After six-plus years of historic drought, Governor Edmund G. Brown rescinded the state of emergency order, excluding four counties, in the wake of one of the wettest winters in state history. Only Fresno, Kings, Tulare and Tuolumne counties remain in a drought emergency.
The drought is effectively over, though one of the fallouts from sustained dry conditions are recognizable in various counties throughout California. Tree mortality, resulting from unprecedented drought and subsequent bark beetle infestations, has stripped California forests of more than 100 million trees.
The mortality data is based on the U.S. Forest Service Aerial Detection Survey flown across all forested lands of the state each year. The Forest Service has already treated 30,000 acres of dead trees, with more to come.
California has seen more than its fair share of wildfires and the drought has not helped fire conditions. Fire seasons seem to be getting longer and the number of fires are going up.
Do you know which wildfire was the largest? Most destructive? The deadliest? The statistics are staggering. In the last 10 years alone, California has experienced 11 of the largest and eight of the most destructive wildfires in recent history. Here is CAL FIRE data outlining the Top 20 largest, destructive and deadliest wildfires in the Golden State.
The drive into the Sierra Nevada region of Tuolumne County is peaceful and surrounded by picturesque scenery. But trekking deeper into the woods provides a more disconcerting visual.
Drought, bark beetle and other stresses have contributed to massive tree mortality, as detailed by the California State Association of Counties (CSAC), with an estimated 29 million tree deaths in California.
Earlier this week, the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) joined multiple agencies, including Cal Fire and PG&E, to initiate a tree removal project near Sonora in Tuolumne County.
“It takes a lot of time to remove trees and you can see how dangerous these trees are,” said Cal OES Assistant Director of Recovery Charles Rabamad, who toured the project on June 9 in the small town of Twain Harte. “Obviously the collaborative effort is great … continue reading »
Today, Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. proclaimed May 1-7 as “Wildfire Awareness Week” in California. Last year’s destructive Valley and Butte fires as well as the ongoing drought and vast tree mortality remind Californians of the fire dangers the state continues to face this fire season.
Wildfire Awareness Week was kicked off at CAL FIRE’s Aviation Management Unit in Sacramento by Governor Brown with state and federal leaders. Governor Brown was joined by Cal OES Director Mark Ghilarducci, CAL FIRE Director Ken Pimlott, California National Guard General David Baldwin, U.S. Forest Service Region 5 Deputy Regional Forester Jeanne Wade Evans, and California Natural Resources Agency Secretary John Laird.
State and federal officials not only discussed steps their respective agencies are taking in preparation of fire season, but stressed steps Californians can take to reduce their risk – … continue reading »
Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today issued an emergency order for Lake and Trinity counties to help residents and businesses recover from the damaging effects of wildfires. Already this year, a series of wildfires in those counties has burned tens of thousands of acres, destroyed dozens homes and damaged critical infrastructure.
This executive order will expedite the removal of hazardous debris from the impacted areas and will waive fees to replace documents such as driver’s licenses and birth certificates for those affected by the fires. Today’s executive order follows the State of Emergency declaration issued in late July for wildfires across California during one of the hottest and driest summers on record.
SACRAMENTO – As thousands of homes and residents are threatened by devastating and deadly wildfires in the state of Washington, Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today directed his Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) and CAL FIRE to send firefighters and equipment north to help battle the flames.
“We understand the devastating impacts of wildfires here in California and our hearts go out to the residents and first responders on the front lines in Washington,” said Mark Ghilarducci, Director of the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services. “Our mutual aid system is built on the concept of neighbor helping neighbor, and this is another great example of helping our neighbors in a time of dire need,” said Ghilarducci.
Four strike teams of fire engines and personnel (20 fire engines) from local government agencies and CAL FIRE departed … continue reading »
The long road toward recovery from the devastating Round Fire has begun for residents of Mono County.
At the direction of Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr., who on February 26 proclaimed a state of emergency for the county, personnel from CalRecycle are conducting pre-tests for the owner-authorized removal of debris from private properties that were damaged and destroyed by the fire. The … continue reading »
The Boles Fire is 100% contained as of Saturday, September 20, 2014, but not without burning 479 acres and 150 homes. Although small in size, this fire was devastating to the Northern California community of Weed.
Now, the efforts of the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services have turned to recovery and we have a full team doing just that in the city of Weed, as well as in the State Operations Center, in Sacramento.
Sacramento – As high temperatures persist and firefighters continue battling wildfires throughout the state, Governor Edmund G. Brown Jr. today secured a Fire Management Assistance Grant (FMAG) from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to help ensure the availability of vital resources to extinguish the King Fire burning in El Dorado County. The FMAG also enables local, state and tribal agencies to recover eligible response-related costs.
So far, the fire has consumed more than 18,000 acres, threatening structures and causing more than 1,400 evacuation in the following areas: Forebay, Pony Express Trail, White Meadows, … continue reading »
Extreme drought conditions and summer’s high temperatures have California firefighters battling the Courtney Fire in Madera County. Governor Edmund G. Brown, Jr., today secured a Fire Management Assistance Grant (FMAG) from the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to enable the availability of vital firefighting funds for those local, state and tribal agencies responding to the fire.
So far, the fire has consumed more than 320 acres, threatening structures and causing evacuations near the Bass Lake and Oakhurst communities.
The grant, which is provided through the President’s Disaster Relief Fund on a cost-share basis, will assist local, state and tribal agencies responding to the fire to apply for 75-percent reimbursement of their fire suppression costs.