We've lost OVER 91% of our Wetlands in CA! Help us spare Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve from the same fate!

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Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve is the first place that got me involved with environmental issues so it is dear to my heart! For over 20 years the Bolsa Chica Land Trust and the Amigo's have fought to spare this place from the development of houses. Here in California we have lost OVER 91% of our coastal wetlands already. I wish to invite anyone who can make it to be a voice or even just a presence in support of sparing this wetland from development. Below is the email I received from the Bolsa Chica Land Trust.

> Believe it or not, the same development proposed by the Shea Company, and rejected
> by the Coastal Commission last October for the upper Bolsa Chica Wetlands along
> Graham Street is back. On June 13th at 9 AM the California Coastal Commission will
> be meeting at the Huntington Beach City Hall to re-hear the project that proposes
> 111 new houses be built to a finished height 40 feet above current ground level.
>
> This project is back on the agenda due to a legal settlement reached by the Commission
> and the Shea Co, but it is the exact same project the Commission rejected in October
> of 2011.
>
> This proposed development STILL includes:
>
> Excavation of 480,000 cubic yards of soil
>
> Importation of 260,000 cubic yards of fill
>
> 8 wells to a depth of 55' to dewater the historic wetlands upon which they plan
> build. This dewatering may cause subsidence in adjacent homes.
>
> We need you at the meeting to support the Land Trust in opposing this project that
> will impact both Bolsa Chica, and the surrounding neighborhoods.
>
> Please join us on June 13 at 9 AM in the Huntington Beach City Council Chambers.
> The City Council Chambers are located at 2000 Main Street.
>
> Want to help, but can't attend the meeting? Please send an email to the commission
> expressing your opposition. You can address the email to Coastal Commission staff
> member Meg Vaughn at: mvaughn@coastal.ca.gov
>
> Thank you for your continued support.
>
> Connie Boardman
>
> President, Bolsa Chica Land TrustSEE YOU AT THE MEETING?? LET ME KNOW! POST A MESSAGE BELOW!

MrsBJLee's picture
MrsBJLee
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Feb. 17, 2012 8:45 am

Comments

Your link didn't work but I found some that did:

Bolsa Chica Wetlands

Bolsa Chica Ecological Reserve

I see the governing body is the state of California.

I imagine it also falls under any or all of the following active Federal legislation:

The Clean Water Act

Coastal Zone Management Act

and the more agriculture development-related:

Wetland Conservation Program (Swampbuster)

So don't forget your Congress critters in the battle. I'm sure they aren't forgotten by others involved.

.ren's picture
.ren
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Apr. 1, 2010 6:50 am

Thanks for your reply! I didn't add a link that was an email address that was already in the body of the letter. Here is a link to the Bolsa Chica Land Trust that should work. They are involved in trying to raise enough money to purchase the land the developers wish to build on.

http://www.bolsachicalandtrust.org/bclt.html

The Coastal Commission denied the permit back in October as the letter said but the letter also mentioned > This project is back on the agenda due to a legal settlement reached by the Commission
> and the Shea Co, but it is the exact same project the Commission rejected in October
> of 2011. So do you have any idea as to how I can find out what the law suit was about and what settlement was reached BEFORE this meeting?

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MrsBJLee
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Feb. 17, 2012 8:45 am

Every environmental issue can be traced back to one root cause. Over population. If we continue the current open borders policy, it will devour the few natural resources that we have left. There is no stopping it.

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rigel1
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Jan. 31, 2011 6:49 am

I don't disagree with you but I truely must add GREED. Who ever first said that money was the root of all evil certainly was right.

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MrsBJLee
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Feb. 17, 2012 8:45 am

I started reading the COASTAL ZONE MANAGEMENT ACT and was excited until I read that participation was voluntary. How come it seems like important things such as this Coastal Zone Management Act, is ALWAYS vountary! Case in point.....there are guidlines for siting wind farms so that we can protect migration routes of birds and spare wildlife the horrible death by turbine blades. Those guidlines are also VOLUNTARY! It makes me want to tear my hair out! These should be regulations that they HAVE TO ABIDE BY not just VOLUNTARY!! The all mighty dollar they are going to make takes precedence over all thoughts of the consenquences of their actions. Money is a drug and they can't get enough.

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MrsBJLee
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Feb. 17, 2012 8:45 am

Is there anyone out here in cyperland that thinks they can make it to the Coastal Commission meeting regarding Bolsa Chica & Shea Homes? ? ? Your support would be appreciated!

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MrsBJLee
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Feb. 17, 2012 8:45 am

Here's an image of the subject parcel- it has been farmland for quite some time.

http://www.bixby.org/parkside/multimedia/vegetation/cattail/cattail_map.JPG

stwo's picture
stwo
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Jul. 31, 2007 3:01 pm

Well what are you using as a definition as a wetland the EPA or the ecology definition? The EPAs definition can count a ditch as wetland so your stat wouldn't surprise me then.

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CollegeConservative
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May. 4, 2012 1:22 pm

Over 91%!?! DISGRACEFUL!!

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telliottmbamsc
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May. 20, 2010 3:06 am
Quote MrsBJLee:

I started reading the COASTAL ZONE MANAGEMENT ACT and was excited until I read that participation was voluntary. How come it seems like important things such as this Coastal Zone Management Act, is ALWAYS vountary! Case in point.....there are guidlines for siting wind farms so that we can protect migration routes of birds and spare wildlife the horrible death by turbine blades. Those guidlines are also VOLUNTARY! It makes me want to tear my hair out! These should be regulations that they HAVE TO ABIDE BY not just VOLUNTARY!! The all mighty dollar they are going to make takes precedence over all thoughts of the consenquences of their actions. Money is a drug and they can't get enough.

Everything that comes out of these legislative acts involves endless compromise. The result is they are willing to compromise us into a final state of environmental collapse.

I guess they might hope people will get involved to make it work when they compromise with the "voluntary" part of the wording. Gets them off the hook that way. They can even say it makes it more democratic.

Then you get the conservatives who point to the letter of the law, which is designed to be insufficient, and to what has been the "historical" grandfathered case (ignoring thousands of years of successful indigenous non invasive living strategies) which was the reason the creation of a law was attempted, and you get the inevitable result of people getting involved to make it work being handcuffed by block headed stupidity of what will affect us all. And you get exhaustion from those who care while the greedy with all the money in their pockets to buy politicians slickly get their "voluntary" way with their short-term orientation of making profit through infinite growth.

Who says we can't change the system by working within it? Don't get discouraged! It takes time, is all.

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.ren
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Apr. 1, 2010 6:50 am

Yes that parcel has been used as farmland but it was illegally filled in without consulting the Coastal Commission. It used to be wetland. It butts right up to the ecological reserve (wetlands) which is already in trouble from those who live around it already. The people in the neighborhoods feel that it is their backyard, dog park, and dumping ground and that is causing us to loose the wildlife we are trying to protect there. If we allow 111 more homes with 111 more families that have dogs to walk or cats that won't stay indoors then we might as well pave over the entire wetlands and just make a mall out of it! Right now it is the largest coastal wetland in California. I believe it's worth fighting for.

There are endangered species of birds, such as the Least Tern, and Snowey Plover, that nest on the ground. Also, Killdeer nest on the ground too. I love this place and will do what I can to protect it from development. I will be heartbroken if we loose the battle.

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MrsBJLee
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Feb. 17, 2012 8:45 am

It's most likely up to 93% by now. I got that figure from the Coastal Commission's own book and I bet we've lost more since it was printed. You are so correct in saying it is DISGRACEFUL! I AGREE!

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MrsBJLee
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Feb. 17, 2012 8:45 am

Are you with me? Tell me if you are going to the Coastal Commission Meeting please!

If you can't make it will you PLEASE SEND AN EMAIL IN FAVOR OF SPARING BOLSA CHICA ECOLOGICAL RESERVE by DENYING the permit for SHEA HOMES to build. Please take action with me! This issue is one very dear to my heart!

> You can address the email to Coastal Commission staff
> member Meg Vaughn at: mvaughn@coastal.ca.gov

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MrsBJLee
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Feb. 17, 2012 8:45 am
Quote MrsBJLee:

I don't disagree with you but I truely must add GREED. Who ever first said that money was the root of all evil certainly was right.

Sure. But I firmly believe that the rich do not love money any more than anyone else. They just happen to be better at earning it. They are no more greedy than your friends and neighbors. Greed is everywhere.

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rigel1
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Jan. 31, 2011 6:49 am

I wanted to continue this conversation regarding the rich/GREED, but it is seriously off topic. Maybe we can continue this somewhere else? I am truely hoping to bring to the attention of those who have no clue that we have lost OVER 91% OF OUR WETLANDS in California and we are about to make that figure grow again so 111 mini-mansions can be built. That would be a tragedy for the wildlife that attempts to live there. It's already a struggle because the locals that already live close treat the wetlands like it's their own personal dog park. They might as well pave it over and make it into a mall if they build those homes.

SERIOUSLY....WHEN IS IT GOING TO STOP?? WHEN WE REACH 94%?? 96%??? OR WILL THEY FINALLY WAKE UP AT 98% GONE?

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MrsBJLee
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Feb. 17, 2012 8:45 am

IF YOU CAN'T MAKE IT TO THE COASTAL COMMISSION MEETING JUNE 13TH WOULD YOU PLEASE BE SO KIND AND SEND AN EMAIL STATING YOUR OPPOSITION TO SHEA HOMES 111 HOMES PERMIT.

THE EMAIL ADDRESS AND CONTACT INFORMATION IS ON THE VERY FIRST COMMENT IN THIS THREAD.

THANK YOU FOR YOUR CONSIDERATION & HOPEFULLY FOR YOUR HELP!

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MrsBJLee
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Feb. 17, 2012 8:45 am

CollegeConservative asked "what are you using as a definition as a wetland...."

In its action on the LUP amendment for the subject site, the Commission found that wetlands were present on site. In addition, the Commission found that additional wetlands would exist on site were it not for either unpermitted fill activities or farming activities that converted wetlands to dry lands. Any activities, whether normal farming activities or other, that result in the fill of wetlands cannot be exempt from the need to obtain approval of a coastal development permit. Unpermitted development cannot be used as a basis to justify development in areas where, were it not for the unpermitted development, such development would not be consistent with the requirements of the Coastal Act. Consequently, the Commission found that both the areas that currently meet the definition of wetland at the site as well as the areas that would have met the definition of wetland were it not for unpermitted activity, must be treated as wetland in terms of uses allowed within and adjacent to these areas. (See LT-WR v. California Coastal Commission (2007) 152 Cal.App.4th 770, 796-79

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MrsBJLee
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Feb. 17, 2012 8:45 am

Southern California does not need to build any more match-box house subdivisions like the one proposed for the Bolsa Chica Wetlands. Developers like Shea would be wise to focus on restoring blighted down town areas and turning them into comfortable multi use neighborhoods where homeowners can walk a short distance from their front doors to do their shopping or bicycle, jog, or hop on public transportation for a short trip to their work places downtown. But unfortunately, at least until the public wakes up and starts to follow the example of visionaries like California Governor Jerry Brown, who lives in a downtown Sacramento loft and walks to work; The big developers will think only of building dream subdivisions for the wealthy yacht owning, golf cart driving land gluttons who want to isolate themselves and their families from the vitality and reality of everyday life. And to hell with the birds and the water purifying estuaries. They will let them die and then complain that their marina has begun to smell like sewage.

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Sacramento Dave
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Nov. 27, 2010 9:46 am

I agree. Sadly if they get the permit to build there is even ANOTHER housing project on the horizon that would have an easier time getting their permit. The wetlands is already suffering from overuse and abuse and adding 111 more families would be a tremendous strain on the ecosystem. Sometimes we win though as shown in the article below. If enough people get involved we CAN prevail!

> Court Rejects Southern California Mega-Development Next to Wildlife Area!
> http://ecowatch.org/2012/court-rejects-southern-california-mega-development-next-to-wildlife-area/#comment-21325

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MrsBJLee
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Feb. 17, 2012 8:45 am

Only 2 days until the Coastal Commission meeting to decide the fate of this wetland. CAN YOU BE THERE? WILL YOU COME AND SUPPORT THE BOLSA CHICA LAND TRUST? If not could you PLEASE send an email to the address I posted in an earlier comment? Your support would be so appreciated and it just might be the one email that saves the wetlands from this development.

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MrsBJLee
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Feb. 17, 2012 8:45 am

THE COASTAL COMMISSION MEETING FOR THIS DEVELOPMENT IS TOMORROW (WED JUNE 13TH)

CAN YOU COME AND SUPPORT THE BOLSA CHICA LAND TRUST AND HELP US TRY TO SAVE THE LARGEST COASTAL WETLAND WE HAVE IN CALIFORNIA?

I WILL BE THERE........WILL YOU?

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MrsBJLee
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Feb. 17, 2012 8:45 am

Well today was the Coastal Commission meeting that I posted earlier. There was a very large group of people that supported denying the permit to build. Many excellent points were brought up and one of the commissioners said that he has had a change of heart. He said that last time he voted for the project but can no longer support it! The audience gasped. We couldn't believe our ears! The vote was put on hold though until some things could be clairified with the Huntington Beach LUP.

You can watch what happened by going to the California Coastal Commission website.

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MrsBJLee
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