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Santa Monica Baykeeper Charity Profile
Founded in 1993, the Santa Monica Baykeeper's mission is to protect and restore the Santa Monica Bay, San Pedro Bay and adjacent waters through enforcement, fieldwork, and community action. We work to achieve this goal through litigation and regulatory programs that ensure water quality protections in waterways throughout L.A. County
The Santa Monica Baykeeper established the Kelp Restoration and Monitoring Project to restore the giant kelp beds in Santa Monica Bay. During the last one-hundred years, close to 90% of the giant kelp canopies off southern California’s coast disappeared.
Similar to tropical coral reefs, giant kelp forests support a wide array of life and are one of the most biodiverse communities known to exist in our world’s oceans. One-fourth of California marine organisms depend on the kelp forests for some part of their life journey, including the threatened bocaccio, giant black sea bass, and the few remaining sea otters.
The Kelp Project relies on volunteer divers from local communities, who assist in research, monitoring and restoration of historic kelp beds off of Malibu and the Palos Verdes Peninsula. Since the project’s inception in 1996, thousands of hours have been donated by volunteer divers. The direct results of these efforts are the restoration of thousands of square meters of kelp forest, a better understanding of the status of the nearshore habitat of Santa Monica Bay and the first steps towards the widespread recovery of our coastal kelp forest.
Santa Monica Baykeeper monitors pollution problems from inland communities in streams, rivers, wetlands, and estuaries. We have an active volunteer corps comprised of more than 150 active volunteers at any given time. These volunteers are trained to help collect water quality data to identify areas that are contributing pollution to streams, wetlands, and ultimately the ocean.
In addition, Baykeeper volunteers actively work to fix problems identified by our monitoring activities. Volunteers participate in monthly restoration activities such as removing invasive plants and planting appropriate native plants to minimize erosion and water pollution, and improve natural habitat for wildlife. Baykeeper volunteers also work monthly to remove litter and trash from Lincoln Boulevard, one of the busiest streets in southern California. Trash and litter is removed from the street before it enters are waterways. Baykeeper and our volunteer army conduct special restoration projects such as retiring abandoned roads that pollute our waters by causing erosion and extra runoff to enter local waterways.
Santa Monica Baykeeper is under contract with the Resource Conservation District of the Santa Monica Mountains to help manage the Malibu Lagoon Restoration Project. We help secure permits, manage contractors, and supervise construction and monitoring activities, to ensure that the sensitive natural resources are protected and the restoration project meets the goals of improved habitat and water quality. Phase 1 of the Lagoon Restoration, the construction of a Low Impact Development (LID) green parking lot has already been completed.
Santa Monica Baykeeper Volunteer Information
We have many volunteer opportunities available.