Community Wildfire Protection Plans (CWPP)
Community or County Wide Wildfire Protection Plans (CWPPs) that incorporate all communities within the county are authorized and defined in Title I of the Healthy Forests Restoration Act of 2003 (HFRA). CWPP’s represent the best opportunity that communities have to address the challenges of the Wildland-Urban Interface and the threat of wildfire. The CWPP helps communities define their priorities for the protection of life, property, and shared assets-at-risk from wildfires. Developing a CWPP encourages community members and leaders to have valuable discussions about wildfire preparedness, evacuation planning, and local fire district capabilities. The CWPP increases grant funding opportunities by prioritizing fuel reduction projects around and within the community.
Nevada Division of Forestry staff engage in and can facilitate the CWPP process with those communities or counties that request assistance. Communities are encouraged to work with County officials to convene a county-wide CWPP process that will provide an overarching plan for all communities. Then individual communities can focus on obtaining and retaining Firewise USA site recognition which requires community-level action planning and implementation.
Elements of the CWPP
- Collaboration: A CWPP must be collaboratively developed by local and state government agencies, in consultation with federal agencies and interested parties. The local county, local fire district and NDF must sign off on the final CWPP document.
- Prioritized Fuel Reduction: The CWPP must identify and prioritize areas for hazardous fuel reduction treatments and recommend the methods of treatment that will protect at-risk communities and structures. A map of the priority fuel reduction projects is not required but is highly recommended. The Community Assessor Tool will help local and state government agencies, in consultation with federal agencies and interested parties and communities prioritize mitigation strategies for their communities.
- Treatment of Structure Ignitability: A CWPP must also recommend measures that homeowners can take to reduce the ignitability of structures throughout the area addressed by the plan.
The HFRA requires that three entities must mutually agree to the final contents of a CWPP:
- The applicable local government (e.g. counties or cities);
- The local fire department(s); and
- The state agency responsible for forest management
Benefits for the Community
The Partnership assists Community Chapters with the creating or updating your community’s CWPP. A current CWPP provides several benefits to your community, such as:
- The opportunity to establish a locally appropriate definition and boundary for the WUI.
- Community Hazard Assessments for firefighters to use for fire pre-planning.
- A list of priority fuel reduction projects for your community to implement.
- The requirement for federal agencies, when planning fuel reduction projects, to give priority to projects that provide for the protection of at-risk-communities or watersheds, or that implement recommendations in a CWPP.
CWPP Learning Resources
University of Nevada Cooperative Extension-Living with Fire CWPP
Community Guide to Preparing and Implementing a CWPP
Community Wildfire Protection Plan Evaluation Guide
Preparing a Community Wildfire Protection Plan-Handbook
Leader’s Guide for Developing a CWPP
Healthy Forests Restoration Act of 2003 Official Website
Carson City Sample CWPP
Lake Tahoe Basin Sample CWPP