February 8, 2023
Contact: Kelly Herbinson, Joint Executive Director, Mojave Desert Land Trust
Phone: 760-366-5440 ext 224
Email: [email protected]
Joshua Trees Remain Temporarily Protected as Bill Moves to Legislature
The California Fish and Game Commission has voted unanimously today to postpone the decision on whether to protect the western Joshua tree under the California Endangered Species Act. The species has been a candidate for listing under the California Endangered Species Act (CESA) since October 2020. The Commission decided to wait and see whether a new legislative bill, the Western Joshua Tree Conservation Act, becomes law.
“California is facing a complex confluence of issues stemming from climate change, including the need for more renewable energy and the need for more habitat protection for imperiled species. Unfortunately, these two goals are sometimes at odds. The future of our species depends on both, and we are pleased to see the Newsom administration and the Fish and Game Commission working to find creative solutions to these issues. Preserving the western Joshua tree and its habitat is central to our mission at MDLT. We will be evaluating the proposed bill and advocating for legislators to ensure the language and budget provide impactful and sustainable avenues that secure the long-term protection of the western Joshua tree.” – Kelly Herbinson, Joint Executive Director, Mojave Desert Land Trust
The Mojave Desert Land Trust (MDLT) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization with the mission to protect and care for lands with natural, scenic, and cultural value within the California desert. Since its founding in 2006 the land trust has conserved over 100,000 acres, conveying more tracts of land to the National Park Service in the last decade than any other organization. The land trust has established a seed bank to ensure the preservation of native species and an onsite nursery at its Joshua Tree headquarters. Since 2016, over 100,000 native plants have been propagated for restoration projects and community landscaping. MDLT educates and advocates for the conservation of the desert, involving hundreds of volunteers in our work. For more information, visit mdlt.org.