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New CA Department of Conservation Forest Health Watershed Coordinator Grants Available

January 4, 2019
The California Department of Conservation (DOC) has released guidelines for eight new Forest Health Watershed Coordinator grants.
 
Grants of up to $235,000 will be awarded in March 2019. The principal goal of the Forest Health Watershed Coordinator Program is to improve watershed health by providing support for local, collaborative watershed improvement efforts. The program aims to restore health and resilience to forests at the watershed scale for multiple benefits, including water quality.
 
Background
 
It is critical for California to adapt to drought, fire, and other impacts of climate change. Protecting, restoring, and enhancing our forest resources is essential to help prevent catastrophic fire and to protect our water resources by preserving watershed capacity. This work relies on local knowledge and management. Local entities have the best understanding of the environmental and social context within which statewide forest management practices can be executed, along with the needs of individual watershed regions. It has been shown that local leadership — such as an on-the-ground coordinator — can help communities plan projects and leverage funds to achieve forest watershed health, especially in critical areas. It has also been shown that for every dollar spent on a watershed coordinator, seven dollars is raised from available sources. 
 
Grant Basics
 
Eight watershed coordinators will be funded for two years, with the possibility of additional funding. The program has two priority funding zones: Sierra Nevada and Cascade; and North and Central Coast. These zones target where approximately 95 percent of California forest biomass exists and also where most precipitation (rain and snow) falls. The DOC will provide training and expertise to the project recipients.
 
Applications for these grants are due Feb. 15. The guidelines and application are available on the program webpage. Grants will be awarded in March 2019.
 
If you have questions please contact Sarah Rubin at (916) 322-6671 or wcp@conservation.ca.gov.


 
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