Help Restore the Salton Sea

Posted by ardeidae on August 17, 2005

This past Sunday, I went on a birding trip to the Salton Sea, which is about 130 miles east of San Diego. What an amazing place and an excellent area to see birds! I will have a full report, along with photos online in the next few days, but right now the Salton Sea Coalition, of which I belong, needs your help.

The Salton Sea Coalition has asked that $300 million in funding for implementation of restoration at the Salton Sea be included in SB 153.  We need each of you to write to senator Chesbro urging him to do this.  Any of you who reside in assemblywoman Bonnie Garcia’s district or are represented by senator Jim Batten, please write to them as well. Please also forward this to anyone else you can think of that would be willing to help us get this funding.

This action needs to be taken prior to Thursday, August 25th.

If you would like to read SB 153, go to http://info.sen.ca.gov/pub/bill/sen/sb_0151-0200/sb_153_bill_20050711_amended_asm.html. Also forward this message to anyone else you can think of that would be willing to help us get this funding.

Below are sample letters and contact information.



The Honorable Wesley Chesbro California State Senate Sacramento, CA 94248 Dear Senator Chesbro: I am writing to urge you to include $300 million in funding for implementation of the Preferred Alternative for restoration of the Salton Sea in your bill SB 153. I feel the importance of restoring the Salton Sea cannot be over emphasized. Restoration is important not only for the wildlife that rely on the Salton Sea ecosystem, but also to protect the health of the people living in the area as well as their livelihoods. Sincerely,

The Honorable Bonnie Garcia 68-700 Avenida Lalo Guerrero, #B Cathedral City, CA 92234 Dear Assemblywoman Garcia: I am writing to urge you to not vote for SB 153 unless it includes $300 million in funding for implementation of the Preferred Alternative for restoration of the Salton, for the following reasons: The parties to the 2003 Quantification Settlement Agreement (QSA) agreed to restore the Salton Sea to protect wildlife, air quality and local economic development. The QSA requires the Secretary of the Resources Agency to present a Preferred Alternative for restoration to the Legislature by December 31, 2006. Although the QSA also included water transfer fees to mitigate environmental harm caused by the water transfer, those fees will be far from sufficient to pay for the full costs of restoration. Restoration will require significant additional public funding, hopefully from a combination of state, federal and local sources. The importance of restoring the Salton Sea cannot be overstated. For air quality and human health, restoration is critical to prevent an Owens Lake type dustbowl, except a dry Salton Sea bed would produce many times more particulate matter (PM2.5 and PM10) containing selenium and other contaminants. Restoration is critical for wildlife because the Salton Sea ecosystem provides habitat for over 400 bird species, more than two-thirds of all the bird species found in the United States and Canada, and several listed bird, fish, amphibian and plant species. Restoration is also important for the continuing health of the local Imperial and Coachella Valley economies and to protect cultural values of the Torres-Martinez and Cabazon Indian tribes. Sincerely,

Contact List: The Honorable Jim Battin: jim.battin@sen.ca.gov Capitol Address State Capitol Room 3067 Sacramento, CA 94249-0001 (916) 651-4037 District Address 73-710 Fred Waring Dr., #112 Palm Desert, CA 92260 (760) 568-0408 Assemblywoman Bonnie Garcia: www.assembly.ca.gov/Garcia Capitol Address State Capitol Room 2002 Sacramento, CA 94249-0001 (916) 319-2080 District Address See above sample letter (760) 321-8522 The Honorable Wesley Chesbro: Senator.Chesbro@sen.ca.gov

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