Wildfires in Carmel Valley?

CRWC continues to coordinate with the community for the prevention of dangerous wildfires

The aftermath of the Soberanes Fire shows scorched hills above the Los Padres Dam

The aftermath of the Soberanes Fire shows scorched hills above the Los Padres Dam

In the summer of 2016 the Soberanes Fire burned almost 30 percent of the Carmel River Watershed, and approached Carmel Valley before finally being contained just a few miles away.  Many Valley residents watched with trepidation as the fire burned along the ridges south of the Santa Lucia Preserve.  This scare prompted CRWC to help form a volunteer coalition of non-profits and property owner associations to address how to prevent future wildfires from entering Carmel Valley and nearby communities.  The coalition met many times and participated in community forums sponsored by local fire agencies.  We also submitted four grant proposals aimed at maintaining existing fuel breaks and applying prescribed burns to areas that had not yet experienced major fires.

We also advocated for a new “fire mitigation coordinator” role with  the County’s Resource Management Agency (RMA), which was submitted to the County Board of Supervisors and supported by a majority of the supervisors.  This role would coordinate the implementation of the Community Wildfire Prevention Plan (CWPP) that was promulgated by a host of local and state agencies but only partially implemented thus far.  The position would also secure grants and arrange for actual work to begin to map the key fuel breaks, and coordinate the actual maintenance of those fuel breaks, and the application of prescribed burns to reduce fuel loads.  This work would be part of a “pre-attack plan” that hopefully will prevent the future spread of wildfires into our watershed.

Above photo from LATimes