LA officials want regional ‘connectivity’ for wildlife conservation efforts
Six Los Angeles City Council members introduced a motion Tuesday aimed at creating a Regionwide Wildlife Habitat Connectivity Plan that includes Los Angeles and Ventura counties, noting that “our native wildlife do not abide by jurisdictional boundaries.”
The motion was introduced by councilwomen Nithya Raman and Monica Rodriguez and councilmen Paul Krekorian, Paul Koretz, Mike Bonin and John Lee.
It noted several local and national efforts aimed at conserving wildlife habitat and addressing climate change. Along with the city’s draft Wildlife Ordinance — which aims to promote wildlife habitat and connectivity between the 405 and 101 freeways within the Santa Monica Mountains — the motion noted the state and federal “30% by 2030” conservation preservation plans, Sen. Alex Padilla’s PUBLIC Lands Act and LA and Ventura counties’ wildlife connectivity ordinances.
However, the council members warned that “separate disconnected wildlife preservation efforts run the risk of failure.”
“Indeed, one habitat connectivity blockage can spoil the entire enterprise. An interconnected regional effort is essential for this work to succeed. The city of Los Angeles should thus partner and coordinate with neighboring jurisdictions to pool resources, staff, funding and expertise to ensure that our wildlife connectivity efforts are themselves connected,” the motion added.
If passed, the motion would instruct LA Sanitation and Environment, the LASAN Biodiversity Expert Council and the Department of City Planning to participate in meetings with local and regional jurisdictions and conservation and environmental justice groups to share best practices, information and resources to create a Regionwide Wildlife Habitat Connectivity Plan that includes Los Angeles and Ventura counties, connecting the Rim of the Valley, the Los Angeles River, the Verdugo Mountains, the Arroyo Seco and the San Gabriel Mountains and more.
The motion also seeks an expanded draft Wildlife Ordinance in the city of Los Angeles to cover more areas, including the Rim of the Valley areas within the city.
The motion will first be reviewed by the Energy, Climate Change, Environmental Justice and River Committee before heading to the full City Council.