Why the Bay Area is home to one of the most effective carbon sinks in the world

SF Chronicle

Tara Duggan

Knightsten Elementary School students look out onto the Dutch Slough, a restored wetlands area near Oakley in Contra Costa County. It’s one of the most effective carbon sinks in the world, according to UC Berkeley scientists. Jessica Christian/The Chronicle

River Partners couldn’t be happier to see these incredible results from Dutch Slough, where we restored native plants such as tule for the freshwater tidal marsh alongside our partners at the California Department of Water Resources.

Excerpt from the SF Chronicle:

“One of the most efficient carbon sinks in the world is in Contra Costa County — and it promises a way to help California meet ambitious climate goals.

Dutch Slough, a restored wetland in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta near the town of Oakley, stores carbon at such a high rate that it is in the top 1% of thousands of locations studied worldwide, from pine forests to arctic tundra, according to UC Berkeley scientists who have worked at the site since last year.

It’s important because finding ways for soil, trees and plants to sequester more carbon is one of the most cost-effective strategies to combat global warming after reducing emissions, scientists say. And tidal wetlands like Dutch Slough are known to be excellent carbon sinks, meaning they absorb more carbon than they emit.

The 1,200-acre restoration project, which is in the process of being returned to wetlands after decades of farming, is the largest of its kind in California and will have cost $63 million to build when complete. The information gleaned at the site will help guide what other types of restoration projects California takes on in its quest to reach carbon neutrality by 2045. “

Keep reading the full piece from SF Chronicle.