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California may trim environmental review in wildfire fight

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – California wildland managers are starting a new effort to speed up logging and prescribed burns designed to protect communities from devastating wildfires.

An effort announced Tuesday would create a single environmental review process to cover vegetation reduction projects, fuel breaks and restoration projects. It’s a fresh start after officials scrapped an effort that began 12 years ago.

They plan to complete a new version in the next year aimed at doubling the state’s forest management efforts to a half-million acres of non-federal land each year. That’s a goal set by former Gov. Jerry Brown.

Environmental groups are critical of the new approach and say the focus should be on protecting homes from wind-driven embers.

President Donald Trump has criticized California officials for not doing a good enough job managing forests.

(Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Associated Press

Associated Press

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