We received the below from our friends at the Owens Valley Committee about a plan for the re-classification of the Owens River basin from a high-priority to a low-priority basin. This change would allow MORE water to leave our area – with major implications! Please show up this afternoon (Wednesday, August 15) at the Bishop Fire Training Center on E Line St. at 2pm! You don’t have to speak – your presence will speak volumes and will support the Owens Valley Committee and others who are fighting this harmful change.
Owens Valley Groundwater Authority
This is an emergency! At the OVGA meeting on Wednesday, August 15th, there is a proposal to change the Department of Water Resources classification of our basin from a high priority basin to a low priority basin. This will have serious implications for the future of the Owens River Subbasin and the Fish Slough Subbasin. It also opens the door for further transfers from our basin to another basin (the Indian Wells Groundwater Basin). That has implications for Mono County Leases, because the City of Los Angeles is claiming that everything has to be “water neutral”. It is about the money and work, not about the long term sustainability of our aquifers. Please write letters, protest, show up and let the OVGA know what you think about this!
We realize this is very short notice, but if you can’t make the meeting, please send your comments to the members of the OVGA by August 20.
County of Inyo: Dan Totheroh
County of Mono: Fred Stump
City of Bishop: Joe Pesci
Big Pine CSD: Bryanna Vaughan
Keeler CSD: John Dukes
Starlite CSD: Daniel Cutshall
Sierra Highlands CSD: John Camphouse
Eastern Sierra CSD: Walt Pachuki
Indian Creek-Westridge CSD: Luis Elias
Wheeler Crest CSD: Glenn Inouye
Tri Valley GWMD: Dave Doonan
Below is a copy of OVGA’s proposal.
Here’s what you can do to help
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We all know that Los Angeles came to the Owens Valley 100 years ago and sucked the life out of what was a budding agricultural area. It’s a rite of passage for new residents of the valley to read about the chicanery that took place when DWP’s agents came north looking for “farm land.” And, of course, our most (in)famous export is the particulate matter from Owens Lake. Come learn about all that and where we stand today by joining us at Jill Kinmont Boothe School on Wednesday, June 13 at 6 PM. We’ll have a short INYO350 general meeting, followed by a talk and slide show, “The History of Water in the Owens Valley,” presented by Mary Roper.
Mary is the president of the Owens Valley Committee, formed in 1983 to protect the valley’s land and water resources. Mary’s roots in the valley run deep, from a childhood on the family’s ranch on the south fork of Oak Creek to monitoring dozens of elections as the Inyo County registrar of voters. With the aid of her sister, Inyo County Library Director Nancy Masters, Mary will chronicle the history of water in the valley, from before the first white settlers to the water wars that are continuing to this day. Spoiler alert: LA Still Sucks the Owens Valley Dry!
Mining companies are pressuring the state to weaken our strong reclamation standards. The California State Mining and Geology Board will hold a meeting next Wednesday in Sacramento to review the rules applying to open-pit mines. Click here to send a message urging the board to keep California free of the eyesores that plague some of our neighboring states.
Sharon Markenson is a retired teacher who now dedicates her time to educating people of all ages about our changing climate. Sharon and her husband, Gary Goldstein, split their time between their home in Southern California and their cabin on the South Fork of Bishop Creek. We are lucky to have her here, even part-time.
Trained in 2013 by the Climate Reality Leadership Corps to present information on climate issues, Sharon has been teaching faith, school, business and community groups on the effects of climate change and what we, as individuals and as a society, can do about it.
Sharon claims that what really got her into wanting to learn about and then act on climate change was the birth of her grandchildren. She was concerned for their futures, and for the lives of all young people. She loves presenting to students and getting them engaged, because it really is their future that she is talking about.
Sharon has been presenting in Southern California for many years now, but after she joined INYO350 last year she volunteered to offer her skills and her time to Inyo County schools.
Last month Sharon gave an engaging presentation at an INYO350 General Meeting at the White Mountain Research Center. Her presentation combined stunning visuals and captivating stories as she talked about the causes and the impacts of a warming planet, and the solutions that we can all be a part of.
During this week before Earth Day Sharon is presenting her talk to students in Lone Pine, Independence, Bishop and Round Valley Schools. As a retired teacher she has the skill to adapt her presentation to virtually any audience and to students of all ages. Teachers from Southern California who have worked with Sharon and who have seen her work with students have stated that one of the best things about Sharon’s presentation is that she emphasizes a positive attitude toward progress and hope for the future. This is something we all could use a hefty dose of at this point!