Posted on Categories Sustainable LivingTags , Leave a comment on Sonoma County Board of Supervisors advance plastic bag ban

Sonoma County Board of Supervisors advance plastic bag ban

by Jeremy Hay, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Sonoma County supervisors Tuesday moved forward with a countrywide ban on plastic bags now given out at grocery stores.The ban would apply to grocery stores but not restaurants or bags used for meat and vegetables. The ordinance, which is still being fine-tuned to address questions about enforcement mechanisms and authority, would also levy a 10-cent charge on paper bags. That money would be collected by and go to the grocers.
via Sonoma County Board of Supervisors advance plastic bag ban | Petaluma360.

Posted on Categories Sonoma CoastTags , Leave a comment on BOS will vote on fee collection at county beaches

BOS will vote on fee collection at county beaches

by Sonoma Coast Surfrider
The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors (BOS) will be voting this upcoming Tuesday, August 21st, on a resolution regarding the fees collection system (the “Iron Rangers”) proposed by the California Department of Parks and Recreation (DPR) to be installed at Sonoma County’s major beaches.
Your attendance at the BOS chambers this Tuesday is very valuable, demonstrating your support of a Sonoma County resolution that the DPR proposed project is flawed and ill-conceived.  Attendees are encouraged to be at BOS chambers, 575 Administration Drive, Room 102A in Santa Rosa for item 12 of the agenda; the meeting will be called to order at 8:30 am.  It will be important to have as many people as is possible attend; please pass this information on to fellow citizens.
A summary to the BOS can be downloaded at
http://sonoma-county.granicus.com/MetaViewer.php?view_id=2&event_id=20&meta_id=93959
A copy of the BOS resolution can be downloaded at
http://sonoma-county.granicus.com/MetaViewer.php?view_id=2&event_id=20&meta_id=93961
In addition, a link to this resolution has been posted on the Surfriders blog.  Not only can it be downloaded from this site, but it provides much additional information relevant both to the issue of Iron Rangers, but to other coastal issues.
http://www.scsurfrider.blogspot.com/
This vote marks the end of Public Comment (as required by CEQA), and the acceptance of letters of concern by the public to Sonoma County’s Permits Resources Management Department.  Please submit your comments on this matter to PRMD, c/o David Hardy (Project Planner), RE File CPH12-0004, 2550 Ventura Avenue, Santa Rosa, CA  95403.  You can email David at david.hardy@sonoma-county.org, or you can call him for details at 707-565-1924.  Comments must be submitted by August 21, 2012.
 
Copy of DPR’s July 31st application to Sonoma County can be downloaded from
http://www.surfrider.org/sonomacoast/permitapp.pdf
 
Thank you for your active involvement in this important issue, one that involves the traditional rights of public access and use of our beaches here in Sonoma County.

Posted on Categories WildlifeTags Leave a comment on Join the Great Bee Count August 11

Join the Great Bee Count August 11

by Staff, SAN RAFAEL PATCH.COM

honey bee on flowerAre we losing bees? Or are they holding their own, busily pollinating crops and flowers as they should? A biologist at S.F. State is asking for your help in a nationwide bee census Saturday.
via Join the Great Bee Count Aug. 11 – San Rafael, CA Patch.

Posted on Categories Land UseTags , , , Leave a comment on Sonoma County judge strikes down Roblar Road quarry approval

Sonoma County judge strikes down Roblar Road quarry approval

by Brett Wilkison, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
A Sonoma County judge has struck down the approval for a controversial rock quarry west of Cotati, saying key parts of the environmental impact report were inadequate. The final ruling, issued Thursday by Judge Elliot Daum, could derail the project by requiring the county and quarry developer John Barella to conduct a new environmental report, or overhaul large parts of the existing one.
via Sonoma County judge strikes down Roblar Road quarry OK | PressDemocrat.com.

Posted on Categories Climate Change & Energy, WaterTags , Leave a comment on Windsor approves innovative PAYS water conservation & energy efficiency program – First in California!

Windsor approves innovative PAYS water conservation & energy efficiency program – First in California!

by bvesser, CLIMATE PROTECTION CAMPAIGN
Windsor Efficiency PAYS®, available to eligible Windsor residents starting August 2012, provides water and energy upgrades for residential properties that provide immediate utility bill savings—   with no upfront cost or debt.
On July 18, 2012, the Windsor Town Council gave final approval for Windsor Efficiency PAYS®, a new, innovative water conservation program that provides residents with immediate savings on utility bills and requires no upfront cost or new debt. The program provides for the installation of very efficient products and appliances, as well as dry-summer, drought resistant landscaping that will reduce water use, conserve energy, and save money.
via Windsor Approves Innovative, Water Conservation & Energy Efficiency Program – First in California! | Climate Protection Campaign.

Posted on Categories WildlifeTags , Leave a comment on Delta blues: Can salmon survive California's 'Peripheral Canal'?

Delta blues: Can salmon survive California's 'Peripheral Canal'?

by Alastair Bland, NORTH BAY BOHEMIAN
Chinook salmon are abundant this year in one of the best seasons in local fishing memory, with sport and commercial fishermen reeling in easy boatloads of the most prized food and game fish on the Pacific Coast.
Still, a local conservation group warns that all this could change if state officials in Sacramento, now plotting the near future of California’s water-development infrastructure, approve and build a large canal intended to deliver Sacramento River water to Southern California.
via Delta Blues | News | North Bay Bohemian.

Posted on Categories WaterTags , Leave a comment on Santa Rosa wastewater treatment plant on Llano Road undergoing energy upgrade

Santa Rosa wastewater treatment plant on Llano Road undergoing energy upgrade

By Kevin McCallum, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Cleaning wastewater requires huge amounts of energy.
It has to be moved with pumps, blasted with pressurized air and zapped with ultraviolet lights. Even after it’s cleaned, it has to be pumped to local farms and soccer fields or piped 40 miles to be injected into the Geysers steam fields.
All that makes the Llano Road wastewater treatment plant, operated by the City of Santa Rosa, one of the largest energy users in Sonoma County, absorbing between 3 and 7 megawatts of electricity daily.
via Santa Rosa wastewater treatment plant on Llano Road undergoing energy upgrade | PressDemocrat.com.

Posted on Categories Land UseTags , , Leave a comment on County panel denies Hop Kiln Winery's expansion bid

County panel denies Hop Kiln Winery's expansion bid

by Bob Norberg, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Hop Kiln Winery’s proposal for a major expansion was denied by Sonoma County officials Thursday as being out of scale with the rural Westside Road.
Westside Grapes, the owner of Hop Kiln, was also told by the Board of Zoning Adjustments that it needs to resolve lingering illegal uses on the property and come back with a proposal for a new production facility.
via County panel denies Hop Kiln Winery’s expansion bid | PressDemocrat.com.

Posted on Categories Land Use, WildlifeTags , , Leave a comment on Opponents of Roblar Road quarry win round in court

Opponents of Roblar Road quarry win round in court

by Brett Wilkison, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
A Sonoma County judge has sided with key points in a lawsuit challenging approval of the controversial Roblar Road rock quarry, a move that could derail the project west of Cotati.
A split county Board of Supervisors approved the 70-acre project in late 2010 over the objections of a group of neighbors and others concerned about environmental impacts.
via Opponents of Roblar Road quarry win round in court | Petaluma360.

Posted on Categories ForestsTags , , , Leave a comment on Environmental groups file lawsuits over Artesa vineyard project

Environmental groups file lawsuits over Artesa vineyard project

by Brett Wilkison, THE PRESS DEMOCRAT
Three environmental groups sued the state and a Spanish wine conglomerate on Thursday over approval of a hotly disputed vineyard project in northwest Sonoma County.
The groups oppose plans by Artesa Vineyards and Winery of Napa, owned by the Spanish wine giant Grupo Codorniu, to clear about 150 acres of second-growth forest and former orchard land outside of Annapolis to grow chardonnay and pinot noir grapes.
via Opponents file lawsuits over Artesa vineyard project | PressDemocrat.com.