EBCNPS commented on the Draft Subtidal Habitat Goals Plan which was released in the summer of 2010.  The public comment period has now closed and here are the comments EBCNPS presented to the coalition of groups leading this important effort.  This project is an interagency partnership between the San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission (BCDC), the California Coastal Conservancy, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and the San Francisco Estuary Partnership.

Subtidal by Minette Layne

Subtidal by Minette Layne

The Subtidal Goals document presents up-to-date information on the status of the important Bay Area shoreline resources which are often overlooked in local and regional conservation efforts.  The exhaustive work on eelgrass beds is exceptionally important.  Notably, the document indicates that there is a direct correlation between human impacts and eelgrass bed health.  This conclusion brings to light the need for a marine reserve to protect the few remaining eelgrass resources since it is clear that increased impacts to these resources will only further deteriorate their health.

We hope this document will be instructive in projects like the Russell City Energy Center and the Point Molate Casino, both of which are located upstream of some of the highly restricted eelgrass beds of the SF Bay.

Map of the current distribution of SF Bay eelgrass beds and known stressors