Dear Editor:

CBC News recently reported a warning from a U.S. Forest Service research

scientist, who stated that cutting down old-growth forest and replacing it with more commercially viable trees can be detrimental. “That's because you're implanting something that isn't in sync with the ecology of that particular location.”

This is of critical importance to the Okanagan Valley. We have watersheds at risk. Furthermore, we are surrounded by commercially planted substitute trees, not natural forests.

U.S. Forest Service scientist Malcolm North stated: “The ideal scenario is maintaining the forests that are already there.” North said scientists worry new forests “may not be very resistant to global warming, may not be resistant to the disturbance regimes, like fire, that are endemic to that system.”

North’s advice is to “restore a more natural forest system. It’s one of the best things we can do."

For the sake of our children and grandchildren, I urge federal, provincial and municipal politicians to give serious attention to the science presented by the U.S. Forrest Service.

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