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Wildfire Risks in Bear Creek Watershed

The Bear Creek Watershed has large areas of federal forested lands scattered throughout the watershed. The BCWA was in-volved in a wildfire hazard study by JW Associates Inc., called Clear/Bear Creek Wildfire/Watershed Assessment Prioritiza-tion of wildfire/watershed-based hazards to water supplies (March 2013). There is high potential for a major wildfire in critical drain-ages. Post wildfire storms in these drainages could result in significant water quality impairment to downstream waters.

The federal forest service post wildfire Burned Area Emergency Response (BAER) program is designed to identify and manage potential risks to resources on National Forest System lands and reduce these threats through appropriate emergency measures to protect human life and safety, property, and critical natural or cultural resources. BAER is an emergency program for stabilization work that involves time-critical activities to be completed before the first damaging storm event to meet pro-gram objectives. The program can install temporary water or erosion control devises or management practices. The program doesn’t monitor the water quality impacts from a wildfire.

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