Last week on April 18 and 19th, the Power in Nature Coalition, of which EPIC is a part, participated in Protect California Day and lobbied at the California State Capitol for legislation, funding and projects related to California’s 30x30 conservation strategy.
The Power in Nature Coalition is a statewide coalition made up of over 100 community groups, environmental and conservation organizations, land trusts, indigenous organizations and tribal members that are all dedicated to advancing California’s 30x30 commitment, an effort to protect and conserve at least 30% of California’s land and coastal waters by 2030 in order to counter the impacts of climate change and biodiversity. To read the Pathways to 30x30 California full report click here.
Power in Nature Coalition members, including EPIC’s 30x30 Coordinator Josefina Barrantes, met with senators, assembly members and legislative directors from our respective districts to discuss overall goals of the Coalition, as well as more specific topics important to our regions.
As an overall goal of the Coalition, we discussed the reversal of large funding cuts that were made recently to several state conservancy programs that try to keep current conservation acquisition, restoration and land management in motion. We also urged the legislature to support more long-term funding for projects like those through the Climate and Natural Resources Bond. Coalition members also voiced their support for the use of rainy day funds to restore recent budget cuts, and responded positively to the legislature considering accessing reserves in order to mitigate our current recession.
Specific projects of interest that were discussed in our Far Northern Regional Group meetings were the new management plan for the Jackson Demonstration State Forest, tribal water rights in Mendocino county, the Eel River’s Two-Basin solution, and removal of the Eel River’s Scott Dam. Senator McGuire said it himself, “Scott Dam is going to have to come down.” The legislative director for Senator Dodd mentioned to our group that they want to hear from constituents who are supportive of the dam removal, as well as from PG&E about the dam removal process and any concerns.