Johnson Meadow Acquisition
Partner: Tahoe Resource Conservation District; California Tahoe Conservancy, California Department of Fish & Wildlife, Barton Health, Heavenly Resort
Total Project Cost: $8,315,000
Tahoe Fund Contribution: $100,000
Johnson Meadow, 206 acres of beautiful meadow in South Lake Tahoe and the largest privately-owned section of the Upper Truckee River, is now publicly owned. This is a major milestone for the health of Lake Tahoe.
The Upper Truckee River has been identified as the most impaired watershed in the Tahoe Basin and the highest contributor of fine sediment impacting the clarity of the Lake. The river discharges about 2,200 metric tons of fine sediment per year and delivers approximately 60 percent of the fine sediment that enters Lake Tahoe annually from stream erosion.
Acquisition of this property will allow for future restoration of the river that will have a dramatic impact on the Lake’s famed clarity. The acquisition will also improve wildlife habitat, climate change resiliency and recreation connectivity.
The purchase of the 206-acre property was made possible through a collaboration between Tahoe Resource Conservation District, the California Tahoe Conservancy, California Department of Fish & Wildlife, Tahoe Fund, and the former property owners, who owned Johnson Meadow for almost a century.
Over the next severl years, the Tahoe RCD and their partners will need to identify $10-15 million in funding to begin restoration efforts for Johnson Meadow and $60 million for the entire Upper Truckee River Watershed.
The campaign to acquire Johnson Meadow was made possible by the generous support of Barton Health and the dollar donations collected at Heavenly Ski Resort. These private donations of $50,000 each were used to secure more than $8 million in public funds through Prop 1 funding.