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Posted 9/4/2014

Release no. 14-049


Contact
Capt. Michael N. Meyer
(916) 557-5100
spk-pao@usace.army.mil

SACRAMENTO, Calif. – The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Sacramento District awarded a $7 million contract Aug. 28 to Burleson Consulting Inc. of Folsom for habitat restoration and biomonitoring of endangered species at the former Fort Ord. This phase of the environmental project is set to begin in fall of 2014 and end in the fall of 2019.

The Army has been involved in munitions cleanup at the former Fort Ord since 1993 and environmental preservation is an important part of that mission. A future related project will clear some vegetation with controlled burns in order to remove munitions safely from the area. Before that burning and munitions removal takes place, biologists with the habitat restoration and monitoring project will survey the land and remove endangered animals from the area.

“This is an environmentally sensitive area, and we take that very seriously,” said Teresa Rodgers, the Corps’ lead environmental geologist with the project. “We’re making sure that the critical work of removing munitions leaves the environment as healthy as we found it.”

The project includes restoration of 65 acres of central maritime chaparral plant community, which supports endangered plants such as the sand gilia and threatened Monterey spineflower, as well as many endemic shrub species. It also provides funds for replanting after the burn, providing grading and erosion control of the soil and monitoring plants on more than 9,000 acres of the Fort Ord National Monument to ensure that the habitat returns to the conditions observed prior to the Army’s cleanup activities.                                                           

“After munitions removal, site restoration, and replanting, the area will be monitored for up to 13 years to ensure that the restoration efforts meet federal and state guidelines,” said Rodgers.

The Army estimates that it will continue to clean up munitions at Fort Ord for another eight to 10 years. Once the land is considered safe for its intended use, it can be turned over to the Bureau of Land Management. For more information please visit www.fortordcleanup.com

biomonitoring burning Corps of Engineers endangered species Fort Ord habitat munitions restoration USACE