Public Invited to Community Meeting on East San Pedro Bay Ecosystem Restoration Feasibility Study

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Long Beach has worked with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (Army Corps) for over seven years to advance a feasibility study to restore the East San Pedro Bay. This study was formerly known as the Long Beach Breakwater Study. In 2010, an official determination of “federal interest” was made to move into the feasibility study phase and rename it the East San Pedro Bay Ecosystem Restoration Study (Study). The study has now kicked off officially, and the City is seeking community input on this important issue.

“Over the course of the next three years, the City will work closely with the Army Corps to evaluate ecosystem restoration models, ways to increase tidal circulation, and the potential for improving the user experience in the Bay,” said Mayor Robert Garcia. “This study is an important opportunity for the City, and I want to encourage residents to come out and learn about the process.”

The purpose of the Study is to provide a plan for restoring and improving the aquatic ecosystem structure and function for increased habitat biodiversity within East San Pedro Bay. The Study has two primary objectives: (1) Restore aquatic habitat such as kelp, rocky reef, coastal wetlands and other types of marine life of sufficient quality and quantity to support diverse resident and migratory species, and (2) Improve water circulation sufficient to support and sustain aquatic habitat, within East San Pedro Bay.

The purpose of this first public meeting is for the Army Corps to seek public input on problems, objectives, opportunities and constraints. The Army Corps will also explain the plan formulation process. The meeting is the Army Corps’ official Public Scoping meeting in compliance with NEPA (National Environmental Policy Act) and CEQA (California Environmental Quality Act).

The meeting will be held on Thursday, April 7, 2016 from 2:00 – 4:00 pm and 6:00 – 8:00 pm at Bixby Park Community Center, 130 Cherry Avenue, Long Beach, CA 90802. (The same information will be presented at each meeting; participants only need to attend once.)

“With this study, we have the opportunity to use advances in science and technology to identify an ecosystem restoration solution that can improve the overall health of the East San Pedro Bay, as well as protect our maritime partners at the Port of Long Beach,” said Vice Mayor Suja Lowenthal.

The next opportunity for public comment will be a follow-up participatory workshop to elicit viewpoints on various habitat restoration measures, including breakwater modifications, with key stakeholder groups including residents, ports, marine biologists and surfers. The public’s input will provide valuable insights into the development of potential study solutions. The date, time, and location of this meeting will be made available soon.

“This study will present opportunities to improve the East San Pedro Bay, as well as challenges to ensure that homes and other infrastructure are protected,” said Councilwoman Suzie Price. “I look forward to seeing the data and proposals moving forward with guidance from the experts.”

To receive current information regarding the East San Pedro Bay Ecosystem Restoration Study, sign up for the City of Long Beach’s LinkLB notices at Select the “Bay Restoration” option.

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