California Mitigation Requires an Ecosystem Based Metric and Credit ~ No Longer Business As Usual

If you need an ecosystem mitigation assessment to determine mitigation credit(s), then use the Habitat Institute’s Combined Habitat Assessment Protocols (CHAP). CHAP uses a habitat and biodiversity valuing system to determine baseline conditions, impacts, mitigation and future conditions. In so doing it addresses the recent changes made to the California Fish & Wildlife Code by Assembly Bill 2402 [Sept. 2012] and 2087 [Nov. 2017.]

State of California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) is mandated to use an ecosystem based management approach to decision making for all resource management decisions [Assembly Bill 2402, Section 10, 703.3 9/25/2012]. Further, the California Assembly passed Bill 2087 [November 2017] defines mitigation metrics and mitigation credits. This later legislation amends California  Fish & Wildlife Code 1854 (e) as follows, “the department [CDFW] shall require the use of consistent metrics that incorporate both area and quality of habitat and other natural resource [values] to measure the net change resulting from the implementation of conservation actions and habitat enhancement actions.” and  also amends California Fish & Wildlife Code 1856 (a)  by stating under mitigation credit agreements, “conservation action or habitat enhancement actions…may be used to create mitigation credits that can be used to compensate for impacts to focal species and other species, habitat and other natural resources.”  By so doing, these changes link the mitigation metric to the mitigation credit to an ecosystem management approach.