2013 Report on the Health of Colorado's Forests

The 2013 Report on the Health of Colorado's Forests, released by the Colorado State Forest Service at the annual Joint Agriculture and Natural Resources Committee Hearing at the State Capitol, details forest health concerns throughout the state and the opportunities available for landowners to mitigate their effects.

Unprecedented challenges

“Colorado land managers continue to face unprecedented challenges in their pursuit to foster healthy, thriving forests,” said Mike Lester, state forester and director of the Colorado State Forest Service.

Lester said that insect and disease outbreaks, devastating wildfires, and recent floods have brought to light the necessity of working together to actively manage Colorado forests and as a result, collaboration among public land managers and private landowners has never been stronger.

Each year, the Report on the Health of Colorado’s Forests provides information to the Colorado General Assembly and residents of Colorado about the health and condition of forests across the state. The report provides recent data, figures and maps detailing major insect and disease concerns in the state, including the expansion of spruce beetle activity and the detection of emerald ash borer – an invasive pest first discovered in Colorado in 2013, which poses serious risks to the state’s urban forests.


Maria Fernandez-Gimenez receives Mongolian Ministry's highest award

Professor Maria Fernandez-Gimenez has been awarded the Honorable Champion of Agriculture and Food Industry in Mongolia award - the highest honor of its kind given by the Mongolian government.

Outstanding achievements
The award is presented to individuals working in the agricultural and food industry sector for at least 15 years with consistent good results and outstanding achievements.

In addition to her international award, Fernandez-Gimenez also received the Outstanding Achievement Award at the Society for Range Management Annual Meeting in Orlando on Feb. 12.

Fernandez-Gimenez is a professor in the Department of Forest and Rangeland Stewardship in CSU’s Warner College of Natural Resources. She has conducted ongoing research on Mongolia’s social-ecological systems since the 1990s, and has made significant contributions to scientific knowledge of Mongolia’s rangeland systems and pastoralist communities.

This award was presented to Fernandez-Gimenez in recognition of her 20-plus years of cumulative actionable research and ongoing efforts to collaborate with Mongolian policy makers and communities to strengthen their capacity for sustainable stewardship. Much of Mongolia’s history, livelihoods, and culture revolve around nomadic herding, and Fernandez-Gimenez’s work has drawn international attention to critical issues facing the country such as climate change, pasture land tenure, and land-use policy.

I don’t do science just because it is fun – even though it is. I am motivated to answer questions that are going to solve problems, sustain ecosystems and improve livelihoods for people,” said Fernandez-Gimenez. “This award was a great surprise and means so much to me. It’s recognition that it all made a difference – that our team has made a meaningful contribution in the eyes of the people benefitting from this science and the students I have worked with.”

Catastrophic Wildfires Ignite New CSU Center for Managing ‘WUI’ Wildfire Risk

Extreme Colorado wildfires over the past two years burned in unprecedented ways in urbanized wildlands causing devastating loss of life and property. In response to this new normal, Colorado State University’s Department of Forest and Rangeland Stewardship is launching a new center dedicated to creating the next generation of wildfire management solutions. The Center for Managing WUI Wildfire Risk will provide science-based answers to critical questions raised by the most destructive wildfires in Colorado’s history.
The Department of Forest and Rangeland Stewardship is part of CSU’s Warner College of Natural Resources and has a long history of education and research programs in wildland fire and collaborative management. The College has faculty expertise in wildland fire behavior and management, fuels management, fire policy, and fire economics and suppression. It also offers award-winning undergraduate and graduate degree programs in wildland fire and has a variety of research and extension initiatives dedicated to the issue.