San Joaquin River National Wildlife Refuge Expansion

Project Lead: US Fish and Wildlife Service

Short Project Description:
In January 2017, the federal government approved a boundary expansion for the San Joaquin River National Wildlife Refuge (SJRNWR) that encompasses the San Joaquin River floodway and certain adjacent floodplains up to the confluence with the Merced River, as well as the lower reaches of the Stanislaus and Tuolumne Rivers. This expansion will enable the SJRNWR to acquire, manage, and restore lands within these areas as willing-seller opportunities arise. This project will foster coordination between the SJRNWR and other regional partners to identify and plan for such acquisition opportunities. Achievement of the SJRNWR's target of acquiring more than 10,000 acres at full build-out would likely cost about $300m and would include expanded floodways and reduced water surface elevations in Stockton and Lathrop, recovery of 3 to 5 endangered species, and restored groundwater recharge capacity benefiting 4 GSAs.