Experiences in the Policy Arena
Advised executive and legislative branches of national governments in the United States and abroad, international organizations, and private for-profit and not-for-profit organizations (see CV).
Some major activities include:
Helped write two Forest Health reports submitted to Congress, warning about the impending forest fires in the western United States, chairing one of these reports; meeting with elected representatives; and testifying in U.S. Congressional Hearings multiple times regarding these reports. Both committees of scientists warned of impending catastrophic forest fires and recommended proactive thinning to mitigate the fire intensity and so make the fires less destructive and easier to control. These reports were not acted on; consequently, the fires we were predicting have been occurring.
Met with elected representatives and testified multiple times in U.S. Congressional and Senate hearings about the “Old Growth” situation in the Pacific Northwest forests and about reauthorization of the Endangered Species Act.
Participated as one of thirteen scientists at President Clinton’s national televised Forest Summit in 1993. I was not part of the subsequent planning team that developed the FEMAT (Forest Ecosystem Management Assessment Team) report. I also wrote a testimony in a lawsuit in a federal court that had the FEMAT report declared illegal because it had not followed government-mandated protocols to ensure fairness. This ruling of illegality has never been overturned.
Chaired an ad hoc, international group of scientists to call attention to the increasing fire danger and the spread of radioactive smoke. (see Biography).