Our Blog

Image of Jan 2022 snow storm with cars buried in driveway and dog

From Climate Change to Climate Emergency

Over the last few years, climate scientists have noticed that the extreme events originally projected for future decades are happening now. These recent extreme events have changed language in the field from climate change to climate emergency, and the difference isn’t just semantics—it is the rate and volume at which they occur.

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Photo of valley in eastern Sierra with a light dusting of snow, mountains in the background

Regional Reflections and Opportunities Ahead

To close out the year, Sierra Climate Adaptation and Mitigation Partnership (CAMP) held its last member meeting open to the public as a way to not only reflect upon itself in traditional end-of-year fashion, but build a stronger vision for the year ahead. Steve Frisch, SBC President, gave a fantastic overview of information and member highlights from the past year.

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Photo of smoke in downtown placerille from Caldor fire, 2021

How has SBC responded to the Sierra’s greatest challenge?

Wildfire is the apex issue in our region, impacting the environment, economies, and public health of the Sierra. The severity of this problem is addressed by each of SBC’s three focus areas—our climate action, regional advocacy, and economic empowerment teams are each working on solutions that tackle the many challenges presented by severe wildfires. 

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Two men shake hands with Green Business flyer in their hands

Calling all Sierra Green Businesses

The California Green Business Network (CAGBN) is a community of small to medium sized businesses throughout the state that comply with environmental regulations in the areas of waste, energy, water, pollution prevention, and air quality. These businesses have undergone an extensive auditing process, implemented cost and resource saving measures, and continue to use best practices even beyond certification.

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Sunset on Caldor Fire Burn with Snow by Sherry Hao

The New Normal in the Sierra Nevada: Lessons learned from the Caldor Fire

Successful forest treatment projects over the last ten years (and the heroic work of firefighters) were what slowed the Caldor Fire enough to save homes and businesses in the Tahoe Basin, but often the threats posed to fire-impacted communities like mine are still only just beginning by the time containment is reached. 

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James Sedlak in fire gear

From Fire to Fellow

After fighting fires all over the West Coast – from Arizona to Alaska – I realized there was a tremendous amount of work to do off the firelines; I wanted to transition into climate adaptation planning and community resilience work, especially for underserved communities facing such climate threats firsthand. I began to think about work opportunities to prevent catastrophic wildfires or at least help communities better prepare for them.

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Eastern Sierra backpacking trip alpenglow, Goddard glacier

A Walk Through the Sierra

This past January, I got a text from my trail family asking if I was interested in going on a backpacking trip for 12 days in the Southern Sierra in August. Without hesitation, I said yes. Little did I know how this trip would impact my life, let alone bring perspective to the Sierra Nevada Climate Vulnerability Assessment project I had just joined.

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Downtown bridge in Truckee
Energy

Business Power Shut Offs

The 2021 fire season has already begun, and with record-breaking scope and damage. As a protective measure to minimize wildfire risk, utility companies that power the Sierra Nevada will be periodically shutting off power to regions and communities experiencing high wind, lightning storms, and other severe weather. NV Energy just announced its first planned outage for the season, starting at 4am on Sunday. Are you ready? 

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Echo Lake Cabins on Sept 1, 2021. Photo by Loren Sperber
Wildfire

Not if But When

It’s one thing to follow the news reports and social media videos of wildfire damage from afar, mentally preparing yourself for what it might be like to try and identify the skeletal remains of a structure as your own family’s cabin or home. Or see the tornados of fire set ablaze against a hillside you’ve traversed hundreds of times by car or by foot. Or watch a community you know and love evacuate by the thousands, their whole lives crammed into one carload.

It’s another thing entirely when it happens for real.

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Fire crews at lake almanor during dixie fire
Sierra SBDC

From Beyond the Line of Fire: Living through largest single fire in California History

As we contemplated go-bag contents and watched the relentless advance of the Beckwourth, River, Tamarack, and especially the Dixie fire over the last few weeks, one of our dearest Small Business Development Center counselors, Clint Koble was smack in the middle of the devastation. Clint lives at and manages a resort in Chester along Lake Almanor. Over the course of several days, Clint holed up at the resort, guarded by the command of fire fighters he so graciously hosted. The firefighters instructed him to park his car on the boat ramp and to take refuge in the car should the flames approach – they would protect him.

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Join Us In Creating A More Resilient Sierra.

To learn more about our mission, services, staff, or program work, please contact: 

info@sierrabusiness.org
530.582.4800