Camp Fire Debris Cleanup Running Ahead of Schedule

Office of Public Affairs
For Immediate Release: July 26, 2019
News Release #2019-16
Media Contact: Lance Klug

SACRAMENTO–In a significant milestone in the recovery and rebuilding of the Town of Paradise and Butte County following last year’s devastating wildfire, the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (Cal OES) announced that crews managed by the California Department of Resources Recycling and Recovery (CalRecycle) have completed the removal of more than 75 percent of the structural debris on the 10,732 properties participating in the state-managed Camp Fire Consolidated Debris Removal Program.

“This has been a tremendous effort by all involved and today is an important milestone in this community’s journey to recovery,” said Mark S. Ghilarducci, Director of the Governor’s Office of Emergency Services. “While significant work remains to finalize this project, it has been impressive to watch how rapidly and effectively these crews have cleared debris.”

“The progress we are achieving together is the result of a lot of hard work and many long days for wildfire survivors, their communities and all of the local, state and federal partners involved in this effort,” CalRecycle Director Scott Smithline said.

Based on a calculated program operations schedule, crews are expected to complete structural debris removal on current participating properties in the September 2019 timeframe, significantly ahead of schedule. Final project completion, which includes both structural debris removal on any additional properties as well as final soil testing, erosion control installation and final property inspections, remains on track for early 2020.

Progress Report as of July 25, 2019

Order of OperationsProperties
Participating properties10,732
Step 1–Site Assessment and Documentation
Sites assessed10,653
Asbestos surveys completed10,618
Step 2–Debris Removal
Debris removal completed8,259
Step 3–Confirmation Sampling
Sample results approved4,867
Step 4–Erosion Control Measures
Erosion control completed3,898
Step 5–Final Inspection
Final inspection completed3,566

Currently 154 debris removal crews remain engaged – consisting of three to five persons each–clearing burned parcels in Paradise, Concow and Magalia. To date, crews have removed more than 2.6 million tons of ash, debris, metal, concrete and contaminated soil from 8,259 of the 10,732 properties participating in the Consolidated Debris Removal Program.

Debris Removal Tonnage as of July 23, 2019

Type of WasteCamp Fire Debris Removal
Ash, debris, and soil1,666,482 tons
Concrete518,510 tons
Metal37,386 tons
Contaminated soil446,166 tons
Total2,668,544 tons (5.3 billion pounds)

Moving forward and based on operational needs, the Camp Fire Debris Removal Incident Management Team, which includes representatives from CalRecycle and Cal OES, will continually assess the requirement for debris crews and begin to gradually demobilize crews as necessary.

The State of California remains committed and engaged with the Town of Paradise, Concow, Magalia, and with Butte County throughout the recovery process and into the rebuilding of these communities.  

California’s Consolidated Debris Removal Program

Implemented under the leadership of the California Governor’s Office of Emergency Services (CalOES) and local governments, the Consolidated Debris Removal Program offers Camp Fire survivors a streamlined option to clear their properties.

Affected residents can find answers to their questions about the debris removal process by emailing inquiries to or by contacting local representatives at their local Debris Removal Operations Center:

Butte County DROC
900 Fortress St.
Chico, CA  95973
(530) 399-0434

For more information contact, the Office of Public Affairs,

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CalRecycle provides oversight of California solid waste handling and recycling programs to protect human health, develop sustainable solutions that conserve resources, and reduce greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change.