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Colorado Sun Debrief: How trees can repair ecosystems, and lawsuits against gun manufacturers

Tree logs are marked for shipping.
Wikimedia Commons
Tree saplings make for an innovative means of habitat repair. Saplings prevent erosion and repair other habitat issues when they take root in a fire-scoured area.

KUNC's Dylan Simard was joined by 'Colorado Sun' reporter Lance Benzel to discuss two stories from the 'Colorado' Sun newsroom.

The Colorado Forest Service is using a tree nursery to repair damaged habitats. Saplings are cultivated and then planted around the country in mass reforestation efforts. It's an ambitious expansion in scope for the 66-year-old facility.

"It also works with private landowners who need seedlings, for erosion control, windbreaks, [and also] to plant trees along roads to keep snow from drifting," Benzel said.

The facility has run into trouble in recent years. The COVID-19 pandemic caused a mass-layoff. The majority of the staff were Colorado State University students. Before major reforestation work can be attempted again, those gaps in employment need to be filled.

Benzel also discussed lawsuits against gun manufacturers in Colorado. They're presently pretty rare.

"If you file suit against them and you lose, the plaintiff is on the hook for the defendants attorney's fees. And that can be quite the tab," Benzel said.

Democrats are considering changing that and making it easier to sue gun manufacturers— or at least make it no harder than suing any other type of company.

KUNC regularly hosts discussions with members of the 'Colorado Sun' news team on Tuesdays at 8:45 a.m., during Morning Edition.