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Wildfire Resilience Week

Empowering Communities to Take Preventative Action

In partnership with Mono and Inyo counties, Whitebark Institute will be hosting a week-long series of events across the Eastern Sierra to help cultivate wildfire resilient communities using effective wildfire risk-reduction strategies. Our goal is to equip residents with realistic and actionable steps to protect themselves and their homes from wildfires, while at the same time, fostering collective action within the community and region. Through this process, Eastern Sierra residents and guests can gain a deeper understanding of how our built and natural environments can thrive alongside wildfire. It is our responsibility to practice good stewardship of local landscapes, prevent accidental ignitions, and prepare our homes from the threat of wildfire.  

 

The events during Wildfire Resilience Week offer a diverse range of opportunities for engagement and education, both in person and online. From informative discussions to hands-on demonstrations, there is something for everyone interested in learning the most effective and pragmatic ways to safeguard local communities against the threat of wildfires. Residents, visitors, community members, and local leadership are encouraged to participate in as many events as possible to gain a comprehensive understanding of wildfire resilience strategies and to connect with fellow residents and experts in the field. 

For more information contact:

Outreach and Education Coordinator, Crystal Medhurst

crystal@whitebarkinsititue.org / 760-709-2263

SCHEDULE OF EVENTS

MAY 30 @ 8:30-9:30 am

Fire Resilience & Eastern Sierra Climate and Communities Resilience Project Updates 

Location: Mammoth Lakes Chamber of Commerce, Community Coffee online presentation

Whitebark Institute and Mammoth Lakes Fire Department will present updates on the latest developments about fire resilience efforts in our region. Join the conversation at the link below:

https://business.mammothlakeschamber.org/events/details/community-coffee-05-30-2024-1859

MAY 30 @ 6:30-7:30 pm

Science on Tap Speaker Series with Marc Meyer, PhD 

Location: Mountain Rambler Brewery, Bishop 

Marc Meyer, Inyo National Forest’s Southern Sierra Province Ecologist, will lead an engaging discussion about the facts and fiction of landscape treatments. Come early and grab some refreshments! Stay till the end for a chance to win great prizes. 

MAY 31 @ 5:30-7:30 pm

North Inyo County Firewise 

Location: Vista Verde cul-de-sac, Mustang Mesa 

Directions: From HWY 395, exit on Mill Creek Road (across from Rovana) for .8 miles, Turn left on Mill Creek Road for .3 miles, Turn Left on Vista Verde Road to the end of the cul-de-sac. 

Google Maps Directions from Bishop: https://maps.app.goo.gl/nPxgqKQ9j59pUs6v8

Connect with your neighbors and develop a wildfire action plan at this community event.

FREE Refreshments will be served.

 

Mesa CSD- Welcome and brief background on the Mesa CSD and projects. (5 minutes)

 

Inyo County – Supervisor Trina Orrill and Kristen Pfeiler – Brief overview of the Community Wildfire Protection Plan. (5 minutes)

 

BLM – Angel Avila – Look at an example of community resource mapping and how it can be used by first responders and identify safety zones or temporary refuge areas. (15 minutes)

 

CalFire – Stan Nelson – A demonstration of how CalFire might approach defending a home, what's important when it comes to defensible space and home hardening. (30 minutes

 

Firewise USA – Beth Burnam – Overview of the national Firewise USA program and next steps for the Mustang Mesa community. (45 minutes)

JUNE 4 @ 5:30-7:30 pm

South Inyo County Community Wildfire Preparedness 

Location: 710 Goodwin Rd, Lone Pine 

Wildfire preparedness strategies tailored to the unique challenges of South Inyo County. 

FREE REFESHMENTS will be served.
 

Lone Pine Paiute Shoshone Tribe – Mel Joseph

Welcome and brief background on LPPST and the Lone Pine Fire Safe Council along with upcoming projects. (10 minutes)

Inyo County Supervisor – Matt Kinglsey and Wildfire Preparedness Coordinator, Kristen Pfeiler

Brief overview of the Community Wildfire Protection Plan. (5 minutes)

BLM – Angel Avila

Look at an example of community resource mapping and how it can be used by first responders and identify safety zones or temporary refuge areas. (15 minutes)

CalFire – Eric Abrams

A demonstration of how CalFire might approach defending a home, what's important when it comes to defensible space and home hardening. (30 minutes)

UCCE – Yana Valachovic 

An introduction on how homes are susceptible to wildfire followed by a walking tour to apply these concepts on a demonstration home with the goal of identifying practical, science-based solutions that could lower the risk of losing your home in the next wildfire. (60 minutes)

JUNE 4 @ 6:30-8:30 pm

Embers & Ales Wildfire Trivia Night 

Location: Mammoth Brewing Company Brewer's Hall 

Grab your crew, have a brew and learn something new! Tuesday Night Trivia will feature Maurice with MC Entertainment and Whitebark Institute, who will test your knowledge about wildfire resilience while you enjoy a refreshing beverage. Join the fun for an opportunity to win great prizes! 

JUNE 5 @ 5:30-7:30 pm

Wildfire Mitigation Demonstration Home 

Location: Long Valley Fire Department 

Connect with your neighbors and begin to develop a wildfire action plan! 

FREE REFESHMENTS will be served.

Come early for community meet and greet!

"Introduction to Firewise Communities" presentation with Beth Burnam, Eastern Sierra Regional Firewise Coordinator, a pioneer in organizing communities to be wildfire prepared.

 

Take Eastern Sierra Transit Authority (ESTA) charter for FREE and tour two local homes for a hands-on demonstration of how to protect your property using Home Hardening and Defensible Space.

Return on ESTA bus to Long Valley Fire

JUNE 6 @ 5:30-7:30 pm

North Mono County Firewise USA 

Location: Bridgeport Fire Department 

Connect with your neighbors and develop a wildfire action plan at this community event!

FREE REFRESHMENTS will be served. 

Come early for community meet and greet!

"Introduction to Firewise Communities" presentation with Beth Burnam, Eastern Sierra Regional Firewise Coordinator, a pioneer in organizing communities to be wildfire prepared.

Begin a community action plan with your neighbors during a workshop geared to protect your property using effective, science-based Home Hardening and Defensible Space.

JUNE 7 @ 12-1 pm

The Future of Wildfire Insurance 

Online Lunch & Learn webinar 

UCCE Advisor Yana Valachovic will lead a discussion to help residents gain insights into the evolving landscape of wildfire insurance and how it impacts homeowners.

Have you recently lost your wildfire insurance?

Are you worried about being dropped by your insurance carrier?

Would you like to understand how to prepare your home for wildfire?

Join us for a discussion to help residents and realtors gain insights into the evolving landscape of wildfire insurance and how it impacts homeowners.

UCCE Advisor - Yana Valachovic is passionate about helping communities learn to live with wildfire. Her team has conducted post-fire assessments throughout the state of California and she is a leader in developing local and state strategies to improve wildfire resilience. She will bring key insights into building and landscape design that make a difference in building survivability and property protection.

Zoom Link and Password below:

https://us04web.zoom.us/j/79188196836?pwd=mZgMTSnFDVGLe5mjjL6av0B91yapRw.1

PASSCODE: 8Q5dZn

JUNE 8 @ 10am-1pm

Forest Health & Firewise E-Bike Tour 

as part of High Sierra Energy & Mono County Libraries Sustainability Series

Location: Mammoth Lakes Library 

Join us at Mammoth Library for FREE refreshments and a presentation about wildfire resilience efforts in our region.

Learn more about ecological forest health and Firewise practices on an e-bike tour to fuel reduction treatment sites and

a demonstration home. Must REGISTER in advance for the E-Bike Tour at link below, space is limited:

https://www.highsierraenergy.org/mono-county-sustainability-series-2024

GUEST SPEAKERS

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Yana Valachovic

is the County Director / Forest Advisor for the University of California Cooperative Extension in Humboldt and Del Norte Counties. She is a registered professional forester and forest scientist whose skills and interests cover a broad set of natural resource fields. She is currently the co-lead of the Northern California region of the California Fire Science Consortium and is a founding steering committee member of the Northern California Prescribed Fire Council. She is best known for her work in wildfire mitigation and resilience, however, her research has also covered the ecology of conifer and oak ecosystems, management of forest pathogens, the effects of forest management on redwood lumber durability, the water demands of forest densification, impacts of code changes on wildfire building performance, and the sociological aspects of cannabis production.

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Beth Burnam

is CalFire’s Regional Firewise Coordinator for Mono and Inyo counties in the Eastern Sierra and is considered a pioneer in organizing communities to be wildfire prepared. On a volunteer basis, she has founded, managed, and consulted with many wildfire nonprofit organizations, community groups, businesses, and residents. Additionally, she serves on the Board of Directors of the Resource Conservation District of the Santa Monica Mountains, TreePeople, and TreePeople Land Trust. Beth was a founding member and co-President of the North Topanga Canyon Fire Safe Council where she wrote and managed grants.  She also lead Topanga residents through the process of becoming an extraordinarily large Firewise Community. She looks forward to using her experience to mentor communities in the Easter Sierra through the process of becoming wildfire prepared and obtaining their Firewise designation.

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Marc Meyer

is an ecologist with the U.S. Forest Service Pacific Southwest Regional Ecology Program and serves the Inyo, Sequoia, and Sierra National Forests. His work focuses on integrating science information into land management planning and ecological restoration projects in the southern Sierra Nevada of California. The Southern Sierra Province Ecology Program is part of the Region 5 Ecology Program and serves the Inyo, Sequoia, and Sierra National Forests and Giant Sequoia National Monument. The province is topographically and ecologically diverse, spanning from high elevation alpine and subalpine environments to foothill woodlands on the west slope and arid shrublands and woodlands on the eastern escarpment and Basin and Range. The Southern Sierra Province contains many unique vegetation types including giant sequoia groves, extensive east-side Jeffrey pine forests, and high-elevation bristlecone pine and foxtail pine woodlands. Much of the province occurs in wilderness areas where fires are often managed as a natural ecological process.

These workshops are hosted by the Whitebark Institute in partnership with Inyo and Mono County. Funding for this project was provided in part by a grant from Edison International as well as the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection as part of the California Climate Investments Program, through the California Fire Safe Council. Special recognition is given to the workshops’ contributors representing UC Cooperative Extension, Firewise USA, CalFire, Inyo National Forest, Lone Pine Paiute Shoshone Tribe, Bishop Paiute Tribe, Bureau of Land Management, Mustang Mesa CSD, Swall Meadows Firewise, Wheeler Crest Fire Safe Council (FSC), Mammoth Lakes Chamber of Commerce, Mountain Rambler Brewery, Mammoth Lakes Brewing Company, Long Valley Fire Department, Bridgeport Fire Department, High Sierra Energy Foundation, and Mono County Libraries. 

‘Community Wildfire Preparedness Project’ and ‘Wildfire Prevention in the Eastern Sierra: Visitor Education and Outreach’ is part of California Climate Investments, a statewide program that puts billions of Cap-and-Trade dollars to work reducing GHG emissions, strengthening the economy, and improving public health and the environment– particularly in disadvantaged communities. The Cap-and-Trade program also creates a financial incentive for industries to invest in clean technologies and develop innovative ways to reduce pollution. California Climate Investments projects include affordable housing, renewable energy, public transportation, zero-emission vehicles, environmental restoration, more sustainable agriculture, recycling, and much more. At least 35 percent of these investments are located within and benefiting residents of disadvantaged communities, low-income communities, and low-income households across California. For more information, visit the California Climate Investment website at: www.caclimateinvestments.ca.gov

THANK YOU

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