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  • AASHE-STARS

The Sustainability Tracking, Assessment & Rating System™ (STARS) is a transparent, self-reporting framework for colleges and universities to measure their sustainability performance.

Overall Rating Gold
Overall Score 73.41
Liaison Fletcher Alexander
Submission Date Feb. 28, 2018
Executive Letter Download

STARS v2.1

California State University, Chico
OP-10: Biodiversity

Status Score Responsible Party
Complete 2.00 / 2.00 Eli Goodsell
Sustainability Program Coordinator
Associated Students Sustainability
"---" indicates that no data was submitted for this field

Does the institution own or manage land that includes or is adjacent to legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance?:
Yes

A brief description of the legally protected areas, internationally recognized areas, priority sites for biodiversity, and/or regions of conservation importance:

Big Chico Creek Riparian Corridor

With a riparian corridor running through our campus, we are very sensitive to its uniqueness compared to the rest of the landscaped areas on campus. Special restrictions regarding fertilizing, planting, spraying, trimming while eliminating nonnative plant species are practices we abide by in an effort to protect wildlife habitat.

Big Chico Creek Ecological Reserve

The Big Chico Creek Ecological Reserves is under the direction of the Institute for Sustainable Development. Our mission is to work together with the CSU Research Foundation's Ecological Reserve System to preserve critical habitat and to provide a natural area for environmental research and education.

The Big Chico Creek Ecological Reserve contains 3,950 acres of diverse canyon and ridge habitats, including 4.5 miles of Big Chico Creek, and is home to many species of plants and animals. BCCER was created with the purchase of the Simmons Ranch in 1999 and the Henning Ranch in 2001. It is owned by the California State University, Chico, Research Foundation.

The Reserve ranges in elevation from 700 feet to 2,044 feet and contains a wide variety of habitats, including creek riffles and pools, riparian areas, oak woodlands, chaparral, pine forest, rock cliffs, and springs. These diverse habitats support more than 140 different wildlife species, including a number of listed species and species requiring large tracts of undisturbed habitat. BCCER contributes to the understanding and wise management of the earth and its natural systems by preserving critical habitat, and providing a natural area for environmental research and education.

Butte Creek Ecological Preserve

The Butte Creek Ecological Preserve is a 93-acre site along the middle section of Butte Creek. The site was formerly used for gold, sand and gravel mining, and is recovering from those activities. The property contains more than a mile of creek frontage, which is critical salmon habitat and spawning grounds, as well as habitat for many species of special status, including Chinook salmon and bald eagle. In December 1998 the University Research Foundation purchased this site with grants from the US Fish and Wildlife Service, National Fish and Wildlife Federation, CALFED, and the Wildlife Conservation Board. The goal of the preserve is to work in conjunction with other programs towards achieving a reasonable balance among the diverse demands on the resource base of the Butte Creek watershed. The research foundation will provide an adaptive management approach to managing the property. Program areas at the preserve include habitat management and conservation, outreach and education, and research. The reserve is open to the public year round.


Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify endangered and vulnerable species (including migratory species) with habitats on institution-owned or –managed land?:
Yes

Has the institution conducted an assessment or assessments to identify environmentally sensitive areas on institution-owned or –managed land?:
Yes

The methodologies used to identify endangered and vulnerable species and/or environmentally sensitive areas (including most recent year assessed) and any ongoing assessment and monitoring mechanisms:

In 2017 we did an assessment for a draft California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) report detailing the species that have been observed or are likely to be on the Reserves.


A brief description of identified species, habitats and/or environmentally sensitive areas:

See attached sensitive species list.

Complete species lists at http://www.csuchico.edu/bccer/natural_resources/species/index.shtml


A brief description of plans or programs in place to protect or positively affect identified species, habitats and/or environmentally sensitive areas:

We also have plans we write up for individual projects (e.g. a planned prescribed fire in partnership with CalFire). All researchers, students, etc. are required to describe research and apply for access through the University of California Reserves Access Management System, which prompts for permits, etc., then we review and approve the applications.

Management plan at: www.csuchico.edu/bccer/natural_resources/management_plan.shtml


The website URL where information about the programs or initiatives is available:
Additional documentation to support the submission:

The information presented here is self-reported. While AASHE staff review portions of all STARS reports and institutions are welcome to seek additional forms of review, the data in STARS reports are not verified by AASHE. If you believe any of this information is erroneous or inconsistent with credit criteria, please review the process for inquiring about the information reported by an institution and complete the Data Inquiry Form.