The California Wildlife Conservation Board has granted the National Wildlife Federation $20 million for the construction of the wildlife crossing at Liberty Canyon in the Los Angeles area. Combined with a $5 million dollar grant awarded by the board in 2020, the Wildlife Conservation Board (WCB) has now matched the $25 million Conservation Challenge grant from Wallis Annenberg and the Annenberg Foundation. This leaves the #SaveLACougars campaign with only $6.5 million to raise in order to start construction on the landmark conservation project before the end of this year.
“I am so gratified that the Wildlife Conservation Board is joining in making a major contribution to the wildlife crossing at Liberty Canyon, which is so needed in our region,” said Wallis Annenberg, Chairman, President, and CEO of Annenberg Foundation.
“Wildlife crossings restore ecosystems that [have] been fractured and disrupted. They reconnect lands and species that are aching to be whole. I believe these crossings go beyond mere conservation, toward a kind of environmental rejuvenation that is long overdue. It’s a model for the kind of public-private partnerships that can heal our environment for the long haul.” As evidenced from decades of wildlife crossing projects across the world, such as the successful structures in Banff National Park, and the array of animals seen using an overpass in Utah in a recent viral video, wildlife crossings work. As a major green infrastructure project for the state of California, construction for the crossing will generate jobs in the region and economic benefits into the future.
“Time is running out for these mountain lions,” said Beth Pratt, California Regional Executive Director for the National Wildlife Federation and leader of the #SaveLACougars campaign. “All that stands between us and groundbreaking is $6.5 million — we hope other philanthropists will step up and get us past the finish line so these remarkable cats can have a future in the Los Angeles area.”
To learn more about the #SaveLACougars campaign and its efforts to build the wildlife crossing at Liberty Canyon visit https://savelacougars.org/