Conservation with an Equity Lens
30×30 is an international effort to preserve 30 percent of the Earth’s lands and waters by 2030. It provides a framework for wildlife and conservation efforts and a roadmap to immediately begin addressing the twin crises of extinction and a changing climate.
In 2020, California Governor Newsom signed into law N-82-20, an Executive Order on Biodiversity and Climate Change, with the objective of conserving a minimum of 30 percent of California’s land and waters by 2030. California’s goals for 30×30 offer an integrated path forward that acknowledges biodiversity as essential for human health and climate resilience.
CNPS is part of a coalition of conservation, Indigenous, and environmental justice organizations partnering to ensure that California’s 30×30 plan protects biodiversity and includes everyone in its benefits. The legacy of conservation has often been one of Indigenous erasure and racism, and part of 30×30 is ensuring those who have been excluded from nature’s benefits are provided opportunities to access and participate in the protection and appreciation of biodiversity.
The Biodiversity Initiatives Group at CNPS focuses on stewardship, horticulture, community science, and best practices for ecological land management. In her inaugural blog, Director of Biodiversity Initiatives Andrea Williams writes about how California can address the greatest threats to biodiversity in modern history.
Learning what to save
The state of California lacks adequate plant and vegetation data, which is crucial to have for 30×30. In order to protect the land, we have to know where protection is needed. This year, CNPS completed regional Important Plant Area (IPA) models for the entire state that encompass:
- key vegetation communities
- rare species
- areas and plants of cultural significance
- measures of native plant biodiversity such as native species richness and phyloendemism
- and unique soils, geology, and other abiotic habitat features
Important Plant Areas
Working with science and land-use experts, CNPS is developing an Important Plant Area Model that can guide regional planners as they balance necessary development with plant conservation.
“California is a dynamic place at a time of immense change. The world’s fifth largest economy is home to the nation’s most diverse population of people — and plants and animals.”
-Natural Resources Secretary Wade Crowfoot
“I see success as making 30×30 an open-source movement, where everybody can see themselves as part of it.”
-California Deputy Secretary of Biodiversity and Habitat Jennifer Norris