Meeting ASBS Requirements - Implementation Case Study - Newport and Irvine Coast (ASBS No. 32 and 33)
Since 2005, the City of Newport Beach has taken proactive steps to preserve and restore the Areas of Special Biological Significance (ASBS) through a comprehensive program to address the State Water Resources Control Board (SWRCB) Storm Water Discharge Exception process (currently regulated under the General Exception), and common recognition of the need to protect and preserve these vital marine natural resources. This comprehensive program was initiated with an investigation of the coastal canyon creeks and adjacent receiving water (ocean) quality under dry and wet weather conditions along both ASBS 32 and 33. Based on the findings of this water quality and flow assessment, the City developed a weight-of-evidence tool to identify and prioritize nonstructural and structural best management practices (BMPs) to address sources of constituents that may impact the ASBS.
The City has used an adaptive management approach to implement the ASBS Protection and Restoration Program. Once a BMP is implemented, its effectiveness is assessed. If expected results are not achieved, a field investigation is instigated to re-evaluate impacts. These results are then used to redefine the work plan with appropriate BMPs. Field investigations and monitoring of dry weather and wet weather conditions to evaluate the effectiveness of implemented management measures in meeting the conditions of the General Exception (pollutant and impact reduction goals) and further characterize sources of potential impacts to the ASBS have included toxicity testing of marine species, mussel bioaccumulation, the impact of public use, and relative migration of constituents from Newport Harbor (cross-contamination).
The City, through its proactive approach, has already completed several cycles of this iterative process, first by identifying priority water quality issues, implementing management measures, and then further assessing sources of potential impacts to the ASBS along with the effectiveness of implemented measures. This approach has focused resources to higher priority impacts that include measurable impacts to the rocky inter-tidal marine resources from trampling and scavenging activities. The potential impacts from sediment and metals loading from the coastal canyon creeks have also been addressed with structural management measures. The City also focused resources to address non-storm flows to the ASBS through a comprehensive runoff reduction program as well as the implementation of structural BMPs. The City has also collaborated with State Parks and the City of Laguna Beach on several grant funded studies and BMP implementation projects. This collaboration provided opportunities to share data, resources and lessons learned between ASBS. Based on the results of the regional ASBS monitoring under the Bight ’13 program, additional measures are planned pending further detailed analysis and re-evaluation and re-prioritization of planned structural and non-structural management measures.
The presentation will summarize the results for the monitoring and special studies to date that provide the scientific basis for the management measures implemented. The implemented non-structural and structural BMPs will be presented with the results of the effectiveness monitoring in meeting water quality and other defined metrics. Current results of Regional ASBS compliance monitoring will be presented and the planned additional measures to protect the ASBS. Planned innovative design studies and approach will be presented. The presenters will engage the audience in providing lesson’s leaned in the implementation of the ASBS Program and tools for the program assessment. The City will also provide tips on engagement with stakeholders and collaborative efforts with municipalities, agencies and universities to use available resources more effectively. Strategies for funding that include grants will also provide for audience engagement.