Investment in Water begins with Forest Health Improvements

Yuba Water commits $6.5M to reduce wildfire risk & restore headwaters.

As part of the North Yuba Forest Partnership,* the Yuba Water Agency will fund two specific projects.

New Bullards Bar Dam and Reservoir  | photo credit Yuba Water Agency$6 million Trapper Forest Resilience Bond

The 10-year cost-share contribution provides $600,000 annually to Blue Forest Conservation to advance restoration treatments on nearly 23,000 acres for two projects previously planned by the Tahoe National Forest. This bond model allows Blue Forest Conservation and its partners, World Resources Institute and the U.S. Forest Service, to attract additional capital from public and private investors to initiate restoration at a much faster pace and scale.

Yuba Water and other beneficiaries of the restoration work repay investors at contracted rates as restoration work is completed; the Tahoe National Forest is providing in-kind support and funding for project planning, development and execution. The Yuba Project, which is already underway, is expected to be completed six years earlier than it would have been if not for this innovative partnership.

$0.5 million to plan and prioritize future work

Additional funding was earmarked to complete environmental documents and permitting for the wider North Yuba Forest Partnership area and field surveys for the first 20,000 acres of treatment. Yuba Water stepped into the funding gap since the partnership already secured $2.53 million.

The shared approach to environmental stewardship mitigates catastrophic wildfire risk for people and property. More than prevention of danger, it prioritizes watershed health, air quality and the economy.

In particular, fire prevention measures protect water quality from harmful and unknown contaminants debris flows or sedimentation in the reservoir.

* The diverse partnership includes nine organizations working together to plan, finance and implement forest restoration across 275,000 acres of private and public land that spans two northern California counties -- Sierra and Yuba counties -- and two national forests.

The members are Blue Forest Conservation, Camptonville Community Partnership, National Forest Foundation, the Nature Conservancy, Nevada City Rancheria, Sierra County, South Yuba River Citizens League and the Tahoe National Forest.