We’re Here to Help
The RCD, along with our local and regional partners, have begun to evaluate the potential immediate and ongoing impacts of burned areas on our watersheds. A Watershed Emergency Response Team assembled by Cal Fire will identify erosion prone areas that could pose a threat to both life and property. The RCD’s goal is to collaborate with local agencies as to not duplicate efforts and provide the best support possible to our constituents. Gold Ridge RCD has offered their staff to help us get our project managers and resource specialists on the ground to provide technical assistance.
We are indebted to the many first responders from near and far who came to battle these devastating fires, we are grateful for their support and dedication. Our staff and board are sending you, our landowners, partners and friends heartfelt wishes for the safety and well-being of you and your family. This tragedy has deeply impacted all of us.
The RCD will continue to gather information and resources to support you. Currently, we are able to offer:
- Site visits and planning services for landowners and managers to determine resource needs and appropriate actions concerning erosion, riparian areas, etc. sometimes in partnership with an NRCS engineer,
- Connecting landowners with funding resources available for post-fire natural resource protection,
- Natural resource permit assistance on a fee for service basis,
- Natural Resources Recovery Guide, which provides information for homeowners and landowners as to what services local, state and federal organizations are offering to those affected by the fires, where to find additional information, funding opportunities/technical assistance/general assistance/etc., and contact details (this Guide will be a living document and will be updated as resources and information becomes available to us), and
- Our website, this page in particular, will be updated regularly with the latest natural resource management information, funding and technical assistance programs available to you.
Preparing for Winter After the Fire: What Property Owners Can Do
- The goal this winter is to prevent ash and debris from entering the waterways. You can help by taking simple steps by placing straw wattles, hay bales, and mulch around burned areas to reduce the chances of ashes and other material from washing into streams.
- Remember that everything that is outside drains to creeks and streams. Don’t use leaf blowers or hoses to remove ash and debris.
- Get help from professionals who are certified, registered and/or licensed before selecting and installing large, permanent or semi-permanent treatment measures.
- Wear protective gear whenever you work in burned areas.
- *IF YOUR PROPERTY IS IN A RURAL AREA OR ON A HILLSIDE* Watch for unusual movement of water, land, and debris during or after rain. Have an emergency plan and leave your property if it becomes unsafe during or after a storm.
- Minimize soil and slope disturbances. Ash, leaf drop, downed trees and remnant burned vegetation all play a role in protecting the soil and slopes following wildfire.
- Work with your neighbors. Runoff, erosion & debris flows have no boundaries.
- Private roads require more maintenance in the first few winters following wildfire. Clear debris upstream of culverts as possible, and check culverts for clogging after every storm. If culverts or other road drainage structures do not appear to be functioning properly, consult a professional.
Efforts are ongoing to assess high-risk areas and to provide additional information to landowners, please go to Sonoma County Recovers: www.sonomacountyrecovers.org Or call: Jeff Schreiber, Sonoma Resource Conservation District: 707.569.1448 (In unincorporated areas). City of Santa Rosa contact: 707.543.3800
*These tips were provided by natural resource specialist Rich Casale, who is assisting local agencies in fire recovery efforts. Other resources: Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Sonoma Resource Conservation District (RCD), County of Sonoma, City of Santa Rosa, City of Sonoma, CAL FIRE, U.S. Forest Service, Fire Safe Councils, California Department of Fish and Wildlife, U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, California Regional Water Quality Control Board, U.S. Army Corp of Engineers, and NOAA/National Marine Fisheries Service.
Resources for Homeowners and Landowners
Fire Recovery: Helpful Information for All Properties
- Natural Resources Recovery Guide_11-09-17 (PDF)
- Dos and Don’ts (PDF)
- Post Fire Top Ten Things to Consider (PDF)
After the Fire: Preparing Your Property for Winter NRCS BMPs
- Concrete Barrier Wall (PDF)
- Contour Sandbags (PDF)
- Dike (PDF)
- Diversion (PDF)
- Erosion Control Mats (PDF)
- Hand Raking (PDF)
- Hazardous Trees (PDF)
- Hillside Home Drainage (PDF)
- Hydromulching (PDF)
- Log Erosion Barriers (PDF)
- Sandbag Barrier (PDF)
- Seeding (PDF)
After the Fire: Other Helpful Resources to Protect Your Property
Local Native Grass Seed Sources and Erosion Control Supplies Contacts List
- Natural Resources Recovery Guide (now includes a supplies resource list on pg. 20)
- Hedgerow Farms – Winters
- LeBallisters – Santa Rosa
- Harmony Farm Supply –Sebastopol
After the Fire: Forests and Oak Woodlands (all NRCS, UCCE, Cal Fire sources)
- Burned Oaks – Which Will Survive? (PDF)
- Recovering from Wildfire – Forest and Woodland (PDF)
- Fire Restoration Forestland and Woodland (PDF)
- Survival of Fire Injured Conifers in California (PDF)