Since the last issue of EcoNews was published, the climate crisis has become more real to many members of the public who normally remain oblivious about anything outside of their social circle. The economic impacts of the climate crisis have been brought into sharp focus by the PG&E power shutdowns across the state. The unnecessary shutdowns in Humboldt County, resulting from our connection to the bigger power grid in other affected areas, caused businesses to lose hundreds of thousands of dollars (in just one of the shutdowns), not to mention all of the money lost by individuals through lost wages, spoiled food, and being forced to pay top dollar for emergency supplies, if they could even be found. Doctors’ offices were closed, resulting in expensive Emergency Room visits. And in some extreme cases, deaths were reported, a consequence of unpowered or malfunctioning medical devices.
General Plan Lawsuit
The notorious pro-development and so-called property rights group HumCPR has sued the County of Humboldt over its General Plan CEQA (California Environmental Quality Act) document. They accuse the County of several technical violations of CEQA and are asking that the document be vacated, set aside, and all activities under the CEQA document be suspended. This is a very peculiar situation because HumCPR’s former director, Estelle Fennel, is a Supervisor. Rex Bohn, an ardent HumCPR supporter, is also on the Board, along with Virginia Bass, who has always voted with them. So it seems strange to us that HumCPR would be suing what appears to be their friends and supporters. The situation begs the question, what’s really going on here?
As the hype about the Nordic Fish Farm Project seems to be gathering momentum, there are more questions about the potential environmental impacts of this unusual and fairly untested way of fish farming at this scale. The proponents would better serve the community and themselves by answering all of the pertinent environmental questions ahead of time instead of trying to build public support before a clear picture emerges.
The controversy around this project continues to grow. Despite attempts by Terra-Gen and some in the media to promote division in the environmental community, few have taken the bait. Most see this as a flawed project with a lofty goal. One of the main problems with the Terra-Gen Wind Farm is rather than providing an extensive opportunity to engage with the public, the project is seemingly being rushed through the process in order to maximize profit potential. Many serious questions and issues were raised in comments submitted by the NEC and EPIC, as well as many others. Terra-Gen’s response to these and other substantial issues raised during the input period has been wholly inadequate. The final document relies on false assumptions, missing data and even bad math in order to achieve their desired goal of quick approval. Be sure to voice your opinion at the appeal hearing in front of the Board of Supervisors on December 16, 9a.m. at the Adorni Center in Eureka.
Eureka’s Broadway Corridor Plan
We attended a public meeting in November about the City of Eureka taking another look at its Broadway Corridor. The Broadway Corridor has always been a problem for the City of Eureka, but the situation was made much worse when the City decided to allow unchecked development all along the corridor with no regard for traffic impacts.
This was something that the NEC had warned the City about back in the 1980s. Now the City is bringing out many of the old plans and studies that were done in the past, apparently hoping to receive grant money to look at one or more of the old, discarded plans again. Included in this toxic mix of old plans is the zombie-like Waterfront Drive extension that the NEC and many other groups have killed several times through the years.
Winter Vacation Raffle
Win a vacation—enter our Winter Vacation Raffle! Prizes include two night stays at Requa Inn, Humboldt Bay Social Club, Blue Lake Casino, plus other great prizes. Check the back page of this issue for more information and how to purchase $10 tickets. Raffle winners will be announced at our January 23 Open House.
Best of Luck Tiffany!
We would like to publically give our heartfelt thanks to our dedicated Work Study student Tiffany Perez, for all her enthusiasm, creativity, dedication to detail and streamlining of our membership program during the past two years. Tiffany will be graduating from HSU this December and looking for opportunities to utilize her skills in other conservation efforts.
We’ll be pouring wine at Garden Gate December 13 so stop by to say hi and purchase raffle tickets! Many thanks to Garden Gate for their continued support.
Open House – January 23
Be sure to stop by the NEC office from 5-7 p.m. on Thursday, January 23, for some light appetizers, drinks, and comradery. We’ll talk about our 2020 tasks and upcoming projects.
Bouquets of gratitude to groups, businesses, and individuals who deserve special thanks!
Bouquets to Greg Breams for designing and installing new shelves at the NEC office! Thanks for helping us get organized after three years in this space!
Bouquets to the Garden Gate for hosting NEC and supplying the wine during December’s Arts Arcata!
Bouquets to Humboldt Bay Social Club, Requa Inn, Blue Lake Casino, Benbow Historic Inn, Lady Anne Victorian Inn, 511 Restaurant, and Cafe Mokka/Finnish Country Sauna & Tubs for their donations to our Winter Vacation Raffle!
Bouquets of eternal gratitude to Tiffany Perez, our amazing Work Study student for the past two and a half years. Your dedication and enthusiasm for any task, be it helping at events to the bulk mailing of EcoNews will be very missed! We wish you well on your next adventure.