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Study Shows Policy Hurting Ranchers

A new report paints a bleak picture for cattle ranching families in the Sierra Nevada, thanks to a reduction of grazing land available from the Forest Service. Tuolumne and Calaveras County Farm Advisor Ken Churches says the larger family operations have based their business on high country grazing for generations. He says most cannot afford to buy enough grazing land in the Foothills to make up for what´s being withdrawn. Churches says rationales given by environmentalists to limit mountain access don´t make sense. Rather than hurt the environment, he says grazing keeps streams accessible to wildlife, and reduces fuels that could support catastrophic wildfires.