Lake County, California has had a tough time with wildfire in the last decade. Hit by the Valley Fire in 2015, the Mendocino Complex Fire in 2018, and many other fires, the county faces not only questions about how to rebuild, but also how to prepare for future wildfire. Like many places in California, Lake County strives to identify areas of risk before they are devastated by fire, and mitigate risk for those areas in whatever way they can. Community building plays an important role in this process, and the Lake County community has certainly come together in the wake of fire. But the question remains: once the community is together, where do you go next?
This plethora of data is organized and stored in an ArcMap attribute table that corresponds to specific project areas and management units. The attributes are then analyzed using a Python program, which categorizes projects into eight priority levels. Data-driven prioritization is extremely valuable in deciding which projects to address first; a long list of projects can be overwhelming without it. CLERC and others in Lake County hope that, with improvements and feedback from interested parties, the use of this system could be expanded to prioritize wildfire management projects in Lake County and beyond.
The following Storymap showcases how this system has been used to prioritize and update the Lake County Community Wildfire Protection Plan. The data collected for this Storymap and its contents was gathered with the help of tribal, governmental, and community experts. The framework that followed is in its infancy, but it has the potential for growth and improvement, and it may one day be helpful for partners outside of the Lake County area. Questions are very welcome, and can be emailed to Laurel Bard, Fire and Forestry Project Coordinator Take a look to see what’s next for Lake County’s wildfire management.
Below is a presentation of the StoryMap provided by CLERC staff to the Lake County Board of Supervisors on July 27, 2021.
The latest news, views, and perspectives from the Clear Lake Environmental Research Center (CLERC)