The California Wildfire and Forest Resilience Task Force recently held a quarterly meeting at Shasta College in Redding, marking the final of four regional meetings — Northern California, Southern California, the Sierra Nevada, and the Central Coast — that have taken place across California over the past year.
The California Wildfire and Forest Resilience Task Force recently held its quarterly meeting at Shasta College in Redding, marking the final of four regional meetings — Northern California, Southern California, the Sierra Nevada, and the Central Coast — that have taken place across California over the past year. The purpose of these meetings has been to better understand each region’s unique socioecological context related to increasing resilience to wildfires.
“7% of our state has burned in the last five years, and some towns have been wiped off the map,” said California's Natural Resources Secretary Wade Crowfoot in his opening remarks. “This is an existential crisis we face across the American West, and that’s what drives this Task Force.” After opening remarks from the Executive Committee, Director Patrick Wright shared an overview of California's recent successes in wildfire resilience including massive investments from state and federal agencies and the release of products like the Interagency Treatment Dashboard.
The latter part of the day was filled with three panels tailored to the Northern California region. To set the scene, members of the Task Force’s Science Advisory Panel and other regional scientific experts discussed the region’s unique ecological and socioeconomic landscape and how it relates to Indigenous stewardship, water security, and other aspects of community resilience. Next, federal, state, and NGO representatives from the region gathered to share stories of successful landscape level restoration projects including that of the Weaverville Community Forest, a partnership between federal and local agencies that manages a total of 14,963 acres. To round out the meeting, forest-sector representatives from a diverse range of organizations discussed workforce development, a critical barrier to forest restoration in Northern California.
At the meeting, the Northern California Resource Kit and Regional Profile were released. These products, released alongside each of the four regional meetings, have been designed to give a comprehensive overview of the issues facing each region and provide a set of relevant resources for regional stakeholders and other decision makers planning projects to increase landscape health and resilience to wildfire.
To watch webinar recordings of the full program, visit the Task Force website.