Delta tunnel project to receive endangered species grant

Published: Wednesday, Aug. 15, 2012 - 12:00 am | Page 2B
Last Modified: Wednesday, Sep. 12, 2012 - 9:07 am

California will receive $11 million in federal grants to acquire habitat and plan more protections for wildlife.

The grants were announced Tuesday morning by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service from funds held by the Cooperative Endangered Species Conservation Fund, one of the functions of the federal Endangered Species Act.

The money coming to California represents one-third of a total of $33 million awarded to 21 states.

The only project in the Sacramento area to receive funding is the Bay Delta Conservation Plan. Led by the California Natural Resources Agency, the plan aims to restore habitat in the Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta and improve the reliability of water supplies diverted from the estuary.

The plan includes a controversial diversion tunnel system on the Sacramento River.

The Bay Delta Conservation Plan will receive $640,575 from the federal grant program to help complete a habitat conservation plan.

Other grants in the region include $1 million to purchase wildlife habitat in East Contra Costa County and $750,000 to purchase a conservation easement on the Kelsey Ranch in Merced County.

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