CAL FIRE Forest Health Research Program (FY 2020-21 & FY2021-22)

Portal ID:
Closed (70 total applications submitted)
Opportunity Type:
  • Grant
Last Updated:



The intent of CAL FIRE's Forest Health Research Program is to fund scientific research that expands our knowledge in topics related to forest health and wildland fire.  The outcomes of these projects will support agencies, organizations, landowners, and policy makers, while furthering the goals of the California Forest and Wildfire Resilience Action Plan and California Climate Investments.


The Forest Health Research Program (hereafter “Research Program”) was established as part of CAL FIRE’s plan for implementing the California Forest Carbon Plan. It is one of several CAL FIRE programs funded through the California Climate Investments (CCI) program, Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund. The mission of the Research Program is:

To identify and prioritize research topics in forest health and fire science critical to the State of California To fund sound scientific studies that support forest landowners, resource agencies, and fire management organizations within the state To ensure scientific information generated from the program is made available to support decision making and policy To further the goals of the California Forest Carbon Plan, the California Natural and Working Lands Implementation Plan, CCI, and AB 32 Global Warming Solutions Act.

The Forest Health Research Program operates in conjunction with the Forest Health Program but draws from a separate source of funds. The program, procedures and requirements apply only to “stand-alone research” projects, where research-related activities are the only activities proposed. Research activities are no longer eligible as a component of larger Forest Health projects

The following topics have been identified as priorities for study for the Research Program for FY 2020-21 and 2021-22. Proposed research must address one or more of these priority topics. Research projects should be focused on and relevant to California ecosystems and their management.

Disturbance, recovery, and strategies for forest resilience in an altered future climate. Implementation, effectiveness, impacts, and tradeoffs of alternative management strategies to reduce wildfire risk, increase carbon storage, improve biodiversity, improve water and air quality, and provide regional economic benefits. Natural, historical and contemporary range of variation in fire regimes (i.e., frequency, seasonality, size, spatial complexity, intensity, severity, and fire type), forest conditions and distributions, and wildfire-related greenhouse gas emissions in California ecosystems, particularly those less well studied. Forest products and utilization of forest residues related to fuel reduction and forest health treatments. Human dimensions and socio-economic considerations related to forest health and management. Improved prediction of wildland fire spread, behavior, and potential impacts, particularly under extreme weather conditions and within the wildland-urban interface.

Please see Appendix B of the Forest Health Program Grant Guidelines for FY 2020-2021 & FY 2021-2022 for a more thorough description of this grant cycle's Research Priority Topics. The Grant Guidelines Document and other application resources can be found at the Forest Health Grants Website here:

Eligibility Requirements

Eligible Applicants:

  • Nonprofit
  • Public Agency
  • Tribal Government

CAL FIRE will grant funds from the Research Program to public and other nonprofit universities and affiliated academic institutions, local agencies (e.g. counties and special districts), state agencies, federal agencies, Native American tribes; private forest landowners; and non-profit 501(c)(3) organizations (e.g. fire safe councils, and land trusts).

Eligible Geographies:

Projects must be focused on and relevant to California forests and other ecosystems and their management. A significant portion of the geographic area proposed for study must be contained within California and may include adjacent lands contiguous and representative of California sites. Any sites external to California and discontinuous to study areas within the state require justification. Study areas may not be located outside the United States

Important Dates

The date (and time, where applicable) by which all applications must be submitted to the grantmaker. Time listed as “00:00” equates to midnight.
The date on which the grantor expects to announce the recipient(s) of the grant.
July-September 2021
The length of time during which the grant money must be utilized.
2-4 Years

Funding Details

The total projected dollar amount of the grant.
A single grant opportunity may represent one or many awards. Some grantors may know in advance the exact number of awards to be given. Others may indicate a range. Some may wish to and wait until the application period closes before determining how many awards to offer; in this case, a value of “Dependent” will display.
Grant opportunities representing multiple awards may offer awards in the same amount or in varied amounts. Some may wish to wait until the application period closes before determining per-award amounts; in this case, a value of “Dependent” will display.
Certain grants require that the recipient(s) provide a letter of intent.
Certain grants require that the recipient(s) be able to fully or partially match the grant award amount with another funding source.
The funding source allocated to fund the grant. It may be either State or Federal (or a combination of both), and be tied to a specific piece of legislation, a proposition, or a bond number.
  • State

Funding Source Notes:

California Climate Investments (CCI) is a statewide program that puts Cap-and-Trade dollars to work reducing GHG emissions, strengthening the economy, and improving public health and the environment – particularly in disadvantaged communities. As required by AB 1550, at least 35% of these investments are to be located within and benefit residents of disadvantaged communities, low-income communities, and low-income households across California.

The manner in which the grant funding will be delivered to the awardee. Funding methods include reimbursements (where the recipient spends out-of-pocket and is reimbursed by the grantor) and advances (where the recipient spends received grant funds directly).
  • Advances & Reimbursement(s)

Funding Method Notes:

Research Program funding will be allocated to four projects types, approximately as follows (subject to change):

Research Project Type: General

Maximum Award Amount: $500,000

Research Project Type: State Forests

Maximum Award Amount: $500,000

Research Project Type: Graduate Student

Maximum Award Amount: $100,000

Research Project Type: Synthesis and Tool Development

Maximum Award Amount: $500,000

How to Apply

State agencies/departments recommend you read the full grant guidelines before applying.


For questions about this grant, contact: