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Trees in Trouble

Wildfires, Infestations, and Climate Change Hit the West

List Price: $26.00

ON SALE: April 7, 2020 | Hardcover | 6.0 x 9.0, 288 pages | ISBN 9781640091351

A troubling story of the devastating ripple effects of climate change told through forest ecologists, professional forest managers, park service scientists, fire bosses, and activists

Climate change manifests in many ways across America, but few as dramatic as the attacks on our western pine forests. In Trees in Trouble, Daniel Mathews tells the urgent story of this loss, accompanying burn crews and forest ecologists as they study the myriad risk factors and refine techniques for improving forest health and saving this important, limited resource.

Mathews transports the reader from the exquisitely aromatic haze of ponderosa and Jeffrey pine groves to the fantastic gnarls and whorls of five-thousand-year-old bristlecone pines, from genetic test nurseries where white pine seedlings are deliberately infected with their mortal enemy to the desertlike expanses at the heart of the hottest megafire sites and neighborhoods leveled by fire tornadoes or ember blizzards.

Highly personal and scrupulously researched, Trees in Trouble explores not only the devastating ripple effects of climate change, but introduces us to the people devoting their lives to saving our forests. Mathews also offers hope: a new approach to managing western pine forests is underway. But in order for our forests to adapt, this approach needs a wider understanding and bipartisan political support. Trees in Trouble explores how we might succeed in sustaining our forests through the challenging transition to a new environment.

About Daniel Mathews

DANIEL MATHEWS is the author of Natural History of the Pacific Northwest MountainsRocky Mountain Natural History, and Cascade-Olympic Natural History. During a career of learning and writing about the natural history of western North America, he has backpacked far and wide, watched for fires from Desolation Peak Lookout, watched a forty-foot fir crash onto his family’s house in a storm, and lived for years in a forest cabin without electricity, heating with firewood and writing by kerosene lamp. He lives in Portland, Oregon.


Praise for Trees in Trouble

Trees in Trouble is no environmentalist screed. Daniel Mathews has written a comprehensive, deeply informed, and personally anguished call of alarm about the great conifer forests of the dry American West . . . There is [also] hope, says Mathews—you can’t hang out with old trees and not feel hope . . . Trees in Trouble is crucial reading for anyone who cares about the Mountain West.” —John Daniel, author of The Trail Home and Rogue River Journal

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