It is important to remember that SFVAS sent a letter to the NASA Office of the Inspector General (OIG) months ago concerning the egregiously excessive clean-up standard NASA agreed to with the California Department of Toxic Substances Control. The OIG concluded that the clean-up provisions in the agreement, entitled the “Administrative Order on Consent” (AOC) were unreasonable. However, NASA management blithely ignored the OIG’s conclusions in preparing the current DEIS. The AOC is the underlying justification for this environmentally damaging process, which will result in the trucking of approximately one half million cubic yards of soil, including irreplaceable topsoil, to landfills across the country. In following this process, NASA is ignoring less environmentally damaging alternatives, including actual risk-based alternatives.
To all whom it may concern: The San Fernando Valley Audubon Society, and its 1800+ members, support an expanded Santa Monica Mountains National Recreation Area to include a combination of Alternatives C and D. The SMMNRA should be expanded to include the Rim of the Valley Corridor, in addition to protecting the wildlife corridors between the Santa Monica Mountains, Santa Susana Mountains, Los Padres National Forest and Santa Clara River Corridor. Inclusion of the Rim of the Valley and completing trail work linking the San Fernando, La Crescenta, Santa Clarita, Simi and Conejo Valleys would increase public access to parkland and cultural sites, protect wildlife corridors, and improve management of the Rim of the Valley Trail. Inclusion of the significant natural areas within the valleys; including Sepulveda Basin, Hansen Dam Basin, and the rivers, will serve to spread appreciation and enjoyment of these special areas, as will inclusion of especially significant historical and cultural sites. This then would hopefully lead to improved management of these areas by the local agencies that presently own or manage them. The expansion would provide major recreational and educational enhancements. Access to open spaces, and opportunities to learn about the Los Angeles area’s rich history,
Two state Senators have sent letters to the US Army Corps of Engineers demanding an explanation for the Sepulveda Basin destruction: From The Honorable Fran Pavley, State Senator, 27th District From the Honorable Kevin de León, State Senator, 22nd District You can read more about their support at the LA Times article Legislators want Army Corps to explain habitat removal decision. Read more about the ongoing situation at our page Stop the Devastation of Sepulveda Basin.
The Sepulveda Basin is closed due to flooding. We will postpone the event to Saturday morning, April 21 from 8:00 – noon. Hope you can join us for the rescheduled cleanup. Please advise anyone you know who was expecting to help tomorrow know about the postponement. Thanks, Muriel Kotin
In addition to all of the outstanding environmental education programs that SFV Audubon organizes, sponsors, manages and provides volunteers for, we are also very active in preserving, enhancing, and creating valuable wildlife habitat within and adjacent to our local territory (San Fernando and Santa Clarita Valleys). Your chapter was instrumental in designing and creating the Sepulveda Basin Wildlife Area in 1980 and all of its additions, enhancements, and renovations since then. The Sepulveda Basin is still the focus of most of our volunteer efforts. Every year we conduct a trash cleanup along Haskell Creek with 50 to 150 volunteers. This year the cleanup will be on April 14. We have also organized volunteers there to eradicate invasive noxious non-native plants and have planted wildlife benefiting native plants in their place. We have also successfully installed, and monitor and maintain, several Western Bluebird nest boxes in the area.
An excellent spot to observe a wide variety of birds including waterfowl, wetland birds, and raptors. Directions: From the 101 Freeway take the Las Posas Road exit south (left), then Hueneme Road west (right) to Casper Road. Turn south (left) on Casper Road and continue to where the road eventually turns left through a large entrance gate and leads to the preserve compound. We will meet at the compound at 8 a.m. Bring lunch and drinking water. Allow one hour and fifteen minutes driving time from the Valley. Leader is Richard Barth (310) 276-0342.
Thanks to our very busy volunteer, Carolyn Oppenheimer, the webpage describing our Education programs has just been updated. Use the Education link on the left or click here. She also coordinates the activities of our College Student Conservation Committee. To learn more about the activities available to those of college age interested in conservation and environmental concerns, visit that link on the left or click here.
With several occurrences of such phenomena hitting the national media last week, some of you may be interested to know more information about such seemingly bizarre behavior. Well, someone has compiled a great deal of info on the “Birds Fall from the Sky” website to sate the desires of those seeking more on the subject. Thanks to Serena Castleton for calling this site to our attention.
SFVAS Conservation Chair, Kris Ohlenkamp sent a letter to Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein and to Congresspersons Howard Berman, Brad Sherman and Henry Waxman, urging them to support this measure. “The CDPA of 2010 is landmark legislation that would protect wildlife habitat, preserve open space, and enhance recreational opportunities while supporting responsible renewable energy development and the ability of the military to protect the United States of America,” Ohlenkamp writes. The act would provide additional protections to Big Morongo Preserve and Joshua Tree National Park, among other proposals. You can find the complete text of the letter here. http://www.sfvaudubon.com/wp-content/uploads/2010/09/CDPA-of-2010.pdf
Did you know that 52 Audubon California Important Bird Areas are at least partially owned by California State Parks, totaling 156,000 acres? Audubon California, The Nature Conservancy, Save the Redwood League and California State Parks Foundation are sponsors of The State Parks & Wildlife Conservation Trust Fund Act (“State Parks Initiative”) appearing on the November 2, 2010 statewide ballot as Proposition 21. Prop 21 works like this- Vehicles registered in California will get a free, year round day use admission to all California state parks in exchange for a new annual $18 vehicle license fee, a considerable savings if you go to more than two State parks in a year. The funding will provide a stable, reliable and adequate source of funding for the state park system, for wildlife conservation and for increased and equitable access to those resources for all Californians. The parks budget will no longer be subject to cuts by the legislature or the Governor, the Trust Fund cannot be borrowed from or raided, and our state Parks can begin work on acquisitions and deferred maintenance once the funds become available. The passage of this proposition is a conservation legacy that all of us Audubon members in