As so many of us are continuing to be affected by the recent storms, whatever comes our way, our community is in this together. The wetlands, creeks, and Pajaro River and the history of flooding in this valley have been fundamental to shaping the community we know today. As a place for floodwaters to go, local wetlands play an essential role in protecting our coastal community from flooding, while helping to replenish groundwater. Their protection and restoration helps to ensure they can perform this service in the Pajaro Valley, an important tool in the toolbox of ways we can reduce flooding and storm-related impacts on our urban and agricultural lands.
Our organization has been working diligently and collaborating with many other local agencies, organizations and individuals to restore and care for local wetlands and natural open spaces, to ensure equitable benefits from this work for all in our community, and to foster the next generation of environmental leaders to grow and continue these efforts. This work is even more essential in this moment.
This Saturday, Feb. 4 is Watsonville’s annual celebration of World Wetlands Day, a day during which communities care for wetlands around the world. This event, co-sponsored by the City of Watsonville and many local organizations, is important to recognize locally, as Watsonville’s wetlands are one of the largest remaining coastal freshwater wetlands in California and support over 270 resident and migratory birds and a tremendous diversity of wildlife. Please join us for an inspiring day of volunteer work to clean up and restore Watsonville’s wetlands. Information on this fun family event is available at our website, watsonvillewetlandswatch.org.
As we start this new year under these uncertain times, let’s care for and support one another, volunteer, and deepen our work to build a community resilient to climate change and the challenges ahead. Let’s care for and restore our wetlands in concert with and for the benefit of all in our community.
Executive Director, Watsonville Wetlands Watch