Posted on February 3, 2011 by spoutingoff
Life imitates art at the L.A. Regional Water Board
Dear Governor Brown:
I understand you are facing California’s budget crisis head on and I agree with your priority setting for the state: digging us out of the budget crisis is priority one through 100. However, on behalf of all of those that care about clean water in the Los Angeles region, we need your help. Making appointments to boards that don’t necessarily share your views on environmental protection is a high priority. Each month that goes by without your appointments could lead to a series of bad decisions.
For example, the Los Angeles Regional Water Board met on Thursday and one of its first orders of business was the approval of a new board chair. Typically, this is a pro-forma decision. The vice chair gets appointed to the chair leadership. Unfortunately, a Coastal Commission hearing broke out at the Simi Valley meeting with politics getting in the way of traditional policy. Every year for the last 10 years, the vice chair has become the chair. Until Thursday.
Filed under: Environmental Governance, Environmental Leaders, Legislation | Tagged: California Budget, Public Health, Regional Water Quality Control Board, Water Quality | 1 Comment »
Posted on August 5, 2009 by spoutingoff
Rainwater capture: coming to your neighborhood soon
State water power brokers continue to battle over “replumbing” the Delta in the name of “saving” the Chinook and the Delta smelt. They continue to quibble over language in yet another water bond when we haven’t even started spending the last one. But little has been done to make it easy to exploit our most logical source of water: rain.
One of the great qualities of rain is that no one has any rights to it until it hits an aquifer or a body of water. As such, agribusiness and ginormous water districts can’t fight over water rights as gravity takes it from the sky to your backyard.
Filed under: Public Health, Water Recycling | Tagged: cistern, Public Health, rainwater capture, stormwater, Water Recycling | 1 Comment »
Posted on June 23, 2009 by spoutingoff
California halibut is now on reduced consumption list because of contaminant levels
The state Office of Environmental Health Hazard Assessment (OEHHA) finally released its health advisory and safe eating guidelines for fish caught from coastal areas from Ventura Harbor south to the Dana Point area. The results do not bode well for those that regularly eat locally caught coastal fish.
The recommendations are based on a NOAA/EPA fish contamination study of DDT, PCB and mercury contaminant levels in fish collected over five years ago. The agency used some supplementary fish contamination data from Los Angeles County Sanitation Districts and Los Angeles monitoring programs as well.
DDT and PCB manufacturing was banned over 30 years ago, but there are still over 100 tons of DDT and PCBs contaminating the sediments off of the Palos Verdes coast.
Despite the fact that OEHHA unconscionably chose to set the cancer risk for fish consumption at 1 in 10,000 (1 in 100,000 to 1 in a million is the norm and those ranges are the risk levels used by EPA), the health recommendations are pretty far reaching. (more…)
Filed under: Public Health, Seafood | Tagged: contaminated fish, Palos Verdes, Public Health, Seafood, toxins | 5 Comments »
Posted on June 19, 2009 by spoutingoff
L.A. County legal strategy puts swimmers at risk
This week, the State Water Board heard Los Angeles County’s appeal on the inclusion of enforceable beach water quality standards in the county’s stormwater permit. The county appealed the permit despite the fact that the L.A. Regional Board modified the permit nearly three years ago and it has been relatively successful in getting a lot of beaches cleaned up of fecal pollution during the summer months.
The county’s dubious arguments stem from its challenge to putting enforceable numeric limits in the permit. In the case of Santa Monica Bay, the limits are that every beach along the Bay must comply with fecal bacteria water quality standards 100% of the time from April through October. Some beaches, like Santa Monica Pier, Dockweiler at Ballona Creek, and Malibu Surfrider exceed limits dozens of times each summer.
Filed under: Heal the Bay, Public Health, Sewage | Tagged: Clean Water Act, EPA, Public Health, Santa Monica Bay, Sewage Treatment, State Water Board, Water Quality | Leave a Comment »
Posted on May 29, 2009 by spoutingoff
Earlier this week a San Diego Superior Court judge ruled that the city of San Diego had two weeks to come up with a plan to evict a colony of harbor seals at Children’s Pool in La Jolla, a breakwater area with calm swimming waters that attracts many families. The judge’s twisted ruling discounted a previous federal order prohibiting removal of the seals. In his eyes, and the eyes of many locals, the seals are a hazard to children and pose a health risk to local swimmers. These must be the same sort of folks that are constantly pushing for mountain lion and black bear eradication.
Filed under: Marine Life, Public Health | Tagged: Marine Life, Public Health, San Diego, Scripps | 1 Comment »
Posted on May 5, 2009 by spoutingoff
Trump has a mess on his hands in Baja
The Los Angeles Times today examines the failed Trump Ocean Resort in Baja, just below Tijuana. The failure of the massive 525-unit vacation home complex has cost investors millions.
The controversy over the use and abuse of Donald Trump’s “good name” has become the focus of the high-profile collapse. But what hasn’t been mentioned prominently is the potential public health disaster that looms over the project. (more…)
Filed under: Public Health, Sewage, Water Quality | Tagged: Baja, Mexico, Public Health, San Diego, Sewage Treatment, The Apprentice | 1 Comment »
Posted on July 17, 2008 by spoutingoff
Signal Hill is leading the charge to weaken water regulations.
A major court decision was handed down by an Orange County state Superior Court Judge on July 2 that could have a range of impacts on efforts to address water pollution in LA County. (More in the L.A. Times and Daily Breeze.)
Filed under: Public Health, Water Quality | Tagged: Clean Water Act, Public Health, TMDL, Water Quality | 1 Comment »
Posted on July 15, 2008 by spoutingoff
Will eating more California fish really make you more healthy? Photo: Curt Degler
The California Office of Environmental Health Hazard Evaluation (OEHHA) has decided that you need to eat more fish, no matter what the health consequences. The state now says that the solution to our obesity and heart disease epidemics isn’t eating fewer In-N-Out double doubles, but to consume more sport fish caught off the shores of California. Don’t worry that many species are riddled with harmful chemicals. And don’t be troubled by the fact that factory fishing has led to the collapse of most major fishery stocks. We can always lean on fish farms and our remaining struggling fisheries to put fish on the table.
Filed under: Environmental Justice, Public Health | Tagged: carcinogen, fish, OEHHA, Public Health | Leave a Comment »