Skip to main content

Last week I ran down I-65 from Louisville to Nashville; for most of the 100 miles in Kentucky the shoulder of the road was an almost continuous wall of treetops that had been cut back just enough to clear the road.

On Saturday I ran down I-57 through southern Illinois to I-55 in Missouri, then south almost to the Arkansas state line, and for the last 40 miles in Illinois, and all of Missouri, practically every tree that wasn't completely broken off had lost many or most of their limbs.

I haven't been through Arkansas since the ice storm but understand that a large part of it was equally hard hit.

Everybody who cares knows the difficulties still being experienced by folks in parts of Arkansas and Kentucky, but I wonder how many have given thought to what is to come. An area that measures over 100 miles north/south by 300 or 400 (or a bit more?) east to west, all wooded terrain, is right now knee-deep in tree limbs and broken trees. All of it that is in somebody's yard, or along a roadside, will be cleaned up as soon as folks can get to it. But...

An area in the middle of the Country, something over 30,000 square miles, given six months or so to dry, will be covered in fuel. This is mostly mixed hardwood forest which rarely experiences anything more than "ground" fires that burn the fallen leaves and some brush. By about July, or maybe August, the conditions will be nearly ideal for huge, devastating fires across the middle of the Country, and I don't know of a damned thing anybody can do about it. If the "Economic Stimulus" Bill had funding for 10,000 people with chainsaws and pickups for the next six months they couldn't make more than a good dent in it.

Just another installment in my series about good news.

Originally posted to The Baculum King on Sat Feb 07, 2009 at 11:13 PM PST.

EMAIL TO A FRIEND X
Your Email has been sent.
You must add at least one tag to this diary before publishing it.

Add keywords that describe this diary. Separate multiple keywords with commas.
Tagging tips - Search For Tags - Browse For Tags

?

More Tagging tips:

A tag is a way to search for this diary. If someone is searching for "Barack Obama," is this a diary they'd be trying to find?

Use a person's full name, without any title. Senator Obama may become President Obama, and Michelle Obama might run for office.

If your diary covers an election or elected official, use election tags, which are generally the state abbreviation followed by the office. CA-01 is the first district House seat. CA-Sen covers both senate races. NY-GOV covers the New York governor's race.

Tags do not compound: that is, "education reform" is a completely different tag from "education". A tag like "reform" alone is probably not meaningful.

Consider if one or more of these tags fits your diary: Civil Rights, Community, Congress, Culture, Economy, Education, Elections, Energy, Environment, Health Care, International, Labor, Law, Media, Meta, National Security, Science, Transportation, or White House. If your diary is specific to a state, consider adding the state (California, Texas, etc). Keep in mind, though, that there are many wonderful and important diaries that don't fit in any of these tags. Don't worry if yours doesn't.

You can add a private note to this diary when hotlisting it:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from your hotlist?
Are you sure you want to remove your recommendation? You can only recommend a diary once, so you will not be able to re-recommend it afterwards.
Rescue this diary, and add a note:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary from Rescue?
Choose where to republish this diary. The diary will be added to the queue for that group. Publish it from the queue to make it appear.

You must be a member of a group to use this feature.

Add a quick update to your diary without changing the diary itself:
Are you sure you want to remove this diary?
(The diary will be removed from the site and returned to your drafts for further editing.)
(The diary will be removed.)
Are you sure you want to save these changes to the published diary?

Comment Preferences

Subscribe or Donate to support Daily Kos.

Click here for the mobile view of the site