PG&E and California Fire Foundation launch wildfire safety grant program

May 29, 2024

Applications open for wildfire safety grants

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) and the California Fire Foundation (CFF) are now accepting grant applications from California-based fire departments and community-based organizations focused on wildfire safety and preparedness.

As reported by Pacific Gas and Electric Company, this initiative marks the continuation of a seven-year partnership between PG&E and CFF.

Applications open on May 30 and must be submitted by June 30, 2024, at 11:59 p.m. through the CFF website.

Award notifications will commence on July 31, 2024.

PG&E and The PG&E Corporation Foundation are contributing a total of $1.4 million to CFF’s Wildfire Safety and Preparedness Program (WSPP).

The WSPP aims to enhance public awareness about wildfire safety and provide resources to underserved communities in high fire-risk areas.

In the previous year, the program awarded $730,000 in funding to 48 local fire departments and community groups.

Past funding successes

In 2023, the funding supported the purchase of approximately 2,800 pieces of personal protective equipment (PPE), including helmets, boots, gloves, goggles, and fire shelters.

It also enabled the removal of over 176 acres of hazardous trees and brush, the chipping and hauling of 380,500 pounds of tree limbs and other combustibles, and the execution of 25 prescribed fires or pile burns for forest management.

Since 2018, CFF has awarded 313 grants statewide, focusing efforts in Northern and Central California.

The funding targets communities identified by the California Public Utilities Commission as having extreme or elevated fire risk.

Comments from key leaders

Rick Martinez, Executive Director of the California Fire Foundation, emphasized the need for preparedness: “California weather conditions remain unpredictable, and residents must be prepared in the event of wildfire and disasters.

“It has only been three years since the largest and most destructive wildfires raged across California, and conditions can quickly change again with new growth in vegetation and fuel due to recent storms.”

Mark Quinlan, PG&E’s Senior Vice President of Wildfire, Emergency & Operations, highlighted the importance of local efforts: “Local fire departments, agencies, and community groups play a vital role in prioritizing and executing the projects that help protect our friends, neighbors, and communities.

“We’re grateful for our ongoing partnership with CFF and our shared goal to ensure that our hometowns are doing everything possible to prevent wildfires from starting.”

Program impact and support

From 2018 to the present, PG&E and the PG&E Foundation have provided $8.8 million in total support for fire safety awareness through the WSPP.

The charitable contribution is funded by shareholders and not by PG&E customers.

The WSPP has financed specialized fire equipment and personal protective equipment, defensible space and vegetation management efforts, fuel and hazard reduction programs, and fire prevention and emergency preparedness education, including programs for senior citizens.

The program has also developed partnerships with community groups in high fire-risk areas to distribute fire-safety information and conducted fire safety outreach campaigns.

These efforts include distributing 12,000 multi-lingual brochures targeting under-resourced communities in English, Spanish, Chinese, Hmong, and Vietnamese.

The California Fire Foundation’s Firefighters on Your Side program, supported by PG&E, provides multi-lingual, culturally relevant fire safety messaging to assist the public in staying safe.

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