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Our Mission & History

The Bay Foundation’s mission is to restore and enhance Santa Monica Bay through actions and partnerships that improve water quality, conserve and rehabilitate natural resources, and protect the Bay’s benefits and values.

Our Passion for Water Quality, Innovation and Collaboration Is What Drives Us

Nearly two million people live in the Santa Monica Bay Watershed stretching from Ventura County to Palos Verdes, from the Santa Monica Mountains and Griffith Park to Baldwin Hills and out to the sea—and more than 5,000 species of animals, fish, birds, and plants make their home in the Bay and the Bay Watershed.

The Bay Foundation (TBF) is a 501(c)(3) non-profit environmental group founded in 1990 to restore and enhance Santa Monica Bay and local coastal waters. TBF is staffed by science and policy experts who are passionate about understanding and protecting the Bay and its watershed. This provides many benefits to people and wildlife, supports a strong economy, and improves our quality of life.

TBF works with a broad group of stakeholders, including government agencies, environmental groups, local communities, industry leaders, and scientists, to create and put into action innovative projects that clean up our waterways, create green spaces in urban areas, and restore natural habitats both on land and underwater, such as wetlands and kelp forests.

TBF supports the U.S. EPA’s Santa Monica Bay National Estuary Program (SMBNEP). The SMBNEP is one of 28 similar programs established under Section 320 of the 1987 Clean Water Act and administered by the U.S. EPA. A central aspect of this work is the implementation of 44 goals, as defined in the SMBNEP’s Comprehensive Conservation and Management Plan (CCMP). This publicly developed and adopted plan of action provides a road map for the protection and restoration of Santa Monica Bay and local interests. Learn more about the SMBNEP. For further details, reference the Memorandum of Agreement between the Santa Monica Bay Restoration Commission and The Bay Foundation regarding the Santa Monica Bay National Estuary Program.

The Bay Foundation recognizes and acknowledges that we are on the Indigenous land of Gabrielino-Tongva, Chumash, and Fernandeño Tataviam who have lived and continue to live here. TBF respectfully acknowledges Indigenous peoples as original and continued stewards of this land and its waterways and is grateful to carry out its work on their traditional lands.