Open houses planned for forest health projects | AspenTimes.com

Open houses planned for forest health projects

Aspen Times staff report
Aspen, CO Colorado

EL JEBEL – The White River National Forest Supervisor’s Office will host two open houses in December and January to discuss a plan to restore forest health on 50,000 acres around the Roaring Fork Valley.

The first open house will be held Wednesday from 5 to 7:30 p.m. at the Eagle County Building and Community Center in El Jebel. A second open house will be held shortly after the New Year, the supervisor’s office said in a press release.

The meeting will be held to disclose details and answer questions about projects designed to improve wildlife habitat. About 26,200 acres will be treated by lighting prescribed fires; 19,400 acres will be treated with a combination of prescribed fire and mechanical treatments; and 4,300 acres will be treated by cutting individual trees or small groups.

“The reality is that much of the wildlife habitat in the valley floor has been developed,” said Forest Supervisor Scott Fitzwilliams in the press release. “This makes the national forest lands above the valley floor even more important for wildlife. This landscape-scale proposal is essential for improving this habitat so we can continue to enjoy abundant wildlife.”

A map and a full description of the proposed action is available at http://www.fs.usda.gov/whiteriver, then navigate to “Land and Resources Management/Projects.”

Written comments must be submitted via mail, fax, e-mail or in person (Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., excluding holidays) to Scott Fitzwilliams c/o Phil Nyland, P.O. Box 309, Carbondale, CO 81623; fax: 970-963-1012 ; or by e-mail to comments-rocky-mountain-white-river westzone@fs.fed.us. Comments should be received no later than Jan. 18.

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