In partnership with the Feather River Land Trust, Sierra Institute for Community & Environment of Taylorsville organized a number of cleanup efforts as part of the Plumas Conservation, Restoration, Education and Watershed program, where 10th- through 12th-grade high school students are recruited from various schools for paid stewardship work during the summer months.
The two-day cleanup was held on June 20 and 21 just east of town on a PG&E-owned parcel in Chester Meadow along both sides of the causeway near the northern end of Lake Almanor.
Sponsored by PG&E, Oakland-based Youth Outside funded the restoration project, with a crew consisting of 14 students.
The effort was an opportunity for youth to engage alongside Forest Service specialists, experienced crew leaders, and other high school students to complete conservation projects in the Northern Sierra.
Sierra Institute’s Alana Joseph, one of two crew leaders on the restoration program, said the work is designed for rural and urban high school students to clear and restore the land back to its pristine state, in this case by removing old wooden fencing and rusty barbed wire that’s no longer useful at the meadow location.
Project partner Nils Lunder, stewardship manager for FRLT oversaw the work being done. Lunder said, “It’s a way to integrate young people from different walks of life and engage them in activities in the Upper Feather River Watershed, and to help educate them about science and natural resources.”
“The reason we’re working here locally,” Joseph added, “is because everyone uses the same water, starting from the Feather River Watershed where our drinking water originates all the way down to the Bay area” from the headwaters in Oroville.
Youth Outside offers young people important work experience and an invaluable opportunity learning about wildfires, forest ecology, wildlife biology, and forestry at the top of the Feather River Watershed.
Students typically work 40 hours a week during the summer while camping for five weeks in an outdoor setting, building and maintaining trails, removing invasive species, and reducing fire fuel sources and other projects.