History of the Wetlands
Dow purchased this land from the U.S. Steel Corporation for $11 million in 1989 as an environmental buffer zone. In the ‘70’s, and again when we purchased this property, developers were proposing residential/commercial projects that would have put significant population density close to our plant.
Each year, the 30+ member team of Dow employees, retirees, and community members determines the enhancements and restoration efforts it pursues at the site. Native species in the form of trees, shrubs and wildflowers are planted routinely. A windmill pumps water to native oak trees and a bird forage field yields crops of sunflowers, barley, and corn to attract additional wildlife. Habitat enhancement, wildlife monitoring, and nesting site improvements for migrating birds is a team focus. From the construction of a viewing platform to Kestrel birdhouses, raptor platforms, road improvements, docks, and recycle water irrigation systems -- many projects are ongoing team challenges.
View the Dow Wetlands Preserve Brochure. (30KB PDF)
Our program is an award-winner thanks to the effective partnership with several local organizations:
- Lindsay Wildlife Museum - Volunteers from Lindsay serve as docents to thousands of school students each year as they explore the Wetlands, learning about earth and water science. Lindsay also uses hack boxes we’ve built to release rehabbed raptors and barn owls into the wild.
- EarthTeam - Members of EarthTeam are students in Contra Costa County who have a passion for the environment. Several times each year, these teens spend time at the Wetlands doing mission-critical work – trash clean-up, weeding, planting, and more.
- Los Medanos College - Chemistry and environmental sciences classes use the Wetlands as their outdoor laboratory. They can study water quality, soil nutrients, plants and animals – all in their own “backyard.”