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August 23, 2011


SF Zen Center Receives Federal Grant

Zen Center receives federal grant to restore salmon habitat in Green Gulch Creek

GGF Bridge over creek

Bridge at bottom of project area. This bridge is used as alternative access for Green Gulch Farm and as emergency access by Golden Gate National Recreation Area (GGNRA).

In late July, Zen Center was awarded a $200,000 grant from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). This award, stemming from the Estuary Restoration Act, is funded under the Department of Defense via the Army Corps of Engineers.

After discovering Coho salmon spawning in the Green Gulch Creek in 2008, Zen Center reached out to experts and government agencies to launch an effort to restore the habitat for Coho salmon (an endangered species), steelhead trout and California red-legged frogs (both threatened species).

With a grant from the California Department of Fish and Game, a design by Prunuske and Chatham Inc. to return Green Gulch Creek to its original path was completed in 2011. Zen Center is now engaging partner agencies and funders to support implementation of the first of two phases of the project, which is planned to begin in the fall of 2012.

Providing and maintaining suitable habitat is an important part of the Zen Center’s mission as an organization and as an organic farm. Removing the concrete barriers that predate Zen Center’s ownership of the land and allowing the creek to flow naturally promotes Zen Center’s aim of living harmoniously within the farmís ecosystem.

This creek restoration follows a similar effort downstream of Green Gulch within the Lower Redwood Creek. The Redwood Creek Watershed is within the Golden Gate Biosphere Reserve, one of the 411 reserves designated by the United Nations Educational, Scientific, and Cultural Organizations (UNESCO) to provide a global network representing the world’s major ecosystem types. In addition to its local and regional importance, the watershed is part of one of the 25 global diversity “hot spots” recognized by The Nature Conservancy and targeted by the global conservation community as key to preserving the world’s ecosystems.

7 Comments Post a comment
  1. Annette Adams
    Aug 26 2011

    Go Sukey Go…Marin needs more people like you
    In Gassho,
    Annette (I am in Italy at a Zen Center and saw this on Taiyo’s facebook post

  2. Steve Krenkel
    Aug 28 2011

    When you set a work schedule please send it out. I would like to work on stream resoration.
    I have been to Green Gulch and worked with you in the past-the last time I saw the lagoon restoration going on downstream. It is a hopeful sign for land and stream that the project is going forward.

  3. Lee
    Aug 28 2011

    I felt teary when you said that too, Sukey. I’d love to help with this anyway I can. Lee

  4. jo ferneau
    Aug 28 2011

    what a beautiful video and what a heartening development. Thank you all for your great works! Hooray and congratulations. We miss you.

  5. Ryan Ginn
    Aug 29 2011

    Continually inspired and touched by your devotion to the Redwood creek watershed Sukey. Feel so grateful for all the many people and beings that have cared for that watershed over the years and are stewarding with such love and care.


  6. Dave Hobbs
    Aug 29 2011

    The migration of salmonids is a representation of life force which is a joy to behold and a greater joy to understand\feel. Just think if every stream was treated with such love and understanding…there is a way to live with the planet…Green Gulch leads, thank you


  7. Sally Young
    Aug 30 2011

    Loved the two red fish, the fog on Sukey’s face, the tears in her eyes and the idea of small loving acts connected to a big story that I need to hear more about. Sally


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