Fumbling on the Environment

Butting heads over CEQA

Butting heads over CEQA

I grew up a diehard Rams fan.  I suffered through the 14-7 “Mud Bowl” NFC championship loss to the Vikings at the Coliseum in 1977.  My recall of the Steelers’ John Stallworth grabbing a reception by pinning the football to his helmet is as vivid as my memory of today’s breakfast.  Be it Jack Youngblood playing with a broken leg or Harold Jackson streaking long for a TD pass, I lived and died with my beloved Rams. At least until owner Georgia Frontiere broke my heart by moving the team to St. Louis.

I am a football fan.  Not a fantasy league geek kind of fan, but the kind that follows the NFL closely, watches ESPN’s “SportsCenter” daily, and catches at least part of a game or two a week.  I want football back in Los Angeles.  It is comical that little Jacksonville has a team and the nation’s second largest city has none.

But that does not mean that I support waiving compliance with the California Environmental Quality Act to get it done.

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Blink 10-22

Chadwick students spoke at MPA hearing but didn't get satisfaction of a vote Thursday night

Chadwick students spoke at MPA hearing but didn't get satisfaction of a vote Thursday night

Most of the signs Thursday pointed towards a state panel adopting a protective Marine Protected Area (MPA) network for Southern California. A strong op-ed piece supporting Map 3 was penned by her deepness herself — Sylvia Earle. An L.A. Times editorial endorsed a strong conservation network. Analysis by the panel’s Scientific Advisory Team — made up of some of California’s best marine scientists — clearly stated that Map 3 best met the scientific criteria. The group also noted that the compromise alternative, Map 1, did a decent job of meeting the criteria, but the fishing alternative, Map 2, failed to meet numerous guidelines.

The “MPAs Work” folks had put together a PSA with star power including Pierce and Keely Brosnan, John McGinley, Amy Smart and others. Even the circus of a public hearing in Long Beach was a balanced affair. With about 500 conservationists garbed in blue and 500 fishermen in black, the hearing room looked like a giant bruise.

Despite having the science, media and a great deal of public opinion on the side of a strong MPA network, the state’s Blue Ribbon Task Force (BRTF) decided to . . . blink. The members postponed their recommendation till sometime in November.

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Remembering Dorothy

The late Dorothy Green: an enduring legacy

The late Dorothy Green: an enduring legacy of activism

A year ago today, California’s environmental community lost a giant: Dorothy Green. Tireless. Visionary. Selfless.  Brilliant.  Fearless. Passionate. Warm.  Driven. Inspiring.  Leader. Mentor. Friend.  These words only begin to describe this remarkable woman.

I miss her each and every day.  Every time I see an article or e-mail on California’s water crisis, I think of Dorothy.  Every time I see our fish logo, I think of Dorothy.  Every day we work on water recycling, conservation, and a Low Impact Development approach to reducing polluted runoff and augmenting local water supplies, I think of Dorothy.  To me, Dorothy will always be Heal the Bay and Heal the Bay will always be Dorothy.

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Ground Control to Guy

Poetic Social Mission: Behind the Webcast in Mumbai

Poetic Social Mission: Behind the Webcast in Mumbai

Today’s guest blogger is Refugio Mata, Inland Outreach Coordinator at Heal the Bay

On the heel’s of NASA’s “bombing” of the moon, another event was beamed to earth from space. The two events had nothing to do with one another, but together they turned eyes heavenward. Continue reading

Deja Poo

San Diego's sewage plant should be source of shame

San Diego's sewage plant should be source of shame

Scientists claiming that poorly treated sewage poses no ecological harm to local marine life.  Bureaucrats claiming that their sewage treatment system has a spotless record despite a long history of major sewage spills. The mayor claiming that the large city deserves a waiver from the full secondary treatment requirements of the 1972 Clean Water Act because of the prohibitive cost of environmental compliance.

Los Angeles circa 1985?  Nope.

San Diego from the grunge period of the early ‘90s?  Nope.

Try today’s San Diego — the city that the Clean Water Act forgot.

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A Visit from the EPA

EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson (center) visits Heal the Bay

EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson (center) visits Heal the Bay

Heal the Bay staffers and board members had the honor of meeting Thursday with new EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson at our Santa Monica Pier Aquarium. We gave the administrator a brief tour of the facility and then we sat down to give her an overview of Heal the Bay’s latest work. We covered a lot of ground in a short time. We told her about the need for a national Beach Report Card, the scope of the global marine debris crisis and Heal the Bay actions to abate the problem, our work on Compton Creek and Stream Team, and our efforts to educate anglers about the health risks of eating DDT- and PCB-contaminated locally caught fish. We talked about our strong working relationship with EPA Region IX on such issues as TMDL and the Palos Verdes shelf Superfund site.

We also asked Jackson to take some critical actions.

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