Wildfire Preparedness & Recovery Resources

Beth Costa on Aug 3, 2023

Hello to all of our winery members –

I just wanted to pass along the latest resources from the Wine Institute.

Wildfire Preparedness & Recovery Resources

Wine Institute has compiled the following resources to help our vintners proactively prepare for the risk and threat from fire season. Most can also be viewed together in the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance’s resource library.

XPRIZE Wildfire — A four-year global competition that will award $11 million in prizes to competing teams that will innovate technologies to detect and put out destructive wildfires. XPRIZE Wildfire is offered in partnership with Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, Pacific Gas & Electric, Minderoo Foundation, Lockheed Martin and Conrad N. Hilton Foundation as well as individual benefactors. XPRIZE is the world’s leader in designing and operating incentive competitions to solve humanity’s grant challenges.

Emergency Relief Program — The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has made $6 billion available for commodity and specialty crop producers — including winegrape growers — who suffered financial losses as a result of natural disasters including wildfires that occurred in 2020 and 2021 through the Emergency Relief Program. View Rep. Mike Thompson’s January 2023 webinar about ERP Phase 2 (as well as the Pandemic Assistance Relief Program), the application and additional info and related documents: Emergency Relief Program Phase 2 Fact SheetPandemic Assistance Revenue Program Fact Sheet and ERP Phase 2 and PARP Comparison Fact Sheet. Also view 2022 resources: fact sheetwebinar recording and a Farm Services Agency presentation.

2022 Wildfire Preparedness Webinar Recording — Wine Institute along with the California Sustainable Winegrowing Alliance (CSWA) and the California Association of Winegrape Growers (CAWG) hosted a June 22, 2022, webinar focused on wildfire preparedness for vineyards and wineries. Topics included available resources, technologies and industry efforts related to wildfire prevention and preparedness. View the additional information from the webinar at the following links:

Disaster Assistance Webinar Recording — Wine Institute co-hosted this Aug. 5, 2022, webinar along with California Association of Winegrape Growers.  The session featured presentations by U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Farm Service Agency on recovery payments for frost damage and an update on applications to Phase 1 and 2 of the Emergency Relief Program.

Smoke Exposure Project Webinar Recording — This June 27, 2022, webinar was hosted by the lead researchers of a multi-year, grant-funded research project focusing on wildfire smoke-exposed wine grapes in California, Oregon and Washington. This session specifically addressed progress on a project that is investigating additional tools for the wine industry to use to measure and predict smoke impacts as well as reduce smoke impacts on winegrapes.

A Winegrowers’ Guide to Preparing for Wildfires — A checklist that ensures both a property and staff are fire prepared along with a video on preparing for fire at your winery or vineyard can be found here.

Wildfire Preparedness for Vineyards — Presentation, Rich Casale, Consultant, Natural Resources Conservation Service

Wildfire Grants — Presentation, Noelle Cremers, Director Environmental & Regulatory Affairs, Wine Institute

Wildfire Risk Reduction Grants

Defensible Space and Hardening Your Home — CAL FIRE

Fire Recovery Guide and Firescaping with California Native Plants (Southern California and Bay Area and Central Coast) — California Native Plant Society

USDA Forest Service Public Fire Information Websites

CAL FIRE Incidents Webpage

Posted by Beth Costa