Carbon Sequestration Efforts
Protecting the Lands You Love
In last year’s spring issue of Saving Land Magazine, Kelly Watkinson, Land and Climate Program Manager at the Land Trust Alliance, said, “Land trust work is more vital than ever, because improved conservation, restoration, and land management actions enhance the capacity of natural systems to absorb and hold carbon.”
Big Sur Land Trust’s team is continually thinking about how our projects relate to the challenges presented by climate change. And we agree that carbon sequestration can help. By removing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and releasing oxygen, trees and plants clean the air. They also release unnecessary carbon compounds through their roots. Then these compounds feed organisms in the soil. The storage of carbon in soil is a form of carbon sequestration that can make soil healthier. BSLT’s projects with potential carbon sequestration benefits include:
- Carr Lake Native Garden Demonstration Project. Our community volunteers are planting and caring for trees and perennial native plants. This thriving and ever-expanding garden is helping to sequester carbon in the soil. Want to be part of the solution? Join us at our next community planting day on November 9th or come to our Carr Lake community meeting on November 20th.
- Native Plant Community Restoration at Glen Deven Ranch. BSLT staff and volunteers are actively restoring areas of the ranch by planting redwood trees, shrub and forb species, and native perennial grasses. Planting vegetation and encouraging the regrowth of the coastal scrub also promotes carbon sequestration.
- Conservation Grazing at Marks Ranch and Arroyo Seco Ranch. Rotational grazing practices mitigate the effects of over-grazing that are common with traditional agriculture practices. Allowing pastures to “rest” and recover from grazing and shifting grazing to other areas encourages the resilience of perennial grasses instead of introduced annual grasses. Rotating cattle also reduces soil compaction and allows vegetation to grow, reducing the risk of bare, infertile ground. Rotational grazing can assist with fire fuels reduction and removal of invasive plant species that threaten native plant biodiversity. And, very importantly, conservation grazing is a strategy that encourages resilience in the face of climate change by supporting healthy soils, carbon storage, and biodiversity.
- Mitteldorf Preserve. Following the fire at Mitteldorf Preserve, volunteers and staff planted redwoods in the fire footprint at Mitteldorf Preserve to restore the redwood forest community. Staff has also monitored vegetation regrowth following the fire and actively monitors and treats invasive plant species that were introduced during fire suppression activities. Invasive species treatment protects biodiversity and native plant community resilience which also promotes carbon sequestration.
Our stewardship crew is also working to improve forest stands at Mitteldorf through ecological thinning. In this process, some trees are carefully selected for removal to promote uneven-aged stands. These efforts create a more vigorous forest, promote complex wildlife habitat, and reduce wildfire risk by increasing the amount of available groundwater and decreasing fuels.
Carr Lake Community Planting Day
Saturday, November 9
10:00 AM – 1:00 PM
Our community volunteers are planting and caring for trees and perennial native plants. This thriving and ever-expanding garden is helping to sequester carbon in the soil which can help lessen the effects of climate change.
Want to be part of the solution? Join us at our next community planting day on Saturday, November 9th. Register here.
Carmel River FREE Tour
Friday, November 15
9:30 AM – 12:00 PM
BSLT will lead an informational tour of the site for the Carmel River Floodplain Restoration and Environmental Enhancement (Carmel River FREE) Project.
The tour is a moderate 2.5-mile walk from the Monterey Peninsula Regional Park District’s (MPRPD) Discovery Center to Palo Corona’s front ranch trails. Join us to envision the floodplain restoration of the former Odello agriculture fields as BSLT’s 128-acre property is transformed in the coming years. Register here.
Guided Trail Run at Marks Ranch
Sunday, November 17
8:00 AM – 10:00 AM
Come run at Marks Ranch and get a glimpse of what the trails look like before BSLT’s Race for Open Space happens in the spring. Kick-off your Sunday morning with a 3.5-mile or 6-mile elevationally-challenging run. BSLT staff and volunteers will guide small groups at varying paces and distances.
Space is limited to those who have reserved a spot online. Register here.
Help Design a Park
Wednesday, November 20
6:00 PM – 8:00 PM
Sherwood Hall, Salinas
Join us at our community meeting for a presentation of new design ideas for our 73-acre site at Carr Lake! We’ll be asking you to share your views afterwards.
Childcare will be available, and food will be served at 5:30 p.m. An RSVP is appreciated but not required.
Please either call 831-625-5523 or RSVP here.
Support the Lands You Love!
Help us protect more lands, restore more habitats, and share the joy of open space. We have raised $6.5 million toward our Campaign for the Lands You Love $7 million goal! Learn more and watch our video featuring breathtaking landscapes throughout Monterey County.