Coyote Valley is a rural landscape located at the southern edge of San José, California in Santa Clara County. Due to its location and natural resources, Coyote Valley has long been a place where human and natural communities intersect. The long-term vision is to make Coyote Valley a landscape for all, forever. Check out the list below to learn some of the benefits of protecting these lands.
1. Wildlife Biodiversity
Coyote Valley's protected lands support a wide variety of wildlife. From birds to badgers, bobcats, and more - Coyote Valley’s dynamic ecosystems support every level of the food chain. This landscape is the best remaining pathway for wildlife to safely move between the Santa Cruz mountains and the Diablo Range. Like anywhere else in the world, biodiversity is critical for longevity and well-being of any healthy ecosystem.
2. Food Security
In just the past 20 years, almost half of Santa Clara County’s remaining farmland has disappeared. Once known as the “Valley of Heart’s Delight,” protecting Coyote Valley means protecting Santa Clara County’s rich agricultural heritage. The region is still home to highly productive farmlands that provide food security and economic benefits for local communities. But far too many residents in our county experience hunger, and of the farmland still here today, about half is at risk in the near-term from development.
3. Water Resources
Water is an essential natural resource, but rapid urbanization has led to the loss of floodplains, which are crucial to flood prevention and water supply. Open spaces (like those found in Coyote Valley) provide water supply reliability by capturing and storing water in underground aquifers. The Coyote Valley floodplain acts as a sponge for recharging groundwater and slowing floodwaters; and supports the creeks, streams, and woodlands that help provide clean air and clean water to surrounding communities. By keeping water where it can do the most good, we can also keep water away from areas where it can do the most harm.
4. Public Access to Nature
As urban areas get denser, it's essential that people have access to green space, no matter where they live. Studies show that children who spend time in nature have better physical and mental wellness and are more likely to care about the natural world. Basically, getting outdoors helps inspire people to do their part! So protecting open spaces like Coyote Valley means more opportunities to get outside, connect with nature, and gain a variety of health benefits.
5. Climate resilience
We cannot address climate change without considering nature, and scientists say that nature-based solutions make up a third of correcting course. Floodplains help minimize flooding in times of heavy rain, and wetlands provide resilience during periods of drought. Open space serves as a buffer to cities against wildfires and helps remove carbon from the atmosphere which mitigates atmospheric warming. By protecting Coyote Valley, we are investing in natural infrastructure that provides resilience amid unpredictable times.
The upcoming Coyote Valley Conservation Areas Master Plan will create a roadmap for Coyote Valley’s conserved lands. Learn more about the benefits of protecting Coyote Valley for all, forever, during the Authority’s three-part webinar series, Discovering Coyote Valley.