The Fire and Resource Assessment Program (FRAP) of CAL FIRE conducts periodic assessments to align the state mandates for natural resource inventories and strategies with the federal government's objective to increase reliance on state programs for determining funding priorities. These assessments provide critical data that is used to inform decision-making at both the state and federal levels, and ensure that resources are allocated to the areas that need them most.
As mega-disturbances from fire and pests, human demands on natural systems, and climate change increase, concerns are growing about the sustainability of our forest and rangelands. The recent multi-year drought in California, which caused over 100 million dead trees across 7+ million acres, highlights the need to reevaluate current fire and land management policies and practices and the feasibility of achieving sustainability under a changing climate and growing population.
California law mandates periodic assessments of forest and rangeland resources, with the latest assessment conducted in 2010 to meet both state and federal requirements. The assessment identifies ongoing and new threats to these resources, such as wildfire, climate change, and renewable energy infrastructure, while also highlighting opportunities for shaping future conditions through innovative partnerships and policies.
California's forests and rangelands are a significant part of the state's heritage and future, covering over 80% of the state and providing diverse benefits such as biodiversity, scenic views, open space, wildlife habitat, recreation, timber, forage, and water. However, as the state's economy grows and population increases, there are greater demands on these shrinking resources. The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection and its partners provide this assessment as a basis for ongoing discussions about optimal use and long-term sustainability of these lands.