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About Santa Monica Bay and the SMBRP

An Overview of Santa Monica Bay
About the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Project (SMBRP)
SMBRP Management Structure
Major Accomplishments of the SMBRP
SMBRP -- List of Publications
Reaching the SMBRP

Exploring Santa Monica Bay

The Bay and its Watershed
      --How water travels through the watershed and arrives in the Bay

The Bay and its Ecosystems
      --Bay species and their habitats

Human Impacts on the Bay
      --How humans have affected the Bay

Play in the Bay
    --Recreational uses of Santa Monica Bay

Restoring the Bay

Citizen Actions for Bay Restoration
      --What you can do to restore the Bay

Government Actions for Bay Restoration
      --Science, research and public outreach programs

Cheap greenhouse
    --Annoucements, new releases, meeting schedules

The Southern California Boater's Guide

Download any section of the SMBRP's Southern Califorina Boater's Guide by

About the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Project

The SMBRP is a coalition of environmentalists, government, scientists, business and the public that was formed in 1988 to develop a Santa Monica Bay Restoration Plan. One of the first among 27 National Estuary Programs nationwide, the SMBRP is funded by the US Environmental Protection Agency, the State of California, and the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Foundation. Its mission has been to create a comprehensive plan to ensure the long-term health of Santa Monica Bay, the 266-square mile body of water located adjacent to the heavily urbanized, second most populous region in the United States. Approved by Governor Pete Wilson in December 1994, and by US EPA Administrator Carol Browner in March 1995, implementation of the Bay Restoration Plan is now underway.

SMBRP Management Structure

Prior to the creation of the SMBRP, a number of disparate municipal, state and federal agencies were charged with monitoring Bay conditions. However, no single entity had the authority to solely address and resolve these issues. To fulfill its responsibility, the SMBRP convened a Management Conference organized into three committees, comprised of a unique and diverse coalition of people committed to restoring the Bay. The Management Conference included: The Technical Advisory Committee
Scientific and technical professionals. Its role was to ensure that the MC had the necessary scientific and technical information on which to base its decision-making.The Public Advisory Committee
Included interested members of the public -- such as user groups (e.g., surfers and anglers) -- and provided guidance on educating and involving the public in Bay-related activities.As the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Project moved into implementation of actions identified in the Bay Restoration Plan, a new management structure emerged to oversee implementation progress. This three-tiered management structure includes: The Steering Committee
The Steering Committee is a smaller working group of the BWC and consists of 12 members representing federal, state and local government agencies, environmental groups, dischargers, resource agencies, business and the four chairs of the implementation committees (see below). This group meets monthly to evaluate the progress of implementation committees and reports to the Bay Watershed Council.The Watershed Management Implementation Committees (WMICs)
The WMICs include Malibu Creek and Santa Monica Mountains Watersheds; Ballona Creek and Other Urban Watersheds; Communications; and the Technical Advisory Committee. These four committees are responsible for overseeing day-to-day implementation activities and report to the Steering Committee on progress. Membership is open to all stakeholders and interested parties.

Why a Plan is Needed

In order to restore and protect the Bay, a plan is needed -- the Bay Restoration Plan (BRP) --not only to guide recovery efforts, but also to serve as a road map for dealing with management issues on a watershed basis. The BRP addresses four fundamental questions:
  1. How safe is it to swim in Santa Monica Bay?
  2. How safe is it eat Bay seafood?
  3. Are fisheries and other living resources in the Bay adequately protected?
  4. Is the health of the Bay adequately protected?
The BRP also addresses these management issues:
  1. Interagency coordination;
  2. Resolving conflict or redundant resource management approaches among various agencies;
  3. Resolving conflicting policies between jurisdictions; and
  4. Financing the Bay's restoration and resource management efforts.

Major Accomplishments of the SMBRP

In addition to developing the Bay Restoration Plan, the SMBRP has undertaken a number of significant projects and programs that support and further the goals of Bay restoration and protection. The SMBRP:

Santa Monica Bay Restoration Project

320 W. Fourth Street, 2nd Floor
Los Angeles, CA 90013

Phone: 213/576-6615
Fax: 213/576-6646

To reach us via email,
or use our staff directoryto contact a specific staff member.

Overview of Santa Monica Bay

Santa Monica Bay is one of the country's most important natural resources, providing the two million-plus humans who live in its watershed with a mild climate, aesthetic beauty, recreation, food, fresh oxygen, and commercial opportunities. It teems with life, serving as home to over 5000 species of birds, fish, mammals, plants and other wildlife -- some of the largest and smallest organisms on Earth.

Its 50 miles of coastline, with 22 separate public beaches, provide recreational opportunities for an estimated 45 million visitors each year -- more than 500,000 a day at the height of summer. The Bay and its environs also provide essential habitat for a number of migratory waterfowl and shorebirds, as well as for threatened and endangered species. The Bay's intertidal areas (rocky shores and tidepools) are home to a multitude of small fishes, invertebrates, and other organisms.

Santa Monica Bay's natural boundaries extend from Point Dume to Palos Verdes Point. However, for the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Project (SMBRP) study purposes, the Bay has been defined as extending from the Ventura-Los Angeles County Line (west of Point Dume) to Point Fermin (south of Palos Verdes Point), and offshore to water depths of about 1,650 feet.



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