PLACERVILLE, 4 March 2011 – Yesterday the Sierra Nevada Conservancy (SNC) Governing Board authorized a $197,592 grant to The Sierra Fund for a collaborative project with California State Parks to complete a Watershed Assessment and Management Plan for Humbug Creek, a tributary to the South Yuba River in Nevada County.
This grant will fund the project team to work with California State Parks to evaluate and make a plan to address turbidity, mercury, and physical hazards associated with historic mining activities in the Humbug Creek watershed. Humbug Creek flows through the popular Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park. Project partners include the South Yuba River Citizens League (SYRCL) and government, community and business advisors with expertise in historic mining-related issues.
“We’re really excited to be working with State Parks on this project,” comments Elizabeth “Izzy” Martin, CEO of The Sierra Fund. “We’re all dealing with how to address mining’s legacy in this region. This project will be a key example of how agencies and organizations can come together in a voluntary way to clean up the mess we were left with. This is a great use of state funds—since there is so much in-kind support of this project, we will get a high-value result for our Park in a very cost-effective way.”
This project was one of 29 grants the Conservancy authorized today at their quarterly Governing Board meeting. SNC awarded a total $10 million in bond-funded watershed conservation grants to organizations and agencies in the Sierra Nevada. These projects “provide jobs and a variety of benefits to the Sierra Nevada Region, including reducing the risk of large damaging fires, restoring meadows, supporting working ranches, and improving water quality,” said SNC Executive Officer Jim Branham. “This work is important to all Californians who enjoy the water, scenic beauty, and other resources the Sierra Nevada provides.”
Nonprofit organizations and government agencies apply for SNC funds through a competitive process. The funds come from Proposition 84 the Safe Drinking Water, Water Quality and Supply, Flood Control, River and Costal Protection Bond Act (2006). Over the past five years, the SNC has already distributed approximately $30 million in Proposition 84 funding. (A listing of project recommendations for the 2010-11 solicitation is included provided here.)