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Fitzgerald ASBS Pollution Reduction Program

General information

The ASBS is a Special Area Worth Protecting

The James V. Fitzgerald Area of Special Biological Significance (Fitzgerald ASBS) is located approximately 7 miles north of Half Moon Bay and extends from 4th Street, Montara south to the Pillar Point breakwater.  The Fitzgerald Marine Reserve (Reserve) is located within the boundary of the ASBS.  The Reserve was created in 1969 to protect the mosaic of habitats and tremendous diversity of marine life that exists in the area. 

The Reserve is currently designated as a marine Protected Area and is jointly managed by County Parks and the Department of Fish and Game.  A 5.5-mile band of shoreline including the Reserve was designated as an ASBS by the State Water Resources Control Board due to the diversity of habitat and biological assemblages, dense stands of bull kelp found along with red algae, diverse array of invertebrates that inhabit the broad reef, and the three types of subtidal habitat that occur at this location.  Past studies and monitoring efforts have recorded 164 species (or taxa of invertebrates, 134 species of algae and marine flora, many bird species, and several mammals including harbor seals, sea lions and sea otters.  It’s an area worth protecting.

Pollution Reduction Program Information

In June 2011, San Mateo County began working on the Fitzgerald ASBS Pollution Reduction Program (project). The project was led by the Department of Public Works in collaboration with the San Mateo County Resource Conservation District and the San Francisco Estuary Institute. This project was funded in part by a Proposition 84 grant from the State Water Resources Control Board and continued through March 2016. The project involved implementation of targeted stormwater Best Management Practices (BMPs), water quality studies, BMP effectiveness monitoring, and education and outreach. The project’s goal was to improve water quality and protect beneficial uses of the Fitzgerald ASBS and assist in the County’s compliance with ASBS stormwater regulations. Project information and the final project report are available below.

ASBS Final Project Report

Get Involved!

History and Regulations

Julie Casagrande, County Public Works Dept.
Email with new events, questions, suggestions.

Funding for this project has been provided in full or in part through an agreement with the State Water Resources Control Board.  The contents of this document do not necessarily reflect the views and policies of the State Water Resources Control Board, nor does mention of trade names or commercial products constitute endorsement or recommendation for use.





Kid Stuff

Taking Protection Upstream

If you visit, live, or work in Moss Beach or Montara, you can help protect the ASBS. Click on the links below for pollution prevention resources and conservation tips.