Forestry in MA 2010

To Whom It May Concern:

The practice of forestry in MA has ceased to be a productive scientific based activity that is designed to generate regular supplies of valuable raw materials and energy and sustainable employment in rural areas. Rather the hollow shell of what is left of a once major component of rural MA life has become an employment mill for bureaucrats and like our neighbor to the south a legalized vehicle for removal of a single cutting of most value by excessively damaging systems whose major recommendation is that they can cover large areas quickly.

No longer is there any sense of what is appropriate and affordable as a guide for the level of compliance required of an owner. Rather it has become the job of the hired regulators to insure that cutting is as heavy as possible and as infrequent as possible. A set of first principles and ways to enable them is attached for reference of any who care to attempt to deal rationally with the current dysfunctional system.

The bureaucratic shell that functions via the MA Department of Conservation and Recreation - Bureau of Forestry has succeeded in enforcing the letter of the law while completely missing the intent for which the law was established. In the past 100 years the culture of rural life globally has been devastated by a relentless effort to use humans as both a cheap labor source and a market for organized endeavors to funnel wealth to a few. These excesses were the cause of unacceptable logging practices that should never have happened and were right to be regulated. Our super mobile society has succeeded in creating a “life” style that is poised to materially damage the basis for this life force through the evolving massive climate crisis. The MA DCR implementation of forestry regulations have made compliance efforts conform with this damaging view of “normality” rather than with an honest acceptance of the state of nature in a particular situation. It is not clear whether this situation has developed from a lack of knowledge due to our adaptation to blatantly unsustainable demands or whether there are more sinister forces involved.

Whatever the reasons for the overall deterioration of global sustainability, the process of compromise in MA that generated the regulations now in place missed much of the essence of sustainable practice in the attempt to get some kind of agreement between the parties concerned.

This problem in exemplified by the simple situation agricultural waste water. When the wetlands regulations were put together two classes of waste water were identified: septage, and industrial waste. So today as local agriculture is becoming more common in urban areas when a farmer seeks to wash carrots in the field, the water left after the rinsing must be disposed of as a toxic item. This nonsense situation developed for two reasons: 1) the drafters forgot that food might come from local soil and that they might need to find a way to facilitate its production, and 2) we have a public intent on its own interest with no concept of the difficulties that are impending from the imposition of impossible and as above irrational standards on sustainable production. The lies and miscommunication now practiced in DCR are part of the same fabric.

Unfortunately like the use of water in a farm field, forest development and value production was not well understood by many of the groups involved in drafting the legislation and later the regulations and this condition continues today in some of those charged with carrying out the letter of the law. In the end what is placed on paper as a contract with the State does not create the condition of a sustainable forest today it simply allows something to happen. The requirements for what may be accepted in the form of a legal document by one who has no insight into the impact of the practice of various systems of control may force an owner into modes of action that were the farthest from their central goal when the activity was proposed.

The two cutting plans recently rejected by Mr. Sean Libby in the Town of Cummington, MA will be used to demonstrate the depth of depravity to which official control of this poorly administered charade has stooped.