Officials say Lake Tahoe imperiled by wildfires

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Updated: 8/19/2014 2:17 pm

SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. (AP) — Lake Tahoe is a crown jewel of the western landscape but is being challenged by drought, invasive species, the threat of catastrophic wildfire and climate change.

Tuesday's annual summit about protecting the iconic lake that straddles the California-Nevada border brought unusual bipartisan consensus among federal lawmakers that more logging should play a role in reducing the fire danger.

Decades of suppressing wildfires to protect homes has left many forests too thick with trees, leading to disease and stoking high-intensity wildfires that end up scorching the earth.

Republican Congressmen Tom McClintock told participants that money from logging could help pay for forest improvements.

U.S. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, a Democrat, agreed. They joined federal and state officials in signing a proclamation supporting fuel-reduction efforts near the lake.

©2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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