Conserving the Nature of America
Press Release
Final Habitat Conservation Plan to Address Orange County Transportation Projects Released

March 31, 2017

Contact(s):

Jane Hendron ,760-431-9440 ext. 205; Jane_hendron@fws.gov


Views of ocean and mountains.

Habitat acquisition as part of Orange County Transportation Authority's Habitat Conservation Plan, 151-acre property in Laguna Beach, adjacent to Aliso and Wood Canyons Wilderness Park and Moulton Meadows Park. Credit: OCTA

Carlsbad, Calif – A Final Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) that balances transportation infrastructure and wildlife conservation in Orange County, California, is now available for public review.  The final HCP and environmental documents released today cover Orange County Transportation Authority’s (OCTA) proposed 40-year permit for transportation projects.

The Final HCP proposes to cover 13 listed and unlisted species of wildlife and plants that would be affected by transportation improvement projects in Orange County, California. Copies of the Final HCP and Environmental Impact Report and Environmental Impact Statement are available for review and comment until May 1, 2017.

“The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is dedicated to the idea of achieving conservation through partnerships and finding common ground,” says Paul Souza, Regional Director, Pacific Southwest Region. “This HCP provides important conservation for our native species while ensuring Orange County can meet its transportation needs.”

OCTA’s Final HCP would accommodate more than a dozen freeway projects designed to reduce congestion and improve traffic flow throughout Orange County.

“This environmental plan reflects years of strong collaboration between transportation and environmental leaders to accomplish two things – efficiently moving forward on improving our freeways while at the same time protecting the habitat and wildlife that make Orange County so special. We’re proud of the results,” said OCTA Director Lori Donchak, who also chairs the Environmental Oversight Committee. 

Species proposed for coverage by the Final HCP include the federally threatened coastal California gnatcatcher, and the endangered least Bell’s vireo and southwestern willow flycatcher.

Copies of the Final HCP and Environmental Impact Statement and Environmental Impact Report are available on the web at https://www.fws.gov/carlsbad/HCPs/HCP_Docs.html.

You can also obtain copies of the documents by contacting the Carlsbad Fish and Wildlife Office at 760-431-9440.

The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals, and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov.cno. Connect with our Facebook page at http://www.facebook.com/usfwspacificsouthwest, follow our tweets at http://twitter.com/USFWSPacSWest, watch our YouTube Channel at http://www.youtube.com/usfws and download photos from our Flickr page at http://www.flickr.com/photos/usfws_pacificsw/

                                                                                                                     -FWS- 


The mission of the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is working with others to conserve, protect, and enhance fish, wildlife, plants, and their habitats for the continuing benefit of the American people. We are both a leader and trusted partner in fish and wildlife conservation, known for our scientific excellence, stewardship of lands and natural resources, dedicated professionals, and commitment to public service. For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit www.fws.gov.

For more information on our work and the people who make it happen, visit http://www.fws.gov/. Connect with our Facebook page, follow our tweets, watch our YouTube Channel and download photos from our Flickr page.