Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve Draft EIS/EIR September 2017 KEY DEFINITIONS AND ACRONYMS

Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve - Draft Environmental Impact Report - Sept 2017


The terms listed below are key to understanding this Draft EIS/EIR. This list supplements the more robust list of key definitions and acronyms provided in the Glossary (Appendix J).


Ballona Reserve - Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve as described in Section 1.2.1 and shown in Figure ES-2.
Ballona Wetlands - The aquatic ecosystem in the vicinity of the Ballona Reserve, which once spanned more than 2,100 acres and supported a great diversity of aquatic resources from Playa del Rey to Venice and inland to the Baldwin Hills, as discussed in Historical Ecology of the Ballona Creek Watershed, Southern California Coastal Water Research Project Technical Report No. 671and Historical Wetlands of the Southern California Coast, An Atlas of U.S. Coast Survey T-Sheets, 1851-1889.2

CDFW - California Department of Fish and Wildlife, the CEQA lead agency for this EIS/EIR.

CEQA - California Environmental Quality Act

Corps - U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the NEPA lead agency for this EIS/EIR.

EIR - Environmental Impact Report

EIS - Environmental Impact Statement

Fiji Ditch - An excavated, unlined drainage channel that runs parallel to Fiji Way along the northern boundary in the eastern portion of Area A within the Ballona Reserve. The eastern part of the Fiji Ditch is located in the northwestern part of Area C. The Area A and Area C segments are not connected.

​LACDA​ - Los Angeles County Drainage Area. The LACDA project is a Federal flood risk management project. The Los Angeles County Department of Public Works maintains a portion of the Ballona Creek channel by virtue of an easement and by statutory obligation as the non- Federal sponsor of the LACDA project. Approval of the Project may include modifications to LACDA project features within the Ballona Reserve by removing all or portions of the existing levees and the concrete channel in favor of constructing new flood risk management levees, restoring the wetland floodplain, constructing new water-control structures (such as culverts, weirs, and tide gates, and access roads) and/or erosion protection features, modifications to existing operations and maintenance requirements.

LACDPW - Los Angeles County Department of Public Works. LACDPW “is responsible for the design, construction, operation, and maintenance of roads, traffic signals, bridges, airports, sewers, flood control, water supply, water quality, and water conservation facilities” within Los Angeles County.3

LACFCD - Los Angeles County Department of Public Works-Los Angeles County Flood Control District. The Los Angeles County Flood Control District owns and operates the levees within the Ballona Reserve; planning and operational activities of the Flood Control District reside within the LACDPW.LACFCD, as defined herein, is the applicant pursuant to Section 14 of the Rivers and Harbors Act of 1899 as codified in 33 U.S.C. § 408 (commonly referred to as “Section 408”).


Navigable Waters of the U.S. - Navigable waters of the United States are generally defined as those waters that are subject to the ebb and flow of the tide and/or are presently used, or have been used in the past, or may be susceptible to use to transport interstate or foreign commerce. A determination of navigability, once made, applies laterally over the entire surface of the waterbody, and is not extinguished by later actions or events which impede or destroy navigable capacity. (33 C.F.R. § 329.4).

NEPA - National Environmental Policy Act

Ocean Waters - Ocean waters are the open seas lying seaward of the “baseline” from which the “territorial seas” are measured. Generally, the “baseline” is the mean lower low water line (or low water mark) along the coast or “closing lines” that are drawn on maps across river mouths and openings of bays and that are depicted on official United States Nautical Charts

Project - For purposes of this EIS/EIR, the term Project with a capital “P” means restoration of the Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve and incidental work necessitated by the proposed restoration activities. Three different options for implementing the Project (i.e., restoring the Ballona Reserve) are analyzed in this EIS/EIR: Alternative 1, Alternative 2, and Alternative 3. Under Alternative 4, the No Federal Action/No Project Alternative, none of the proposed restoration activities would occur.

SCC - State Coastal Conservancy

SoCalGas - Southern California Gas Company

SoCalGas Property - The seven potential natural gas well relocation sites on property owned by the Southern California Gas Company as described in Section 1.2.1 and shown in Figure ES-2.

USACE - U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, the NEPA lead agency for this BWER EIS/EIR. 

USEPA - U.S. Environmental Protection Agency

USFWS - U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service

Waters of the State - This term is defined in California Water Code Section 13050(e) as “any surface water or groundwater, including saline waters, within the boundaries of the state.” The term is broadly construed to include all waters within the state’s boundaries, whether private or public, including waters in both natural and artificial channels.

Waters of the U.S. -  The term as defined in the Corps’ regulations at 33 C.F.R §328.3 (in place prior to August 28, 2015), as modified by guidance in place prior to August 28, 2015.

Wetland - The official definition of “wetland” differs among regulatory agencies, although all variations involve these three elements:

  • Wetland Hydrology: The presence of water at or above the soil surface for a sufficient period of the year to significantly influence the plant types and soil chemistry. 

  • Hydric Soil: Soil that is wet long enough during the growing season to develop low-oxygen conditions. 

  • Hydrophytic Plants: Plants adapted to saturated soil conditions. 

    The Corps and USEPA, for example, require that all three elements be present to define a wetland. By comparison, the State considers the presence of any one of these three elements to define a wetland. Unless otherwise clearly indicated, this EIS/EIR uses the Corps and USEPA’s definition.

  • WRDA - Water Resources Development Act. Began in 1974 to oversee Flood Control and Navigation, the Rivers and Harbors Act, 404-b-1 Guidelines CWA regulations on Aquatic Resources and 408 Approval to modify a Federal project per 33 USC 408.

    Ballona Wetlands Ecological Reserve - Draft Environmental Impact Report - Sept 2017