Sustainability Elements

Natural Resources Management

In 1986, LAWA began the LAX Dunes Restoration Project by voluntarily dedicating 307 acres of sand dunes on the western portion of LAX as a natural wildlife preserve.

The Restoration Project and other wildlife conservation programs demonstrate LAWA’s commitment to natural resources management.


El Segundo Blue Butterfly Counts

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Our Stories

LA Zoo Partnership

In 2014, LAWA shipped 130 cubic yards of acacia and ficus to the Los Angeles Zoo as part of the LAX/Los Angeles Zoo green waste diversion partnership. Acacia and Ficus are not native plants to the LAX/El Segundo Dunes and must be removed by the airport. The Zoo uses the acacia and ficus to feed exotic animals.

LAX Coastal Dunes Improvement

The Coastal Dunes Improvement Project involves removing pavement from abandoned roadways and housing tracts, planting native species, and eliminating invasive species to restore a 48-acre area in the northern portion of the LAX Dunes. In 2014, LAWA removed approximately 32,000 square feet of hardscape, which included abandoned streets, curbs, gutters, sidewalks, retaining walls, foundations, and above-ground utilities from an old residential lot.

El Segundo Blue Butterfly Habitat Management

The U.S. Department of Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) placed the El Segundo Blue Butterfly (ESBB) on the agency’s Endangered Species List in June 1976. Almost lost forever, the endangered ESBB found a refuge in the LAX Dunes habitat. In 2014, biologists estimated that the ESBB population was between 26,302 and 27,460 individuals, a decline of approximately 40 percent from the previous year and a historical low over a 17-year period. Declines and increases of this magnitude are not unusual among insects, especially those that have only a single generation per year such as ESBB. This dramatic decrease may be within the “normal” range of population fluctuation given the prolonged drought and the associated decline in the ESBB’s sole food source, coastal buckwheat, due to the drought.

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