The following is a statement by Kameran Onley, director of North American Policy and Government Relations, on the introduction of the Save Our Sequoias Act, sponsored by Rep. Scott Peters, D-Calif., and Kevin McCarthy, R-Calif.
“Giant sequoias are designed to live with fire, just not the kind of fires we are seeing now. The Nature Conservancy strongly supports active interventions that are science-based and designed to restore ecological integrity in the areas in and around groves so that when wildfires do come, they are once again restorative rather than destructive.
“We look forward to working with the Save Our Sequoias Act sponsors to ensure these intentions are reflected in the final legislation and will help facilitate this important work. Importantly, we seek to ensure agencies have the flexibility to use any available authority, sufficient resources and more efficient processes while maintaining environmental safeguards throughout the process. These are essential conditions for success, as will be collaboration among federal and state government agencies, Indigenous peoples, scientific experts and other relevant stakeholders.
“We appreciate Representatives Peters and McCarthy for their leadership on this important issue. We look forward to working with them and others to secure the steps necessary to reduce the risks to our remaining giant sequoias.”
The Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world’s toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at an unprecedented scale, providing food and water sustainably and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in 76 countries and territories—37 by direct conservation impact and 39 through partners—we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit www.nature.org or follow @nature_press on Twitter.