California 30×30 Biodiversity Panel

The California Natural Resources Agency will be presenting its Pathways to 30x30 document in Feb. 2022.

CALIFORNIA一 On July 27 the California Natural Resources Agency hosted the third panel in a series of five community panels planned to go throughout the summer, addressing various topics on California’s path to 30×30 and defense against climate change. This particular panel Advancing 30×30 and Protecting Biodiversity focused on the best way to protect biodiversity in California through conservation.

“The purpose of these topical advisory panels is to address key topics and questions to support the development of the Pathways to 30×30 document and the CA nature geographic information system,” said Mark Gold, secretary for biodiversity and habitat from the California Natural Resources Agency, in the discussion.

In October 2020 Governor Gavin Newson signed executive agreement N-82-20, which committed the state of California to conserve 30 percent of the state’s coastal waters and lands by 2030, this enlisted California’s network of natural and working lands into fighting against climate change.

In response to this the California Natural Resources Agency is creating a document, Pathways to 30×30, detailing opportunities and strategies to achieve 30×30 and is in the process of developing the CA Nature Geographic Information System. CA Nature GIS will be a publicly accessible system that will inform the 30×30 Pathways document and will provide insight on where biodiversity is richest and most threatened; how climate change will impact ecosystems; where landscapes can accelerate natural carbon removal and protect climate-vulnerable communities; where lands provide public access for recreation and where such access is restricted.

The panel recommended six pathways for conservation that covered the use of metrics to capture biodiversity and prioritize lands and coastal waters that need protection; target conservation approaches towards specific at-risk species and significant ecosystems in California; prioritizing the protection and restoration of landscape connectivity, things like corridors that would connect pieces of habitat disturbed by development; leveraging data to understand native species and the effect of climate change; implementing conservation methods on working landscapes and in urban areas not just in protected lands parks; partnerships with California Native American tribes to ensure effective and long-term management strategies.

The white paper released by the panel stressed that designating lands coastal waters for protection is just the beginning in the push for conservation and changing climate.

According to California Natural Resources Agency, the purpose of these panels is more than just reading off the white paper, but it is to engage the community to create a document and a pathway to 30×30 that is sustainable and well researched.

They encourage public comment, which can be done by preregistering for the public speaking portion of the panels on the website or sending comments in through email, post, or leaving a voicemail.

“We are looking for specific ideas on the types of programs that should be included and expanded upon and referrals to any organization doing relevant work propel us closer to the goals for 30 by 30. We want to hear from as many participants as possible… If you have additional input, you can send an email to californianature@resources.ca.gov, you can send in regular mail or you can leave a voice message at 1(800) 417-0668.”

This is the third of the five panels, there will be two more held this summer on August 10, Conservation of Lands which will go over the definitions and the parameters of land conservation for 30×30.

August 17, the agency will host the Conservation of Coastal Waters panel which will also provide definitions and parameters for conserving California’s water.

For more information on the panels see https://resources.ca.gov/, and to watch the most recent panel or catch up on previous panels see https://bit.ly/2VflaAv.

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