SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The U. S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) has agreed to pool wildfire prevention efforts and funding with California-based organizations through a nationwide initiative using funding from the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law.
Through the nationwide initiative known as the Good Neighbor Authority, state, county, and federally recognized Indian tribes are authorized to conduct certain land management projects on federal lands.
Thursday's announcement of agreements between BLM and the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE), the California Department of Transportation (Caltrans), and the California Conservation Corps are aimed at restoration, fuel reduction, and forest health projects on federal land.
BLM oversees 15 million acres of public land in California, approximately 15% of the state's total land mass.
“This groundbreaking collaboration between CAL FIRE and the BLM promises to be a vital step in
safeguarding California's natural resources and communities from the devastating impacts of wildfires,” said Matthew Reischman, Deputy Director for Resource Management at CAL FIRE. “Through strategic
planning and joint efforts, this partnership streamlines planning steps and seeks to foster a healthier and
more resilient environment—one that is better equipped to withstand the challenges posed by wildfire and other ecological stressors.”
Within the next five years, the U. S. Department of Interior will receive $1.5 billion in funding through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law to invest in wildfire preparedness.
BLM California has already received $15 million from the Law and intends to provide $800,000 of that funding to partner agencies in California to complete restoration work near important infrastructure.
“We are excited to partner with CAL FIRE on important projects on BLM-managed public lands
throughout California,” said BLM California State Director Karen Mouritsen. “These agreements will
result in better coordination for activities to reduce fuels that feed wildfires, protect wildlife habitat,
improve forest health, and restore important watersheds.”
These new agreements reflect a commitment to the goal of treating one million acres of forest and wildlands annually by 2025 as detailed in the Shared Stewardship Agreement.
To learn more about CAL FIRE's resource management programs, visit here.
To learn more about BLM's restoration efforts through the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, visit here.