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San Jose Water Company and Santa Clara County FireSafe Council Announce Partnership to Protect Regional Watersheds and Drinking Water Systems
Contract includes AlcheraX FireScout AI wildfire cameras in the San Jose Water service area and establishes a Community Wildfire Mitigation Pilot Program to reduce community wildfire risk.
November 17 2022, Saratoga, CA—San Jose Water (SJW), Inc. announced today it has entered into a strategic partnership with The Santa Clara County FireSafe Council (SCCFSC), an independent 501(c)3 nonprofit, to provide a series of technology solutions supporting SJW’s commitment to environmental stewardship and water resources management. With a focus on reducing wildfire risk and creating a consortium to monitor areas at elevated risk to wildfire in SJW’s service area, this partnership will protect critical infrastructure and provide monitoring and early detection of wildfire in Santa Clara County
The first projects include serving as a value-added reseller (VAR) for AlcheraX’s FireScout technology which will add an artificial intelligence (AI) capability to wildfire early detection and monitoring on SJW lands. The SCCFSC will provide multiple FireScout systems to SJW, provide consulting for the setup, configuration and implementation of FireScout. This project is part of SCCFS’s larger regional effort to coordinate multiple land management, municipal and fire agencies to expand a wildfire-early detection network across county and jurisdictional boundaries — leveraging SCCFSC’s relationships to provide strategic consulting and technology procurement for wildfire risk-reduction and environmental stewardship practices.
FireScout was selected principally for its industry-leading nighttime detection capability and 91% accuracy rate. FireScout provides location-specific detection — helping operations teams and first responders deploy resources quickly and efficiently. The cloud-based SaaS solution enables SJW to connect to a state-of-the-art wildfire detection network that continuously monitors the landscape for ignitions.
Additionally, the SJW and SCCFSC partnership establishes a Community Wildfire Mitigation Pilot Program focused on at-risk communities in Santa Clara County. SJW is providing funding to SCCFSC to offer an innovative bundle of solutions, which includes:
- Developing projects in coordination with local communities and stakeholders;
- Providing technical support, community outreach and engagement events, promoting programs through social media and other communication/outreach networks; and
- Project oversight and management of Hazardous Fuels Reduction (HFR) and defensible space programs throughout the County.
“This partnership expands SJW’s wildfire mitigation and community wildfire protection work, improving overall coordination of our wildfire response,” said Jared Lewis, SJW’s Manager of Environmental Planning and Natural Resources. “SCCFSC’s team brings a wealth of technical expertise, a strong history of collaboration, and innovation that increases our ability to protect the County’s critical water resources and communities most susceptible to catastrophic wildfire.”
“The partnership with San Jose Water helps to deliver on their commitment to sustainability and environmental stewardship by providing critical consulting and technology services to help San Jose Water evaluate, pilot and implement wildfire technology solutions throughout their properties,” said Seth Schalet, CEO of Santa Clara County FireSafe Council. “We envision this partnership as a template to serve other public and private landowners throughout the area. The innovative risk mitigation program, funded by San Jose Water, is another way we are collaborating and innovating to provide wildfire risk mitigation and community education services to protect life, property and the environment.”
About San Jose Water:
Founded in 1866, San Jose Water is an investor-owned public utility, and is one of the largest and most technically sophisticated urban water systems in the United States. Serving over one million people in the greater San Jose metropolitan area, San Jose Water also provides services to other utilities including operations and maintenance, billing, and backflow testing. San Jose Water is owned by SJW Group, a publicly traded company listed on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol SJW. SJW Group also owns: Connecticut Water Company in Connecticut; Maine Water Company in Maine; and SJWTX, Inc. (dba Canyon Lake Water Service Company) in Texas. To learn more about San Jose Water, visit www.sjwater.com.
About Santa Clara County FireSafe Council:
As a 501 (c)3 nonprofit with a 20-year history, Santa Clara County FireSafe Council’s core mission is to mobilize the people of Santa Clara County to protect their homes, communities, and environment from wildfires. As a trusted partner across the government, fire service, corporate and WUI residential communities, SCCFSC has led some of the most complex hazardous fuel reduction projects in the region. With a board of directors and advisory board that has a deep expertise across the wildfire ecosystem including wildfire and environmental research, academia, emergency management, regional planning, technology products and wildland firefighting executive leadership, Santa Clara County FireSafe Council is uniquely positioned to lead cross-sector collaborations, government-private partnership in Silicon Valley, Santa Clara County and beyond. For more information, visit www.sccfiresafe.org
About AlcheraX FireScout: https://firescout.ai/
Manager of Environmental Planning and Natural Resources