Our e-newsletter editor is taking a much-deserved break for a few weeks, so this edition of the WAVE looks different than the usual format, but we are continuing to post the latest news articles, events and announcements related to elated to California's severe drought, legislation, coastal issues, water, local government, climate change, etc. on the CalCoast.org website. Below are this week’s highlights (or lowlights in terms what’s happening in the state Senate:
· The Legislature passes the governor’s proposed drought relief plan while LA deals with mudslides and flooding from one storm and another is on the way.
· Speaking of the Guv, he announced yesterday that he’s running for reelection for a historic fourth term.
· The San Diego City Council voted this week to close Children’s Pool beach in La Jolla for five months each year during seal pupping season.
· Scientists said earlier this week that radiation from Fukushima hasn’t reached California’s shore and it’s unlikely to pose any threat to human health.
· A study shows that rising sea levels could threaten LA.
· What the what? Senate President pro tem has allowed Sen. Roderick Wright (D-Inglewood) to take an indefinite leave of absence with pay, after being convicted of voter fraud. He could terminate the leave at any time to vote on legislation because his leave was “voluntary.”
· What the what? State Sen. Ron Calderon (D-Montebello) pleaded not guilty this week to federal charges that he accepted bribes in return for pushing legislation, but he still has his seat. The senator has hired attorney to the stars and Mark Geragos to defend him.
· San Diego passes med pot regulations that allow dispensaries in the city, but votes down an open government measure.
· San Diego’s Chief of Police abruptly resigns amid a number of scandals in the department.
· Full coverage of California’s historic drought.
Stay dry, but hope for more rain this weekend. That’s not counterintuitive in light of the drought.
Our e-newsletter editor is taking a much-deserved break for a few weeks, but we are continuing to post the latest news articles, events and announcements related to elated to California's severe drought, legislation, coastal issues, water, local government, climate change, etc. on the CalCoast.org website.
you live in San Diego, where a new mayor (City Councilmember Kevin
Faulconer) was elected, this week’s news was once again dominated by
California’s drought and what to do about it. The good news is the
state’s snowpack increased from 13% of normal to 28% the last two weeks.
The state is still in crisis mode, however, but some much-needed federal aid will be announced when President Obama visits California today. The state’s drought extends beyond our borders - we supply roughly half of the nation’s fruit and produce annually. Between the December Freeze, which decimated the state’s citrus and fruit stocks, and severe drought conditions in coastal watersheds and the Central Valley, watch for price increases for almonds, salmon, and almost everything we consume, including beef. Lawmakers in Sacramento and D.C. have introduced legislation for drought relief and at least one pundit (below) ponders whether the politics of the drought could affect mid-term elections.
Not discussed in the articles below, but probably of interest to most of our subscribers, are three statewide bills: SB 270 by Senator Alex Padilla (D-Van Nuys), SB 916 by Senator Lou Correa (D-Santa Ana), and AB 1102 by Assemblymember Travis Allen (R-Huntington Beach). SB 270, which would impose a statewide ban on plastic single-use shopping bags, has been co-authored by two Senators who opposed a similar measure last year (SB 405), and it appears that the grocers in California are on board with the bill because they’re currently dealing with more than 70 local bans.
SB 916 would prohibit the sale of motor oil in the state unless the lubricating oil meets certain requirements, including meeting or exceeding the minimal standards for biodegradability, as specified in the bill. SB 916 has been referred to Senate G.O. and EQ.
Finally, AB 1102 deals with beach fire pit issues that first arose in Newport Beach, but eventually included action by the California Coastal Commission and the Southern California Air Quality Management District (SCAQMD). The bill would halt any rule adopted by the SCAQMD on open burning that restricts the use or location of a beach fire ring until the public agency with jurisdiction over that area obtains and implements an approved Coastal Development Permit consistent with the Coastal Act. AB 1102 passed in the Assembly last month and it has been referred to Senate EQ and NR&W. For updates on these and other bills, log onto http://www.leginfo.ca.gov, click “Bill Information,” and type the bill number in the search window.
Happy Valentine’s Day and enjoy tonight’s full moon. What a great coincidence!
Unfortunately, the drought has dominated the news this week,
In terms of what you can do to help reach the governor’s goal of a 20% across-the-board cut in water consumption this article:
California provides half of the nation’s fruits and vegetables and, between the December frost that decimated the state’s citrus and fruit industries and the severe drought in the Central Valley and elsewhere, we will all feel the pain of higher prices down the road, even for fish, but for now our thoughts go out to the workers, farmers and fishermen/fisherwomen affected by this natural disaster.
As if the state didn’t have enough to deal with, the governor issued a statewide power alert this week. Due to a series of natural disasters in form of snow and ice in the Midwest and along the East Coast, shipments of natural gas to power generating plants in the state have been curtailed due to shortages caused by market demand and delivery problems.
So let’s all go to that happy place - San Diego, for the 2014 “Headwaters to Ocean (H2O) Conference” (May 27-29). As in the past, we have received a lot of great abstracts, but we could still use a few more, especially from group panels. Today is the last day to submit abstracts for the conference.
Click here for more information about the conference, to submit an abstract, or register for the conference. Online registration is now available. Click here to Register Now. The early registration rate is available until May 8, 2014.
On behalf of CalCoast’s board, its members and our staff, TGIF and have a great weekend!
This week’s section on the state’s drought is unusually long, but
the issue is front and center here and across the nation so we wanted
to provide full coverage.
State leaders are taking up the issue today (see KPBS piece below). Also below is an article about Assemblyman Mark Stone (D-Monterey Bay) and AB 1504, which he has introduced to ban statewide all cigarettes with filters designed to be discarded after a single use. Cigarette butts with filters are the number one by-product gathered up during beach clean-ups and marine debris is the target of the bill.
AB 1504 will be heard in committee February 14 (a committee has yet to be designated, but the proposed legislation will probably be heard first in Assembly Natural Resources or in Water, Parks and Wildlife.) You can track the status and history of the bill, read committee staff analyses, and access voting for/against the bill here.
We want to remind everyone that the deadline for submitting abstracts for this year’s “Headwaters to Ocean (H2O) Conference” is February 7. You can submit a brief abstract here.
We hope to see you at the conference May 27-29 in San Diego. For more information, including sponsorship and exhibitor opportunities, please click on the link on the left margin or see the announcement below.
Have a great weekend!