July 18, 2015    
 
 
Welcome! We hope you enjoy this month's issue of the Pulse, where we recap the outcome of Nevada Wildfire Awareness Month, hear about a Mount Charleston clean-up success story, learn about the Eureka County Firewise Communites Program and more. Don't forget to check out our calendar by clicking here to stay informed of our upcoming events. Thanks for reading!
Nevada Wildfire Awareness Month 2015

Wildfire Awareness Day at the Nevada State Legislature

Nevada Wildfire Awareness Month 2015 was held May 1 - 31, with events and activities taking place throughout the state. This tenth annual effort, originally held as a week-long observance, was expanded in 2014 to an entire month. Utilizing grant funds from the Bureau of Land Management, Nevada Division of Forestry and U. S. Forest Service, University of Nevada Cooperative Extension's Living With Fire Program coordinates this collaborative effort each year. Additional funding, support from corporate sponsors and in-kind contributions from program partners all helped to increase its effectiveness and impact. With a classic Nevada theme, the message for this year's campaign was "Improve Your Odds - Prepare For Wildfire," stressing the importance of taking action before a wildfire to prepare homes, people and whole communities to significantly improve the chances that all will survive when a wildfire does occur. Wildfire Awareness Month is only the beginning of our collective year-long efforts to help Nevadans learn to live more safely with wildfire.

 

    In summary, we are pleased to report that:

  • 181 events and activities took place.
  • 8,220 people participated in those events.
  • 4,848 others received educational materials via direct mail or distribution.
  • 148,900 contacts were reached via newspaper articles, school flyers and other methods of communication.
  • 150 partners collaborated in this effort.
  • $15,000 in donations to the Wildland Firefighter Foundation were raised by participants in the annual Wildfire Awareness Half Marathon and 5K Runs in Washoe and Clark counties.

A full report containing details on all the events and activities that took place during the month will soon be available on the Living With Fire website. If you would like to join the planning committee for next year's effort, contact Sonya Sistare at 775-336-0271 or sistares@unce.unr.edu.

Partner Spotlight: 
Eureka County Firewise Communities Program

Eureka County Firewise Events 2015. Photos courtesy of Jessica Santoyo.

 

The 2008 reauthorization of the Secure Rural Schools and Community Self Determination Act (SRS) allowed counties to allocate up to 20 percent of their SRS share to be used for the development of Firewise Communities. This development allowed the Eureka County Department of Natural Resources , with the approval of the County Board of Commissioners, to move forward with the creation of Firewise Communities in Eureka County. Jake Tibbitts, Natural Resource Manager, along with his assistant Kathy Porter, hosted workshops in Eureka/Diamond Valley and Crescent Valley/Beowawe, to inform and gain support from residents. During these workshops residents expressed concern about wildfires and risks to homes and property. It also became apparent that a local program was important to educate, empower, and assist homeowners in creating defensible space to prepare for wildfire. With continued SRS funding, two Firewise Communities have been established and remain very active. With Kathy Porter's transition to volunteer status, Jessica Santoyo has stepped into the role providing managerial support for the Firewise Communities Program.  Jessica also currently serves on the Network's Advisory board. Throughout the year, the two Firewise communities distribute educational materials, host annual community Firewise events during Nevada Wildfire Awareness Month, conduct numerous defensible space home assessments, and assist in clean-up and fuels reduction projects. Of note is the Eureka County Firewise Communities Program heavy reliance on Nevada-specific material and support available through Living with Fire and the Nevada Network of Fire Adapted Communities. To learn more, visit:

 

Eureka County Firewise Program - http://www.co.eureka.nv.us/natres/firewise/index.html

 

Firewise Communities - http://www.firewise.org

 

Secure Rural Schools - http://www.fs.usda.gov/pts/

FACt: 
Be Careful With Cheatgrass

Photo courtesy of David Allan  

Throughout much of Nevada, cheatgrass is transitioning from reddish brown to a pale yellow straw color. It's worth repeating that once it reaches this stage, cheatgrass becomes an easily ignited wildfire fuel. Cheatgrass fires have been started by discarded lit cigarettes, welding activities, mowing, ricocheting bullets, catalytic converters on vehicles and fireworks. 


 
If you are working and recreating in "cheatgrass country":

  • Always have water and a shovel nearby.
  • Do not park your vehicle over dry cheatgrass.
  • Properly dispose of cigarettes and matches.
  • Have a cell phone available to report fires.

For more information about cheatgrass and its control, go to: http://www.unce.unr.edu/publications/files/ho/2005/fs0529.pdf

Evacuation Preparation

 

Join Jenny for another adventure in preparing for wildfire! In this month's blog, Jenny learns what she needs to do in order to be prepared for a wildfire evacuation. Read more about her continually evolving journey here 

Funding Opportunities

Tahoe Douglas Fire Protection District

Defensible Space Grant

 

Tahoe Douglas Fire Protection District is offering up to $2500 reimbursement for vegetation management available to residents located within the boundaries of the Tahoe Douglas Fire Protection District. Note that this does not include raking or disposing of pine needles. To qualify, applicants must have completed an official Tahoe Douglas Fire District Defensible Space Evaluation. The application deadline is October 15, 2015. Learn more about this Defensible Space Grant here. Similar grants may be available for other locations. Contact your local fire service to determine if grants are available to your community. 

What do you think?
We'd like your feedback! What information would you like to know to help reduce the wildfire threat to your community? Reply to this email to share your thoughts.
This newsletter is provided by University of Nevada Cooperative Extension, an EEO/AA institution, with funding from a State Fire Assistance grant from the Nevada Division of Forestry and USDA Forest Service. Additional support is provided by the Bureau of Land Management - Nevada State Office.
In This Issue

Mount Charleston Annual Pine Needle Pick Up
 


 

Photos courtesy of
Liz Claggett

 

The Mount Charleston Annual Pine Needle Pick Up occurred on June 6, 2015 at locations in Kyle & Lee Canyon with great success. Republic Services donated 5 large dumpsters to help area homeowners clean up their properties and together they collected and disposed of almost 18 ½ tons of hazardous wildfire fuel!
 

Volunteers were available to help those who could not clean up their own property or needed assistance with getting their waste to the dumpsters. These volunteers came from the Mt. Charleston community, the Las Vegas area, the Spring Mountain Youth Camp, and the Nevada Division of Forestry crew. Kona Pool Services provided donuts, coffee and water for the volunteers and the Metro Volunteer Police made goody bags for everyone, including kid bags with games, coloring books and crayons.
 

Following the clean-up was a free BBQ sponsored by the Mt. Charleston Volunteer Fire Department Station 81, which included a raffle that raised a total of $2,100. Proceeds from the raffle went to Joshua Evans, a U. S. Forest Service firefighter who suffered 2nd and 3rd degree burns while fighting an active wildfire on May 25th. Vendors included NDF Nursery, Southern Nevada Water Authority, U. S. Forest Service, Mt. Charleston Baptist Church and Metro Volunteer Police.

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