The Fire Suppression Policy of the U. S. Forest Service
The direct cost of forest fire control in 1943 averaged, for all lands inside the national forest boundaries, 3 1/4 cents per acre--a total of $7,350,000 from the public treasury. Fire suppression constituted 20 percent of the total cost as compared with more than 50 percent in some years. For this reason and others mentioned in the author's introductory paragraphs we are glad to have here a close-up view of the policy, commonly known as "the first burning period policy," or as "the 10:00 a.m. policy," under which the Forest Service handles its fire suppression task. Apparently it is based on much the same viewpoint as Stewart Holbrook expresses in his recent book Burning An Empire wherein he quotes Ernest Swift, acting conservation director for Wisconsin: "The philosophy of the average American toward land must be changed. We talk of useless and waste land. By and large it was so made by man. I firmly believe that Americans should feel that every foot of land we possess as a nation has value, that there is a possible utilization for all of it."
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Document Type: Journal Article
Affiliations: Assistant chief, U. S. Forest Service, Washington, D. C.
Publication date: 1944-08-01
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