ENGAGE and EMPOWER all Californians to sustain our natural places and common home

We are working to engage our entire community in the appreciation, celebration and stewardship of biological diversity. We seek to harness the genius of human capital, the influence of our research institutions and the creativity of the state’s technological leadership to build partnerships that embrace tribes, local and traditional knowledge, and our diverse next generation.

Our efforts will spark collaboration and stewardship, and help mobilize action across all communities and generations across and beyond California.

The California Natural Resources Agency is taking immediate action to support the goal of engaging and empowering all communities in the protection of biological diversity. These include:

Citizens of the Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation conducting rocky intertidal monitoring on California’s North Coast. Photo: Tribal Intertidal Digital Ecological Surveys (TIDES) project.

Citizens of the Tolowa Dee-ni’ Nation conducting rocky intertidal monitoring on California’s North Coast. Photo: Tribal Intertidal Digital Ecological Surveys (TIDES) project.

Tribal Marine Stewards Network Pilot Program – Indigenous peoples are the original stewards of California’s coastal and marine biodiversity. In June 2020, the California Ocean Protection Council and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife partnered with the California Indian Environmental Alliance and four California Tribes to launch a statewide Tribal Marine Stewards Network pilot program, rooted in shared ocean and coastal monitoring priorities between Tribes and the State. As part of this program, Tribal citizens will conduct on-the-ground research and monitoring activities (e.g. monitoring of culturally important species or locations, monitoring of human uses, water quality sampling, collection of Indigenous Traditional Knowledge), conduct outreach to the broader Tribal community, share data and knowledge with State partners as appropriate, and create a plan for scaling up the pilot program. This pioneering effort will significantly advance California’s efforts to engage and empower Tribes, support indigenous stewardship, and adopt meaningful co-management measures.

San Vicente Redwoods Public Access Trails
The 8500-acre San Vicente Redwoods in Santa Cruz county is located in a biodiversity hotspot with intact wildlife communities. This project provides needed public access to nature, while protecting ecosystems and working lands, and providing robust management and planning to ensure all conservation values are protected. Public access at this important site provides recreational opportunities of statewide significance. The project is building 10 miles of trails including an accessible trail, eleven trail bridges, interpretive and wayfinding signage, and a gravel-surfaced parking area and restrooms. Trails will traverse 2100 vertical feet, with sweeping ocean views, cascading streams, redwood canyons, and entrancing oak-madrone woodlands. At buildout, 100,000 visitors per year are expected to enjoy hiking, mountain biking, horseback riding and dog walking. Project partners expect visitation by a broad array of enthusiasts for nature-based recreation.

The following represents a small subset of programs that seek to engage and empower Californians in biodiversity conservation. We will add to this list as the Collaborative develops new partnerships and grows our network.

The California Landscape Stewardship Network brings together those working in landscape stewardship to help to create a California where everyone sees and embraces their role in caring for and sustaining the landscapes that are vital to our collective well-being.

The California Association of Resource Conservation Districts supports thriving local communities, landscapes, and economies by working with Resource Conservation Districts, state and federal agencies, policy makers, and individuals to ensure the resilience and health of California’s water, soil, wildlife habitat, and other natural resources today and for generations to come.

The Center for Land-Based Learning seeks to inspire, educate, and cultivate future generations of farmers, agricultural leaders, and natural resource stewards by cultivating opportunity for youth, agriculture, business, and the environment.

eBird is among the world’s largest biodiversity-related science projects, with more than 100 million bird sightings contributed each year by eBirders around the world. A collaborative enterprise with hundreds of partner organizations, thousands of regional experts, and hundreds of thousands of users, eBird is managed by the Cornell Lab of Ornithology.

iNaturalist, one of the world’s most popular nature apps, helps you identify the plants, animals, and other living things around you. Get connected with a community of over a million scientists and naturalists who can help you learn more about nature! What’s more, by recording and sharing your observations, you’ll create research quality data for scientists working to better understand and protect nature. iNaturalist is a joint initiative by the California Academy of Sciences and the National Geographic Society

Latino Outdoors inspires, connects, and engages Latino communities in the outdoors and embraces cultura y familia as part of the outdoor narrative, ensuring Latino history, heritage, and leadership are valued and represented.

Outdoor Afro is the nation’s leading, cutting edge network that celebrates and inspires Black connections and leadership in nature. They connect thousands of people to outdoor experiences, helping lead the way for inclusion in outdoor recreation, nature, and conservation for all.

Parks Online Resources for Teachers and Students (PORTS) program provides FREE live interactive videoconference programs, also known as virtual field trips. K-12 students from California and around the world are connecting with live State Park Interpreters and learning academic content standards within the context of California’s dynamic state park system. The primary focus of PORTS are students that have experienced geographic and socio-economic barriers to participate in state park programs, or in current situations like those presented by COVID-19.

The Wild Farm Alliance helps farms thrive by working with nature and supporting farmers’ critical role in reversing biodiversity loss and climate change, by engaging conservationists and consumers to support these efforts.

Youth Outside works to remove the barriers that have historically prevented communities from accessing meaningful experiences in nature and professional opportunities in the outdoor sector. They believe that participating in outdoor programming offers those who have been most impacted by racial injustice a powerful source of healing and growth.