Sitnews - Stories In The News - Ketchikan, Alaska - Opinions



by Stephen B Smeltzer


June 19, 2004

OK people, what is it Klukwan Inc. is going to spray on Long Island? The story I got about six months ago was they wanted to spray HERBICIDES, not PESTICIDES. There is a difference. Both are poisonous, but kill different forms of life. Seems after Klukwan Inc. clear cut Long Island, (after getting the rights from Sealaska Corp. to log this area, since they could not log Admiralty Is.), they found that the alders come up first, (no surprise) then the "money" trees start growing, at a much slower rate. Alders are nitrogen fixing plants, which is good for the soil. Kill the alders and your soil doesn't have the right nutrients. Didn't we learn anything from spraying in Vietnam? Unlike Southeast Asia though, Southeast Alaska is a temporate rain forest, not a tropical jungle. Some flora grow slower here than in a jungle.

What Klukwan Inc. should do is hire kids to go and thin out the alders. This is certainly a better alternative to spraying herbicide. Sure it costs more, but just think of putting people to work, cultivating a forest that was chopped down. New trees could be planted, and maybe in 100 years or so a new crop can be clear cut again. Oh well, one can dream.

I may be wrong as to the agreement worked out with Sealaska Corp. and Klukwan Inc. For that I apologize. As a Vietnam veteran, I am opposed to spraying anything on our forests. This amounts to laziness on the part of Klukwan Inc. Your shareholders and directors got money out of a sweet deal, now you don't want to clean up after you? Are you broke now so you take the easy way out? No wonder the environmentalists are on our case concerning the Tongass. Fortunately a few locals are opposed to this kind of "forestry management."

I think it was a white man that said, "do what you like, just don't hurt anyone, and don't destroy the land." Herbicides destroy the land and hurt the people.
That's my opinion.

Stephen B Smeltzer
Sealaska Shareholder
Juneau, AK - USA



Note: Comments published on Viewpoints are the opinions of the writer
and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of Sitnews.



Post a Comment -------View Comments

Submit an Opinion - Letter

Stories In The News
Ketchikan, Alaska