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Science and Innovations

Forest Restoration Work to Begin on Bill Williams Mountain

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Melissa Sevigny
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The U.S. Forest Service signed a decision yesterday to begin restoration work on 15,000 acres of forest near the City of Williams.

The agency will use logging and prescribed burns to thin overcrowded stands of trees on the Bill Williams Mountain. Kaibab Forest Supervisor Heather Provencio says the project will restore forest health and reduce the risk of devastating wildfires.  

“There’s some urgency around it,” Provencio says. “Our forests are dry, they’re unhealthy, and we’re anxious to get the mountain treated and protect the watershed for the City of Williams.”  

The work will begin in 2016. Mayor John Moore says the project is vital for the city’s future. “If this mountain ever caught fire and burned to the ground, it kills our watershed,” he says. “With our watershed gone, there probably would be no more City of Williams.”

The restoration plan calls for leaving some downed logs and snags for the threatened Mexican Spotted Owl. The area is also home to Arizona bugbane, a rare flower that grows only in this region.

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Credit Melissa Sevigny
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U.S. Forest Service personnel and visitors pose for a photo at the signing ceremony.

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