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Forest Fires

             Forest fires have been around since the dawn of time. Ever since the first fire nature has evolved to handle it. Forrest fires have changed the landscape of America over the ages, but the forests still stand tall all over the US. So how can a person say that a forest is bad for the environment? Throughout this essay I hope to show that forest fires are not entirely bad. In fact they are a crucial part of life.
             The ecological role of fires in nature is a vital part of life for some trees. One example of this is the pine trees witch has cones. When heat is present, the cones open up and release seeds. If there is no heat applied to the cone, the cone will not open up therefore the seeds remain inside. In Northern California there are large sequoias that need forests fires to help with the next generation of trees. Without fires to burn out the underbrush, the baby sequoias will not get the sun light they need to grow. This is yet another example of how fires aid nature. So one might ask, “Who is in charge of the forests?” the U.S. Forest Service is. .
             Since the formation of the U.S. Forest Service, their approach to dealing with forests fires has changed the ways of the entire U.S. In the beginning, the U.S. Forest Service said, “lets attack it head on” but that didn’t work for too long. After a large number of people gave their lives while trying to put out fires, the U.S. Forest Service said to prevent fires from ever occurring. That is when Smokey the Bear was started. He preached that fire was evil, and it was the public’s job to help prevent the fires from starting up. After following this system, the ground fuels started to build up. Since there were no fires to keep them down, this was a catalyst to the largest fire season in the last 80 to 100 years. After that historical fire season, the U.S. Forest Service has gone to better fire management systems like prescribed burns, and mechanical thinning.