Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument Expanded

On Thursday, May 2nd, President Joe Biden expanded two national monuments in California following calls from tribal nations, Indigenous community leaders, and others like the Mayacamas to Berryessa Connectivity Network (M2B) for the permanent protection of nearly 120,000 acres (48,562 hectares) of important cultural and environmental land. As part of this expansion, the Berryessa Snow Mountain National Monument in Sacramento will now include Molok Luyuk, or Condor Ridge. “Most of this expansion aligns with the area we identified as a key climate corridor,” says Dr. Morgan Gray, Pepperwood’s Conservation Analyst, “this is a win for wildlife movement and climate resilience.” Not to mention Indigenous leadership, the newly renamed Molok Luyuk ridgeline has been significant to tribal nations such as the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation for thousands of years.

This climate-wise move, part of the “America the Beautiful” initiative, launched in 2021, also contributes to the 30×30 vision of conserving 30% of our lands and waters by 2030. The image below shows the expansion alongside the climate-wise corridor proposed by M2B, of which Pepperwood is a Steering Committee member and project partner.

M2B emphasized the need to establish successful science-management collaborations and “co-creation” of applied data products and engage conservation users at the project outset. Collaborative partnerships like M2B can create enduring connections that bridge the gap between connectivity research and implementation. The climate-wise connectivity methods and stakeholder engagement framework used by M2B provide insights that may be applied elsewhere to advance landscape-scale resilience to climate change while meeting objectives around justice, human well-being, and ecological health.

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