SNC launches $25 million grant round, funds giant sequoia restoration project

Dec 9, 2021 | SNC Updates

2022 wildfire recovery and forest resilience grant guidelines

The Sierra Nevada Conservancy’s Governing Board approved new funding guidelines at its December meeting that will make up to $25 million in local-assistance grants available. The grants are part of the Sierra Nevada Watershed Improvement Program (WIP) and will support projects that address immediate wildfire recovery and forest-resilience priorities.

“Consecutive record-shattering fire seasons make it clear that we need to scale up forest restoration across the Sierra Nevada. If we don’t, we risk losing more of the treasured landscapes that support our state’s water supply, carbon storage, and biodiversity. We also can’t abandon Sierra Nevada communities devastated by recent fires. Our new wildfire recovery and forest resilience grant guidelines address both these needs.”

Angela Avery—Executive Officer, Sierra Nevada Conservancy

The 2022 wildfire recovery and forest resilience grants will receive as much as half of the $50 million allocated to the Sierra Nevada Conservancy (SNC) in the 2021 state budget. These projects will create resilient forest landscapes, reduce wildfire risk, and help communities and natural landscapes recover from recent wildfires.

“California’s leaders are responding to the wildfire crisis in our state with significant investments,” said Andy Fristensky, field operations and grants division chief with the SNC. “These commitments allow agencies, such as the SNC, to fund ecologically sound forest management projects that protect communities and landscapes, and restore forests lost to high-severity fire.”

To be eligible under the approved guidelines, projects must be located within the Sierra Nevada Conservancy region, meet applicable California and national environmental compliance requirements, result in a clear and enduring public benefit, be completed by January 2028, and support goals identified in California’s Wildfire and Forest Resilience Action Plan and the SNC’s Watershed Improvement Program. Priority will be given to projects resulting from Regional Forest and Fire Capacity Program funding, along with multi-benefit, landscape-scale, high-impact, and/or wildfire recovery projects. More information on the grant round will be posted on the SNC Grants page in early January.

$1.1-million grant for Fresno and Tulare County Sequoia Grove fire resilience restoration

Boardmembers also awarded $1,105,278 to the Great Basin Institute for Phase Two of the Grant Grove-Big Stump Ecological Restoration Project to protect giant sequoia groves in Fresno and Tulare counties.

looking up at a large tree in a forest that is partially burned at the bottom
Healthy giant sequoia groves are incredibly resilient to fire, one of the characteristics that allows them to live for thousands of years and grow to be the world’s most massive tree.

Large wildfires have killed roughly 10,000–14,000 mature giant sequoia trees in the past two years, 13–19 percent of the ancient, iconic species that live exclusively in California’s Sierra Nevada.