What is a natural community conservation plan (NCCP)?
A natural community conservation plan (NCCP) is the state counterpart to the federal HCP. It provides a means of complying with the Natural Community Conservation Planning Act (NCCP Act) and securing take authorization at the State level. The NCCP Act is broader than ESA and the California Endangered Species Act (CESA). The primary objective of the NCCP program is to conserve natural communities at the ecosystem scale while accommodating compatible land uses. To be approved by CDFW, an NCCP must provide for the conservation of species and protection and management of natural communities in perpetuity within the area covered by permits.

NCCPs are different from HCPs because the NCCP Act requires that conservation actions improve the overall condition of a species, whereas an HCP typically only requires avoidance of a net adverse impact on a species. And while an HCP can be applied at a project-by-project or regional scale, an NCCP must be applied at the regional scale to promote the long-term recovery of species, protection of habitat and natural communities, and diversity of species at the landscape-level. Thus the state requirements go “above and beyond” the federal mitigation requirements.

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1. What is the Santa Clara Valley Habitat Plan (Habitat Plan)?
2. Who developed the Habitat Plan? When was it approved?
3. What is a habitat conservation plan (HCP)?
4. What is a natural community conservation plan (NCCP)?
5. Why develop a joint HCP/NCCP?
6. What is "take"?
7. What are the benefits of the Habitat Plan?
8. What projects and activities are covered by the Habitat Plan?
9. What projects and activities are not covered by the Habitat Plan?
10. How long is the Habitat Plan in effect?
11. What are the boundaries of the Habitat Plan? How are the boundaries determined?
12. What does the Habitat Plan not do?
13. Who is responsible for overseeing implementation of the Habitat Plan?