La Jolla Light: ReWild Mission Bay chosen as primary regional wetlands project

Published July 2015 by the San Diego Community Newspaper Group

San Diego Audubon’s ReWild Mission Bay recently became one of three projects chosen to spearhead wetlands restoration in the San Diego region. As it adopted a resolution to prioritize the protection and restoration of San Diego’s wetlands, the San Diego Regional Water Quality Control Board selected the group for the project’s goal to restore and expand more than 150 acres of precious wetlands in the northeast corner of Mission Bay.

The action solidified the water board’s stated commitment to prioritizing regionwide restoration of one of Southern California’s most threatened and important habitats, designed to ensure completion of the ReWild project and survival of Mission Bay’s wetlands.

With ReWild Mission Bay, San Diego Audubon is facilitating a three-year planning process that includes collecting community input and conceptualizing plans to restore the wetlands along Pacific Beach Drive and on both sides of Rose Creek. By May of 2017, this process should yield at least three versions of a community-informed, scientifically defensible wetlands restoration plan for the northeast corner of Mission Bay. Once the City of San Diego approves a plan, permitting and ultimately restoration of the area’s wetlands are expected to ensue.

“Healthy wetlands keep our communities beautiful, preserve habitat for local wildlife and provide clean water for all of us. Healthy wetlands preserve the San Diego way of life we all treasure,” said Rebecca Schwartz, project manager for ReWild Mission Bay. “Over the next two years, ReWild will work with partners, stakeholders and the community to develop a series of plans that will keep Mission Bay healthy and thriving for years to come.”

Wetlands, including marshes, mud flats, riverbanks and more, play an important role in San Diego’s quality of life, as they attract wildlife, foster a diverse ecosystem, improve water quality and protect communities from flooding by providing a cushion during high tides. Today, only 5 percent of the historic 4,000 acres of Mission Bay wetlands remain, making ReWild Mission Bay a critical and time-sensitive project for the area.

Focused on community input, San Diego Audubon encourages engagement in educational workshops and public meetings to ensure community input shapes the project and results in at least three restoration plans by May of 2017.

Other projects identified in the June 24 decision include the Brown Fill Property Restoration Project for the Tijuana River Valley and the San Juan and Trabuco Creek Steelhead Recovery Plan.

For more information on ReWild Mission Bay, visit http://www.rewildmissionbay.org.

Read more: San Diego Community News Group – ReWild Mission Bay chosen as primary regional wetlands project