CWI Launches Website, Prepares for 2023 with Focus on Five Major Project Areas

With a new year approaching, the Climate & Wildfire Institute (CWI) thanks you for supporting our ongoing work to accelerate solutions that help build resilience in the face of increasingly destructive wildfire seasons.

CWI’s mission of delivering climate and wildfire-related research services to decision-makers has continued to evolve since our inception. While connecting research to policy makers is critical, we recognize the need to connect science and data to those on the ground, all while facilitating crucial conversations needed to drive implementable policy that is rooted in existing science. In all that we do, we will continue to allow the dynamism of these issues to inform sustainable, meaningful, and cross-boundary solutions.

Our growth this year cannot be overstated—we convened key partners and experts in June to discuss CWI’s place in the broader climate space while developing an agenda that most aligns with our mission. Following that, we hosted three other topic-specific convenings with a total of more than 150 combined participants from across California and beyond. We are already leading a number of projects that align with the goals set out earlier in the year—these projects are outlined below.

We’ve also continued to expand our leadership team by adding our Deputy Director for Operations and External Affairs, Bethany E. Hannah, and, most recently, Deputy Director for Science and Policy, Stacey Sargent Frederick. With a growing staff and a team of eight founding board members, CWI is also working towards developing a physical headquarters in the Lake Tahoe area to better facilitate the real-world conversations and collaborations that we know are essential in developing better climate and wildfire resilience. Finally, today we are excited to announce the launch of our new website!

In the new year, CWI will continue to fulfill its primary mission of supporting robust science and data infrastructure that allows for timely, accurate, and grounded policy solutions.

Read on for a summary of the projects; the facilitation and implementation of these project areas are CWI’s primary objectives in 2023.

The Forest Data Hub

To more effectively (and quickly) inform policy options and alternatives, the Forest Data Hub is being developed to utilize an information modeling approach that is informed by on-the-ground conditions and models. The hub will federate data from federal, state, and local forest management and carbon accounting sources and serve as a clearinghouse for new and emerging technologies and data platforms.

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The Stewardship Project

We are supporting a partnership of tribes and western science to consider how current federal forest policy can incorporate insights from tribal practices to better steward the landscapes of the American West.

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Policy Projects

We are co-sponsoring an effort to develop a comprehensive and measurable list of forest and wildland resilience indicators that will inform various policy projects. These projects include a Wildfire Season Scorecard, our Landowner’s Guidebooks, and our Defining Resilience initiative.

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Interagency Tracking System

We are accelerating the development of an interagency forest treatment tracking system and spatial database that includes recently completed and planned treatments across California.

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Colored map of California broken into four regions: Pink shows the North Coast-Inland Region Green shows the Sierra-Cascade-Inyo Region Blue shows the Coastal-Inland Region (central coast and valley) Orange shows the Southern California Region

Regional Resource Kits

Our Regional Resource Kits project aims to connect data to boots-on-the-ground; we will utilize and integrate existing data to inform resilience metrics, which can then be reflected to land managers through resource kits. The kits will assist in prioritizing potential treatment areas based on anticipated impact, and will ultimately aid land managers in making the greatest impact in building resilience in their communities.

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Thank you for your ongoing support!

We wish all of our partners and supporters a happy and relaxing holiday season and all our best in the new year.

Many thanks,

Caroline Godkin, Executive Director