New Mexico forest plans thinning to reduce fire threat

New Mexico

The U.S. Forest Service is planning another round of thinning in the mountains east of Albuquerque with the aim of reducing the potential for extreme wildfires.

The Sandia Ranger District says the work beginning later this week will cover more than a tenth of a square mile (0.3 square kilometers). It will involve thinning the area by hand, piling up fuelwood for later collection and chipping the leftover material.

There are no plans to close recreational trails in the area, but officials are warning visitors to use caution.

The entire project area encompasses nearly 30 square miles (76 square kilometers) where high tree density has created unhealthy conditions and has increased the possibility of high-intensity wildfires.

New Mexico State Forestry, The Nature Conservancy and others are helping with the project.

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