Climate Action and Resiliency

Make Sonoma County carbon neutral by 2030.

Goal 1, Objective 2

Expand outreach and education on vegetation management and provide additional resources to land owners to help mitigate fire risk.
On Track 75%

Updated: January 2023

Summary of Objective Implementation Status

Expanding outreach and education on vegetation management and providing additional resources to land owners to help mitigate fire risk is  in process and on going. Many of the key milestones are completed or in process as anticipated in the implementation plan. Collectively, we have provided more than 30 public training and capacity building events and the PG&E Settlement funded Vegetation Management Grant Program has provided 46 community grants, totaling $8.3 million. The various agencies and organizations are now working collaboratively on vegetation management efforts throughout the county. We have a collective awareness of efforts throughout the county and have prepared recommendations for the Board to consider regarding outreach and education and additional resources for landowners into the future.

Key Milestone Update

  • Convene all agencies and departments with vegetation management efforts planned or in process by end of 2021 – COMPLETE
  • Create a vegetation management technical advisory committee by the end of 2021 – COMPLETED and meeting on a regular basis
  • Host PG&E settlement funding vegetation management grant workshops end of 2021 and beginning of 2022 – COMPLETE
  • Document and describe all vegetation management efforts by early 2022 – COMPLETED
  • Develop a strategy to communicate vegetation management efforts with the community by early 2022 – IN PROCESS to be completed in 2023
  • Provide a multi-agency/department comprehensive vegetation management update to the board by May 2022 – COMPLETE
  • Create vegetation management outreach materials, including a website by end of 2022 – IN PROCESS, web portal to be developed in 2023
  • Work with partners and the technical advisory committee to identify the best approach to using the remainder of the PG&E settlement funds to create a long-term vegetation management program by end of 2022 – COMPLETE, recommendations will be presented to the Board in January 2023
  • Work with partners and the technical advisory committee to identify best management practices for vegetation management that is focused on healthy ecological function and fire resilience to share with the community – ONGOING
  • Update communications strategy, website, and outreach materials as needed – ONGOING

PRMD’s Updates:

  • Permit Sonoma is developing and implementing outreach, education, and funding programs outlined in Wildfire Adapted Sonoma County and Hazardous Fuels Management for Sonoma County, FEMA Hazard Mitigation Grants and the Wildfire Resilient Sonoma County (BRIC) FEMA grant.
  • These grants will fund multiple term positions including a full-time media specialist position, a GIS specialist to produce story maps, several project managers, and other subject matter specialists.
  • As of November 2022, PRMD has hired a grant administrator, senior environmental specialist, marketing specialist and GIS specialist
  • PRMD provides environmental review support to the vegetation management grant program by providing CEQA/NEPA/Permitting and project scoping services, including preparation of CalFire Vegetation Treatment Program documentation.

Coordination and Partnership Update

The Vegetation Management Technical Advisory Committee, which includes Ag + Open Space, Permit Sonoma, Regional Parks, Climate Action and Resilience Division, UCCE, fire agencies, Sonoma and Gold Ridge Resource Conservation Districts, Sonoma Ecology Center, Pepperwood Foundation, Fire Forward, and Fire Safe Sonoma, meets regularly to advance coordinated vegetation management efforts.

Community, Equity, and Climate Update

The purpose of this objective is to enhance our ability to communicate with the public about local vegetation management efforts. Therefore, the actions that have been conducted to date seek to engage all members of our community, we strive to incorporate approaches that reach all members of our diverse community. For example, workshops have been offered to all members of the community with Spanish translation services. Our vegetation management outreach and education efforts have helped to better inform the community about vegetation management practices that are beneficial to climate resilience as well as natural systems and fire resilience .

Funding Narrative

Current funding needs are met by the PG&E settlement funds, FEMA Hazard Mitigation grants, and BRIC grant. We are recommending formation of a technical advisory committee to address future, on-going funding needs. Additionally, UC Cooperative Extension received $300,000 from the Climate Resiliency Fund in October 2022 for promoting managed grazing to lower wildfire risks and to increase climate benefits.