The July meeting was attended by 25 people in person. There was no Zoom option. Since no actions were taken there will be no notes for this meeting, only this summary.
Susie Kocher, a Forestry Advisor with the University of California Cooperative Extension presented the results of her research on what worked and what didn’t with respect to restoration after the 2007 Angora Fire.
photo by Mary Rawson
Lessons learned from the 2007 Angora Fire should be applicable to the needed restoration after the Tamarack Fire. Below is the summary table of restoration methods used along with their advantages and disadvantages. Failure to implement restoration after a wildfire such as the Tamarack Fire almost certainly will eventually result in a brush field, especially in the warmer and drier climate we are currently experiencing. Examples include the unrestored portions of the 1987 Acorn Fire, the 1996 Autumn Hills Fire above Foothill Rd. in Douglas County, and even the recent 2015 Washington Fire.
The full PowerPoint presentation will be available here for approximately one month.
Participant updates: Unfortunately, the quality of the audio recording is not good and consequently not all the updates have been completely captured. Apologies to those who whose reports are not audible.
Monti (USFS) reported that crews were working on the West Carson Project. McAfee (AWG reported that their meeting on Tuesday, July 12th at 5:30 pm will be a tour of the West Carson Project. Details available here. Longeran (NFF) gave an update on the National Forest Foundation activities helping agencies secure and administer project funding. Francis (BLM) reported that the BLM had hired two people through American Forests to look for cone trees that could provide seed for a reforestation effort. They are looking for a grouping of ten trees in an area that have a heavy cone drop, called a cone flush. She appealed for any information on such a grouping of ten trees. She is also looking for certified tree climbers to retrieve the cones and is hoping to recruit them at an arborist convention in Reno in September. Monti stated that the Forest Service has the same need. Franklin reported that she has some pinyon pine currently coning on or near her property. Harvey announced that his project with NRCS to reduce the fuel on his property was essentially complete. He commented that he found the NRCS most helpful and easy to work with as a private landowner. Aralia reported that the Tahoe Conservancy was supporting the creation of a forestry program at the Lake Tahoe Community College and that might help improve the number of qualified people to work in forestry. Jones (WEPD) reported that the Washoe Environmental Protection Dept. of the Washoe Tribe is starting up their native plant nursery and will be including pinyon pine and black oak. She also offered the use of their native plant guide and expert on invasive plants to those that need help identifying invasive species. She reported that the lease agreement for the sawmill in lower Clear Creek immediately south of Carson City was signed. There is still some environmental review before final approval and she expects some strong opposition. Kocher stated that her agency has hired a woody biomass expert to work with the communities. The new person will start in September. Griffith reported that there was an initiative on the November ballot that would ban all biomass facilities in eastern Alpine County and that there is a committee being formed to oppose it. He invited anyone who was interested in serving on the committee to contact him. In response to a question about his earlier statement that there might be significantly more funding available for restoration after the Tamarack Fire, he explained that he did not have details, but speculated that it was about the $600 million that VP Harris promised California in January and that he would not know more until after his meeting with the authorities. (Unfortunately, it has turned out that the $600 million was already allocated and the roughly $3 million the Forest Service and County received was all that was allocated to the Tamarack Fire recovery.)
Future Meetings: Our August 2nd meeting will feature Susie Kocher of the University of California Agriculture and Natural Resources Department. This time she will be giving her presentation on prescribed fire, especially on private land. In September we are hoping to have a presentation on what a resilient forest is and why it is important to get our forests into a resilient state in a warmer and drier climate. Please send suggestions for future speakers to dGriffith.firstname.lastname@example.org. Presentations need to be on topics that relate to our mission statement.