Conservation

MBCA believes that conservation of the desert’s natural resources is a concern both on a personal day-to-day basis and also at the larger scale of community and government efforts.

To learn more, find Conservation topics in the pull-down menu tab above, browse recent Conservation articles below, or use the search feature.

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  • Proposed Reduction in Protected Lands in the DRECP

    MBCA has kept our supporters informed since its inception about California's Desert Renewable Energy Conservation Plan (DRECP). While we deemed its final land protections not ideal but acceptable (after eight years of intense debate and input), the current federal administration is seeking to reduce those protected lands. The Bureau of Land Management on January 13 released a draft environmental impact statement and plan amendment for the three plans that underlie the DRECP. These changes disregard conservation efforts by supporting massive solar projects, mining and natural resource extraction, rights-of-way, livestock grazing, and off-roading recreation. BLM is also proposing modifications to the California Desert National Conservation Lands to reduce the connections and impede on the wildlife corridors in these areas. This Desert Sun article provides more background and details. Please review the documents in the proposal and let the BLM know what you support and oppose. Public comment can be submitted until April 15, 2021. 
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  • MBCA Joins Request for Desert Conservancy Legislation

    MBCA has joined 13 other conservation-minded organizations in requesting California Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia carry legislation to establish a desert conservancy program in the Wildlife Conservation Board, whose primary purpose is to approve funding for wildlife habitat protection, restoration and wildlife-oriented public access projects. With increased desert tourism and the effects of climate change, additional attention is needed for California deserts. Learn more about the request in the coalition letter sent January 12, 2021.
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  • MBCA Supports Listing the Joshua Tree as Threatened

    Read MBCA's letter to the California Fish & Game Commission supporting the listing of Yucca brevifolia, the western Joshua tree, as a threatened species. For background see our recent News Update on the topic and the second item in the June 8 EBlast.
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  • MBCA Urges Funding for Mojave Trails Acquisition

    MBCA has forwarded a letter of support to U.S. Interior Secretary Bernhardt and California Bureau of Land Management Director Karen Mouritsen for the BLM to acquire Land and Water Conservation Fund resources for purchasing lands within the Mojave Trails National Monument. The LCWF provides grants for federal-state partnerships for conservation and public recreation projects. The 6,213 acres of interest in the Mojave Trails National Monument contain cultural sites and are part of important habitat linkages.
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  • New Petition Filed for Joshua Tree Protection

    Joshua_Trees___snowy_Mt.SanG.jpgThe Desert Sun reports that the Center for Biological Diversity recently filed a petition with the state's Fish and Game Commission for protection of the Western Joshua Tree from climate change by listing it as a threatened species under the California Endangered Species Act. The news article provides scientific and political background on the issue. The Commission has 10 days to certify the petition and send it to the Department of Fish and Wildlife, which then has 90 days to provide an initial recommendation. Here is the LA Times story on this topic.
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  • Concern about Tortoises in Joshua Tree National Park

    tortoise.jpgThe Los Angeles Times published a comprehensive article on the status of tortoises in Joshua Tree National Park. The reduction in numbers over past decades, and especially the deaths of a number of female tortoises in the southern area of the Park in recent years is of concern. The scientists interviewed share data and hypotheses about the current and future status of the Park icon. 

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  • National Monuments Guest Commentary

    pat_photo.jpgA guest commentary by MBCA Director Pat Flanagan on the importance of National Monuments to the County of San Bernardino and its desert communities was published on Wednesday, May 10, 2017.  We have made available a printable version of Pat's commentary or you can view the story on the Sun's website.  

     

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  • Cadiz Water Project Moves a Step Forward

    An administrative move within BLM management at the federal level has reduced the obstacles still in place for the Cadiz Valley Water Conservation, Recovery and Storage Project that seeks to move water from desert aquifers to urban areas of southern California.  This April 5 story by our local radio station includes a map of the Cadiz location, and this LA Times article provides more details.
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  • Turn off lights for Earth Hour

    A worldwide effort to bring attention to environmental issues and climate change is represented by the act of turning off as many of your home lights as possible for one hour, between 8:30 and 9:30 PM, on Saturday, March 25.  Much more information is available on the Earth Hour website.
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  • National Park Proposed Land Transfer

    The Department of the Interior recently announced the latest step in the process of adding about 20,000 acres to Joshua Tree National Park. The "Eagle Mountain Boundary Study" began about two years ago and the current action moves another step toward final action. 

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