San Dieguito Wetlands Restoration Project

Type: report

Article abstract: BACKGROUND Southern California Edison Company (SCE) is the majority owner and operator of the San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (SONGS). The California Coastal Commission (CCC) issued a Coastal Development Permit (No. 6-81-330-A3, as amended; formerly permit No. 183-73) for the construction of SONGS Units 2 & 3 with the condition that SCE fund the independent evaluation of the impacts of SONGS' on the marine environment. The Coastal Development Permit (Permit) further requires that SCE mitigate any significant adverse impacts. The CCC determined that SONGS adversely impacted bightwide fish stocks and required SCE to mitigate those losses. As partial satisfaction of the mitigation requirements, SCE was required to create or substantially restore at least 150 acres of wetlands in Southern California. After considering the results of a site-selection study that included an evaluation of eight potential sites throughout Southern California, the CCC concluded that the San Dieguito Lagoon (SDL) in Del Mar offered the best opportunity for achieving the full objectives set forth in the Permit. A public working group consisting of resource agency representatives, non-governmental organizations, and interested members of the public worked together to develop a reasonable range of practicable alternatives for restoration of the SDL. As required by the Permit, SCE submitted a Preliminary Restoration Plan for restoration of SDL to the CCC in September 1997. Following CCC approval of the Preliminary Restoration Plan in November 1997, the wetland restoration project entered the environmental review process pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) and the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA). The San Dieguito River Park Joint Powers Authority (JPA) took the role of state lead agency under CEQA and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) took the role of federal lead agency under NEPA. The JPA incorporated the SCE wetland restoration project into their overall Open Space Park Project (Park Project) for the San Dieguito River Valley area. A joint environmental impact report/environmental impact statement (EIR/S) was prepared for the entire San Dieguito Wetlands Restoration (Restoration Project) component of the Park Project, which includes the following elements: (1) creation or substantial restoration of 150 acres of tidal wetlands to fulfill SCE's SONGS Permit requirement, (2) restoration of additional wetlan

Number of pages: 265

Month: November

Year: 2005

Prepared for: California Coastal Commission;

Prepared by: Southern California Edison Company;

Keywords: San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station (SONGS); wetlands;