Biodiversity and Habitat

California Resources Corporation (CRC) is directly aligned with the state’s biodiversity goal of preserving 30 percent of lands statewide for natural habitat. In fact, CRC already holds a state permit to dedicate 25 percent of our statewide surface acreage at full field development for perpetual habitat conservation. This will triple the size of our existing habitat conservation area and further expand our certified conservation programs.

CRC works closely with the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service, the U.S. Bureau of Land Management, the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, universities and non-profit organizations like the Wildlife Habitat Council to promote habitat conservation and biodiversity. We actively support and promote research on native flora and fauna in our operating locations, minimize disruption of those species, and conserve and restore habitat. By implementing improved and enhanced recovery techniques in mature oil and natural gas fields and applying directional and multi-pad drilling technologies and well stimulation, we extend the productivity of existing infrastructure and reduce the surface area needed for oil and gas production. These approaches enable us to complete several wells from a single drilling site, minimizing the footprint of oil and gas development. As a result, we preserve significant natural habitat that would otherwise be lost due to more intensive surface uses such as residential, commercial or industrial development like commercial solar projects.

Shortly after acquiring our flagship Elk Hills Field in Kern County from the U.S. Government in 1998, we established a Habitat Conservation Area of more than 8,000 acres to protect threatened and endangered species and their habitat that is overseen by the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service and the California Department of Fish and Wildlife, and to preserve Native American cultural resources. Elk Hills is home to the San Joaquin kit fox, Blunt-nosed leopard lizard, Giant kangaroo rat, Tipton kangaroo rat, San Joaquin antelope squirrel, Western burrowing owl and several native plant species which we are committed to protecting. In fact, the Wildlife Habitat Council has certified the Elk Hills Conservation Area for our proactive environmental management. In 2016, CRC received a 50-year state permit from the California Department of Fish and Wildlife that at full field development will preserve an additional 17,500 acres of habitat in perpetuity. The resulting 25,500-acre conservation area will be 160 times larger than Disneyland and occupy more than half the surface area of the Elk Hills Field, putting us close to Governor Newsom’s goal of preserving 30 percent of California lands for habitat.

In 2020, CRC received our fourth Wildlife Habitat Council certification for the Barlow Canyon Oak Woodlands Restoration in Ventura County, a project to restore, enhance and protect coastal sage and chaparral habitat that promotes increased biodiversity and provides refuge for many native species. This latest acheivement joins our Council-certified coastal habitat conservation programs at the four THUMS oil production islands in Long Beach Harbor and the Huntington Beach Field. CRC also received the Council’s 2016 Landscaping Project Award for the THUMS islands, which provide both excellent habitat for native coastal species and an educational opportunity for schools, scouting groups and other community members. In addition to our support of the Bolsa Chica Conservancy, we have actively supported other conservation organizations, such as the Aquarium of the Pacific in Long Beach, the Nature Conservancy’s water management efforts in Sacramento County, and the Wind Wolves Preserve in Kern County. We have also planted 67,000 trees in the past five years in our orchard properties, and support urban tree planting in the communities where we operate through volunteerism and donations.

Wildlife Habitat Council