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93 victories as of 6/08

June 08 2008 | Jim's Blog,
by Jim

I post our victories every month. If you want the reasoning behind this exercise, pop on over to this post "understanding victories at a glance." Here's this month's batch.

West Los Angeles / Malibu Plastic Bag Ban in Malibu

In support of Heal The Bay's effort to address the problem of plastic bag litter in the marine environment, the West LA/Malibu Chapter successfully helped to convinced the Malibu City Council to ban both regular and biodegradable bags in all retail stores. This victory was part of the Chapter's Rise Above Plastics campaign efforts to educate members, the public, and local government officials about the dangers of plastic marine debris. More.

Southwest Florida (organizing chapter), Lee County Fertilizer Ordinance

The use of fertilizer near major waterways is a contributor to the large and looming issue of red tide and algal blooms that can cause breathing problems and pollute beach water quality, impacting Lee's $2 billion tourism industry. The ordinance would limit any fertilizer application within 10 feet of a water way from June 1 to Sept 30. Fees for violation would be up to $500. The Chapter partnered with Sierra Club, SCCF, Nature Conservancy, PURRE, RGMC and Riverwatch. More.

South Orange County, Protected Coastal Access at Strands Beach

The developer at the Headlands in Dana Point attempted to remove a stairway providing beach access from the previously approved plan, citing geotechnical difficulties. [4:35:10 PM] Chad Nelsen says: The stairway had been a part of a balancing argument made by the Coastal Commission to allow the developer to build a 2200 foot seawall, destroy senstive habitat and create a gate-guarded development. The CA Coastal Commission saw through this attempt to further limit access and denied the change.

San Diego County City of San Diego: Indirect Potable Reuse

Following Surfrider’s and San Diego Coastkeeper’s 2002 lawsuits against the City of San Diego for improperly approving a waiver of secondary sewage treatment at its Point Loma Wastewater Treatment Plant, the environmental organizations entered into a multi-pronged settlement that required, among other things, that the City conduct a study of all available opportunities to increase water recycling within its service area. The environmental groups primarily sought to resurrect a previously failed Indirect Potable Reuse (IPR) project which would result in highly treated sewage being combined with San Diego’s raw water from the Colorado River or San Francisco Bay Delta. Sometimes called “toilet to tap,” the environmental groups nonetheless sought to re-initiate discussion among community leaders and citizens about the benefits of such a local source of water.

After the production of a comprehensive Water Reuse Study involving numerous meetings, dozens of community leaders, and a technical advisory committee, the City Council finally took action. On October 29, 2007 the San Diego City Council approved a resolution authorizing the beginning steps of an Indirect Potable Re-Use (IPR) project in San Diego. More.

*This campaign was completed in October 2007, but was reported in May 2008.

San Diego County City of San Diego Urban Runoff Management: Restrictions on Residential Over-Watering

While significant strides have been made in recent years to control urban runoff from construction sites and industrial facilities, commercial and residential polluters have been too often overlooked. In particular, municipalities have been reluctant to require individual homeowners to abate the clearly wasteful practice of irrigation over-watering, despite the negative impacts to water supply and the fact that runoff from lawns and gardens consistently transmit bacteria, nutrient, and pesticide wastes to sensitive water bodies throughout the region.

On January 22, 2208, at the request of the Surfrider Foundation and San Diego Coastkeeper, an ordinance limiting residential over-watering was added to San Diego’s Jurisdictional Urban Run-off Management Plan (JURMP). Each city has to establish a JURMP to comply with the regional Municipal Stormwater Permit and the federal Clean Water Act (CWA). Securing this addition prohibition was monumental in that it sends a message to the entire region that we can no longer allow wasteful and polluting practices, regardless of whether they arise from businesses or private homes.

*This campaign was completed in January 2008, but was reported in May 2008.

San Diego San Diego Regional Municipal Stormwater Permit

The San Diego Chapter of the Surfrider Foundation worked in coalition with the San Diego Bay Council to support the passage of the San Diego region’s 2007 Municipal Stormwater Permit. This permit spells out the stormwater control requirements applicable to all of the region’s cities, the County of San Diego, the San Diego Unified Port District, and the San Diego Regional Airport Authority.

Building on prior litigation victories defending earlier iterations of the stormwater permit, Surfrider and its partners were successful in strengthening various controls on construction, industrial, municipal, commercial, and residential urban runoff discharges. Of particular interest to Surfrider, the new permit contains a requirement that local jurisdictions develop comprehensive regulations for Low Impact Development (LID) and runoff-sensitive site design standards. Such provisions will ensure that the problems of increased impervious surface cover and unsustainable changes to watershed hydrology will not continue. With most new development now required to accommodate historic water infiltration and flow regimes, Surfrider can turn its attention to enforcement of runoff standards and mechanisms to require retrofitting of existing development.

*This campaign was completed in January 2008, but was reported in May 2008.

Monterey Pacific Grove Polystyrene Ban

The City of Pacific Grove has passed an ordinance prohibiting the use of polystyrene food service wares. The ordinance acts to reduce local non-biodegradable and non-recyclable waste at the source, preventing its eventual disposal on local beaches and in the ocean. The Chapter partnered with Sustainable Pacific Grove and Monterey Green Action to accomplish their goal. More.

Florida chapters, Clean Oceans Act in Florida

The Clean Oceans Act sets up a mechanism for gambling boats to stop dumping 44 million gallons of pureed, chlorinated waste into the ocean every year. It requires gambling boats to register with DEP, pay berth facilities for waste hauling or use an onboard “closed system” treatment, and report waste releases to DEP. In addition it petitions the federal government to prohibit dumping in federal waters.

This campaign was spearheaded by the Sebastian Inlet Chapter with major support from the entire Florida Chapter Network. More.
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