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by AVA News Service, September 25, 2013
BACK-TO-BACK jive stories from the Press Democrat on Tuesday and Wednesday. Tuesday, Glenda Anderson reported from Ukiah that the SEIU one-day strike was a great success. Glenda's source? An SEIU spokesperson. The strike, the brainchild of Bay Area-based “organizers,” was not a success because it not only failed to clearly state the issues, it cost participating County workers a day's pay. The issue is, Does the County have the money to restore the 10% pay cut all County workers agreed to when the County was broker than it is now? The union claims the County has the money but doesn't say why or how a percentage of the County's paper budget surplus can be given to County employees.
WEDNESDAY, under the front page headline, “North Coast vintners, growers bullish on future,” and featuring a large color photograph of four Mexican women doing the work, Cathy Bussewitz's PD piece began, “North Coast wineries and grape growers are optimistic following a strong harvest and an improving economy…”
BY ALL MEASURES the economy is not improving. The story goes on to contradict its rosy assumptions… “Rising production costs are a serious concern for US wine industry executives, said Smiley, who released the results of an annual survey of vintners and growers at the conference. A slow economic recovery, water availability and consolidation of retailers and distributors are other major concerns, he said…”
“RISING PRODUCTION COSTS” is code for labor shortages as the immigrant Mexican workforce ages and young people don't replace them in the fields. “Water availability” is a casual reference to the wine industry's blithe assumption that they're entitled to the rivers and streams of the Northcoast, an assumption they share with marijuana growers.
‘NEED FOR SPEED’ RELEASES TRAILER
Although starring popular Breaking Bad co-star Aaron Paul, the big movie that inconvenienced Mendoland for a couple of weeks back in April, now officially set to hit theaters on March 14, is nothing more than another hideous “action” movie aimed at teenagers featuring lots of high speed racing, car crashes, explosions and gore.
When the producers held their post-permit “here’s what we’re going to do — get out of the way” meeting after the County had pre-approved their permit without a hearing back in April, location manager Mandi Dillon answered critics who complained that the film seemed to be encouraging young drivers to engage in dangerously bad driving by saying, “It is not intended to glorify speeding and the characters will have real-life consequences.”
But it obviously does glorify speeding — and, as it turns out, the movie is little more than a feature length Mustang commercial.
According to a Ford Co. press release accompanying the release of the trailer, “DreamWorks Studios’ Stacey Snider, Partner and Co-Chair, and Ford Motor Company’s Jim Farley, Executive Vice President, Global Marketing, Sales and Service, are pleased to announce an exclusive partnership for the feature film ‘Need for Speed,’ which will include significant integration of Ford products, along with extensive media promotion by Ford at the time of the film’s release on March 14, 2014. The announcement coincides with the unveiling of a one-of-a-kind Ford Mustang for the film, during Electronic Arts’ press conference at E3 Expo in Los Angeles later today. The Ford-designed and created made-for-movie Mustang will be featured prominently throughout the film and become part of the mythology of the movie. The ‘Need for Speed’ Mustang features a custom-designed wide body, unique 22-inch alloy wheels, and larger air intakes to feed the supercharged V8 engine under its classic Mustang twin-nostril hood. Ford also provided the production with an F-450 truck known in the film as ‘The Beast,’ as well as another Mustang to serve as a specially designed camera car, which allows the filmmakers to capture car racing action in new and exciting ways. ‘Ford Mustang is a symbol of freedom and optimism that allows you to be the person you dream of being, making it the perfect fit for this story,’ said Farley. ‘Ford is excited to partner with DreamWorks and Electronic Arts as they bring the epic gaming franchise of “Need For Speed” to the big screen, allowing us to go further with them as they tell their great story on the global stage.”
“The ‘Need for Speed’ movie will embody everything that fans of action racing films want to see — hot cars, high-stakes street racing and mind-blowing stunts,” said Scott Waugh, director of the ‘Need for Speed’ film. “The adrenaline-fueled story across America will keep viewers on the edge of their seats. My job as a director is to put you in that seat and let you drive it 230 mph.”
According to one on-line early review, “At first blush it's hard to tell the movie apart from yet another Fast & Furious sequel, but it's described by the producers as ‘a fast-paced, high-octane film rooted in the tradition of the great car culture films of the 70s while being extremely faithful to the spirit of the video game franchise’.”
The movie’s tag line is, “Framed for a crime he didn’t commit, muscle car mechanic and street racer Tobey (Aaron Paul) gets out of prison determined to settle the score with the man responsible for his false conviction.”
A Revenge film is hardly a theme that will feature “real-life consequences.”
Back at that April meeting with Ms. Dillon, Fifth District Supervisor Dan Hamburg told his constituents, “Mendocino County has a reputation of being against everything, so we have to show our interest in the dollars that will come into local motels and restaurants. Business is drying up. The public should not interfere.”
Hamburg went on to trumpet the movie rep’s obviously inflated claim that the movie would bring a ridiculously high $3-$5 million into Mendocino County. Later, after Hamburg dimly discovered that the production crew had brought their own caterer and high-end mobile homes for their staff at the fairgrounds, Hamburg declared at a Board of Supes meeting that the County was going to do an independent assessment of how much money the film actually brought in. Predictably, that assessment was never forthcoming.
Also at that Fairgrounds meeting, County Film Office coordinator Debra DeGraw said she was working on getting a mention of Mendocino County in the film credits. Although locals may recognize some of the roads where the speeding, crashes and explosions are set, the trailer and press releases give no indication that any such credit will be included and nobody outside Mendocino County will have any idea that some local roads were used as explosion backdrops.
Upshot: Mendo got taken advantage of again by a multi-million dollar movie production outfit to produce another very bad movie and got almost nothing in return. If “Need For Speed” had been filmed in San Francisco you can bet they’d have had to pay a nifty permit fee. Not in Mendo. Here, all you have to do is wave outlandish claims at Hamburg and the Chamber of Commerce and they’ll turn handstands for peanuts to make sure nobody even raises an objection.
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE has issued a Red Flag warning for northern Sonoma, Napa and Lake counties through Friday at 3pm because of strong winds and low humidity, the same conditions which currently prevail in Mendocino County. “Conditions are ripe that, if a fire should break out, it could get out of control,” said Bob Benjamin, a forecaster with the National Weather Service. “You've got high winds and very dry winds.”
IN CONVERSATION WEDNESDAY with Supervisor John Pinches, the Supervisor emphasized that he hoped the County “would get serious about truancy.” Pinches said that in the North County school attendance is down, alarmingly down, with some 30% of enrolled K-12 students annually failing to appear in their classrooms. The 3rd District supervisor wants law enforcement to fund a couple of truant officers. He says he's talked to County Superintendent Paul Tichinin about the truancy problem, and hopes the Sheriff and the DA might share Asset Forfeiture Funds to hire full-time people to not only locate truants but to crack down on parents who permit their children to stay home from school. “If we can get all these kids back in school, there should also be money available through the schools to fight truancy.”
ON SEPTEMBER 20, 2013, at about 9:30pm, Deputies from the Mendocino County Sheriff's Office were dispatched to a burglary at the Round Valley Elementary School. A female school district employee observed a male in dark clothing driving a maintenance cart away from the school district transportation yard. The employee followed and observed the male get out of the cart and into a vehicle driven by Shawna Britton, 38, of Covelo. The cart had been loaded with approximately $500 worth of tools belonging to the school district. The stolen cart was valued at approximately $2,500. Sheriff's Deputies, assisted by Round Valley Tribal Police, located Britton at a Whipple Court address and arrested her for being an accessory to the burglary at the school. Britton confirmed the male, Timothy Irving Davis, 34, also of Covelo, was driving the cart and was responsible for the burglary at the school. Upon further investigation Deputies learned Davis had an active arrest warrant for violation of parole. Despite searches in several locations, Deputies were not able to find Davis that night. On September 21 at approximately 10:30pm Davis' vehicle was spotted by a Round Valley Tribal Police Officer. The officer informed the Sheriff's Office of Davis' location on Biggar Lane and a Sheriff's Deputy attempted to perform a traffic stop on the white Chevrolet pickup Davis was reportedly driving. A 1/2 to 3/4 mile vehicle pursuit ensued from Biggar Lane to Davis' residence on Refuse Road where he was subsequently arrested for burglary and vehicle theft. During the pursuit Davis refused to let his 24 year-old female passenger exit the truck despite her numerous pleas to be allowed to get out of the truck while it was being pursued by law enforcement. In addition, because he had deprived his passenger of her freedom and transported her against her will during the pursuit, he was also arrested for kidnapping and for the outstanding parole warrant. Davis was booked into the Mendocino County Jail for kidnapping, vehicle theft, evading a police officer, burglary and parole violation and held on a no bail status. (Sheriff’s Press Release)
CYBER-COMMENT OF THE DAY
“WHY ARE THERE so many mentally ill people on the streets? To those not familiar with the State of California's mental health system I suggest you spend some time talking with Psych Techs and Nurses who work in the system. You will get your eyes opened. EVERY day people who are a danger to others are released because of the way the LPS Act and other laws are written. None of these laws has been seriously addressed since they were passed (many in the mid/late 1960s). The nature of modern mental illness has dramatically changed since then. Besides many of these laws were written with the best of intentions, but not with reality in mind; once passed they don't or didn't address real life issues. For example, someone may come in with a serious mental illness (borderline personality, paranoia, schizoid, etc, etc.) and in a floridly psychotic state. This person may be sentenced to long term care, so what happens? The doctors prescribe a drug cocktail that works, maybe even makes this person capable of living an almost normal life. So what happens then? The patient starts tapering off the meds until he ‘decompensates’ and ‘nuts up’ again. Or he is released back into society with no close follow up and, since many of these meds have side effects the patient doesn't like he stops taking them, and BAM! he's back in the hospital again. A vicious circle that the Legislators need to address.”
JEFF COSTELLO WRITES: “Re McEwen's piece: Ritalin is technically not amphetamine. It's been confused with speed (archaic term) ever since it appeared. The current big pharma amphetamine of choice is Adderall, a combo of two varieties, probably because dextroamphetamine is not easily water soluble, making it more difficult to crush the pills and inject the powder. Speed freak old timers know that the Abbott product Desoxyn, a pill-shaped plastic matrix filled with liquid methamphetamine hydrochloride, can be soaked in water to provide injectable liquid. These days, smoking crank (ala crack cocaine) is the preferred method among the new breed of, umm, shall we say ‘rural’ meth users. As to the issue of giving central nervous stimulants to children whose behavior is not within someone's perceived norm, this is nothing but creepy and frightening in the ‘Brave New World’ or ‘1984’ sense. And then there's Prozac and the many related drugs. The question becomes, who is behind all this chemical behavior modification and why?”
DEAR FRIENDS & FAMILY,
Earlier this month peace advocate David Swanson conducted a half-hour interview with me for Talk Nation Radio & today he published it. Have a listen ~ http://bit.ly/14HvGxx The interview highlights our upcoming trip to Geneva to take Kent State to the United Nations, Human Rights Committee, October 17 & 18. More on this ~ http://bit.ly/12r6F68 The Kent State Truth Tribunal donate page is being freshened up as I write to you. We've placed an amazing new portrait of Allison there, I hope you'll check it out! Looking forward to the U.N., Laurel Krause 707-357-2855. www.TruthTribunal.org.
“What's the matter with peace? Flowers are better than bullets” — Allison Krause on May 3, 1970
— Laurel Krause, Fort Bragg
Come doom, bring your desperate cheer
inside this room, sit here. Fate, sit there.
Stare. Stare at each other. Feel that fear.
Let love come singing through the air.
Come mountain death, climb me down
to your fixed rot, come joy, irritating insect
underneath the supernatural sound
of breath, be murder’s less known suspect.
Come all ye, all ye humors, all clouds,
dark and bright, mix rumors false, true,
with unfixed facts, let natural acts be proud
to blunder down this goofy human avenue.
Come you dumb strange, startle me, strangle
complacency, change cold gold to lead,
see mystery the darling danger dangles
past the wild eye, let no one be so dead.
— Lawrence Bullock
CALLING ON EVERYONE IN NORTHERN CALIFORNIA to take a stand for the Willits Wetlands! The 4-lane Caltrans Bypass is not a done deal. The northern interchange can still be scaled down. The Coalition to Save Little Lake Valley invites you to join us along with inspirational speakers and musicians for a Healing Ceremony and Rally, Saturday, October 12 at Noon. There will be an opportunity for Peaceful Civil Disobedience for all who wish to take part. For safety and solidarity, a brief non-violence training will be offered beforehand, on site. Park, walk, bike, carpool or shuttle from Recreation Grove at the corner of E. Commercial and So. Lenore St. in Willits to rally site 1/2 mile north of Willits. For more information contact: Naomi Wagner, 707-459-0548 or Sara Grusky 707-367-5202, www.savelittlelakevalley.org
ON SEPTEMBER 25, 2013 at 9:29am a Mendocino County Sheriff's Deputy was dispatched to Standish-Hickey State Park in Leggett due to the presence of human skeletal remains. Upon arrival the Deputy confirmed the presence of the remains in a creek bed in the southern portion of the park near Highway 101. The remains had been located by CalFire personnel who had been conducting training exercises in the park. A California State Parks representative requested the Sheriff's Office assume investigative control over the incident. Sheriff's Detectives were summoned to the scene and are in the initial stages of their investigation. At this time Sheriff's Detectives are being assisted by Mendocino County District Attorney investigators and California Department of Justice criminalists.
THE MENDOCINO COUNTY RCD and Natural Resource Conservation Service are offering the second workshop in a series on Staying Current in the Navarro watershed. This workshop will be geared for Forest Landowners. Workshop topics include: Navarro Watershed Forests, Past and Present- Greg Giusti, Forestry Advisor, UCCE Mendocino/Lake Counties; Fuel Reduction Strategies to Reduce Wildfire Hazard and Build Healthy Forests- Tom Schott, NRCS Forester; Oak Woodlands; Restoring a Shrinking Resource- Mathew Cocking, NRCS Forester; Conservation Resources for Landowners – CalFire, Natural Resources Conservation Service, Mendocino County Resource Conservation District, Mendocino County Fire Safe Council; Afternoon field trip to the Mailliard Ranch and Gester Property — participants will see shaded fuel breaks, defensible space and homeowner fire protection projects. “We will carpool to sites approximately 15 miles from the Grange Hall.” Registration is $15 and includes coffee, pastries and a sandwich lunch. Questions? Contact Linda Macelwee, MCRCD firstname.lastname@example.org, 707-895-3230
by Chili Bill Eichinger
I first met Marshall at Ron’s Barber Shop where I went for all of my styling needs. I never determined if that was his first or last name — he was just Marshall. He had a face like Boris Karloff, a voice like Lee J. Cobb and stood about six feet five. Marshall was always impeccably dressed in a suit and tie. He wore a fedora that he never took off, so I don’t know if he had any hair. He never came to Ron’s for a haircut. He would stroll in and climb up into the shoeshine stand, where he would sit hunched over with his hands together and his forearms resting on his thighs. He and Ron and the other barbers, er, “stylists,” would proceed to exchange news, dirty jokes and the general shuck and jive.
From Ron I learned that Marshall had spent about half of his life in the joint, which at that time would have been about 30 years. Most of it revolved around various con games and small time hustles, mixed together with plain old bad luck. I know he was a pool shark; I’d seen him hanging around the Isis Pool Hall on Saturday afternoons, lurking in a dark corner with a newspaper. All the regulars knew him and would never play for money, if they had any sense. He had to patiently wait for some thrill seeker from the suburbs to wade into the water. Once the fish was on the hook, it was a thing of beauty to watch. Just an innocent game of Nine Ball that would eventually involve a dollar on the sinking of the five ball, five dollars on the nine ball. Marshall never crowed about his winnings. He even went so far as to wait for the poor sap to leave before adding the money to the roll he always seemed to carry.
When the roll got big enough he would go to “Johnson City” for some gathering of the heavyweights of billiards. To this day, I don’t know which Johnson City he was talking about; I assume it was in Illinois. Upon returning from these little jaunts, if anyone asked how things went, his reply generally was “they went alright.” And that was that.
Occasionally, Marshall would arrive at Ron’s with a large grocery bag. He would disappear into the back room with Ron for a couple of minutes, and then emerge to assume the position in his chair. The contents of the mysterious bag were never displayed nor discussed. I doubt seriously that it was a fresh batch of Alberto VO-5 hairspray. What Marshall did when he wasn’t at the pool hall or at Ron’s was anybody’s guess. Nobody even knew where he lived for that matter.
When I started to change to the hippy lifestyle in the mid-60s, I called on Ron for one last favor — a gun. Sounds ironic, doesn’t it? Well, in those days if you were going to wear the hair, you had to be ready to take some grief. I didn’t like the idea of getting beat up or getting a public shearing. About a week after my request, I got a call. “Come to the shop tomorrow and bring $25.” The next day, who comes in but Marshall. It was my turn to go into the back room. Out of the grocery bag comes a shiny .25 caliber automatic. It was a large German pistol, maybe a Luger. It looked impressive. And it was only $25! Marshall assured me it was “cold” and couldn’t be traced. I paid him and left quickly, going straight home and dumping the piece. The next day I bought a box of shells and loaded the gun and stuck it in my waistband. I put a heavy coat on and buttoned it up. You couldn’t tell I was packin’.
It didn’t take long for me to put it to good use. I was returning home one night from a party, around midnight or so. About a block from my house, a car full of punks pulled up to the curb near me and one of them shouted “Hey, are you a boy or a girl?”
I nonchalantly opened my coat and drew the pistol. “Does this help to answer your question?” They laid about 20 feet of rubber getting out of there.
After Ron moved his shop into a swanky office building in a better part of town, I dropped in to say hello. When everyone got through offering to cut my hair, we finally got around to shooting the breeze about this, that and the other thing. Marshall’s name came up and I asked how he was doing. “He ain’t doin’ so good, kid.” Apparently, Marshall was back in stir after getting nailed with a bowling ball bag containing something in the neighborhood of 80,000 “bennies,” or Benzedrine tablets. Anyone in a suit and tie carrying a bowling ball bag would be suspect in my book. But Marshall? The whole thing bordered on the absurd, and we all sat there shaking our heads in wonderment. I left shortly, feeling oddly depressed.
BROWN SIGNS BILL CREATING ‘ENVIRONMENTAL PLATFORM’ TO EXPAND FRACKING
by Dan Bacher
Governor Jerry Brown on Friday, September 20 signed Senator Fran Pavley’s Senate Bill 4 — a controversial fracking bill that the head of the oil industry lobby admitted will clear the path to expanding the environmentally destructive oil extraction process in California.
“While SB 4’s requirements went significantly farther than the petroleum industry felt was necessary, we now have an environmental platform on which California can look toward the opportunity to responsibly develop the enormous potential energy resource contained in the Monterey Shale formation,” said Catherine Reheis-Boyd, President of the Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA).
Reheis-Boyd, who previously feigned disappointment with the bill even after it had been gutted with last minute pro-oil industry amendments, gushed, “With the signing of Senate Bill 4, California has the toughest regulations of hydraulic fracturing and other energy production technologies in the country.”
“There remains a great deal of work to clarify and implement the requirements of SB 4. WSPA and our members stand ready to work with the Administration, Department of Conservation and other stakeholders to ensure SB 4 is implemented effectively and fairly,” she concluded.
All mainstream media accounts of the Pavley legislation that I have seen failed to mention the alarming fact that Reheis-Boyd, in one of the biggest environmental scandals in California over the past decade, chaired the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) Initiative Blue Ribbon Task Force to create alleged “marine protected areas” on the Southern California coast. The oil industry superstar also served on the task forces for the Central Coast, North Central Coast and North Coast.
Senator Fran Pavley and Governor Jerry Brown claim the legislation "regulates" hydraulic fracturing ("fracking"), acidizing, and other oil extraction techniques, while opponents, including over 100 environmental, consumer and community groups in the coalition Californians Against Fracking, say the bill actually creates a clear path to expanded fracking in California.
Strangely enough, Reheis-Boyd essentially agreed with the opponents' assessment that the bill will pave the way for expanded oil drilling in the Monterey Shale Foundation.
"SB 4 tragically green-lights an extremely dangerous practice with terrible public health impacts near the homes and schools of California’s communities already most overburdened by pollution,” said Madeline Stano, Luke Cole Memorial Fellow at the Center on Race, Poverty & the Environment.
“New amendments to Senator Pavley’s Senate Bill 4 could pave the way for more fracking between now and 2015,” said Ross Hammond, senior campaigner with Friends of the Earth, prior to the Legislature's passage of the bill. “The latest round of amendments would require state officials to continue allowing fracking while environmental review would be conducted only after the fact.”
Fracking, short for hydraulic fracturing, is a water-intensive process where millions of gallons of fluid — typically water, sand, and chemicals, including ones known to kill fish and cause cancer in humans— are injected underground at high pressure to fracture the rock surrounding an oil or gas well. This releases extra oil and gas from the rock, so it can flow into the well, according to Food and Water Watch. (http://www.alternet.org/fracking/california-poised- enact-dangerous-fracking-bill)
Senator Pavley, Governor Brown tout "benefits" of SB 4
Senator Pavley praised Brown's signing of SB 4, describing it as an "important law."
“I am pleased that Governor Brown is committed to rigorously implementing this important law,” Senator Pavley said. “I look forward to working with the governor and Natural Resources Secretary Laird to ensure that we meet the expectations of all Californians of transparency and rigorous oversight when the law kicks in on January 1, 2014.”
Pavley added, "Starting January 1, 2014, oil companies will not be allowed to frack or acidize in California unless they test the groundwater, notify neighbors and list each and every chemical on the Internet. This is a first step toward greater transparency, accountability and protection of the public and the environment. Now we need immediate, robust enforcement and widespread public involvement to ensure the law is upheld to its fullest."
Likewise, Governor Brown in his signing statement claimed Senate Bill 4 “establishes strong environmental protections and transparency for hydraulic fracking and other well stimulation operations.”
“I am also directing the Department of Conservation, when implementing the bill, to develop and efficient permitting program for well stimulation activities that groups permits together based on factors such as known geological conditions and environmental impacts, while providing for more particularized review in other situations when necessary,” he stated.
Fracking will exact big toll on fish, people and the environment
Fracking opponents were disappointed, though not surprised by the passage of Senate Bill 4, considering the enormous power of the oil industry in California.
Caleen Sisk, Chief of the Winnemem Wintu Tribe, said Brown's signing of Pavley's bill shows how "we are led by representatives who believe oil is more important than water for the people."
"There is such a high price to pay for the last drops of oil — then what? Even this extreme mining for oil will come to an end!" Sisk noted.
Activist Lauren Steiner, who led a petition campaign that got 20,000 signatures urging Pavley to drop her bill and fight for a ban instead, summed up the essence of Senate Bill 4 in her article, "California's Fracking Regulatory Bill: Less Than Zero," (http:// www.commondreams.org/view/2013/08). Rather than actually making fracking safer, "the flawed bill sets up a process for notification, disclosure, monitoring and permitting and simply calls for future regulations by other agencies and a scientific study," she said.
"Telling someone when you're going to frack, where you're going to frack and what chemicals you will use, is like a murderer telling you he's going to shoot you on your front porch at noon tomorrow using an AK-47. At the end of the day, you're still dead," Steiner said.
After the passage of the bill, Steiner noted, "When I wrote the article I thought that the passage of the bill would be worse than having no regulations because it would give legislators political cover not to pass a moratorium. But now that these poison pill amendments have been added, it appears that the state regulators are prohibited from imposing a moratorium and that a CEQA review is optional for the next 15 months. Therefore, this bill ended up being worse than I thought. I just wish the environmental organizations, especially the ones that favored a ban over regulations, would have opposed the bill more actively."
The evidence of the enormous threat that fracking poses to fish, water, air and the environment continues to pile up. Oil companies have used 12 dangerous “air toxic” chemicals more than 300 times in the Los Angeles Basin in recent months, according to a new report from the Center for Biological Diversity that is drawing concerned reactions from public health advocates and an L.A. city councilmembers. Air toxics are chemicals considered among the most dangerous air pollutants because they can cause illness and death. (http://www.indybay.org/newsitems/2013/09/05/18742764.php)
A joint peer-reviewed study by the U.S. Geological Survey and the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service released on August 28 also revealed that hydraulic fracturing fluids were the likely cause of the widespread death or distress of aquatic species in Kentucky's Acorn Fork, including endangered blackside dace, after spilling from nearby natural gas well sites. (http://www.usgs.gov/newsroom/article.asp)
Finally, not only does fracking threaten the environment, but the practice has significant social costs, as revealed in a new report from Food and Water Watch. This study is the first detailed, long- term analysis of the social costs of fracking borne by rural Pennsylvania communities: http://www.foodandwaterwatch.org/reports/ the-social-costs-of-fracking/
Fracking in the larger context of corporate greenwashing
The passage of Pavley's green light for fracking bill occurs in the larger context of the oil industry's enormous influence on California environmental processes. Pavley, Laird and Brown were all strong supporters of the oil lobbyist-overseen Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA) Initiative to create questionable "marine protected areas" in Southern California, so it is no surprise that they will now be helping to implement the fracking of California — or as Reheis-Boyd claims, “responsibly” developing the “enormous potential energy resource contained in the Monterey Shale formation.”
These so-called “Yosemites of the Sea” and “underwater parks” fail to protect the ocean from fracking, oil drilling and spills, pollution, military testing, wind and wave energy projects and all human impacts on the ocean other than fishing and gathering. The alleged “marine protected areas” are good for the oil industry and ocean industrialists — and bad for fishermen, tribal gatherers, the environment and the people of California.
State officials and representatives of corporate "environmental" NGOs embraced the leadership of Reheis-Boyd and other corporate operatives who served on the MLPA Blue Ribbon Task Forces to create “marine protected areas” that fail to actually protect the ocean. By backing her leadership as a "marine guardian," they helped to increase the influence of the Western States Petroleum Association, the most powerful corporate lobbying group in Sacramento.
Two of the groups who were among the strongest supporters of the MLPA Initiative — NRDC and the League of Conservation Voters — also strongly backed Pavley's green light to fracking bill until the very last minute when amendments they suggested weren't included in the bill's final draft. They, along with Clean Water Action and the Environmental Working Group, withdrew their support on September 11 after the oil industry gutted the already very weak bill. (http:// www.sfgate.com/science/article/Brown-signs-bill-to-regulate- fracking-4831759.php)
Now Pavley, Brown and Laird, true to form, will preside over expanded fracking in Cailifornia that will result in tremendous damage to groundwater supplies, rivers and imperiled fish populations, and human health.
Pavley, Brown and Laird also support the Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP) to build the twin tunnels under the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. The construction of the tunnels will result in the export of massive quantities of northern California water to corporate agribusiness interests irrigating drainage-impaired land on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley.
The construction of the tunnels would hasten the extinction of Central Valley salmon and steelhead, Delta smelt, longfin smelt, green sturgeon and other species, as well as imperil the salmon and steelhead populations of the Trinity and Klamath river.
For more information about the hijacking of "marine protection" in California by the President of the Western States Petroleum Association (WSPA), go to: (http://yubanet.com/california/Dan-Bacher- Top-Censored-Environmental-Story-of-2012-Marine-guardian-lobbies-for- offshore-oil-drilling-fracking.php)