Three projects are currently proposed for development in the Natomas Basin:
- South Airport Industrial
- Upper West Side
- Grand Park
All of them are located outside of Sacramento County’s Urban Services Boundary (USB).
Consider this important paragraph in the County’s General Plan, Land Use Element, Amended October 6, 2020:
The Urban Policy Area and the Urban Services Boundary are the “backbone of Sacramento County’s urban planning philosophy . . . intended to protect the County’s natural resources from urban encroachment, as well as to limit costly sprawling development patterns. . . the USB is intended to be a permanent boundary. . .”
The sites for all three projects total several thousand acres and are zoned agricultural in the County’s General Plan.
None of the sites is in an area permitted for development under the Natomas Basin Conservancy Habitat Conservation Plan (NBHCP). See the map: https://natomasbasin.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/01/TNBC-BaseMap-2023.pdf
The NBHCP was adopted in November 1997, revised in 2003. It was designed to promote biological conservation along with economic development and continuation of agriculture in the Natomas Basin. The federal- and state-listed species protected by the NBHCP are described here: https://natomasbasin.org/education/the-nbhcp-species/
If the three projects are built, the remaining land will be inadequate for viable habitat, the protected species will be diminished, and the NBHCP will fail.
This will be a significant planning failure for the Sacramento region, subverting local, regional, and state goals for biodiversity and climate. Specifically, failure of the NBHCP will undercut the City of Sacramento’s goals for greenhouse gas emission reduction and climate adaptation (2012 Climate Action Plan) and the State of California’s goal of conserving 30 percent of our lands and coastal waters by 2030 (30×30 California – Accelerating Conservation of California’s Nature.)
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