WHAT IS THE OC CONSERVATION COMMITTEE ABOUT?
Although each of the three Orange County Groups of the Sierra Club Angeles Chapter has a Conservation Chair, this committee allows members to bring local conservation issues to the attention of the Sierra Club and provides guidance as to how to access Sierra Club resources and conduct outreach among members to support a local conservation issue
The OC Conservation Committee regular meetings are planned quarterly and held ot the Coastkeeper office in Costa Mesa, please sign up to our Sierra Club Listserv to receive meeting announcements and agendas - ANGELES-ORANGE-CONS-COMM@LISTS.SIERRACLUB.ORG - or Contact Ray Hiemstra to get the agenda and details for our next meeting.
Getting involved with Sierra Club conservation efforts in Orange County will help you be a better, more informed resident. The Sierra Club in Orange County is active with many conservation projects and conservation efforts.
LAST MEETING'S AGENDA: Orange County Conservation Committee Agenda Monday Feb 1, 2021 7:00 p.m.
LOCATION: Online Zoom Meeting - join the OC Conservation Committee Listserv, which is called "ANGELES-ORANGE-CONS-COMM" on the lists.sierraclub.org Listserv
7:00 Call to Order/Introductions
- Ray Heimstra
- Annika Krafcik
- Ed and Helen Maurer
- Olga Zapata Reynolds
- John LaRue
- David Warren
Focus of OCCC: Environmental and sustainability issues and policies impacting OC countywide and/or items of concern to any Sierra Club members that are not already being coordinated by any of the three OC groups each of which having representatives on OCCC.
7:05 Approval of Agenda
7:10 Task Force Updates
- Banning Ranch Task Force - Everette Phillips: no new update, there is the potential for new preservation news in the near future
- San Onofre Task Force - Ray Heimstra: Update Dome 1 is being taken down. There is a citizen committee involved in being informed on plans and progress.
- Hobo Aliso Task Force - Penny Elia reported to Ray Heimstra: HomeTowns USA owns the land and Penny observes that environmental easements and Coastal Act requirements are observed - recent issues include SoCal Edison performing work on the property without the proper clearance or waivers to destroy ESHA. Penny and the Coastal Commission Staff became involved. The issue will be on 2/10 Coastal Commission meeting agenda.
- OCCC Zero Waste tam was transferred to Sierra Club California Zero Waste Committee and Hoyin Ip is now CoChair. Congratulations Hoyin!
7:20 Magnolia Tank Farm project discussion
- Magnolia Tank Farm www.magnoliatankfarm.com - should the Sierra Club take a position on this project
- ASCON waste site not in the view
- Sierra Club has not taken a position nor commented on the EIR
- HB approved a zoning change
- New EIR 2020
- City Council approved the development
- NEED COASTAL COMMISSION APPROVAL
- NEED WATER BOARD APPROVAL
- MOTION APPROVED - OPPOSE the current plan as proposed and want to investigate alternatives
- Preserves as wetlands to help with sea rise
7:30 Snowy Plover/Newport Beach River mouth issues
Coastal Commission has rejected the Newport Beach plan for management plan
Penny Elia has been a lead volunteer on coordinating OC Conservation Committee efforts regarding the situation on the ground and needs help.
Note: Congresswomen Steel asked the County not to enforce the dog rules and Coastal Commission create an enforcement rule, because she is afraid of the “dog lover voting block” but this should not be a pro-dog/anti-dog tribal issue, which politicians often default to. This is about the challenges of managing ESHA and the enforcement of existing dog leash laws.
VOLUNTEER REQUEST: Coastkeeper has funding to run a pilot program for monitoring human and dog activity at the mouth of the Santa Ana River.
- Coastkeeper needs volunteers who will take on online course on how to conduct a survey and volunteers will randomly fill out the surveys on human and dog activity at the mouth of the Santa Ana River due to Coastal Commission and Newport Beach Management Plan for Snowy Plover Habitat Management plan. Any volunteer interested should contact Ray Hiemstra (firstname.lastname@example.org)
- This survey will be used by Newport Beach and the Coastal Commission in their discussions and negotiations on the areas management plans for Least Terns and Snowy Plovers. The more data and better quality of data will improve the discussions. Survey times will be random based on volunteer initiative. It will be modeled along the lines of the MPA watch program.
7:45 Safe Trails Coalition/OC Parks Board Speakers
Safe Trails Coalition – something for OCRP is following and participating – along with other citizen groups have expressed concerns about eBikes in County Park trails and trails of open spaces managed by local, state and federal agencies. The current topic is whether eBikes should be allowed in open spaces managed by OC Parks. OC Parks is suppose to be hearing the issue on March 4th. eBikes wants access to all trails including those in OCRP. If OCRP has a position, OCRP should make public comments on whether eBikes should be allowed within OCRP on trails (paved trails or unpaved trails) – Under consideration is a rule change from “No Motorized Vehicles” to “No Motorized Vehicles Allowed - eBikes exempt”. It was reported that one commissioner owns an eBike business and does not plan to recuse himself from voting on the issue.
8:00 OCCC Website/Social Media
VOLUNTEER REQUEST (Facebook): Hoyin is the main volunteer helping with the OCCC Facebook page. More volunteers are needed.
VOLUNTEER REQUEST (Website): Everette is working the update the OCCC website. Please send him update requests and more volunteers are needed.
A request was made to add San Juan Creek Issues - Sierra Club commented on the EIR saying that it should be a creek and not a channel. A link and more information is needed to post on the website.
8:15 Desalination Update
Doheney Desalination - opposed by the Sierra Club with the Chapter Water Committee as leading entity.
Poseidon Project Update – Next Regional Waterboard Meeting in April to reconsider the project. The Sierra Club opposes the project. Look for a new AddUp Campaign. See AddUp Campaigns Here.
Next meeting: Monday May 3, 2021
Join us and learn how government works and how you can make a difference with some simple and basic engagement. Learn from Sierra Club members with experience and protect our valuable open space by methods as a simple as attending a city council meeting, writing to an agency or speaking at a hearing. Being aware is the first step, join us and learn more about how you can make a difference.
Contact our Chair Ray Hiemstra to learn more.