oversight? Like I said above there is not a huge difference between a general permit and any other permit. If you look at the pictures that Protect has it seems to me that a change in policy may be good for the woods?

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  24. Dave says:

    The future of easment land is fixed as industrial forest. It will be roaded and cut accordingly, it is often pretty ugly, and you do get wildlife benefits that disappear with a preservation scheme like our forever wild. But I have wondered why this is a preferred alternative by green groups to large lot, seldom used second homes where 95% of the land is simply left alone and never cut. Is it just the idea of roaded open space? But it is destined for perodic destruction.

    I realize it is a choice made years ago now……industrial forest = better than scattered second homes. We need industry forests, for sure. It is private land and you can’t ban homes and logging and everything (unless you just buy it all and fence it). But it seems to me if preservation of, say, a mostly unbroken tree canopy is a goal, maybe second homes, one per 44 acres, would have been preferable. The neighbor certainly would have liked it better. Just sharing a thought

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  25. jeff says:

    Dave you probably hear it because it is a valid argument. You make a proper point about communities. However the issue is not community but culture clash. People from one community moving into another with different values and wanting to drag with them the constraints that will protect their preferred image of the wilderness life. It is the city guy attempting to control the country.

    Consider the remark in a comment above about folks with debris in their front yards. The snob that made the observation is from a different world (culturally). I can think of communities around the park where that (front yard clutter) is more common than elsewhere and they tend to be places where those who profited from the factories have left with their wealth and those who didn’t remain and try to survive. Call in the antique pickers!

    Friendly? Is it friendly when outsiders come in and tell locals what to do or how to do because that is the way it is done outsice? They are saying, you don’t measure up.

    Proximity is a consideration to define comminity and common interest is another. Common investment is a stronger tie. Just because non-residents like wilderness and are interested in state land does not give them as strong an investment in the land as the property owner. A property owner has a stronger investment in his own property than he does in that of his neighbor. But also needed in community is mutual benefit (not necessarily identical benefits).

    When a landowner takes an aesthetic interest in his neighbor’s property because it makes him think his property is larger than it is or he wants to walk his estate and see endless forests in the distant blue haze, what has the neighbor gained? And if the neighbor’s desires are different, how can he fully enjoy his own property if his hands are tied because of the neighbors interests?

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  26. Paul says:

    The shareholders that own most of the Adirondacks industrial timberland are not “locals” by my measure. But as private property owners they do have rights for sure.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  27. Dave says:

    Thanks Jeff for your insight. Much appreciated…..

    The industrial timberlands are now owned by TIMOs, faceless pension funds, maybe even yours or mine and that adds to the complexity of it.

    I certainly have no answer, but the discussion is a good one. Thanks again…

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  28. Paul says:

    “The future of easment land is fixed as industrial forest”. I don’t think it is. If it can’t make a good return for the shareholders they will want to dump it. If they need to there will not be another buyer that is interested unless they want to split it up but it is easier to sell to the state or the state with help from the TNC and do it as a large tract. They are not in the real estate business.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  29. Paul says:

    The folks that own this land are not people like Jeff that care about the Adirondacks they have one simple goal, to make a return on their investment.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  30. Arlan says:

    Jeff,

    I made the comment about clutter. Does that make me a snob? I guess our code enforcement officer is a snob, and the elected people who support him are snobs because he has worked hard to make our community Improve it’s appearance. Unfortunately neihboring towns have not made a effort to do the same.

    I reject the idea that there is something wrong with new people moving to a community and trying to change it. My wife and I were encouraged to get involved by people who have lived here for generations. I was told by many multi generation adirondacker in elected office that they are glad young (at the time) families of outsiders we’re moving in and getting involved because they felt we need to change to attact more outsider to move here, open business and bring fresh ideas to make the town vibrant again.the 1-2% local who traditionally got involved with determining the direction of the community have been the same for the last 40 years, meanwhile the community continues to slide down hill. In my experience those old timers don’t like change and like to use state regulators as an excuse for why nothing ever improves.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 2

  31. Rancid Crabtree says:

    Arlan, I don’t see anything in my post discussing zoning, dead cars and satellite dishes. Strawman indeed.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  32. jeff says:

    Arlan snob may not be the best word. But consider the culture clash or even mental impairment. People who don’t consider the clutter a problem or don’t appreciate that their mess negatively affects the neighbor (a similar issue with clearcutting up to the property line). How much gets done to meet with people, discover why they are unable to relocate or remove the stuff? That takes time and energy and people think passing a law is the answer.

    That the locals may like things the way they are is part of their culture or comfort zone. Have they been beaten by the “system” enough that they’ve given up? Look at the development project in Tupper. An effort to make things different ( potentially successful or not) perpetually stymied by forces and money from outside. And when it finally looks like the door is open for exploration another group throws a net over the door to prevent progress. It is easy to see why bitterness and disgust develop.

    I know the TIMO’s are mostly absentee owners who will never set foot on “their” property. But to parse the issue of property rights because of who the owner is is a course of situational ethics. Personal property rights need to be respected. I’ve been on properties where the owners are family who haven’t set foot on the land in decades because it was grandfather’s property and they were willed the property.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  33. Arlan says:

    I would appriciate a better explanation of your choice of the word ‘snob’. I know our CEO takes the time and energy to meet with people and is sympathitic to people who fall on hard times. But, when your yard has piles of junk thrown about, and you are physically able, you are lazy and have no pride in your community. Most of those folks I know we’re born and raised here and they should be ashamed that people who are new to a community have more pride in their cOmmunity than they do.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  34. Arlan says:

    Crabtree, I didn’t expect you to respond to the substance of my post refering to aesthetics; and you didn’t. hyperbole is easier than thoughtful discussion.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  35. jeff says:

    Arlan, you’re describing intolerance. To apply the label lazy sounds rather snobbish and by whose standards is community pride judged?

    How about this: A person who believes that their tastes in a particular area are superior to those of other people

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  36. Arlan says:

    Jeff. I agree about Tupper. Its a town that has been working hard to improve and it’s hard to stay positive when a small group of people have the power to stop momentum. Tupper is a town who lost a lost with the loss of a factory. But poverty is no reason to not take care of what you have. Seeing kids toys, bikes and mowers rotting away year after year in peoples yards makes me think that they live this way not because they are poor, but are poor in part because of the way they live. I grew up poor and my grand parents grew up even more poor, but we took care of what little we had, because when you don’t have much, you should try to make it last. My parents kept out house spic and span, and our yard was clean and neat. It doesn’t cost money to clean your house.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  37. jeff says:

    I understand what you are saying but it points to exactly what I’ve said. You’re culture was to take care of stuff, keep it tidy etc. No it doesn’t cost money when stuff doesn’t have to be hauled away. In the homes described, something in their culture was different than yours. It takes initiative that may not have been learned and to change it there needs to be desire and motivation to take action.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  38. Arlan says:

    I agree Jeff

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  39. Two Cents says:

    never hurts to keep a tidy yard….

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  40. Arlan says:

    Does anyone think rubbish in a yard is good taste? No only is it ugly and unsafe, but it does have an impact on the whole community. Aesthetics affects whether some chooses to live in, visit and do business in a community. Many cities and villages feel the same way, which is why they have lawstheir improve community appearance.

    Does that mean everyone feel this way? Of course not. I guess I am a snob.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  41. Two Cents says:

    I was in Arizona building a house for a friend. he introduced me to a friend he made, a native on the reservation. we visited him one day and when he gave us directions he said “my house is the one without the abandoned cars on the front lawn”.
    so when we drive out there, sure enough, everybody has rust heaps in the yard and dogs, chains stretched to their limit, standing and barking from the hoods, car roofs, as we drive along.
    we pull up to his house and outside exchanging our greetings we told him we found it easy like he said- “no cars”
    he says- “yup, i don’t need one. i don’t have a dog”

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  42. jeff says:

    Arlan the issue was/is the perception people have of clearcuts stemming from their bias or culture. The regulation considered for change would make it easier to do a clearcut over 25 acres. You mention cities and villages but the forestland is not cities and villages. HOWEVER, there are people trying to apply city and village regulations to forestland.

    Even more restrictive, in parts of this state there are counties attempting to prohibit forest management which includes the harvest of trees. There are “cities” that have tried (some successfully) to prohibit contractors from parking their equipment for their business in their driveways. Businesses that pre-date the regulations. Oh they are trying to prevent blight…. their tastes are superior to those with a vehicle not parked inside the garage. I say these people are becoming unreasonable.

    You can look at whose reason is changing. New ideas entering an established structure. If you want it “your” way, whether it be clearcut regulations or laws for grass only front yards, buy it, don’t take it away piece by piece by regulating it to the point where only those can afford a certain lifestyle can live together.

    You know most of the TIMO lands sold off their development rights. Can’t they be extended some slack on forest management side which pays for their taxes and pays stockholders?

    There is hope… Some folks are considering having chickens in town… no roosters but at least a few hens. What will the snobs think about that? The feathers could really fly over that issue….

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  43. Rancid Crabtree says:

    Arlan, I meet people like all the time. The only correct opinion is your own- according to you. You leave no room for other peoples values and efforts. You are the people that move into farm areas and complain about cows calling all might, tractors in the road, manure smells, dust and dirt and noise. You are the people complaining because the Amish have the nerve to attempt to travel on the roads but feel 1500 bicyclists or runners trying up the highway for hours is perfectly logical. Yes, snob is a good word.

    Aesthetics alone are not grounds enough to take peoples rights away. I’d love for all my neighbors to have picture perfect yards and homes and spotlessly groomed laws and gardens. Reality gets int he way of that and frankly, it’s none of my business or theirs if they or I have a broke down tractor in the front yard. Things break in real life, they need to be fixed and I don’t own a huge machine shed to store everything in. Livestock poops, cows are noisy and agriculture is noisy and dirty work. While I’m not in favor of every trashy single wide having 6 dead appliances and 3 cars permanently up on block in the front yard, I also know that in the end it’s none of my damn business.

    What any of this has to do with clear cuts I don’t know.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  44. Paul says:

    Guys this isn’t about trash in the front yard is it?

    “The regulation considered for change would make it easier to do a clearcut over 25 acres.

    Jeff, I don’t think this is necessarily true. If you had to apply for a regular (non-general) permit you would have to basically follow the same guidelines. The application is shorter so that is easier. But these guys have people that can manage these applications pretty easily (for a small landowner it is different). You would also have a letter sent to the neighbors which some folks here like. But since when is one of those permits denied? Very rarely. As long as you follow the guidelines there is no problem. That is the point, the permit system is not to deny a project but to make sure it follows APA guidelines. For the forest products industry the rules are pretty fair actually.

    If this new idea gets more landowners into FSC seems like a good thing.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  45. Nature says:

    This issue should be decided by science. Not by the timber industry, environmental groups, or neighbors. If science supports a clearcut, then allow it. If it doesn’t, then don’t allow it. If science supports a clearcut, then adjacent landowners, or those who may drive by, should have little say in whether it is allowed. I am in favor of small buffer zones for aesthetics, but that is it. As people have mentioned, This mostly applies to timberland. Not residential lots. If you don’t want to see logging on your neighbor’s property, make sure you buy enough land to give yourself a visual buffer. Or, buy property adjacent to state land that is not logged.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  46. Rancid Crabtree says:

    Well said Nature. Clearcuts by fire are natural, but we don’t allow that. Clearcuts by windstorm occur and by disease and avalanche or mudslide. It’s a control issue.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  47. Paul says:

    I think that naturally occurring fires in the Adirondacks are super rare if they occur at all. Almost all the fires I have heard of in the Adirondacks were man made. I agree that it is good to let a naturally occurring fire burn I am just not sure they ever happen in this area.

    When you say “science” are you referring to the science that can tell us the way to make the land most productive from a timber perspective? Science can also tell us that the most sustainable forest may be one that is left alone. In that case here I don’t think you want to follow that scientific conclusion.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  48. Rancid Crabtree says:

    Paul, there have been many fires in the Adks that had nothing to do with logging or man. They just tend to be limited in size to a few hundred acres. The great fires of the 1800′s were a result of logging slash and dry summers. We don’t get the western type fires here because we don’t have the huge areas of conifers where the crown fires can get going and we don’t have the dry climate, usually, to add to the danger.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  49. Paul says:

    ” The great fires of the 1800′s were a result of logging slash and dry summers.”

    Yes, and they were ignited by trains.

    Lightning is the source of naturally occurring fires. Can you just give me a few recent example of fires started that way in the Adirondacks. You are probably right that there have been many.

    Like/Dislike this comment: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0