Coconino National Forest soliciting public comments regarding forest thinning project



FLAGSTAFF, Ariz., May 15, 2024 — The Coconino National Forest’s Flagstaff Ranger District (FRD) is soliciting public comments on a proposed forest thinning project aimed at reducing the risk of catastrophic wildfire in the Flagstaff area.

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The Leroux Fuels Management Project aims to treat roughly 1,885 acres of Coconino National Forest land west of the Kachina Peaks Wilderness area by mechanically thinning overgrown areas of the FRD.

This would remove hazardous forest fuels such as pine needle accumulation and dead trees to create safer and healthier forest conditions that are less prone to the risk of catastrophic wildfire and subsequent post-fire flooding.

Mechanical thinning is an important part of the Forest Service’s 10-year Wildfire Crisis Strategy, which aims to reduce the risk of unwanted wildfire to critical infrastructure and communities.

As part of the Leroux Fuels Reduction Project, trees and woody material will be cut and consolidated manually by hand crews, and then hauled via helicopter to designated landings for removal.

Following mechanical thinning, prescribed burns will likely be implemented in the project area as both methods of land treatment are necessary for a healthy ponderosa pine ecosystem.

For more information on this project, please visit the Leroux Fuels Management Project page.

Members of the public interested in submitting comments regarding the Leroux Fuels Management Project can do so until June 12, 2024, by one of the following ways:

  • Via email: Submit an email to comments-southwestern-coconino-flagstaff@usda.gov (include “Leroux” in the subject line)
  • Via mail: Address letters to Coconino National Forest, attention: Jessica Richardson, 5075 N. Highway 89, Flagstaff, AZ, 86004
  • In person: Visit the Flagstaff Ranger District at the above address between 8:30 a.m. and 4 p.m. Monday through Friday (excluding federal holidays)

Comments received, including the names and addresses of those who comment, will be considered public record for this project and will be made available for public inspection upon request. Commenters are asked to refrain from including personally identifiable information in the body of all submitted comments.

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