Washington—Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today applauded the U.S. Department of Agriculture after it announced a new $1 billion Community Wildfire Defense Grant program to help communities and states plan for and mitigate wildfire risks.
The five-year grant program is funded though President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law. Each year, $200 million in grants will be available through the program. Communities will be able to receive grants up to $250,000 for wildfire protection plans and education efforts, and grants of up to $10 million will be awarded for infrastructure and resilience projects.
“These grants will be critical for California communities to prepare for dangerous wildfire conditions as climate change continues to worsen and temperatures rise,” Senator Feinstein said. “We know that rising temperatures will lead to hotter, deadlier and more destructive wildfires. One of our best tools to combat this danger is to plan ahead and implement resiliency projects to mitigate the risk of future wildfires.”
Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack said: “These investments are crucial to tackling the wildfire crisis, climate change and public safety. President Biden’s Bipartisan Infrastructure Law is giving us new resources and tools to invest in communities in the areas where they live and the forests they value.”
U.S. Forest Service Chief Randy Moore said: “Insight and guidance from the communities most at risk for catastrophic wildfires helps us mitigate those risks more effectively. We need a collaborative effort at all levels to ensure the success of this critical national effort.”