• Large Diameter Trees and the Political Culture of "Restoration": A Case Study with the Grand Canyon Forest Partnership, Flagstaff, Arizona

      Coughlan, Michael Reed; Northern Arizona University (University of Arizona, Department of Anthropology, 2003)
      The material presented in this paper resulted from ethnographic research conducted with the Grand Canyon Forest Partnership (GCFP) of Flagstaff, Arizona, in the fall of 2001, as well as continued attention to the public discourse of commercial timber harvesting, forest fire prevention, ecological restoration, and ecosystem management in Southwestern ponderosa pine (Pin us ponderosa) forests. In general terms, the paper reflects an increasing concern for and attention to the nation's forest lands, primarily in response to what forest experts consider unnatural forest fire behavior. These fires, in turn, constitute a symptom of declining health and sustainability of forest ecosystems. More specifically, this paper concerns the "large tree" or "diameter cap" issue involving Flagstaff area forest restoration prescriptions. Because the "large tree" issue is central to the debate over forest policy and management in the American Southwest and elsewhere, it has become a focal point for regional conflict. The story of this issue as it played out within the GCFP illustrates a local community-level example of what has become widespread in national environmental political culture.