Sustainable Watershed Systems: New California law recognizes meadows, streams as green infrastructure

Re-Thinking Water Infrastructure

In October 2016, and with the state entering its sixth year of drought, Gov. Jerry Brown last month signed a landmark law, Assembly Bill 2480, declaring that “source watersheds are recognized and defined as integral components of California’s water infrastructure.”

“In so doing, he made it possible to funnel billions of dollars in infrastructure finance towards the restoration of forests and the maintenance of meadows, streams and rivers — echoing a similar move by Peru last year and accelerating a decades-old trend towards the use of ‘natural infrastructure’ to manage water supplies,” wrote Kelli Barrett, Editorial Assistant with Ecosystem Marketplace, in an article written for GreenBiz.

From Concept to Policy

“It’s a major shift in the way we think about conservation — nature isn’t just ‘nice to have’ but an absolutely critical piece of our water infrastructure systems,” said Genevieve Bennett, senior associate at Ecosystem Marketplace and author of the genevieve-bennett_ecosystem-marketplace_120pState of Watershed Investments 2016 report.

“There are hundreds of communities all over the world who understood that years ago, and started figuring out how to make sure they were protecting their water sources. And now we’re starting to see that concept making its way into higher-level policy.”

To Learn More:

Download New law recognizes meadows, streams as green infrastructure to read the complete article by Kelli Barrett as published by GreenBiz.