The First Climate Champions Plant 10,000 Trees! Climate Change Accessibility Webinar, Climate Champion–Dr. Victor Santiago Pineda

by | Jun 7, 2023 | Podcasts, The Climate Daily

The first Climate Champions plant 10,000 Trees! Plus Climate change accessibility webinar, and climate champion–Dr. Victor Santiago Pineda!



Hey, Everybody. Here’s the update we promised on the first Climate Champions, 10,000 tree reforestation campaign. The trees are going into the ground as part of the Fire Recovery in the Feather River Watershed project. The project aims to restore 4,343 acres of land that was burned during the 2021 Dixie Fire. This restoration of this Sierra mixed conifer forest will focus on planting trees native to the area in pre fire conditions. 

The Sierra Nevada is a region with a strong reliance on wildfire to maintain ecological balance. Wildfires will continue to be a part of this ecosystem. A century of suppression, and removal of indigenous burning has created conditions in which these fires become more severe than ever imagined. Restoring these lands to a state which is resilient to future fires and climate driven affects is possible given reforestation plans that address hazardous fuels, habitat, watershed protection, and a tree density that is sustainable and resilient to these conditions.

An analysis of how forests burn is this: The lowest severity burns in the project are classified as “moderate” with perhaps a 50% or higher tree mortality rate, the majority of the project is burned at high severity, where 90-100% of all trees have died. The project aims to address these issues in a few ways; one is by removing the dead standing trees before they become an ecological hazard. Forests full of snags quickly grow an understory of brush due to increased sunlight; this snag and shrub component has been proven to increase both the intensity and severity of wildfires when occurring in the same area. This leads to a perpetual cycle of high severity wildfire in which healthy mature forests can never become reestablished.

With approximately 1.3 million acres of forests burned in the Feather River Watershed since 2020, we need to put our energy into reforesting areas with a higher likelihood of success. Planting within this project areas will be monitored and maintained by private land managers for a minimum of 75 years. This type of management will ensure that planted trees have the best likelihood of survival, and that plantations can be cultivated to ensure a well stocked forest at densities that are less likely to carry a high intensity crown fire.

Reforestation would prioritize planting shade intolerant species such as Jeffrey pine, ponderosa pine, sugar pine, Douglas fir, and incense cedar, over shade tolerant species such as white fir to re-establish forest structure prior to the exclusion of ecologically beneficial fire. Trees would be planted at approximately 130 trees per acre in differing planting arrangements including rows and clusters. Areas with potential for natural regeneration may be excluded from planting. All planted areas would have dead vegetation, including standing dead trees removed to reduce the fuel risk for future wildfire.

Why does reforesting the Feather River Watershed matter to us? Restoration of biodiversity. Wildlife species to bring back include the California Spotted owl, Northern Goshawk, Bald eagle, and Golden eagle, all require either old growth forests, or mature trees for nesting and/ or foraging. The amount of suitable old growth habitat is currently severely diminished, vital for biodiversity. Several more megafires with no restorative action would leave the region devoid of habitat. Not often thought of but just as importantly, not replanting is already having impacts on water quality and erosion in the North Fork Feather River, including mudslides and rock fall which deposit sediment into one California’s primary sources of drinking water.  

Planting activities also bolster local economies by bringing in workforces that occupy hotels, eat at restaurants, and shop in stores. One project location centers around the historic community of Seneca, which was home to California’s oldest bar; the Seneca Gin Mill. The Gin Mill was destroyed in the Dixie fire, but local community efforts have rebuilt the structure in the historic fashion using logs milled on site. “Re-greening” Seneca will help preserve this piece of California history. We’re loading photographs of the project on so check us out, daily.

Thank you to you first 33 climate champions who are helping us restore the Feather River Watershed in the Sierra Nevadas of California! This is proof that a small group of people can make a massive impact in a short amount of time. So join us in this latest climate champions tree reforestation campaign. We’re at 9,000 trees. Just 1,000 to go. Go to and at the top of the page, click on Climate Champions and donate $50 or $100. Thank you!

DEEPER DIVE: WMO Report50/100 Campaign, Trillion Tree Project



The Inclusion Imperative in Climate Change: Climate change is a global challenge that requires collective action from diverse communities, technical teams, journalists, as well as environmental program, policy and design professionals. However, many global climate initiatives are not accessible to persons with disabilities, leading to exclusion and marginalization. 

The Victor Pineda Foundation / World Enabled and its partners are pleased to host a webinar on practical approaches to accessibility in climate community gatherings and programs. The purpose of this webinar is to provide environmental practitioners, journalists and the wider community of sustainability professionals with knowledge and resources to make their climate advocacy initiatives more inclusive and accessible to persons with disabilities. 

The webinar will take place on Thu, Jun 15, 2023 12:00 PM EDT, in conjunction with the United Nations Conference of States Parties to the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities. The target audience for this webinar is climate journalists, professionals, and advocates, including community organizers, team leaders, and program managers. 

Objectives for the webinar include:

  1. Providing an overview of the importance of accessibility in climate and environmental initiatives
  2. Highlighting practical examples of how climate advocates can be more inclusive of persons with disabilities
  3. Discussing the role of effective communication in promoting accessibility in climate advocacy
  4. Equipping professionals with knowledge and resources to make their climate and environmental initiatives more accessible to persons with disabilities.

The event is moderated by Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi, Co-founder and Director, Mizrahi Family Charitable Fund. Dr. Victor Santiago Pineda, Director at Inclusive Cities Lab at UC Berkeley is the featured speaker. The three part webinar includes an Introduction: Setting the context for the webinar, including a brief overview of the importance of accessibility in climate advocacy.

Session 1: Practical Approaches to Accessibility

Session 2: Effective Communication for Climate Advocates – including accessible language, plain text documents, and captioned videos.

Click on the link in the Deeper Dive section of this story at to register for this Thu, Jun 15, 2023 12:00 PM EDT lively and timely event.

DEEPER DIVE: Registration, Dr. Pineda, Jennifer Mizrahi, Respectability, Pineda Foundation



Dr. Pineda is a distinguished executive and global authority on human rights, inclusive urban development, and accessibility. As Executive Chairman of the Victor Pineda Foundation / World Enabled,, he advises governments, Fortune 500 companies, and the United Nations on corporate governance, ESG, SDGs, and public-private partnerships. A two-time presidential appointee, Dr. Pineda’s expertise spans innovation, resilience, and inclusive design. He has shaped international regulatory frameworks, such as the UN Sustainable Development Goals and UN Habitat’s New Urban Agenda, and implemented key regulations like Dubai and Abu Dhabi’s Disability Strategies and Section 508 of the US Rehabilitation Act.

Dr. Pineda’s award-winning book, “Building the Inclusive City,” reflects his groundbreaking research. He serves on multiple World Economic Forum councils, the US Federal Access Board, and directs the Inclusive Cities Lab at UC Berkeley. Holding a Ph.D. in Urban Planning from UCLA and multiple other degrees, Dr. Pineda is an invaluable asset to companies championing inclusion, sustainability, and progressive governance.

Why does Dr. Pineda matter to us? Because we believe that everyone, regardless of ability, should have equal access to opportunities and resources, including climate advocacy initiatives. And Dr. Pineda practices what he preaches. As a child, Pineda was diagnosed with spinal muscular atrophy (SMA-Type II), a form of muscular dystrophy and has been wheelchair bound his entire adult life, requiring a ventilator twenty-four hours per day. Moreso, Through the Pineda Foundation, Pineda has helped direct 2.5 million dollars towards programs that support youth with disabilities. 

that climate justice involves accessibility as well as racial and economic justice, and he is a shining leader to remind us of that: The Victor Pineda Foundation is committed to promoting inclusion and accessibility for persons with disabilities in all areas of society.

DEEPER DIVE: Victor Santiago Pineda, Pineda Foundation,