The most recent publications on forest health and climate science, policy and initiatives
Background: The Framework was prepared by the County’s Office of Recovery and Resiliency in collaboration with other County departments and agencies, cities and other jurisdictions, nonprofits, and other community stakeholders. This Framework is a culmination of input provided by community members and stakeholders during an extensive community engagement period that included seven countywide community meetings, an online survey, and feedback meetings with over 80 community organizations and local partners.
In Brief: Starting page 118, the primary natural resource goals informed by meaningful collaboration with community partners and agencies are to: reduce forest fuel loads strategically to lower wildfire hazards to communities and sensitive habitats, improve delivery of resources and amenities people need, and move forests on a trajectory of increased resistance to drought, disease, and insects; protect and enhance stream systems to lessen wildfire danger to communities, support water supply and drought tolerance, and provide flood attenuation while sustaining ecological functions and biological diversity; and build on prior and continuing investments in natural resources acquisitions, monitoring, technical studies and partnerships to integrate best available science into outreach efforts, policy development, regulations, incentives, and land use planning decisions.
Background: The Forest Carbon Plan lays out recommended actions to achieve healthy and resilient forests based on what we know today about our forests and how climate change will evolve in California.
In Brief: As the plan notes: “The worsening threats to our forests mean we cannot wait for better information before we act, but must begin acting now and adjust these actions as we learn more over time.” The plan explains that current rates of fuel reduction, thinning of overly dense forests, and use of prescribed and managed fire are far below levels needed to restore forest health, prevent extreme fires, and meet the state’s long-term climate goals.
Background: The Legislative Analyst Office (LAO) has provided fiscal and policy advice to the Legislature for 75 years, based on fiscal and programmatic expertise and nonpartisan analyses of the state budget.
In Brief: This report recognizes the statewide benefits of healthy forests and the poor conditions currently characterizing the state’s forested lands. It offers policy recommendations, including improving and increasing funding and coordination efforts, revising state policies and practices to facilitate forest health activities, improve landowner assistance programs to increase effectiveness, and expand options for using and disposing of woody biomass.
Background: This groundbreaking study was conducted as part of Lawrence Livermore National Lab’s expansive energy programs work and the Laboratory’s Carbon Initiative. The goal of the initiative is to identify solutions to enable global-scale CO2 removal from the atmosphere and hit global temperature targets.
In Brief: California executive order B-55-18 mandates that the state achieve carbon neutrality by 2045 and maintain net negative emissions thereafter. Achieving this goal would complete a chain of other ambitious statewide targets for reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The LLNL study finds that, not only is carbon neutrality possible, but that California can once again be a global climate leader by demonstrating how to remove significant amounts of CO2 from the atmosphere. Most notably, By increasing the uptake of carbon in its natural and working lands, converting waste biomass into fuels, and removing CO2 directly from the atmosphere with purpose-built machines, California can remove on the order of 125 million metric tons of CO2 per year from the atmosphere by 2045, and achieve economy-wide net-zero emissions.