EASTERN SIERRA CLIMATE & COMMUNITIES RESILIENCE PROJECT
ABOUT THE ESCCRP
The Eastern Sierra Climate and Communities Resilience Program (ESCCRP)
The ESCCRP is a collaborative landscape-scale forest restoration project set to reduce the risk of high-severity wildfire and to restore resilience to 58,000 acres of Inyo National Forest lands surrounding the Town of Mammoth Lakes and a few selected non-federal parcels.
Well over a century of anthropogenic influences have reshaped the forests across Sierra Nevada. Exacerbated further by climate change, our forests are primed for catastrophic change. This project, being implemented by The Whitebark Institute in collaboration with the Inyo National Forest, aims to intercept the current trajectory of our Eastside forests, and return them to more historic densities, a critical step toward ultimately allowing us to return to using fire as a tool for forest health. This effort will work to make the forested landscapes we love, more resilient to anticipated future threats from climate change which include, high severity fire, extended drought, mass beetle outbreaks and changes in precipitation timing and amounts. These actions will also work to reduce the risk in the Town of Mammoth Lakes from catastrophic fire events and give emergency firefighting forces tactical options as they continue to encounter increasingly challenging and complex fire scenarios.
1. Reduce Vulnerability in the Town of Mammoth Lakes
Reduce Vulnerability in the Town of Mammoth Lakes. Reduce the risk in the Town of Mammoth Lakes and its assets from fire by increasing the pace and scale of fuel and vegetation treatments in and around the Town of Mammoth Lakes.
2. Allow for Safe and Effective Fire Management
Allow for Safe and Effective Fire Management. Create vegetation conditions that allow for safe, effective, and efficient fire suppression, use of managed wildland fire, and application of prescribed fire, while protecting public and community health and safety.
3. Promote Community Fire Resilience
Promote Community Fire Resilience. Manage and respond to fire within its natural range of variation, in an ecologically beneficial and socially acceptable way, that perpetuates landscape heterogeneity and reduces the threat to human safety or infrastructure from catastrophic wildfire.
4. Restore Ecosystem Health and Resilience
Restore Ecosystem Health and Resilience. Reduce the potential for catastrophic wildfire and other stressors through progressive and proactive forest treatments to return forest structure, function, and composition to the natural range of variation. A healthy ecosystem yields both ecological and community benefits and supports a diverse array of animal and plant species.
5. Utilize Best Available Science
Utilize Best Available Science. Implement restoration based on science, including traditional ecological knowledge, which allows for learning and adaptive management to address changing climate and other environmental stressors.
6. Create a Fire-Conscious Community
Create a Fire-Conscious Community. Increase public understanding of the role of wildland fire on the landscape, the need for proactive forest management, and an increase in pace and scale of restoration to allow fire to play its necessary role.
7. Cultivate Long-Term, Sustainable Partnerships
Cultivate Long-Term, Sustainable Partnerships. Foster a collaborative approach to landscape-scale restoration. Utilize agreements and other mechanisms to form partnerships between federal, state, local, and tribal governments as well as non-governmental organizations and private entities to accomplish fuels reduction projects on federal and other lands more efficiently.
8. Build Local Capacity
Build Local Capacity. Invest in partnerships and technology to help increase pace and scale of restoration through creative biomass and workforce solutions that contribute to a sustainable wood products market.