tree mortality progress chart
sustainable wood utilization chart
land owner percentage chart
counties impacted chart

OVERVIEW

By strategically managing forests along highways, Caltrans will reduce fire risk to state highway assets and protect adjacent communities. Caltrans will accomplish this through hazardous tree removal, prescribed thinning of dense stands of trees, and reforestation in adjacent watersheds to restore forest health. This approach will ultimately reduce highway vulnerability to wildfire and protect natural resources to provide long-term forest resilience across California. Strategically coordinated projects will align with broader public natural resource management goals of the Forest Management Task Force, resulting in sustainable forests that can withstand and adapt to wildfire, drought and a changing climate.

FOCUS AREAS

  • TREE MORTALITY - Removal of hazardous trees along highways, in response to statewide tree mortality, to proactively reduce the risk of trees falling in the roadway
  • FUELS TREATMENT - Prescribed thinning of dense stands of trees along highway corridors to create a shaded fuel break within severe fire-risk areas of California
  • REFORESTATION - Reforestation in impacted watersheds will stabilize slopes to further protect highways and offset vehicle emissions through carbon banking

PROGRAM GOALS

  • Refocus the Tree Mortality Program as a Forest Management Program for natural resource management and protection of the highway from vulnerability to wildfire, insect and disease, and climate change
  • Continue to program emergency projects to remove dead & dying hazardous trees, until the massive die-off of trees along state highways reaches a level that can be managed by Maintenance forces
  • Work cooperatively with other agencies on fuels reduction projects by prescribed thinning of overly dense stands of trees in transportation corridors for public safety and long term forest management
  • Educate the public on the concept of the state highway as an anchor of a 200-400’ wide, shaded “fuel break” within severe fire risk areas of California for better visibility of road conditions day-to-day, and improved ingress and egress for responders during emergencies
  • Explore innovative advanced mitigation crediting to offset GHG vehicle emissions of public vehicles on state highways through reforestation projects to sequester carbon by tree planting, such as in watersheds that have not recovered naturally from wildfire, to rebuild forest function and achieve carbon banking

Related Links

Lead Agencies

Public Education & Workshops

  • Upcoming workshops will be added soon.