Wildfire risk reduction & fireSmart funding

Union of BC Municipalities – CRI Funding

The Community Resiliency Investment (CRI) program was announced by the provincial government in 2018 and is intended to reduce the risk of wildfires and mitigate their impact on BC communities. There are three streams available for funding:

  1. FireSmart Community Funding & Supports:
    • Provides funding to local governments and First Nations in BC to increase community resiliency to wildfire
    • Undertakes FireSmart planning and activities
  2. Crown Land Wildfire Risk Reduction
    • Fuel management planning and treatment activities focusing on provincial Crown land located around communities
    • Prescribed fire
    • Risk reduction activities targeting critical infrastructure
    • Administrated by the Ministry of Forests
  3. FireSmart Economic Recovery Fund
    • Helps supports immediate job creation to build local wildfire resiliency and assist communities in recovering from the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic

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Columbia Basin Trust – Economic Recovery Initiative

Supports communities, society-run fire departments, First Nations, Post-secondary institutions, local governments, and Improvement districts located in the Columbia Basin Trust’s region. The initiative helps Basin communities to build local wildfire resiliency while recovering from the economic impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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British Columbia Community Forest Association – Economic Recovery Initiative

Program targets community forests in BC to complete wildfire risk reduction projects. The BC government has allocated over $5 million to the BCCFA to create or stimulate employment opportunities in 15 rural communities through the Crown Land Wildfire Risk Reduction projects. Unfortunately, funding for this year has closed. However, Community Forests interested in WRR work are encouraged to contact their local Districts to identify projects.

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Intact Foundation – Municipal Climate Resiliency Grant

The Municipal Climate Resiliency Grant (MCRG) provides funding for municipalities (any municipality in Canada) towards effective, practical solutions that mitigate flood and wildfire risk. The MCRG funds initiatives up to $100 000 for one year. The most recent application submission cycle was from October 2021- to January 31, 2022. Focus areas of the grant are:

  • “Shovel ready” greening/natural infrastructure solutions
  • Climate mitigation tools
  • Readiness research or feasibility assessments
  • Awareness and education

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Forest Enhancement Society of BC

Wildfire prevention projects can qualify for funding from the Forest Enhancement Society of BC (FESBC). Eligible applicants are Forest Tenure Holders, Non-Integrated manufacturers (e.g. pulp mills, Cogen facilities, chipping facilities etc.), First Nations governments, local governments and business entities performing or providing forestry services on behalf of the previous applicants. The funding and scope of proposals vary with each intake.

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First Nations’ Emergency Services Society of BC – Indigenous Services Canada Funding

The First Nations’ Emergency Services Society (FNESS), in partnership with Indigenous Services Canada (ICS) has two separate programs to support First Nation communities to mitigate risk from wildfire in the Wildland Urban Interface (WUI). All First Nation Bands and Treaty First Nations in BC are eligible to apply.

The FNESS-ICS On-Reserve Operational Fuel Treatment Program

  • is designed for communities wishing to treat forest fuels
  • These programs fund projects up to $75,000 in areas with moderate to extreme WUI wildfire threat risk and less than 1km from homes and critical infrastructure.

The FNESS-ICS On-Reserve FireSmart Program

  • Primarily designed to fund treatment of fuels and other combustible hazards adjacent to, and within 100m, of housing or community infrastructure.
  • The program supports FireSmart activities to a maximum of $50,000 within FireSmart Zones (Non Combustible, 1, 2 and 3) to achieve outcomes consistent with the FireSmart™ Homeowners Manual.

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First Nations’ Emergency Services Society of BC – 2020-2021 Wildfire Prevention – Mitigation Funding Notice

FNESS – ISC On-Reserve Operational Fuel Treatment Program – Wildland Fire Fighting Training, Equipment, Materials and Supplies. FNESS accepts applications supporting Wildland Fire Fighting crew development up to a maximum of $25,000.00.

The initiative supports First Nations communities who demonstrate completion of Wildland Fire Fighting Crew training/certification and development of wildland fire fighting contract crew’s or achieved standing offer contracts/agreements with BC Wildfire Service.

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FireSmart Canada

FireSmart Canada provides Wildfire Community Preparedness Day Awards through the national FireSmart Canada Community Recognition Program. The program offers grants to help community organizations fund local projects that help reduce the risk of wildfire damage to homes and neighbourhoods. Communities and organizations interested in planning a FireSmart project can apply for a $500 grant annually to support a National Wildfire Community Preparedness Day event held between May 4 and October 31 annually.

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Emergency management funding

Government of Canada – Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund

The Disaster Mitigation and Adaptation Fund (DMAF) aids a variety of applicants across Canada. Launched in 2018, the government of Canada has committed $2 billion over ten years to invest in structural and natural infrastructure projects to increase the resiliency of communities that are impacted by natural disasters.

To be considered eligible, projects must reduce the socio-economic, environmental and cultural impacts triggered by natural hazards and extreme weather events, considering current and potential future effects of climate change in communities and infrastructure at high risk. Projects can range from small-scale ($1 million – $20 million) or large-scale (projects exceeding $20 million). The assessment period closes in July 2022.

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Local Governments for Sustainability – Agents of Change

This project will help municipalities engage residents in their local climate action planning progress:

  • Designing municipally-supported volunteer engagement programs
  • Identifying collaborators and stakeholders in within their communities
  • Recruiting and supporting volunteers
  • Developing and delivering training programs for volunteers
  • Providing $15,000 each to 10 municipalities to support the hard costs of program set-up

Application for this cycle has closed.

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UBCM – Evacuation Route Planning

Intent of program is to support eligible applicants develop Evacuation Plans for local governments and First Nations that would be challenged to evacuate during an emergency. Maximum available funding is $25,000. Current application cycle is closed.

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Other funding