The Rancho Santa Fe Post

Rancho Santa Fe Association Receives Grant For Fire Risk Mitigation

Rancho Santa Fe, California – The Rancho Santa Fe Association was awarded a grant in August 2018 for fire mitigation at the Association-owned Arroyo property. The grant, issued by the USDA’s Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), totaled $83,000 and will fund the removal of invasive species and the revegetation with native plants. The three-year project beginning September 2018 will be a collaboration between the Association Parks & Recreation Department, the San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy (SDRVC) and the California Native Plant Society (CNPS). The Arroyo project is part of a large-scale fire risk mitigation and invasive species removal project in the Lower San Dieguito river valley that runs directly through the heart of Rancho Santa.

The 2007 Witch Creek and 2014 Bernardo Fires damaged and destroyed many homes in the Covenant. Following the fires, invasive vegetation grew back in higher numbers in the Arroyo Preserve, significantly increasing fire risk and degrading native habitat. The Rancho Santa Fe Community Wildfire Protection Plan, developed after the Witch Creek Fire, recommended reducing flammable non-native plants, restoring natural habitat, and informing homeowners of fire mitigation activities to minimize potential fire hazard.

A partnership between the Association, RSF Protection District, CNPS, USFWS Partners for Fish and Wildlife, San Dieguito River Valley Conservancy, Fairbanks Ranch Association and local homeowners was formed in 2015 to remove flammable invasive plants from the Lower San Dieguito River Valley, restore native plants, and provide homeowners information on fire-safe maintenance activities around their homes.

For information on what you can do to help, please visit the Association website at www.rsfassociation.org.