Conservancy in the News
January 15, 2019
CDFW Releases Delta Conservation Framework
The California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) released the Delta Conservation Framework as a comprehensive resource and guide for conservation planning in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta through 2050.
The framework provides a template for regional and stakeholder-led approaches to restoring ecosystem functions to the Delta landscape. It incorporates feedback from public workshops, planning efforts and the best available science on Delta ecosystem processes.
The Delta Conservation Framework includes broad goals that acknowledge the importance of effective communication, community engagement and education, making decisions based on science, and working collectively on conservation permitting and funding. The framework suggests multiple strategies that could be used by all Delta stakeholders to move conservation forward.
For more information and to view the Delta Conservation Framework, please visit www.wildlife.ca.gov/conservation/watersheds/dcf.
Around East County: Progress on Marsh Project Causing Excitement
Sunday, August 26, 2018
By Roni Gehlke, published in East Bay Times. Construction has begun on the Dutch Slough Tidal Marsh Wetland Restoration Project, allowing wetlands to be grown and offering a natural habitat for water birds and mammals.
When Water Worries Often Pit Farms vs. Fish, a Sacramento Valley Farm is Trying to Address the Needs of Both
Friday, August 24, 2018
By Gary Pitzer, published in Western Water News. River Garden Farms is piloting projects that could add habitat and food to aid Sacramento River salmon.
California v Nutria: State Seeks to Eradicate Scourge of Giant Rodents
Wednesday, August 15, 2018
By Alastair Gee, published in The Guardian. As the dog-sized creatures destroy wetlands and dig through levees, officials have a goal: total extermination.
Bay Point Regional Shoreline Restoration and Public Access Project
By the East Bay Regional Park District. The EBRPD will restore wetlands and grasslands, and improve public access to the shoreline by raising trail elevations, improving disabled access, creating new viewpoints, and installing interpretive panels supporting environmental education.
Wetland Restoration is Working at Bay Point Regional Shoreline
Monday, January 29, 2018
By San Francisco Bay Joint Venture. The East Bay Regional Park District is working to restore up to 30 acres of marshland along the Bay Point Regional Shoreline.
Chemical and Biological Control of Arundo at Brannan Island State Recreation Area
Wednesday, February 14, 2018
By Aaron Haiman, published February 14, 2018 in U.C. Weed Science. This story is about the Delta Conservancy’s work on arundo control in the Delta.
California’s Delta Poised to Become Massive Carbon Bank
Friday, June 9, 2017
By Matt Weiser, published June 9, 2017 on the Water Deeply. This story is about the Delta Conservancy’s work on a new carbon banking methodology.
Delta Conservancy Approves $4.4 Million to Benefit Delta Ecosystems, Water Quality, and Water-Related Agricultural Sustainability
WEST SACRAMENTO – The Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Conservancy (Conservancy) approved approximately $4.4 million for four projects that restore and enhance ecosystems, improve water quality, and support water-related agricultural sustainability in the Delta. The Conservancy provides funding through a competitive grant process made possible by a voter-approved bond measure, Proposition 1 – the Water Quality, Supply, and Infrastructure Improvement Act of 2014.
Read the press release here.
ACR Approves Landmark Carbon Offset Methodology for California Wetland Restoration
SACRAMENTO, Calif., April 25, 2017 – Today the American Carbon Registry (ACR), a nonprofit enterprise of Winrock International, announced approval of a new carbon offset methodology to scientifically quantify greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions reductions from the restoration of California deltaic and coastal wetlands. The methodology was developed by a high-profile group of partners — the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Conservancy as lead agency and HydroFocus as lead author with technical support from the University of California at Berkeley and Tierra Resources. Funding for the methodology was provided by the Sacramento Municipal Utility District (SMUD), the California Coastal Conservancy, the Metropolitan Water District and California Department of Water Resources (DWR).
The new ACR methodology combines California data and restoration techniques to create a rigorous scientific framework for carbon offset project development. Opportunities are abundant to enhance current land-use practices by restoring wetlands or converting to rice cultivation in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, Suisun Marsh, and California coastal areas. Carbon offsets generated by the projects can be sold to corporations to meet their voluntary emissions-reduction goals. Additional sources of offsets are also being considered by California regulators for eligibility in the state’s Cap-and-Trade Program, under which power plants and oil refineries are mandated to reduce or offset their emissions.
“Restoration activities that rebuild subsided lands are critical to long-term ecosystem sustainability, are important to reducing the risk of levy failure and sea level rise, and are a significant source of GHG emissions reductions.” said Steve Deverel, President of HydroFocus.
In the Bay-Delta Area, more than 90 percent of historic tidal wetlands disappeared in the last 150 years. Over 2.5 billion cubic meters of organic soils have disappeared since delta islands were first diked and drained for agriculture in the late 1800s, resulting in land subsidence up to 25 feet below sea level. Drained and cultivated organic soils continue to oxidize, subside and emit an estimated 1.5 to 2 million metric tons of CO2-equivalent annually — equal to annual emissions from over 300,000 passenger vehicles.
Research in freshwater emergent wetlands on delta organic soils shows that carbon capture wetlands are the most carbon-rich landscape per acre. The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), DWR, HydroFocus and the University of California at Berkeley have been studying subsidence and GHG emissions of rice and managed wetlands in the delta since the 1980s and have documented very high rates of primary productivity in wetlands.
“State and federal funding remains insufficient to address land subsidence that threatens the California water system, and carbon market revenues could help fill the funding gap,” said Campbell Ingram, executive officer of the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta Conservancy. ”The new ACR methodology provides an incentive to landowners in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta, Suisun Marsh, and other historically natural wetland areas in California to convert their most subsided and marginal agricultural lands to wetlands or to produce wetlands crops such as rice, which will stop land subsidence and reverse it over time.”