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Lassen Fire Safe Council Awarded $14.7 Million for Two Cal-FIRE Fire Prevention Grants

Friday, September 10th, 2021

The Cal-FIRE California Fire Prevention Grant Program of 2020-21 has awarded just over $14.7 million dollars to Lassen Fire Safe Council, for two projects to reduce wildfire risk and potential damage in three Northern California counties. The Dyer Mountain WUI Fuel Treatments project in Lassen and Plumas Counties will receive $5,727,260 and, the Shingletown WUI Fuel Treatments project in Shasta County will receive $8,978,870.

The Dyer Mountain project will fund 7,200 acres of wildfire-mitigating treatments in and around the communities of Westwood, Pine Town, Clear Creek and Hamilton Branch. The project partners include Sierra Pacific Industries, WM Beaty & Associates, PG&E, Clear Creek Community Service District and the Westwood and Peninsula Fire Departments.

“Lassen Fire Safe Council is excited to have the opportunity to work with the Dyer Mountain communities to reduce their wildfire risk and improve forest health,” said Tom Esgate, LFSC Managing Director. “With the impact the Dixie Fire has had on Northeastern California this year, the need for this project has never been more evident.”

The Shingletown project was developed under a memo of understanding between LFSC and the newly established Shasta County Fire Safe Council in the summer of 2020. Under the agreement, the LFSC will mentor the SCFSC as it develops and implements large, landscape-scale fuel treatments, and also as the new agency helps implement the Shasta County Community Wildfire Protection Plan.

Shasta County Supervisor Mary Rickert was instrumental in bringing LFSC and SCFSC together through her long-standing involvement in LFSC’s Day Lassen Bench Project, which includes the northeast corner of Shasta County.

“I very much appreciate the efforts and collaboration of the Fire Safe Councils and congratulate them on getting their first landscape-scale projects funded. They are off to a great start,” said Rickert, a former member of the California Board of Forestry and Fire Protection.

The Shingletown project will treat 15,000 acres by thinning overly dense stands for biomass and masticating thick, flammable understory vegetation around Shingletown and near the adjacent communities of Inwood, Viola and Manton.

In partnership with the Shingletown Fire Safe Council, the project identified strategic treatment areas based on wind patterns and past fire behavior. The work will minimize wildfire threats to the communities through restoration of forest health and resilience. Importantly, the project also will protect the upper watersheds of California’s water supply, promote long-term carbon storage in forests and minimize carbon loss from future wildfires. Additional project partners include Sierra Pacific Industries, WM Beaty & Associates and PG&E.

“The need for forest management initiatives like this is immediate. We plan to make this the first of many efforts to protect the citizens, property, and natural resources of Shasta County from the effects of catastrophic wildland fires,” said Dr. Richard Sealana, Chair of SCFSC.

“Over the past three years LFSC has averaged 9,000 acres of treatments annually,” said LFSC Chair Lloyd Keefer. “With these funds, and others already awarded, LFSC is well positioned to continue and increase the pace and scale of critical fuel reduction and forest restoration projects that help protect northern California communities.”

The two projects are funded from Governor Newsom’s Early Action General Fund request derived from California’s current $38 billion dollar surplus. In addition, the Shingletown project will complement and expand on the governor’s 2019 Highway 44 project that was a highly ranked priority in the state at the time.

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