July 13, 2024
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The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (CAL FIRE), Urban and Community Forestry Program announced on April 6th that the application portal for the 2024 Inflation Reduction Act grants is now open. With the aim of fostering sustainable urban forests across the state, $30.8 million in funding will be available to support urban and community forestry projects in historically disinvested urban communities throughout California.

The Inflation Reduction Act aims to support urban and community forestry investments that promote:

Increased and equitable access to urban tree canopy and associated human health, environmental, and economic benefits in disadvantaged communities.
Broadened community engagement in local urban forest planning, tree planting, and management activities.
Improved community and urban forest resilience to climate change, extreme heat, forest pests and diseases, and storm events through best management and maintenance practices.

Applications for Inflation Reduction Act grants must be submitted no later than May 30, 2024, by 5 p.m. The application portal and final grant guidelines can be accessed on the Urban and Community Forestry Grants Program webpage.

Eligible applicants include local government entities such as cities, counties, or qualifying districts; Federally recognized Tribes operating within California, Tribal-affiliated non-profit organizations; non-profit organizations; schools, school districts, and community college districts.

Six grant options are available, including Urban Forest Expansion and Improvement, Urban Forest Management Activities, Urban Forestry Education and Workforce Development, Urban Forestry Regional or Statewide Impact, Urban Forest Equity Capacity Building, and Green Schoolyards.

In 2023, the U.S. Department of Agriculture Forest Service Urban and Community Forestry (UCF) Program awarded $1.5 billion to states, projects, and national initiatives supporting urban communities in ensuring equitable access to trees and their benefits via the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022. The UCF Program is a covered program under President Biden’s Justice40 Initiative, established through Executive Order 13985.

In California, CAL FIRE’s Urban and Community Forestry Program is administering this federal grant funding. Projects must directly serve priority populations within one or more defined disadvantaged and/or low-income communities in an urban area.

For more information please contact Cal Fire Pio (916) 651-3473 Calfire.dutypio@fire.ca.gov

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