Creating Continuous Habitat Through a Network of Native Seed Libraries
Each year around the world, people observe International Biodiversity Day on May 22. In San Diego, we have good reason to celebrate biodiversity. Our county is a biological hotspot and has been recognized as containing a greater diversity of life than any other county in the continental United States. Unfortunately, it is also home to the greatest number of plants and animals threatened by extinction.
At SDG&E, protecting San Diego’s rich biodiversity happens every day. From restoring native plant communities after construction projects to planting thousands of native oak trees in partnership with tribal communities, our company takes environmental stewardship very seriously. Our employees are always innovating to better support biodiversity and that includes creating an SDG&E native seed bank in Campo to source, clean and store seeds for future habitat restoration efforts.
SDG&E’s Sustainability Strategy, first released in October 2020, recognizes that nature-based solutions are important components of our commitment to sustainability. Earlier this year SDG&E published an economywide greenhouse gas study -- The Path to Net Zero: A Decarbonization Roadmap for California. The study shows that even with clean electricity and clean fuels, carbon removal is necessary to help our region reach net zero emissions. While we anticipate rapid innovation in carbon capture technologies, currently we are relying on nature-based solutions, meaning the trees, chapparal and wetlands all around us will help us work toward our goal of net zero.
As one of our region’s largest landowners, SDG&E works hard to ensure that we are good stewards of that land. That stewardship extends beyond our operations and our employees are integral to these efforts. In partnership with San Diego Audubon Society, we unveiled a native seed library at our main office in Kearny Mesa. This seed library will help our employees take an active role in supporting regional biodiversity by taking seeds to grow diverse ecosystems in their yards – providing both food and shelter to important pollinators like the monarch butterfly, hummingbirds and other bird species.
The SDG&E native seed library at our Century Park campus is part of a network of 30 seed libraries developed as a program of the San Diego Audubon Society. While SDG&E’s seed library is only available to employees, there are dozens of others across our region that are intended for public use. In fact, San Diego Audubon Society’s installation of a seed library at the Barona Cultural Center and Museum in Lakeside was recently profiled in the San Diego Union Tribune and KPBS shared information on a seed library in City Heights last year. Visit the San Diego Audubon Society website to view a map of seed libraries that are publicly accessible.