WASHINGTON (AP) -- Language was added to the Interior Appropriations Bill to give the U.S. Forest Service more tools to remove dead trees from the Chugach National Forest, Sen. Ted Stevens' office said Thursday.
The amendment provides the Forest Service with money to reduce fire hazards posed from dead trees on both private and public lands.
''This amendment will help ensure that our communities are adequately protected from hazard reduction activities on national forest lands, especially prescribed burns,'' Stevens said.
It provides the Forest Service with $15 million to remove dead trees on private lands.
A recent controlled burn turned wildfire on the Kenai Peninsula was fueled by trees killed by the spruce bark beetle.
The amendment also requires the Forest Service to show how restrictions on mechanical treatments and access in the pending Chugach Land Management Plan would affect the agency's use of prescribed burns.
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