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ndcarter

Chico News & Review - Challenge met, work continues - Sustainability - Green - Septembe... - 0 views

  • Goldstein reached out to the general public at Chico events such as Thursday Night Market; the homeowner workshops co-sponsored by North Valley Energy Watch and the Butte Environmental Council, nonprofits that put together tool-and-testing kits available through the Chico library; and meetings with business leaders.
  • Molly Marcussen, a recent graduate of Chico State, began her CivicSpark fellowship this week, transitioning into City Hall as Goldstein transitions out. The two met in one of Marcussen’s classes last fall—Community Service Practice in Geography, taught by Sustainability Task Force chair Mark Stemen—but otherwise have not worked together.
becwatershed

Neighbors needed to help clean up creeks with Butte Environmental Council - 2 views

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    Chico >> Filling bags with trash and picking up cigarette butts isn't exactly a party, but its a good way to join neighbors in a cause. The Butte Environmental Council will organize six upcoming cleanups as part of its neighborhood block party program. BEC is known for organizing large-scale park cleanups during the warmer months.
becwatershed

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

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    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.
becwatershed

Block party clean up | Action News Now - 2 views

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    Block party clean up
rdifalco

Rain, rain and more rain needed to refill local groundwater - 0 views

  • Oroville >> People are wearing raincoats and watching water run down the gutter. However, the recent rains do not mean the end of California’s four-year drought.

    Butte County’s water resources scientist Christina Buck said the local rainfall is still only at about 89 percent of average for this time of year. That’s based on rain through last week and beginning Oct. 1, which is the start of the “water year.”

  • Carol Perkins, a water advocate for Butte Environmental Council, told the members of the Water Commission that she hopes when those groundwater jurisdictions are established, they will consider watersheds, rather than existing water use boundaries. Some examples of watersheds are Butte Creek, Big Chico Creek and the Feather River, she said.

    “This might give groundwater dependent farmers a more prominent voice in this process,” Perkins said.

    “As it stands right now, our only voice is the county for those areas.”

rdifalco

Row on the creek - 0 views

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    Critics blast environmental review of proposed waste conversion facility along Glenn County waterway
    The watchdogs at Butte Environmental Council usually keep guard close to home, but occasionally they'll look beyond Chico's backyard. "Environmental issues don't stop at the county line," said Executive Director Robyn DiFalco. "We tend to look beyond our borders at least a little bit to see if our community will be affected."
    She believes that's the case with the proposed Glenn County Solid Waste Conversion Facility about 3 miles west of Hamilton City, which would sort and recycle up to 200 tons of material a day and convert biodegradable substances into biogas. According to the project's Draft Environmental Impact Report (EIR), the goal is to divert and recycle up to 70 percent of the county's municipal solid waste from the landfill. And that's been a problem; the county's landfill near Artois has been pushing capacity for years and is set to close in December.




    What's caught BEC's attention? It's mostly a matter of location. The facility would be constructed along the northern bank of Stony Creek, which feeds into the Sacramento River and the Tuscan Aquifer, the vast underground reservoir that provides drinking water for residents in Glenn County and nearby communities-including Chico.
becwatershed

'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.
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    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.
becnews

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.
becnews

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.

rdifalco

Water group vows to file lawsuit to stop well drilling - Appeal-Democrat: Glenn County ... - 0 views

  • AquAlliance, a water advocacy group in Butte County, has vowed to file a lawsuit to try and stop Glenn-Colusa Irrigation District's plan to drill five new wells in eastern Glenn County.

    Speakers at a public forum last week in Ord Bend called GCID's plans to pump more groundwater in times of drought "excessively greedy" and potentially harmful to area groundwater levels already taxed to the point that residential wells are running dry.

  • "Glenn County needs to enact an emergency ordinance just as Colusa County did," said Orland farmer Sharron Ellis, of Save our Water Resources. "Oversight of our resources is the responsibility of our county to protect the public trust."
  • The project calls for five additional deep-water wells to be drilled along the Glenn-Colusa canal on sites east of Orland and Artois, which would yield 28,500 acre-feet of water taken over approximately eight months during critically dry years, GCID officials said.
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  • "In a drought like this, do we really need 10 production wells to pull down more water?" asked Robyn DiFalco, director of the Butte Environmental Council. "I don't think so."
  • DiFalco said the biggest concern with the project's environmental impact report is that it assumes the area's groundwater levels would largely recover during the next wet period.
  • "Based on what?" she said. "Data shows that the groundwater has not recovered in recent years. It's has recovered a little bit, but it is, overall, declining steadily."
  • Water advocates said it is hard to trust GCID given its long history of promoting and endorsing conjunctive use of water, which means groundwater substitution, and that there is no reason to doubt that intent has changed.

    DiFalco said since GCID had enough "surplus" water this year to sell 70,000 acre-feet of commingled water, of which 45,000 acre-feet flowed south this year to the Delta, she doubts that an emergency exists.

  • "If you have surplus water, where is the emergency for you to pump this water during a drought?" she said. "How do you claim to have surplus and also claim to have a deficit at the same time?"
rdifalco

Crowd rallies against new wells planned for Glenn County ag land - 0 views

  • he crowd at the Ord Community Hall Wednesday night was decidedly against the idea of five new wells for Glenn-Colusa Irrigation District. The agency provides water to about 1,000 farmers in four counties, and plans the new wells for use when surface water supplies are tight.
  • Ord Bend >> The consistent and clear message Wednesday night was that people do not like Glenn-Colusa Irrigation District’s plans to drill five new wells. Members of the crowd were also not fans of five existing wells the district drilled previously and is including in the current environmental review.

    Speakers at a public comment meeting called the plans greedy, unnecessary and potentially harmful to groundwater levels in the area.

  • Some citizens in Glenn County have started a petition calling for a moratorium on new production wells. Sharron Ellis, who passed a clipboard through the crowds, said a moratorium could stop new wells including those being discussed Wednesday night. So many wells are currently being drilled in the county that a moratorium would only slow down drilling, she said.
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  • One of the predictions in the environmental review is that once the drought is over, groundwater levels will recover. However, Robyn DiFalco, director of the Butte Environmental Council said this is not likely.
  • Groundwater has not recovered in recent years, and is in a decline, she said.
rdifalco

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

  • Volunteer tree watering in Upper Bidwell Park: 8:15-11 a.m. Resources, including buckets, hose and water provided. Meet at North Rim Trail parking lot. Wear sturdy shoes and be able to carry a gallon of water from a truck to seedlings (5-10 yards). Butte Environmental Council planted 100 blue oak acorns last fall, and help watering is needed to assure their survival. For information or to schedule a group, Becky Holden, beckyh@becnet.org. Weekly through August.

rdifalco

City of Chico sees progress, setbacks in meeting 2020 targets for greenhouse gas emission - 0 views

  • Chico >> With 5 1/2 years left to meet greenhouse gas emission targets, the city of Chico continues to struggle in certain sectors.
  • The draft greenhouse gas emissions inventory, which is expected to be highlighted during the sustainability indicators report at the Chico City Council today, summarizes results of a high-level community-wide inventory that addresses emissions from the transportation, energy and waste sectors within city boundaries from 2005-12. Many external factors, including the economy and government regulations, are to be credited for reductions, and it remains to be seen how well the city is on track to meet its goals, said Principal Planner Brendan Vieg.
  • some of these reductions could be reversed, said Mark Stemen, a member of the Sustainability Task Force, which has been tasked with leading implementation of the Climate Action Plan.
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  • “How do we keep people from getting back into their cars?” he said. “We need to remind people, hey, drive less. It’s good for pollution. It’s good for the planet.”

    Other areas of success included emissions from commercial electricity, which fell 10.6 percent, and waste to landfill, which dropped by 15.2 percent.

  • “Watching the struggles with water has made me feel a little bit better about our inability to cut back on electricity,” he said. “People are now seeing the effects of the drought and they are acting. It’s important for people to understand they have to do the same thing when it comes to climate change.”
rdifalco

Butte County supervisors vote 4-1 to ban fracking waste disposal in county - 0 views

  • Oroville >> After a relatively brief public hearing Tuesday, the Butte County Board of Supervisors approved an ordinance that would ban the storage or disposal of fracking waste within the county.

    The vote regarding the waste generated by injecting fluids into the ground to stimulate oil and natural gas production was 4-1.

  • The ordinance defines key fracking terms, creates a land-use category about storing or disposing fracking waste or byproduct and then bans such storage and disposal within the county.
  • Six of the seven members of the public that commented on the proposal openly supported the ordinance. Members of the Butte Environmental Council and Frack-Free Butte County spoke.
rdifalco

Field trips to explore Big Chico Creek - 0 views

  • Butte Environmental Council will host a scientific exploration of Big Chico Creek in a series of three field trips.

    The first outing will take place at the mouth of Big Chico Creek Sunday. Lucas Ross Merz of Sacramento River Preservation Trust and Jennifer Patten of Altacal Audubon Society will be the featured scientists.

    During the outings in April, May, and June participants will experience an upstream migration along Big Chico Creek; beginning at the confluence with the Sacramento River, through the valley and urban section, and ending with a hike to the forested spring headwaters.

    Each event will focus on the scientific wonders from two fields of study to deepen understanding and appreciation of the creek.

    The is a free event, however space is limited and participants need to register at www.becnet.org or call 891-6424.

rdifalco

'Block party' cleanup of Little Chico Creek set for Saturday morning - 0 views

  • A clean-up of Little Chico Creek from 9 a.m. to noon Saturday is being touted as a “block party with a purpose.”

    After gathering near the windchime sculpture at the park on Humboldt Avenue near Willow Street, volunteers and community members will remove garbage from the creek and park, according to an event flier. Invasive weeds will also be cleared.

    Volunteers are asked to wear closed-toe shoes, long pants and long-sleeve shirts and to bring gloves and a reusable water bottle, if available.

    Organizers will provide tools, waste bins and water. They will also provide lunch and lemonade to volunteers.

    The event is sponsored by the city of Chico, Butte Environmental Council, Waste Management and the Mount Lassen Chapter of the California Native Plant Society.

rdifalco

Letters: Supervisors will surely vote to protect the county - 0 views

  • Supervisors will surely vote to protect the county

    I think our Butte County supervisors have the tenacity and courage to do the right thing by supporting the Butte County written ordinance to ban fracking.

    This ban will protect our community, its farmers, ranchers and all future generations from the inevitable destruction of our aquifer brought about from hydraulic fracking,

    Will any of our supervisors vote to support fracking and sell you out to big energy?

    Stand with me to support all the supervisors that vote to ban hydraulic fracking in Butte County.

    — John Scott, Butte Valley

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    John Scott is a member of the BEC Board of Directors and Co-Chair of the BEC Advocacy Committee. He is also a member of the Butte County Water Commission.
rdifalco

Letter: Butte County supervisors must act on fracking ban - 1 views

  • Butte County supervisors must act on fracking ban

    Thousands of Butte County citizens joined members of Frack-free Butte County, Butte Environmental Council and the Sierra Club to demonstrate our desire for a ban against fracking in our petition to the county last year.

  • Since then, numerous health, water, air, disposal, climate, transport, soil, seismic and other problems with fracking were described in letters to the editor. In April, the Butte County Board of Supervisors asked the Planning Commission staff to develop a ban; it was tighter than our own ban. Now the time has arrived for the board to sign onto the staff’s excellent ban.
rdifalco

Letter: County should act where state fails on fracking - 0 views

  • County should act where state fails on fracking

    Please know that DOGGR is not doggedly watching over your safety.

    DOGGR stands for the Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources — part of California’s Conservation Department.

  • It is a shame that last week’s letter to the editor — about SB 4 assuring the safety of fracking — is incorrect. Instead, analysis of Senate Bill 4, Well Stimulation Treatment Regulations, shows that even the most recent revisions (in October) are inadequate.
  • The newer SB4 has weaker reporting requirements regarding earthquake activity tested in the vicinity of fracking. DOGGR now states that earthquakes measuring less than 2.7 are irrelevant. Yet available research shows otherwise.

    Although the Butte County Planning Commission did not have specific recommendations regarding a ban at its Dec. 11 meeting, we are hopeful that the Board of Supervisors will soon ban fracking. Such an ounce of prevention can prevent a mountain of problems affecting our farming, our health, and the quantity and quality of our ground and surface waters — so vital to Butte County’s economic and people’s well-being.

    — Grace M. Marvin, Chico

rdifalco

Letter: Stop shale oil trains along Feather River watershed - 0 views

  • Stop shale oil trains along Feather River watershed

    Lake Oroville provides water for 25,000,000 people and 750,000 acres of farmland in California.

    When a railroad tank car laden with toxic Bakken shale crude oil derails, ending up in the Feather River, all of the water in Lake Oroville will be poisoned.

    Bakken fracking oil is contaminated with hundreds of highly carcinogenic, toxic and poisonous chemicals that would instantly mix with the water in Lake Oroville, rendering all of the Lake Oroville water unfit for consumption by people or irrigating crops.

    The longer this contaminated water is in Lake Oroville the more of it will seep into and destroy our groundwater. If contaminated water in Lake Oroville reaches the Thermalito Afterbay it would seep into the shallow aquifer west of the afterbay. The afterbay actually leaks big time underground into the farmland west of the afterbay.

  • The oil industry will not allow this highly explosive Bakken oil in their pipelines because it would blow up their pipelines. That is why Bakken oil is being shipped by train. Also, the new reinforced Bakken oil railcars have already been involved in oil spills. The liability from this catastrophic event would bankrupt Union Pacific and force its operation into government receivership.

    There are alternatives to energy. There are no alternatives for water.

    Demand that toxic Bakken shale oil trains are not allowed along the Feather River watershed, because your economic future is actually over with the first Bakken shale oil spill into the Lake Oroville watershed.

    — John Scott, Butte Valley

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