A greener Bay could run up a hefty bill

Restoring 36,000 acres of shoreline property in the Bay Area can be achieved in the next 50 years, but it will take a parcel tax or bond for the $1.43 billion needed to pay for the massive project, an environmental group said in a report released Tuesday.

Save the Bay, a nonprofit based in Oakland, outlined how shoreline property from Vallejo to San Jose that has already been secured could be restored, but it will take a mighty effort from all nine Bay Area counties. The ambitious project could double the current amount of marshland in the region.

Save the Bay Executive Director David Lewis said there’s a great amount of support for the project, but that a tax or bond is necessary. State and federal agencies have already spent $370 million during the last decade purchasing the land that Save the Bay is trying to restore.

“The polling that we did shows that people actually care a lot about this and understand that it is beneficial and want to see it happen,” Lewis said.

Save they Bay has recommended forming a new special district that would include most of the Bay Area and would oversee the wetland restoration funding.

The district would be able to propose taxes to state and federal governments.

The actual restoration would mostly involve putting holes in dykes to allow tides to flow through the appropriate areas.

Results would be visible within a few years.

The funding whould support restoration through the next 50 years. Much of the cost would be spent on several reports, permits and other forms necessary for the project, Lewis said.

“It is one of the largest restoration projects ever attempted — certainly the largest on the West Coast,” he said.

Just 5 percent of the Bay’s original marshland remains; the restoration project would double that. Most of the Bay’s old wetlands were drained and buildings were erected in their place.

mrosenberg@examiner.com

Bay Area NewsLocal

If you find our journalism valuable and relevant, please consider joining our Examiner membership program.
Find out more at www.sfexaminer.com/join/

Just Posted

Breed, Walton test negative for COVID-19 after exposure to the virus

Mayor London Breed announced Thursday she tested negative for COVID-19 after notified… Continue reading

‘No timetable’ for cable car return, SFMTA says

How the temporary absence of cable cars means more than just a loss of transit routes

As city schools weigh reopening, doubts about safety dominate conversations with teachers

‘If I don’t feel safe as an educator, how am I going to be prepared to teach?’

Supreme Court deals Trump a defeat, upholds demand for his tax returns

By David G. Savage Los Angeles Times The Supreme Court dealt President… Continue reading

Breed’s bond for parks and homelessness gains support as it grows by nearly $50M

Renovation of Chinatown’s Portsmouth Square added to proposal

Most Read