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Chico News & Review - Compassion above all else - Editorial - Opinions - March 29, 2018 - 0 views

  • Butte Environmental Council, which for decades has organized events to beautify our parks and waterways. During a cleanup in 2008, as the CN&R reported, BEC volunteers collected a whopping 10.5 tons of trash in five hours.
    Butte Environmental Council (BEC) is a community organization committed to protecting and defending environmental quality throughout Butte County. By regularly removing trash and recyclables that have found their way in to our urban creeks, parks and greenways BEC is helping to keep local water clean and safe, improving wildlife habitat and reducing human impacts on our environmental quality. Chico's urban waterways are heavily impacted by litter, illegal dumping, and creekside camping. BEC is committed to treating all members of our community with dignity and respect. We often remove materials left behind by those living along our creeks. Our non-confrontation policy asks our volunteers to avoid any interactions with those in the cleanup area besides inviting them to join us. In partnership with local law enforcement, we provide notice to camps in an effort to allow time for personal property to be removed. Usable items that are removed from our cleanup efforts are repurposed whenever possible to minimize what we send to the landfill. Our community cleanups have two goals: remove waste from our creeks, and build a community committed to healthy waterways.

Chico News & Review - Slow go: Stakeholders call for more time on countywide conservati... - 0 views

  • Natalie Carter, executive director of the Butte Environmental Council, also sees benefit from deliberation. Noting that the BRCP’s 50-year term exceeds the general plans of both Butte County and Chico, she says, “it’s smart to be cautious about these kinds of things—thoughtful and evaluative.”
  • On the BRCP overall, Carter said, “the concept and the core of it is a really strong thing, and wonderful. It’s a remarkable effort that should be appreciated by our community.”

Downtown parade will go Saturday rain or shin - 0 views

  • Engangered Species Fair runs 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Saturday at the group picnic area at One-Mile Recreation Area in lower Bidwell Park. The 37th annual event is put on by the Butte Environmental Council and is free.
  • The theme is “Back from the Brink” which celebrates the removal of three species from the endangered species list, including the gray wolf, bald eagle and maguire daisy. Highlights include an eco-scavenger hunt, free vegetable starts, a raffle and a puppet parade featuring papier mache puppets made by local elementary students.

What's happening Saturday in the north valley - 0 views

  • 37th annual Endangered species Faire, Chico: 11 a.m.-4 p.m. at Group Picnic Area, One-Mile Recreation Area, Lower Bidwell Park. Learn about environmental issues and enjoy live music and food; 30 environmental booths. Hands-on experiences/activities; eco-scavenger hunt, vegetable starts, raffle, puppet parade featuring paper mache puppets made by elementary students. Free bike valet by Chico Velo; hydration station by Klean Kanteen. Hosted by Butte Environmental Council.

Local third-graders make papiér-mâché animals for upcoming Endangered Species... - 0 views

  • The students will get a chance to parade their puppets during the Procession of the Species at this year’s fair on May 7, 11 a.m.-4 p.m. at One-Mile Recreation Area.

Earth Day movie night scheduled at brewery's Big Room - 0 views

  • An Earth Day movie night is planned April 19 at the Sierra Nevada Brewing Co. Big Room. Doors open at 5 p.m. and the films begin at 6:30 p.m. Eight short films with agricultural themes are planned.
  • Admission is a $5 minimum cash-only donation. All attendees will receive prizes corresponding to the generosity of their donation. Guests will also have the chance to win additional raffle prizes throughout the night.

PG&E plans removal of 32 Midway trees - 1 views

  • Mark Stemen of Butte Environmental Council said his group is “very pleased” with the plan, and has been working for about the last year and a half on Chico tree issues. BEC also worked with PG&E on the replacement of trees north of Hegan Lane near the pipeline.
  • Smith said PG&E has been working more carefully with communities over tree removals, noting a change in its approach.

The Big Scrap - 0 views

  • The activist group Move the Junkyard was formed in January 2015, shortly after the City Council directed planning department staff to develop a process for CSM to stay in south Chico. The group is allied with the Butte Environmental Council, which has long supported the Chapman/Mulberry Neighborhood Plan and CSM’s amortization.
  • During an interview several days prior to the Planning Commission’s meeting, Move the Junkyard member Ory and Mark Stemen, chairman of BEC’s board of directors, were certain the commission would reject CSM’s new development agreement. “I think CSM has done a very effective job playing on heartstrings and emotional issues that affect [city] councils, but I think they’ll come up against the Planning Commission and see that’s not what it’s about,” Stemen said.
  • aying on heartstrings and emotional issues that affect [city] councils, but I think they’ll come up against the Planning Commission and see that’s not what it’s about,” Stemen said

Change of guard for Butte Environmental Council: DiFalco departs, Carter takes over - 1 views

    She's helped to turn the Butte Environmental Council around, Stemen continued. She's extremely organized, which helped the nonprofit group stay focused and concentrate on improving programs. Recently, DiFalco announced that she was ready to do something else. She wasn't sure what, but she gave BEC the luxury of hiring someone to replace her, even offering to stay around to help the new person get settled on the job. As for the future, BEC made the announcement this week that Natalie Carter will take the helm at BEC. Carter's recent experience includes running the Chico Certified Farmers Market. She is scheduled to begin March 1, with a period of transition.

Volunteers take part in chilly, post-New Year's cleanup of Big Chico Creek - 2 views

    Chico >> Cold morning temperatures and the calendar failed to deter a handful of volunteers who pitched in for a creek cleanup Saturday. While the last month's first monthly "Block Party With a Purpose" drew about 40 people and collected 4,300 pounds of refuse from Lindo Channel, organizers anticipated fewer people for the event just two days into the new year.

Block party clean up | Action News Now - 2 views

    Block party clean up

'Block Parties with a Purpose' target Chico waterways - 0 views

  • CHICO, Calif. - Volunteers in Chico started the new year by cleaning up Chico waterways. January 2 was the first "Block Party with a Purpose" in 2016.
  • The Butte Environmental Council last held a "party" in 2014. But waterways around the city are littered with trash so volunteers are back at it.
  • "It is really a satisfying experience," Shelly Rogers, a volunteer, said. "We get an unbelievable amount of trash."
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  • Saturday focused on Big Chico Creek but the volunteers will cover Little Chico Creek and the Lindo Channel throughout the year.
    CHICO, Calif. - Volunteers in Chico started the new year by cleaning up Chico waterways. January 2 was the first "Block Party with a Purpose" in 2016. The Butte Environmental Council last held a "party" in 2014. But waterways around the city are littered with trash so volunteers are back at it.

Chico News & Review - Map quest - Sustainability - Green - September 3, 2015 - 0 views

  • In spots around Butte County, particularly in south Chico and south Oroville, ecological hazards threaten health and safety. Some residents know; some don’t. Polluters tend not to advertise when they’re breaking the law, and residual toxins from decades past represent some of the biggest risks.
  • According to Robyn DiFalco, executive director of the Butte Environmental Council, “a clean and healthy environment versus dirty, unhealthy, polluted environments really have a lot connected with geography.” Wealthy neighborhoods don’t have to deal with these problems because residents there tend to “squawk very loud if dirty industrial sites were in their backyard—and they would prevent them from going in, and choose not to live near those sites.” Lower-income individuals don’t always “have those opportunities to speak out and prevent those sites from going in,” she continued, and neighborhoods with less expensive housing often are located “near these sites that are visually less attractive and have these health problems that their families may be affected by. “So, to be able to see a geographic dispersion of contamination sites, environmental and public health issues, is very telling,” DiFalco continued. “That’s why it’s so important to give visibility to that—that’s why it’s so important to have the EJSCREEN tool and the one that California does … otherwise, a lot of these communities are out of sight, out of mind.”

Chico News & Review - Creekside crackdown - News - Local Stories - September 10, 2015 - 0 views

  • Cynthia Gailey identifies herself first and foremost as an environmentalist, and she’s fully aware that homeless encampments have contributed heavily to the trashing of Chico’s waterways. The degradation, she says, is appalling.
  • Still, it’s not as if the camps’ inhabitants have access to household comforts such as toilets, showers, laundry machines or garbage pick-up, Gailey says. As the coordinator for Safe Space, the seasonal, cold-weather homeless shelter hosted at rotating locations, she argues that the solution is providing unsheltered people with adequate facilities and services, not creating new laws that only “further criminalize homelessness.”
  • The environmental impacts are serious. Last year, Butte Environmental Council’s annual Bidwell Park & Chico Creeks Cleanup—which aims to remove litter from the waterways before rain washes it downstream—pulled an estimated 30 tons of garbage from the creeks. It was a record amount of trash, far surpassing the previous high of 23,000 pounds in 2002. (BEC has tracked the trash haul since 1987.)
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  • This year is shaping up about the same, based on accounts of volunteers who have worked in the waterways ahead of the cleanup, which is taking place on Saturday (Sept. 19), said BEC Executive Director Robyn DiFalco. “We’re hearing the conditions are really similar to last year,” she said. “We’re expecting to collect just as much material so long as the same number of volunteers come out again.” The volunteers pick up plenty of “typical everyday litter,” DiFalco said, but the vast majority of trash, by both weight and volume, comes from homeless encampments. However, she doesn’t want people blaming homeless people alone for the waste in the waterways. “This is all part of the bigger situation in our community and society,” she said. “Our role at BEC is to facilitate the community having a positive impact and getting out there for the cleanup.”

Chico News & Review - Back in the scrap - News - Local Stories - October 1, 2015 - 0 views

  • It takes more than a good fence to make a good neighbor. That was the sentiment expressed by many who attended a meeting held by Chico Scrap Metal at the Eagles Hall on Friday (Sept. 25). The meeting ostensibly was a pitch for aesthetic improvements proposed by the recycling yard as part of the owners’ latest attempts to stay at the 20th street property it has occupied since 1983. Zoning changes to the area in 2004 prompted a 2006 order from the Chico City Council that the scrap yard move by 2011, and a series of extensions expired at the end of 2014.
  • A group of opponents to Chico Scrap Metal’s continued presence in south Chico, collectively known as Move the Junkyard, met Tuesday morning at Butte Environmental Council’s headquarters to try to make sense of Friday’s meeting and plan strategies moving forward. Several in attendance expressed ongoing concerns about pollution and questioned whether the city can legally overturn zoning laws and the past council’s amortization order. The group thinks there’s only one reasonable outcome, which was best voiced by Chico resident and Democratic National Committee member Bob Mulholland.

See Lower Feather River salmon run - 1 views

  • Chico >> Butte Environmental Council will kick off its three-part Citizen Science Series Saturday with an On-Water Citizen Science Adventure. The council’s Watershed Program is partnering with the Forebay Aquatic Center and Outdoor Education for All to give a tour of the fall-run Chinook salmon in the Lower Feather River Watershed.
  • Last spring the Citizen Science Series highlighted the Big Chico Creek from the confluence of the Sacramento River to the forested spring headwaters. This fall series will feature other watersheds of Butte County, including an upcoming tour of Butte Creek Canyon.
  • The council’s Watershed Program seeks to protect and enhance the ecological integrity of watersheds throughout Butte County. The council is working on projects in the Big Chico Creek, Little Chico Creek, Butte Creek and Feather River Watersheds to foster watershed education, restore habitat, and advocate for responsible water management.

Chico News & Review - It's baaaaaack - News - Local Stories - October 8, 2015 - 0 views

  • At the end of 2009, after a long-fought battle with concerned citizens and a divided Chico City Council, Walmart’s plans to expand its Forest Avenue store were denied. The ultimate decision, reached by a liberal-majority council, was that the environmental impacts outweighed any potential benefits of the project. The company was told it must wait at least a year before bringing the idea back to the city. Now, six years later, the plan to expand Chico’s Walmart is back on the table. It appears it’s not the only one, either. Plans for a new 197,000-square-foot Supercenter in Oroville that were first submitted in 2006 are finally making headway. That project could break ground by the end of 2015. And there are rumblings of progress on plans for building a Walmart in Paradise—those also had their beginnings in the middle of the 2000s.
  • “As an organization, we feel there are many aspects of a super Walmart that conflict with the goals of protecting the environment and supporting local economies, overall, in a broad sense,” said Robyn DiFalco, executive director of local eco-advocacy group Butte Environmental Council, adding that the group had not yet taken a position on the expansion.

Butte Environmental Council offers water saving gadgets | Local News - Home - 0 views

  • CHICO, Calif. -
  • The Butte Environmental Council is giving away a couple small items to help easily tweak water conservation inside your home.First, they are offering a shower hourglass timer that you can suction cup to the side of your bathroom wall.
  • This times your shower to five minutes. The council said by shaving just four minutes off your shower, you save more than 3,500 gallons of water per year.They are also giving out a sink aerator. This reduces the flow of water, reducing the number of gallons per minute.

Letter: Proposed ag buffer change bad for public well-being - 1 views

  • I can not believe that the Butte County Department of Development Services has the audacity to come up with a plan to reduce the agricultural buffer in Butte County, and it is not just along the greenline. The proposed ordinance will allow developers to be able to ask for a reduction to the proposed agricultural setback from farming operations to as little as 25 feet.The long standing 300-foot buffer is there for a reason. It is the minimum setback that hopefully will protect the public’s health and well-being. This proposed ordinance is so outrageous that it prohibits and exempts the homeowners affected from even being able to sue for damages if they are harmed. Where are the Butte County department heads of Public Health and Services that are paid to protect and serve the health and well-being of the citizens of Butte County? They must speak out to protect the people of Butte County for generations to come.This proposed ordinance goes before the Butte County Planning Commission at 9 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 22.This proposed ordinance is a violation of the ‘public trust doctrine’.— John Scott, Butte Valley

Butte County Planning Commission discusses buffers between houses, land used for agricu... - 1 views

  • Oroville >> The Butte County Planning Commission has delayed making a recommendation on altering how a 300-foot agricultural buffer applies in residential areas.
  • The county’s current rules call for the agricultural buffer to apply next to properties with agricultural use, which may include properties zoned as residential. The proposal would limit this buffer to development next to agriculturally zoned properties, although an amendment would allow people to use their residential, commercial and industrial properties an acre or larger for farming and grazing.
  • John Scott said the proposal was a violation of the public’s trust as eliminating the buffer could expose residents to sprayed pesticides that drift onto their properties. He said the Development Services Department was working to bring in money from development at the risk of others. “Inappropriate development should not drive this ordinance,” Scott said.
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  • Robin DiFalco of the Butte Environmental Council said the changes don’t alter the green line, but increases the potential of development on the farming side. “It is in fact directly contrary to the goals of the General Plan and the green line,” DiFalco said.
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