Here's just a small sampling of the natural treasures we've helped preserve over the years.

550 MW Topaz Solar Project

  • Client: Aspen Environmental Group/First Solar/Althouse and Meade
  • Location: Carrizo Plain; San Luis Obispo County, CA
  • Completion Date: Currently in Construction Phase

The 550 megawatt Topaz Solar Farm will produce enough electricity to power 160,000 homes in California.  The Farm is expected to displace 377,000 tons of CO2 each year, which is the equivalent of removing 73,000 cards from the road (www.firstsolar.com).

MBI Projects Highlights

  • Pre-project Surveys
    • Assessment of habitat
    • Identification of survey needs including review of previous work performed
    • Determining potential for occurrence of state- or federal-listed endangered, threatened and special-status species
  • Permitting
    • Technical assistance with application preparation for California Endangered Species Act Incidental Take Permit (CESA ITP)
  • Designated Biologist and Biological Monitoring Support
    • Overseeing pre-construction surveys/sweeps and site inspections
    • Implementation of CESA ITP, Federal Biological Opinion, and San Luis Obispo County Mitigation Monitoring Plan
    • Nesting bird/bird fatality surveys
    • San Joaquin kit fox (SJKF) monitoring (den monitoring, construction monitoring, and telemetry)

 

North Midway Sunset Development Plamn

  • Client: LINN Energy (formerly Berry Petroleum Company)
  • Location: North Midway Sunset Oil Field; Kern County, CA
  • Completion Date: Ongoing Since 2006

Linn Energy properties in the Midway Sunset Field were acquired in the Berry Petroleum Company acquisition and include over 1,900 acres.  For 2014, the company anticipates spending approximately 16 percent of it's total oil and natural gas capital budget for California development (www.linnenergy.com).

MBI Project Highlights

  • Plan and Permit Implementation
    • Federal Biological Opinion and CESA ITP implementation
    • Determining potential for occurrence of state-or federal-listed species
    • Database documentation and management
    • Compliance oversight
    • Annual and quarterly reports to the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW)
  • Agency Reporting
    • Habitat disturbance
    • Survey tracking
    • Post-construction compliance surveys
    • Results of trapping sessions and burrow excavations
    • SJKF den disposition
    • Sightings of Covered Species
  • On-call Biological Services
    • Pre-activity surveys for detection of Covered Species
    • Small mammal trapping, relocation and burrow excavation
    • Protocol-level, blunt-nosed leopard lizard (BNLL) surveys
    • Emergency response support

 

PG&E San Joaquin Valley Operations and Maintenance HCP Implementation

  • Client: ICF Jones and Stokes/Cardno-Entrix/S2S Environmental Resource Management
  • Location: Kern, Kings, and Fresno Counties, California
  • Completion Date: Ongoing Since 2011

PG&E provides natural gas and electric service to approximately 16 million Californians.  Their service area includes 42,141 miles of natural gas distribution pipelines, 6,438 miles of transportation pipelines, 141,215 circuit miles of electric distribution lines, and 18,616 circuit miles of interconnected transmission lines.  The company's first permitted HCP is located in their San Joaquin Valley service area, and covers routine operations, maintenance, and minor construction activities.  It also details specific goals and procedures for protecting, managing and monitoring 23 wildlife and 42 plant species (www.pge.com).

MBI Project Highlights

  • HCP Implementation
    • Electrical transmission and distribution repairs and maintenance, including test and treat sessions and pole replacements
    • Successful take avoidance and HCP compliance during completion of approximately 30 projects from 2012 to 2013
    • Compliance oversight and reporting
    • Maintenance of quality control expectations
    • Recommendation and implementation of species avoidance measures including San Joaquin Antelope Squirrel (SJAS), SJKF, and BNLL
    • Participation in calibration and coordination among consultant team
  • On-call Biological Services
    • Coordination with PG&E planners, biologists, construction personnel, and prime contract biological resource staff
    • General and focused biological surveys for listed species
    • Nesting bird surveys
    • Construction monitoring

Chevron San Joaquin Valley Business Unit

  • Client: Chevron U.S.A., Inc./Chevron Environmental Management Company/Chevron Technology Ventures
  • Location: Kern, Kings, Fresno, and Monterey Counties, California
  • Completion Date: Ongoing Since 2001

Chevron is the largest oil and gas producer in California, with the majority of production coming from company-operated leases in the Kern River, Midway Sunset, and Cymric oil fields.  Its San Joaquin Valley Business Unit is headquartered in Bakersfield (www.chevron.com).

MBI Project Highlights

  • Projects Supported
    • Seismic
    • Oil and gas production wells
    • Inter- and intra-field electrical lines, pipelines, roads, and other infrastructure
    • Facility abandonment
    • Solar facilities
  • Implementation (avoidance, minimization, and mitigation)
    • Initial project planning regarding threatened and endangered species
    • Staff training (health, environment, safety, and biological resources)
    • Installation and maintenance of buffer zones
    • Excavation and relocation of sensitive species
    • Daily construction monitoring
    • Documentation of take/agency reporting (BLM, and CDFW)
    • Habitat disturbance measurements
    • Restoration planning and implementation
    • Regulatory compliance (CEQA, NEPA, FESA, and CWA)
  • On-call Bioogical Services
    • Biological surveys for sensitive wildlife and plants
    • Technical report completion and compliance oversight
    • Assistance with permit applications
    • Coordination with state and federal agencies
    • Maintenance of historical mapping and data archive

Chevron Lokern Habitat Conservation Plan EIS/EIR:

  • Client: Chevron U.S.A. Inc./URS
  • Location: Kern and Kings Counties, California
  • Completion Date: Ongoing Since 2009

MBI has provided technical expertise during the preparation of an EIS/EIR evaluating the Lokern HCP.  The area under permit consideration includes four Kern County oil fields (Kern River, Lost Hills, Cymric-McKittrick, and Midway Sunset), and the Lokern Natural Area.  Due to the nature of the HCP, analysis has considered the entire area encompassing these fields, not just Chevron-manged lands.  The total area being evaluated covers approximately 204,000 acres in the oil fields and an additional 28,000 acres in the Lokern Natural Area.

MBI Project Highlights

  • Data and Literature Review
    • Review of orignal survey data and publicaly available records
    • Compilation of data regarding potential impacts to biological resources
    • Analysis of 232,000 acres of land (oil field and conservation lands)
  • Document Preparation
    • Review of biological resources section and supporting documentation
    • Application of knowledge of oil and gas production activities, permitting issues, effectiveness of minimization, avoidance and mitigation measures
    • Team regional expert for biological resources of the San Joaquin Valley as part of the technical team assembled for the project
    • Collaboration with agency personnel and legal counsel during FESA and CESA permitting activities.
  • Continuing Support
    • Habitat management and monitoring
    • Annual biological surveys assessing condition on conservation lands (including BNLL, SJKF, SJAS, GKR, and sensitive plants)

Monterey County General Plan/San Joaquin Kit Fox Conservation Strategy

  • Client: EMC Planning Group, Inc.
  • Location: Monterey County, California
  • Completion Date: 2014

Conservation strategies were designed to guide Montery County in the long-term conservation and preservation of natural resources while protecting private property rights (www.co.monterey.ca.us).  Based on the results of literature review, agency coorespondence and field studies, an SJKF conservation strategy was formulated for review, approval, and implementation by the County.

MBI Project Highlights

  • Providing Technical Expertise
    • SJKF habitat requirements
    • Literature review, agency correspondence and field studies
    • Document review/contributed to formulation of SJKF conservation strategy
  • Wildlife Stuides within SJKF Habitat
    • Camera station utilization
    • Coordination of spotlighting sessions
    • Identifications of canids, badgers, burrowing owls, and other wildlife

Middledome Location/Road Construction and Drilling

  • Client: KMD Operating Company
  • Location: Kings County, California
  • Completion Date: Ongoing Since 2006

MBI provides biological consulting services for oil and gas production on a combination of private lands and land managed by the BLM.  Project sites are considered environmentally sensitive due to the presence of several special-status wildlife and plant species.

MBI Project Highlights

  • Biological Surveying
    • Protocol-level, BNLL surveys
    • Rare plant surveys
    • General biological inventory compilation
    • Determination of environmentally sensitive areas
  • Biological Monitoring and Support
    • Inspection of drilling and production facilities
    • Escorting traffic
    • Assistance with power line instillation
    • Implementation of minimization and avoidance measures targeting BNLL, SJKF, Giant Kangaroo Rat (GKR), and San Joaquin wooly threads.

Windstar Wind Energy Project - Environmental Compliance Assistance

  • Client: Aero Energy/Western Wind/RMT, Inc.
  • Location: Kern County, California
  • Completion Date: January 2012

The Windstar Project is a 120 megawatt wind energy facility that officially went into commercial operation in January of 2012.  The project consists of 60 wind turbine generators located southeast of Tehachapi, California (Western Wind Energy Corp. 2012).

MBI Project Highlights

  • Pre-project Biological Surveying
    • Special-status plants
    • Burrowing owls
    • Nesting birds
    • Migratory bird point count (BUC)
    • Desert tortoise and Mohave ground squirrel assessment
  • Construction Phase Consulting
    • Pre-construction surveys and biological monitoring
    • Agency compliance (CDFG Streambed Alteration Agreement, CESA ITP, and CEQA Mitigation Monitoring Plan)
    • Riparian habitat avoidance
    • Erosion control measures
    • Habitat disturbance minimization
    • Implementation of minimization and avoidance measures for desert tortoise and Mohave ground squirrel