Pine Valley Community Fuel Break
California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection
Pine Valley Community Fuel Break
NOE - Notice of Exemption
This project proposes the establishment of a 200-foot-wide, north-south aligned shaded fuel break on the eastern most edge of the Community of Pine Valley for a linear distance of 5,000 feet. Treatment will include reducing the existing fuel loading of mixed chaparral vegetation by approximately 80%. Native vegetation targeted for removal will include chamise, red shank, California buckwheat, and big basin sage brush that commonly occur within the project area. Broadleaf species present within the project include manzanita, ceanothus, and scrub oak. Broad leaf species will be retained to present a mosaic effect but may be thinned where necessary to obtain 80% reduction target. No live trees will be cut. Shrub vegetation will be cut at ground level and root structures left in place to reduce the potential for erosion. All cut vegetation will be piled and burned on site under a San Diego County Air Pollution Control District permit. Riparian areas and associated vegetation will be left untreated and no brush will be piled for burning within these areas. All work will be performed by CAL FIRE hand crews using hand tools and chain saws. Piles will be burned by CAL FIRE engine crews during winter months.
The unincorporated community of Pine Valley is situated in a large valley surrounded by rugged mountainous terrain just north of Interstate 8 in southeastern San Diego County. Pine Valley is an isolated community of approximately 1,500 population. Pine Valley is bordered by the Cleveland National Forest on three sides and privately owned wildland on the forth. The community suffered significant structure loss during the 1970 Laguna fire, the last major fire to impact this area and is considered at high risk for wildland fire.
Other Location Info
Pine Valley Community
Cont.; Section 31, T15S, R5E; Section 1, T16S, R4E; Section 6, T16S, R5E
Notice of Exemption
Type, Section or Code
Class 4; S: 15304
Reasons for Exemption
This project fits under portions of Class 4 Categorical Exception pertaining to minor alterations to the land as identified in the CEQA Guidelines. Field review by CAL FIRE staff confirmed that no exceptions apply that would preclude the use of a notice of exemption for this project. The Department has concluded that no significant environmental impact would occur to aesthetics, agriculture, and forestland or timberland, air quality, biological resources, cultural resources, geology and soils, greenhouse gas emissions, hazards and hazardous materials, hydrology and water quality, land use planning, mineral resources, noise, population and housing, public services, recreation, transportation or traffic, or to utilities and service systems. Documentation of the environmental review completed by the Department is kept on file at Monte Vista Unit headquarters.
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