CAL FIRE Updates Fire Hazard Severity Zone Map

CAL FIRE Updates Fire Hazard Severity Zone Map


Will Host 57 Public Hearings For Comment Throughout California

After years of planning and collaboration with fire scientists, firefighters, stakeholders and local community partners, the new map reflects changes in fire hazard in unincorporated, rural areas, as experienced in California over the past five years.

CAL FIRE’s fire scientists and wildfire mitigation experts developed the map using a science-based and field-tested model that assigns a hazard score based on the factors that influence fire likelihood and fire behavior. Many factors are considered, such as fire history, existing and potential fuel (natural vegetation), predicted flame length, blowing embers, terrain, and typical fire weather for an area. These zones fall into the following classifications – moderate, high, and very high. 

Overall the map shows increased fire hazard, reflecting California’s increase in wildfire occurrence and severity because of many factors, including a changing climate. 

CAL FIRE is inviting public comment on the map until February 3, 2023.

Read the Report

RESOURCES


CAL FIRE: Fire Hazard Severity Zones

Learn

Governor Reflects on a Year of Progress and Resilience

Governor Reflects on a Year of Progress and Resilience


In November, Governor Newsom and state and local officials announced an end to peak wildfire season in California. CAL FIRE Director, Joe Tyler, highlighted favorable weather conditions, strategic investments in firefighting equipment, aerial resources, and fuels reduction and forest management projects, coupled with the hard work of firefighters and the diligence of of local communities resulted in an 85% reduction in acres burned and a 78% reduction in structures destroyed from 2021. 

READ THE RELEASE

RESOURCES


Interview with CAL FIRE Director Tyler

View On Twitter

Synthesis Report: Wildfire Crisis Strategy Roundtable

Synthesis Report: Wildfire Crisis Strategy Roundtable


In spring of 2022, the National Forest Foundation (NFF), together with the USFS, hosted a series of virtual ten roundtables for employees and partners of the agency to gather input on the USFS’s Confronting the Wildfire Crisis Strategy and associated Implementation Plan.  NFF has published a report synthesizing key themes and opportunities for action that emerged from the roundtables.

The NFF will host a webinar on Monday, November 14, 2-3:30 p.m. EST, to share more information about the report, discuss next steps, and provide an opportunity for Q&A with Forest Service leadership.

Read the Report

RESOURCES


National Forest Foundation Roundtables

Opportunities for Action and CollaborationRegister for the Webinar

The 2021 Caldor Fire: One Year Later Video Series

The 2021 Caldor Fire: One Year Later Video Series


October 21, 2022, marks exactly one year since the Caldor Fire was completely contained.

Over the last year and with months of research and collaboration, the Eldorado National Forest released a four-part series examining the Caldor Fire. This series reviews the suppression efforts that took place, the fire behavior challenging firefighters, the road to rehabilitation and restoration, and what is being done now to lower the future risk of fire to communities.

RESOURCES


Episode 1: Initial response and experiences of firefighters who not only worked but also lived in the area

WATCH

Episode 2: How fire behavior and fuel conditions made for a challenging fire fight

WATCH

Episode 3: What restoration and rehabilitation work has occurred and its importance

WATCH

Episode 4: What is being done to reduce extreme wildfire behavior

WATCH

Eastern Sierra Recreation Update

Eastern Sierra Climate Communities Resilience Project aims to reduce wildfire danger and improve forest health and resilience around the Town of Mammoth Lakes


Good things are happening in the Eastern Sierra thanks to collaborative efforts between state, federal, and local partners. These efforts will not only help build resiliency of Mammoth Lakes and the forests, but sustain the recreation economy that Mammoth provides in the Eastern Sierra.

Mammoth Lakes “Donut” Project: The Eastern Sierra Climate and Communities Resilience Project, known locally as the “Mammoth Donut,” is wrapping up its two-year preplanning phase and implementation will soon begin under this multi-year wildfire and forest resiliency project. Spanning 56,000 acres of Inyo National Forest across six different watersheds and managed by the Whitebark Institute, the planning for this landscape-scale project included input from a wide range of partners and was enabled by funding from the Sierra Nevada Conservancy, and the Regional Fire and Forest Capacity Program. The Inyo National Forest is now inviting public input on this project.  

Mammoth Lakes Basin Trails Ribbon Cutting: On October 5th, Inyo National Forest and the Town of Mammoth Lakes officially opened several new trails in the Mammoth Lakes Basin. These new trails are a result of the community engagement effort from the Lakes Basin Special Study, an effort that began in 2012 led by the Mammoth Lakes Trails and Public Access Foundation (MLTPA), MLTPA, with grant funding from SNC.

RESOURCES


MLTPA: Lakes Basin Special Study

Read the Reports

Mammoth Lakes Trail System: RibbonCutting Celebration for New LakesBasin Trails

Learn More

SNC’s Mammoth Lakes Donut Project

Learn More

Aerial view of residential modern subdivision

OPR Releases Wildfire Technical Advisory and WUI Planning Guide

Aerial view of residential modern subdivision

OPR Releases new resources:  Fire Hazard Planning Technical Advisory and WUI Planning Guide


In an important step forward on two key requirements in the Task Force Action plan, the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research (OPR) today published new resources to support local agencies and communities as they plan for wildfire at the community scale. 

The first is OPR’s updated Fire Hazard Planning Technical Advisory (TA) which helps cities and counties address and reduce wildfire risk in their general plans. They also released the Wildland-Urban Interface (WUI) Planning Guide. This publication complements the TA by providing specific examples and best practice case studies to communities to reference as they plan and implement wildfire solutions.

OPR is an important Task Force partner, and these valuable publications will contribute to the Task Force’s goal of strengthening the protection of communities across California

To learn more, read the OPR announcement and sign up for an informational webinar on September 14th, 2022.

Read the Report

RESOURCES


OPR Wildfire Planning Resources

Learn More

Informational Webinar: OPR’s Wildfire Guidance & Resources

Sign Up

burning residential neighborhood

Cal OES Awards $25 Million to Local Organizations to Protect Vulnerable Communities

burning residential neighborhood

Cal OES Awards $25 Million to Local Organizations to Protect Vulnerable Communities from Disasters


 In this second wave of funding, the California Department of Emergency Services awarded grants to 93 community partners to ensure the state’s most vulnerable are ready when disaster strikes. These grants prioritize communities that are considered both socially vulnerable and at a high risk of being impacted by wildfire, flood, earthquake, drought or heatwave.

Learn More

RESOURCES



tree starts

Governor Signs State Forest and Wildfire Budget

tree starts

Governor Signs State Forest and Wildfire Budget


On June 30, Governor Newsom signed a state budget that includes an additional $670 million for programs that will provide immediate benefits during the 2022 fire season and help the state prepare for the 2023 fire season. Key investments (Link pending) include $400 million for wildfire resilience projects, $265 million for strategic fuel breaks, and $5 million to expand defensible space inspections. The budget also sets aside an additional $530 million over two years for forest and wildfire resilience programs that will be allocated in the summer pending additional discussions with the legislature.

Learn More

RESOURCES



forest and lake

Forestry project complete at Feather River reservoir

forest and lake

Forestry project complete at Feather River reservoir


The Little Grass Valley Reservoir Watershed Project will have a big impact when it comes to protecting local communities and valuable water infrastructure from wildfire.

Learn More

RESOURCES



Photo of Yuba Forest

High Risk Landscapes To Receive $80.7M in U.S. Forest Service Funding

Photo of Yuba Forest

Two High Wildfire Risk Landscapes To Receive $80.7M in U.S. Forest Service Funding


Targeted investments for first high-risk areas identified in Tahoe and Stanislaus National Forests.

April 20, 2022 – As part of the Forest Service’s strategy for Confronting the Wildfire Crisis, two landscapes within the Stanislaus and Tahoe national forests will receive targeted investments to increase forest resiliency and health through a broad range of treatments. These two forests will collectively receive $28.6 million in 2022 and an additional $52.1 million over the next three years, for a total of $80.7 million. This funding is being appropriated through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.

The North Yuba Landscape Resilience area on the Tahoe National Forest and the SERAL (Social and Ecological Resilience Across the Landscape) area on the Stanislaus National Forest are two of 10 landscapes selected nationally to receive this funding. Overall, the 10 landscapes will receive $131 million this year to begin implementing our 10-year strategy for protecting communities and improving resilience in America’s forests.

In addition to state and federal agencies, these two landscape-scale restoration efforts are supported by partnerships with Yosemite Stanislaus Solutions, Tuolumne County, the Tuolumne Band of Me-Wuk, the North Yuba Forest Partnership – which includes Sierra County and the Nisenan of the Nevada City Rancheria – and several others. To find out more about the initial landscape investments, visit WCS Initial Landscape Investments- USDA Forest Service.

 


Tahoe National Forest: 

The 313,000-acre North Yuba Landscape is one of the largest contiguous “unburned” landscapes remaining in the Sierra Nevada Mountains. The North Yuba watershed is also an important water source for residential and agricultural areas surrounding Sacramento. It feeds a reservoir retained by the tallest dam in California, which also provides power to the Sacramento area. Through ecologically based thinning and prescribed fire, the North Yuba Forest Partnership seeks to protect North Yuba communities from the threat of catastrophic wildfire and restore the watershed to a healthier, more resilient state. This landscape is also host to the first two Forest Resilience Bonds, which leverage substantial private sector investment to help fund implementation of this work.

 


Stanislaus National Forest SERAL: 

Within the Stanislaus Landscape a full suite of needed treatments to restore forest resilience at a landscape scale. Named SERAL for Social and Ecological Resilience Across the Landscape, these treatments include mastication, biomass removal, machine piling for burning, hand piling for burning, hand thinning, timber harvest, hazard tree removal, prescribed fire, and fuel break construction and maintenance. Combined, these efforts will reduce hazardous fuels and create a landscape that can better withstand disturbances such as wildfire, insects, disease, and drought conditions, while also protecting local communities, providing for critical species habitat, and supporting forest use and recreational opportunities.

 

 

 

RESOURCES