Orange County Branch Newsletter

May 2022

ASCE OC Sustainability

Habitat Restoration and Bike Ride at Upper Newport Bay

By Charlotte Wu & Sam Ali | Sustainability Committee

ASCE OC Sustainability Committee partnered with OC Parks and held a Habitat Restoration event on Saturday, April 9, 2022, at Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve. The purpose of habitat restoration is to rehabilitate an area to recreate a functioning ecosystem. Habitat restorations bring benefits such as increasing local biodiversity and species populations, as well as improving water quality from decreased erosion.

Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve Sign

It was a bright and clear Saturday morning. Ten volunteers gathered around the OC Park Resource Specialist, Nathan, as he pointed to the yellow flowers that have taken over the trailhead right next to him. With Nathan’s help, the volunteers learned how to identify the invasive plant, mustard. The volunteers worked together as a group and tackled different areas at once. As the group worked its way through the area, the field of the brush was rid of the yellow shade that bloomed from the rain just a few months ago. After several hours of weeding, the volunteers covered almost half an acre of field and collected at least seven bags of mustard.



Stay tuned for planting and watering activities at the same location, Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve, in December or January!

Upper Newport Bay View

To encourage active transportation and to explore the beautiful trails in Orange County, the Sustainability Committee organized a bike ride event on the 30th of April to the same location, Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve. Eight riders met in front of the Barnes and Noble at the Woodbridge Shopping Center in Irvine and headed south to Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve. The ride to Upper Newport Bay Nature Preserve and Interpretive Nature Center via San Diego Creek Trail is approximately 16 miles round trip. After the ride, some of the participants stayed and enjoyed the rest of Saturday morning at the Woodbridge Shopping Center for coffee and snacks.

Bike Ride Group Photo

About the Author:

Charlotte Wu is a Transportation Engineer with AECOM. Charlotte is passionate about designing transportation projects that improve the quality of life while maintaining a balanced and sustainable community. Outside of work, she enjoys outdoor activities such as running, snowboarding, and riding. Charlotte can be contacted at

Sam Ali is a retired Civil Engineer. Sam worked at OC Public Works and Psomas. Outside of civil engineering, he enjoys taking care of his garden which includes 32 variety fruit trees, several vegetables, and a Koi fish pond. Sam can be contacted at


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