Fill for Habitat Bay Plan Amendment

Fill For Habitat Amendment Fact Sheet

NOAA Office for Coastal Management Decision Letter on BPA No. 1-17 (PDF)

Statement of Chair Wasserman
Article in San Francisco Chronicle
Article in Oakland Magazine

Fill for Habitat Amendment (BPA 1-17)

On July 20, 2017, BCDC unanimously initiated a process to amend (PDF) the San Francisco Bay Plan to address the need to place an increasing amount of Bay Fill for projects to restore and enhance natural habitat to adapt to sea level rise. The Commission unanimously adopted BPA 1-17 on October 3, 2019

Plan Map Policy Amendment (BPA 3-19)

A complementary amendment process to consider adding a map policy to the Bay Plan Maps regarding the completion of the Middle Harbor Enhancement Project was initiated on June 6, 2019 (Bay Plan Amendment No. 3-19). The Commission unanimously adopted BPA 3-19 on October 3, 2019

Working Group, Public Hearings, Public Workshops, and Commission Briefing Materials

The amendment process was guided by the Bay Fill Policies Working Group. Please see the Bay Fill Policies Working Group Meeting records for more information.

The initial public hearing on BPA 1-17 was held on June 20, 2019.

The initial public hearing for BPA 3-19 was held on September 5, 2019 (PDF).

A workshop on the Fill for Habitat Amendment was held on March 21, 2019.

Please contact Megan Hall for a copy of the materials

Three briefings on the Fill for Habitat amendment were provided to the Commission in preparation for the June 20 public hearing:


For questions, or to arrange a presentation/training on the amendment, please contact:

Erik Buehmann
San Francisco Bay Conservation and Development Commission
375 Beale St, Suite 510
San Francisco, CA 94105 
Phone: 415-352-3645


Background Information

Previous Process Documents

Notice of Revised Date of Public Hearing to November 15th, 2018 (PDF)

Policies for a Rising Bay

Developed from March 2015 to June 2016 to evaluate the Commission’s laws and policies in light of novel threats to the Bay presented by sea level rise and to determine whether changes are needed to help the region’s advancement of appropriate resilience and adaptation actions. The Commission staff organized a steering committee composed of over 30 stakeholders representing public, private, and non-governmental organizations to ensure a broad and collaborative review of the Commission’s laws, policies, and regulations. Working together with steering committee members and other interested parties, the Commission staff analyzed BCDC’s existing laws and policies through one-on-one interviews, case studies, and a series of meetings and discussions. This process resulted in the identification of four overarching policy issues, where BCDC’s policies were found to be inadequate regarding risks associated with rising sea level:

  1. Fill for Resilience and Adaptation - Habitat Restoration and Protection
  2. Fill for Resilience and Adaptation - Innovative Shoreline Solutions
  3. Environmental Justice and Social Equity
  4. Adaptive Management

See the report (PDF) for the full policy analysis and list of policy options suggested.

Public Workshops on Rising Sea Level

Beginning on January 21, 2016, BCDC conducted a series of commission workshops on lessons learned from the San Francisco Bay Plan’s Climate Change amendments, BCDC’s role in regional planning, and making recommendations as the Bay Area adapts to rising sea level. These workshops identified potential changes to the Commission’s laws, policies, regulations and practices, and culminated in the Commission’s unanimous initiation of two Bay Plan amendments addressing Bay Fill for habitat projects (PDF) and addressing social equity and environmental justice (PDF).

Bay Fill Policies Working Group

In late 2014, the Commission created the Bay Fill Policies Working Group to examine potential policy issues and make recommendations to the full Commission regarding BCDC’s Bay Fill laws and policies and whether they need to be amended due to the need to adapt to rising sea level. After receiving input from a variety of stakeholders, the Working Group developed a plan for addressing multiple issues and policies that relate to Bay Fill that included a general discussion of the McAteer-Petris Act, the San Francisco Bay Plan and its policies, and focused meetings, separated into two overarching topics - habitat and resource-based policies, and those addressing the built environment. The Working Group completed its initial review of the habitat and resource-based policies, which are summarized in this report from May 13, 2016.