Sierra Nevada watersheds to benefit from $2.2M in grants

By From page A10 | September 14, 2012

The Sierra Nevada Conservancy’s (SNC) Governing Board recently approved $2.2 million in “Healthy Forest” grants for 24 projects designed to reduce the risk of forest fires and protect California’s watersheds in 14 Sierra counties. With the award, the SNC has now awarded $45 million for similar projects in the Sierra in the past four years, including $7 million this year.

The grants are funded by Proposition 84, the Safe Drinking Water Act passed by voters in 2006.

“Returning our forests to ecological health reduces the threat of fire, protecting our wildlife, our water and our lives,” said SNC Executive Officer Jim Branham. “These projects will help us achieve these goals, while providing jobs and helping to sustain local Sierra economies.”

The types of projects typically funded under the SNC’s grant program include fuels reduction (removal of underbrush and thinning of some smaller diameter trees), forest and meadow restoration, and invasive plant species removal. Many of the projects will be operational in the fall. (Media note: For a complete list of projects approved today, please see the attachment below.)

Under Prop 84 guidelines, funds may be awarded to government agencies, non-profit organizations, or federally recognized tribes. Projects may be on public or private land, but the outcome must serve to protect the watershed and provide public benefit.

“Because of decades of fire suppression and conflict over forest management, today’s major forest fires can have a devastating impact on the landscape and on the watershed,” Branham said. “The resulting erosion and siltation pollute our rivers, lakes, and reservoirs. By spending our precious dollars up in the Sierra proactively, we can reduce the risk and consequence of these fires, protecting the source of two-thirds of California’s drinking water.”

Created in 2004, the Sierra Nevada Conservancy is a state agency whose mission is to improve the environmental, economic, and social well-being of the Sierra Nevada Region. The SNC receives no general fund tax dollars.

The SNC Governing Board meets quarterly around the Sierra Nevada Region, which spans 25 million acres, encompasses all or part of 22 counties and runs from the Oregon border on the north, to southeast of Bakersfield. 

Sierra Nevada Conservancy, Proposition 84 “Healthy Forest” Grants, by County

(Multi-county projects listed at the bottom)

24 Projects, 14 Counties, $2.2 Million

Awarded Sept. 6, 2012





Project Title

Amount  Awarded

  Butte Butte County Fire Safe Council Forest Health Chipper Program $      100,000.00
  Calaveras USDA/USFS Stanislaus National Forest – Calaveras Ranger District ACCG Collaborative Project:  West Calaveras Plantation Thinning NEPA $        74,975.00
  Calaveras Calaveras Healthy Impact Products Solutions Wilseyville Woody Biomass Utilization Product Yard Development Engineering Plans $        74,800.00
  El Dorado Eldorado National Forest, Pacific Ranger District Van Vleck Meadow Complex Assessment and Restoration Plan $        75,000.00
  Madera Eastern Madera County Fire Safe Council, Inc. Malum Ridge Healthy Forest and Watershed Protection $        70,000.00
  Madera Yosemite-Sequoia Resource Conservation and Development Council The North Fork Community – Scale Biomass Project $        70,049.00
  Modoc United States Forest Service, Modoc National Forest Swanson Canyon Hazardous Fuel Reduction Riparian Enhancement CE/EA $        73,999.00
  Modoc City of Alturas Pre-engineering Study: City of Alturas biomass-based district heating in support of the Forest Health Sage Steppe Project $        75,000.00
  Nevada Sierra Streams Institute Lower Deer Creek Healthy Re-vegetation Project $      112,932.00
  Nevada USDA Forest Service, Tahoe National Forest Bloody Run Sub-watershed Forest Improvement $        74,326.53
  Nevada South Yuba River Citizens League (SYRCL) Loney Meadow Aspen Regeneration Project, Phase 2 $        49,265.64
  Nevada Sierra Streams Institute Hirschman’s Pond Healthy Forest Initiative $        75,000.00
  Placer Placer County Resource Conservation District Gillis Hill Fuel Break $        17,528.00
  Plumas Mohawk Valley Stewardship Council (MVSC) White Sulphur Springs Ranch Hazardous Fuels Reduction Project $        20,000.00
  Plumas City of Portola Willow Creek Springs Hazardous Fuel Reduction $      263,230.00
  Shasta Fall River Resource Conservation District Burney Gardens Restoration Planning Project $        75,000.00
  Tehama Tehama County Resource Conservation District Tramway Road/A-Line Road Shaded Fuel Break CEQA Environmental Analysis Project $        23,550.00
  Tehama Tehama County Resource Conservation District Childs Meadows Head Cut Repair Project $        41,663.00
  Tulare Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks Create a Restoration Plan for Cahoon Meadow, Sequoia National Park $        74,500.00
  Tulare Tulare County RCD Mountain Home Fuel Load Reduction Project $      350,000.00
  Tulare Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks Control Velvetgrass (Holcus lanatus) in the Kern Canyon of Sequoia National Park and Sequoia National Forest $      237,638.00
  El Dorado, Alpine, Amador El Dorado Irrigation District, Caples Creek Watershed Fuels Reduction and Meadow Restoration: A Sierra Nevada Region water purveyor and federal land manager working together to protect water supplies within the Sierra Nevada. $        75,000.00
  Plumas; Tuolumne California Invasive Plant Council Planning High-Priority Invasive Plant Management in Mixed Conifer Forests in the Sierra Nevada $        58,593.00
  Calaveras, Tuolumne California Department of Parks and Recreation Calaveras Big Trees State Park Fuels Treatments $        33,091.00



$  2,195,140.17

Sierra Nevada

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