From Library Journal
These three books share certain assumptions about forests: first, that forests provide essential benefits to biological life on land in the form of improved air, water, and genetic diversity; second, that current forest management practices are destroying North America's, and indeed the world's, forests; and third, that changes in government policy can reverse the past century of destruction. O'Toole's book, the most detailed, also offers the boldest policy prescription. In short, he proposes freeing the National Forest Service from its current legislative constraints by "marketizing" the management of national forests. O'Toole details the amazing economics of timber sales in the National Forest Service, the result of legislation that actually rewards the agency for losing money. Ultimately, the agency sells far more timber than necessary in response to the institutional pressure to maximize its own budget and resources. By contrast, Repetto's brief survey of the current state of forests throughout the world presents research findings about the extent of worldwide deforestation and the government's role in creating the problem. The focus is very broad; the policy recommendations are necessarily abbreviated; and the aim, to reach an audience of busy policy makers. Robinson, who handles forestry issues for the Sierra Club and also has an extensive background in corporate forest management in California, offers a short and useful history of why the Forest Service abandoned employing national forests for multiple uses in favor of cutting timber first. He argues for a return to the "uneven" forest involving selective cutting of individual trees within the national forests as they age. The author argues that this brand of "excellent forestry" will prove economically efficient and ecologically beneficent. All books are worthy purchases. James W. Oberly, Univ. of Wisconsin, Eau Claire
Copyright 1988 Reed Business Information, Inc.
--This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.