Forest fires are devastating, and last summer’s Rim Fire in the Sierra Nevadas is a prime example. Over a thousand square kilometers of forest was burned along with homes, commercial buildings and other structures. But National Geographic’s Brian Clark Howard suggests that there might be a silver lining. Because so much forest must be restored, scientists and specialists from the National Park Service will be able to experiment with different practices such as natural fire management. The idea is to challenge stakeholders “to come up with an innovative restoration plan” in some areas of the burned forest while allowing “nature to take its course” in other areas. Benefits include greater bird diversity as well as an opportunity for the reintroduction of specific species of trees in target areas.