- Former President Bill Clinton’s land management rules and other liberal policies paved the way for future debilitating wildfires, fire expert Bob Zybach told the Daily Caller News Foundation.
- Zybach warned of potential disastrous wildfires shortly after Clinton signed a slate of rules in the mid-1990s that drastically reduced logging and road creation on federal lands.
- Zybach’s comments come as California, Oregon, and parts of Washington deal with catastrophic wildfires that have killed 26 people and destroyed buildings.
Former President Bill Clinton made a significant change to federal land management nearly 30 years ago that created the conditions necessary for massive wildfires to consume portions of the West Coast, according to one fire expert who predicted the problem years ago.
Shortly before leaving office in 2001, Clinton limited the ability of the United States Forest Service to thin out a dense thicket of foliage and downed trees on federal land to bring the West into a pristine state, Bob Zybach, an experienced forester with a PhD in environmental science, told the Daily Caller News Foundation. The former president’s decision created a ticking time bomb, Zybach argues.
“If you don’t start managing these forests, then they are going to start burning up. Thirty years later, they are still ignoring it,” said Zybach, who spent more than 20 years as a reforestation contractor. He was referring to warnings he made years ago, telling officials that warding off prescribed burns in Oregon and California creates kindling fuelling fires.