NASHVILLE, Tenn., Aug. 20, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Fires across the Midwest and West Coast have destroyed hundreds of thousands of trees. Over 1.1 million acres have been affected, including land inside of national parks and protected areas. The Washington Department of Natural Resources has reported extensive loss, with 751 fires on DNR-protected land thus far this year.
200 active-duty military personnel have been assigned to fire-control operations. With some problem areas holding steady at 15% or less containment, this frees up more experienced teams to mitigate immediate dangers. The military has also provided a small fleet of C-130 aircraft to help distribute overhead fire retardant.
Fires have destroyed more than 12 million trees in California's San Bernardino National Forest and surrounding mountains, according to park rangers. The drought has made fires worse and now the entire region faces repercussions from widespread tree loss.
"Trees are a valuable natural resource," says Tammy Sons of Trees For Sale Online Nursery. She adds, "They filter impurities from the air and help keep erosion to a minimum."
The US Forest Service expects millions of additional tree casualties by the time fires subside. A recent survey of land throughout Central California found 999,000 acres of dead trees. Making matters worse is the presence of bark beetles. Infestations of the bark beetle have risen drastically since the onset of the drought, rendering trees even more susceptible to fire.
UC Berkeley fire science professor Scott Stephens warns that tree mortality rates will continue to rise as long as conditions remain unchanged.
2015 is fast approaching record levels for tree die off, which peaked with the "Great Drought" of the 1970s with some 14 million lost.
Trees For Sale Online Nursery has offered to donate an excess of nursery stock as soon as spring planting season begins. In 2014, the company bestowed more than 20,000 trees valued at nearly $360,000 to nationwide causes.
Trees For Sale Online Nursery cultivates more than 3,600 acres of tree and nursery stock in Middle Tennessee.
SOURCE Trees For Sale Online Nursery