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Clearcutting/Forestry

Clearcutting is aharvesting method that removes the entire timber stand in an area.This removes all the trees (or all merchantable trees) on the site. Clearcutting is a recognized and commonly practiced method of harvesting and regenerating many valuable southern forest species.
Clearcutting has come under close scrutiny by policymakers and the public because of perceptions that clearcutting unacceptably damages the environment. Unfortunately, the term “clearcutting” is used in two different ways, which complicates understanding and resolution of associated issues. The term is used by the general public to describe deliberate forest exploitation. Clearcutting considers only short-term economic gain not the long-term health of the forest or local community. While professional foresters use the term in the context of prudent forest management, one of several methods prescribed to regenerate a mature forest.
Clearcutting considers only short-term economic gain not the long-term health of the forest because it has resulted in the loss of employment and the loss of dignified, meaningful work. Clearcutting ensures cheap resources now, but what about the future. This exposes the soil to erosion, water storage capacity is lost, and valuable habitat for wildlife is destroyed, streams or rivers are loaded with sediment, killing fish populations. The disadvantage to professionally-applied clearcutting include: Forest stands are sometimes visually disturbing following clearcut harvesting, but the affect is temporary as regeneration of a new stand soon follows. Depending upon location, visual disturbance can be mitigated by maintaining buffer zones along roads and trails and designing the size and shape of clearcuts and their boundaries to blend with and fit the natural topography of the landscape. Clearcutting can result in the temporary loss of habitat for some wildlife species that have small home ranges or that require residual tree…

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