Forestry and Fire Protection, Department of
China Creek Training Project
NOE - Notice of Exemption
The California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection ("CAL FIRE","Department") is proposing training bums on 48 acres of foothill grass and oak habitat at China Creek Park. The park is managed by the County of Fresno and is open to public
use. The purpose of the project is to provide opportunities for local fire service agencies to train with live fire use in a controlled environment. Ancillary benefits of the project include fuels modification, range and wildlife habitat improvement. Bum areas are bounded by existing service roads and foot trails. If additional fire control features are deemed necessary, line creation activities will be monitored by a CAL FIRE archaeologist or their supervised designee. Routine fire control training activities may include mobile attack, hand tool use, and progressive hose lay installation. Lighting will be conducted with hand ignition devices. All burning will be performed in accordance with terms and conditions of a bum permit issued by the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District. The Department has been tasked with increasing acres of land treated and this training bum will be another step toward achieving that goal. Annual refresher training is expected to occur if site monitoring indicates satisfactory burning conditions are likely to result in habitat improvement.
This project fits within the above-listed Categorical Exemption, Declared Emergency, and Emergency Project listed in the CEQA Guidelines. The project meets the requirements of Class 4, §15304(e): Minor Alteration to the Land Categorical Exemption to CEQA. "Class 4" includes minor public or private alterations in the conditions of land, water, and/or vegetation which do not involve removal of healthy, mature, and scenic trees except for forestry and agricultural purposes. Field review by CAL FIRE staff confirmed that no § 15300.2 Exceptions apply which would preclude the use of a Notice of Exemption for this project. CAL FIRE staff has concluded that no significant environmental impact would occur to aesthetics, agriculture and forestland/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/traffic, or utilities and service systems. Documentation of the environmental review completed by the Department is kept on file at CAL FIRE Fresno-Kings Unit Headquarters at 210 South Academy Avenue, Sanger, CA 93657.