Cannabis cultivation on private and public lands can result in serious environmental impacts when sites are not properly constructed or maintained. CDFW works with partner agencies and nonprofit organizations to implement the Cannabis Restoration Grant Program, which funds restoration projects to improve anadromous salmonid habitat in watersheds most heavily impacted by cannabis cultivation. Restoration refers to repairing an ecosystem that has been degraded, damaged, or destroyed, often due to human activity. The goal of restoration projects is to bring an ecosystem back to an improved former or historical state. Restoration may take many forms including:
- Creation of fish habitat,
- Reintroduction of fish or wildlife,
- Revegetation of native plants, and
- Removal of invasive species.
Before and after restoration. A failed dam was removed, and the stream channel was restored.
Assembly Bill 243 (Wood, Medical Marijuana) directs CDFW to restore watersheds impacted by cannabis cultivation in key areas of Coastal Northern California. Funds were set aside and the Cannabis Restoration Grant Program was created. In 2017, CDFW awarded $1.3 million for restoration projects in watersheds impacted by cannabis cultivation within California’s Northern Coastal area.