Firewood permits now available for columbia hazardous fuels treatment area
Permits are now available for firewood collection on the Bureau of Land Management's (BLM) ongoing Columbia wildland/urban interface hazardous fuels treatment project near the communities of East Carbon/Columbia and Sunnyside.
Firewood permits are available for $10 (two cords/one month) at the Price Field Office, 125 S. 600 W., during business hours - 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Permits are accompanied by an informational handout with details about firewood collection in the fuels treatment area.
BLM's Price Field Office and the Canyon Country Fire Zone are implementing the Columbia wildland/urban interface hazardous fuels treatment to reduce pinyon and juniper in the heavily wooded area southwest of the junction of state routes 123 and 124, over approximately 1,400 acres of BLM-administered public lands. This area of public land was identified for treatment through community fire planning efforts - a collaboration between interested public participants; leaders from the communities; and the Utah Department of Natural Resources, Division of Forestry, Fire and State Lands (FFSL). The result of this group effort was the development of a Community Wildfire Protection Plan, which helped to define areas for treatment, where extensive amounts of slash and closed-canopy pinyon/juniper growth could fuel a high-intensity wildland fire; endangering public health, safety, and infrastructure, as well as risking the lives of wildland firefighters.
Residents of the communities may have noticed work already completed by BLM contract crews. In early October, seed was flown onto the entire project area with a fixed wing aircraft.
In November, hand crews completed the work along the road that travels through the project area, thinning and piling pinyon and juniper trees. In the coming months, a mechanical masticator or "bullhog" will move into the area and begin thinning additional pinyon and juniper trees, resulting in a much more visible "mosaic" pattern of treatment.
Management objectives for this project include reducing the fire hazard by thinning dense trees and lowering fuel loads, restoring biological processes to revitalize the ecosystem, and establishing a diverse and resilient understory of grasses and shrubs to improve range and wildlife habitat.
In addition, Utah FFSL will be working in cooperation with private landowners in the areas adjacent to the project area to further reduce fuels and minimize the threat of wildland fire.
For further information about this collaborative project, contact Alison McCluskey, Utah FFSL Wildland/Urban Interface/Sovereign Lands Coordinator at (435) 259-3767 or Brian Keating, at (435) 259-2194.