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County Administrator's Office

Climate Action and Resiliency Division

Sonoma County Climate Resilient Lands Strategy

En español

Sonoma County’s Climate Action and Resiliency Division and Agricultural Preservation and Open Space District have collaborated to create the Sonoma County Climate Resilient Lands Strategy, a document designed to provide structure and guidance to climate-related efforts throughout the county, with a focus on natural and working lands. The Strategy was approved by the Board of Supervisors on September 13, 2022. Below are current versions of the Strategy and an Overview and Critical Concepts document, which offers a summary of the full strategy alongside key excerpts. The Overview and Critical Concepts document has also been translated into Spanish.

Draft versions of these documents were released in June for public comment for a 30-day period. The County, alongside its contractor, reviewed comments and incorporated subsequent edits to update these draft documents. The draft versions of these documents can be access below, alongside a summary document that offers an overview of public comment recieved and edits made.

Members of the public are invited to review these documents. While the public comment period has closed, you are still welcomed to provide feedback which may be considered in a later editions of the Strategy. Additionally, County staff hosted an informational webinar on June 27, 2022 to further engage with members of the public who wished to provide comments or ask questions about the Strategy. The webinar began with an introductory presentation on the Strategy, and was recorded and can be accessed via the link below.

Dickson Ranch, Sonoma CountyDickson Ranch, Sonoma County

Strategy Overview

Sonoma County, comprising over 1.1 million acres (1,500 square miles) and with a population of approximately 488,000 people, hosts a diverse landscape with coastal geography, varied topography, and a range of microclimates. Collectively, the landscape supports an array of ecological zones, plant, and animal species, working lands, waters, and communities (Sonoma County Ag + Open Space, 2021a). With a wide range of vegetative communities, a high degree of climatic variation, and a diverse topographic and geologic landscape, Sonoma’s natural and working lands provide benefits that support the county’s social, ecological, and economic health. These natural and working lands, however, are vulnerable to increasingly dramatic and rapid climate changes. To strengthen climate resilience of natural and working lands throughout Sonoma, the County of Sonoma (also referred to as “the County”) has worked with partners and stakeholders throughout the county to develop this bold and critical Climate Resilient Lands Strategy (“Lands Strategy”). The Lands Strategy aims to address the following objectives:

  • Conserve, manage, and restore as much of the county as possible across public, private, natural, developed, and agricultural lands.
  • Focus early actions on areas with the greatest potential for carbon sequestration, climate risk reduction and biodiversity enhancement.
  • Provide a forum for coordinated action on climate resilience in Sonoma County.
  • Reduce fragmentation of the natural lands system by adding to conserved spaces, increasing connections and corridors, and working with private landowners to develop shared management strategies.
  • Partner with Native American tribes within Sonoma County to advance traditional ecological knowledge and preserve tribal cultural resources and tribal cultural properties.
  • Identify funding and financing strategies within the county, state, and federal, as well as private funding sources to advance this innovative and bold plan. Identify new concepts for funding and financing sources as well.
  • Prioritize equity and climate justice approaches that are measurable and clear.

The Resilient Lands Strategy helps Sonoma County implement its Five-Year Strategic Plan Climate Action and Resiliency pillar by developing policies to maximize carbon sequestration and minimize loss of natural carbon sinks, encouraging agricultural and open space land management to maximize sequestration, and developing a framework and policies to incentivize collaboration with private and public land owners.

Comment submission details

The public comment period for the first edition of the Strategy has closed. Feedback is still welcomed, and may be incorporated into later editions of the Strategy. Please submit written comments to climate@sonoma-county.org. Comments can be sent in either Spanish or English.