Rogue Basin Cohesive Forest Restoration Strategy: A Collaborative Vision for Resilient Landscapes and Fire Adapted Communities
Collaborative partners developed a Rogue Basin Cohesive Forest Restoration Strategy (RBS) targeting careful thinning and controlled burning on 1 million acres across the 4.6 million acre Rogue Basin. This strategy tiers to the National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy by working across all lands to restore resilient landscapes, promote fire adapted communities, and improve opportunities for safe and effective wildfire response.
The Rogue Basin Strategy protects complex forest, optimizes wildfire risk mitigation, promotes diverse and enduring habitats, and supports a predictable supply of ecosystem services. With full implementation, the Rogue Basin Strategy is expected to reduce overall wildfire risk by 70% and risk to homes by 50% relative to business as usual. Thinning on warm ridges and midslopes actually reduces wildfire risk to high quality Northern Spotted Owl habitat by 47%.
Implementing the strategic mechanical treatments on federal lands could cost $30 million annually for 20 years. This work would produce 83 million board feet of merchantable timber every year, meeting annual timber targets for the federal agencies. It would also generate 1,700 direct and indirect jobs, $65 million in local wages, and produce $260 million in local economic output.
The Rogue Basin Strategy describes an all lands approach for a shared landscape and shared responsibility for stewardship. The Strategy has been embraced by the Rogue Valley Integrated Fire Plan (online storyboard) as a framework for prioritizing hazard reduction project and guiding funding. Success depends on transparency based in community engagement, workforce training, education, and multiparty monitoring.