Tahoe National ForestFuel Reduction/Forest Health Program
Fuel Reduction/Forest Health Treatments on the National Forest
Tahoe National Forest (TNF) includes land primarily in 4 counties – Nevada, Placer, Sierra, andYuba. The map shows the fuel reduction/forest health projects completed in the past 10 years.These types of projects include forest thinning projects, prescribed burning, mastication work,hand pruning, and other forestry type work – designed to reduce the forest fuels and toenhance the health of the forests. Reducing the fuels and enhancing forest health are one of our major emphases on the TNF – not only to reduce the intensity of wildfire, but also toprovide more community economic support as well as restoring forests ecologically. In the past10 years the Forest Service has treated 197,000 acres forest wide or 43,000 acres in NevadaCounty using a variety of treatments – some of which are on the same acres to maintain fuelreduction effectiveness. In 2012 – we offered 39 million board feet of timber/wood productsfor sale.For eastern Nevada County, treatments have focused to the north and south of the Town of Truckee boundary – to minimize fire moving from the National Forest into the Town and viceversa. For western Nevada County, treatments have a targeted Highway 20, east of Nevada City – to aid as an escape route and as a strategic location to fight wildfires moving upslope oneither side of the ridge and reduce the chance of them moving toward Nevada City. Thesetreatments have been a part of the Nevada City Community Fuelbreak in collaboration with theFire Safe Council, Resource Conservation District, and private property owners. In addition,treatment has also been focused in the San Juan Ridge area as part of the coordinated fuelbreak area with private property owners.In deciding where to plan treatments, we look at a number of criteria, including proximity tocommunities, called the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI). However, in some of these areas, if valuable timber is sparse and/or if the ground is steep/inaccessible, then these are toughprojects to plan and implement in such a way that they will have bidders. If we just do itwithout the timber sale component (e.g. just as a fuels reduction contract), these are often veryexpensive. That said, we do such contract fuels work with available funding in addition toprojects involving commercial timber.
Funds from the Forest Service to Treat Private Land
Looking at the map, you can see the checkerboard land ownership pattern due to land grantsdating back to the 1800’s. The light green is National Forest and the white is private land.These private lands have the same fuel reduction needs as the National Forest. The ForestService has provided almost $800,000 to groups like the Fire Safe Council of Nevada County,Yuba Watershed Institute, and other organizations for treating the fuels on private property orBLM land in Nevada County. These grants are often made available through State FireAssistance grants or via Resource Advisory Committee recommendations. Fuel reduction efforts
February 26, 2013