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Vegetation Management and Fire Use

The Santa Fe Municipal Watershed Plan lays out an integrated set of recommendations for management of the forest and riparian vegetation within the watershed, with the goal of maintaining reduced fire hazard in areas that have already been treated and treating other areas that pose a significant fire risk the the municipal water supply. These recommendations emphasize the use of mechanical thinning and fire management as tools to maintain forest health throughout the 20-year life of the project. The work in the lower elevation non-wilderness portion of the Municipal Watershed is permitted through the 2002 Santa Fe Municipal Watershed Project Environmental Impact Statement and subsequent Record of Decision. The proposed work in the wilderness area is the subject of a pending Environmental Assessment, expected to be concluded in 2013.

As the image below shows, significant areas (over 5,500 acres) in the non-wilderness portion of the Municipal Watershed have been treated according to the vegetative management recommendations since 2002. The following summarizes the vegetation management recommendations for the Municipal Watershed.

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