CLERC and our partners at the Upper Lake Ranger District of the Mendocino National Forest have been successful in securing a large Forest Health Grant to conduct restoration activities in the fire-impacted areas of the Mendocino National Forest.
Utilizing the recently completed North Shore Restoration Project environmental review, CLERC applied to CAL FIRE’s Forest Health Program in February of this year and the award was announced in April.
The funds will be focused on reforestation of 1,065 acres of federal lands. The scope of work includes multiple treatments within the 1,065-acre footprint including site preparation (felling and removal of dead trees), replanting, and follow-up treatments to remove invasive species. In total, the project will plant over 232,000 trees!
After dealing with major fires several years in a row during the last decade, CLERC’s initial focus was on restoring fire-impacted areas and addressing the excessive build-up of fuel that’s resulted from 100+ years of fire exclusion. While this is still the goal, now that we’re catching up on our most immediately needed projects, we’re able to spend time working with partners to plan ahead and be more strategic about landscape-scale restoration. The award amount was the maximum available under the grant guidelines. The project will kick-off in October 2023 and last until 2029.
This project continues work initiated by CLERC and the Upper Lake Ranger District in 2019 following the devastating Mendocino Complex Fire, which was the largest wildfire in California’s recorded history at the time.
Collaborative projects already underway in the national forest include the Bartlett Roadside Hazard Tree Abatement Project, which will complete abatement of 500 acres of roadside hazard trees along roads within the forest, and the Lake County Wildfire Resilience Project – Phase 1, which will conduct fuel reduction activities across 750 acres of mostly unburned forest lands within the Clear Lake watershed in the hills above Lucerne, CA.
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