The Conservancy at 40: The Carmel River
In 1999 the Carmel River was listed as one of North American’s ten most endangered rivers, but many organizations and individuals have been working together to reverse this and make the Carmel River watershed once again healthy and vibrant. Over the years, a concentration of conservation efforts has begun the transformation; this has included land acquisitions, river restoration, and the initiation of a river parkway that will eventually provide a connection for people between the coast and the river’s headwaters in the Los Padres National Forest.
One of the Conservancy’s proudest accomplishments has been the removal of San Clemente Dam, the largest dam removal in California to date. This innovative project restored fish passage to 25 miles of high quality spawning and rearing habitat and allows sediment to once again travel down the river to replenish the sand at Carmel River State Beach. Removal of the seismically unsafe dam also protected downstream residential and commercial properties. The 920-acre project site will be donated to the U.S. Bureau of Land Management and opened to the public for hiking and other recreation.
In 2004, The Nature Conservancy and Big Sur Land Trust (BSLT) led the effort to acquire the 10,000-acre Palo Corona Ranch, which linked together more than ten conserved properties. The Monterey Peninsula Regional Park District, Wildlife Conservation Board, and California State Parks joined with the Conservancy to provide the $37 million needed to acquire the property. This property dominates the landscape along the lower river and forms the gateway to the Big Sur coast.
Currently the Conservancy is supporting the County of Monterey and BSLT on implementation of the Carmel River FREE (Floodplain Restoration and Environmental Enhancement) project, which will restore habitat along the lower river while also dramatically reducing flooding impacts to the local community.
We look forward to the day when the Carmel River is deemed one of the ten most restored rivers in the country!
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- RFP: Explore the Coast Grant Applications Due March 22, 2021The California State Coastal Conservancy (Conservancy) announces the availability of grants to public agencies, tribes and nonprofit organizations for programs that facilitate and enhance the public’s opportunities to explore California’s spectacular coast. The ocean, coast, and beaches have long been recognized and used as spaces of joy, relaxation, and healing for many Californians. The ability […] (Read more on RFP: Explore the...)
- Coastal Conservancy Public Zoom Meeting – January 2021Meeting Notice Douglas Bosco (Public Member), Chair Ann Notthoff (Public Member), Vice Chair Marce Gutiérrez-Graudiņš (Public Member) Joseph Alioto Jr. (Public Member) Wade Crowfoot, Secretary for Natural Resources; Bryan Cash (Designated) Stephen Padilla, Coastal Commission Chair; Susan Hansch (Designated) Keely Bosler, Director, Department of Finance; Gayle Miller (Designated) Senate Representatives Benjamin Allen (District 26) Assembly […] (Read more on Coastal Conservancy Public...)