Critical Issues

Forest Health

Sterling Forest property, a preserve of Montery Pine and coast live oak

Greenspace monitors the health of the threatened native Monterey pines and the coastal live oaks on our several forested properties. The Cambria forest faces challenges as climate-change-driven drought and consequent disease and infestations take a toll, particularly on Monterey pines. 

Water Resources

Pacific Ocean in Cambria, CA

Two watersheds serve the community of Cambria, Santa Rosa Creek and San Simeon Creek. Presently, commercial and residential water is drawn from wells drilled by the Cambria Community Services District into the groundwater basins of both these creeks. These basins are shallow and dependent on seasonal rainfall for recharge. Population growth in Cambria from the 1970s forward severe periodic droughts, and issues between the District and upstream water right holders have indicated a need for additional water resources for several years. 

Coastal Creeks

Santa Rosa Creek

Cambria relies on two major watersheds for water—Santa Rosa Creek and San Simeon Creek. The health of both are impacted by development, water extraction, ranching and farming and management practices. Greenspace has been the advocate for watershed planning on both San Simeon and Santa Rosa Creeks. Greenspace advocates for future  San Simeon Creek watershed planning which requires cooperation among all stakeholders and agencies, in order to protect the habitat and lagoon. 

Planning & Management

Santa Rosa Creek Watershed

In 2010, Greenspace received a major grant from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife to develop a technically sound plan to address the strategic and scientific needs for watershed management, restoration planning and steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss) recovery in the Santa Rosa Creek watershed, which includes the town of Cambria and nearby agricultural holdings. The objectives of the SRCWMP are to assess existing creek conditions, prioritize limiting factors for steelhead, and identify and prioritize restoration recommendations to address these limiting factors, and improve physical functions and ecological conditions in the watershed.

Published in 2012, the SRCWMP provides a prioritized list of projects for creek health improvement. We continue to seek funding to implement the most urgent of these projects, including a population count and life cycle study for steelhead, instream flow studies and habitat restoration.

Resources & Archives

selling Monterey pine seedlings

Documents are available here for download as primary source material for better understanding the environmental issues that are critical to the SLO County North Coast area. They include public records of state agency reports and correspondence, Greenspace advocacy documents and resource management plans. Please feel free to use them for research. We only ask that you provide clear citations in any articles, correspondence, academic papers or publications. Thank you.