Located in California’s Central valley, Fresno has been facing challenges in conservation of water. Between the coupled effects of industrial agriculture and home yard maintenance, extraordinary demands have been placed on the region’s water resources. While water scarcity is a complex issue facing the entire state of California, Fresno is one of the two cities in California that do not have residential water meters. Of the total residential water use 70% is used for irrigating lawns.
With her TogetherGreen fellowship, Kaberi will lead the Fresno Audubon Community Greenscape/urban residential landscape Program, a collaborative, volunteer-driven, residential landscape transformation process. Building on efforts already in place in Fresno, Kaberi will reach out to underrepresented homeowners and community members to engage them in comprehensive native plant and home landscape management informational workshops and residential greenscaping transformation workday events.
Kaberi’s goal with the Community Greenscape/Urban Residential Low Water Landscape Program is to build a dynamic and active coalition of local government, low-income housing developers, homeowners, community organizations, educational institutions, and environmental groups helping to create a more sustainable environment. Through this program, she will help homeowners install water conserving native plants in their yards, providing enhanced biodiversity and new habitat for birds.
Kaberi’s training in ecology and anthropology as well as her research experience in India and in the USA on conservation biology will enable her to bring a fresh perspective to the complex issues facing Fresno. She believes that in order to preserve biodiversity, a collaborative, integrative, and interdisciplinary approach must take root. She sees this vision coming to life through the Community Greenscape Program.