PG&E donates nearly 4,500 acres of land

October 20, 2017 12:20pm

•  Will help protect iconic McArthur Swamp in Shasta County

•  “To continue the good stewardship of the McArthur Swamp”

Pacific Gas and Electric Company has donated 4,491 acres at the McArthur Swamp in Shasta County to the Fall River Resource Conservation District. The district has in turn donated a permanent conservation easement to Ducks Unlimited for the land.

This newly protected acreage at McArthur Swamp is located just north of the town of McArthur in eastern Shasta County.

The property is located within the ancestral territory of the Ahjumawi Band of the Pit River Tribe. Through the conservation easement, DU and the RCD are ensuring the permanent protection of open space, plant and wildlife habitat, agricultural uses, outdoor recreation by the general public, and historic and cultural values.

The protected land provides essential food, breeding grounds, wintering habitat, and nesting cover for birds. The property also provides opportunities for public recreation including hunting, wildlife viewing and bird watching. In addition, the property’s grasslands provide forage for cattle grazing that has been used by local grazers for more than 70 years.

The Fall River RCD will manage the McArthur Swamp property collaboratively with a management team comprised of the RCD, the Pit River Tribe, and a technicalaAdvisory committee.

"We look forward to working with our partners and the community to continue the good stewardship of the McArthur Swamp exemplified by PG&E and the McArthur Resource Management Association,” says Mike Millington, a board member of the Fall River RCD.

PG&E agreed in a 2003 bankruptcy settlement to permanently protect the beneficial public values on their approximately 140,000 acres of watershed land associated with its hydroelectric generation facilities. In 2004, as part of the settlement, the Pacific Forest and Watershed Lands Stewardship Council was established to work with public entities and nonprofit conservation organizations to ensure these acres of California's pristine PG&E watershed lands in the Sierra Nevada, Cascades and North Coast Range are conserved for the public good.

The donation includes allowing PG&E’s continued operation and maintenance of hydroelectric facilities and associated water delivery facilities, including project replacements and improvements required to meet existing and future water delivery requirements for power generation and water use by existing users and will comply with any FERC license renewal or other regulatory requirements.

PG&E will retain ownership of an additional 3,168 acres at McArthur Swamp, which will also be protected through a conservation easement held by DU. This conservation easement donation is expected to close escrow in early 2018.

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