How Did Our GHG Baseline Change?

A bogus GHG emissions baseline would be a giant step backward for Sonoma County

Sonoma County’s long awaited Climate Action 2020 (CA 2020) Plan is finally here. But what is wrong with this picture (Fig. 1)?

How did Sonoma County’s AB32-mandated greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions baseline — and even the direction of its 20-year trend line — change so dramatically in just the three months between the Draft and Final Reports?

Climate Action 2020 Baseline Trend, Draft vs. Final Reports
Fig. 1. Climate Action 2020 Baseline Trend, Draft vs. Final Reports (ES-2, excerpts compared)

Did the consultants hired to write the CA 2020 Plan make a serious error in their baseline analysis, or are they trying to rewrite history with a ‘backcast’ that is poorly documented and simply too good to be true?

Only the inattentive or the foolish will fall for this without a better explanation. Here’s how the fable currently goes. Continue reading How Did Our GHG Baseline Change?

Carbon Reduction: Taking it to the Streets of Sonoma

By David Templeton – Sonoma Index Tribune August 4, 2016

Transition Streets. It sounds like some trendy Broadway musical, or perhaps a modern-day halfway house for folks moving from hardship to security.

According to Ed Clay, co-founder of Transition Sonoma Valley, the colorfully urban-sounding title actually describes a citizen training program for small groups of neighbors, committed to making better decisions about energy-consumption and its effect on climate change. Originally developed in the UK, the grassroots curriculum was designed to educate and encourage positive environmental action on a street-by-street, family-by-family basis.

Transition Streets, says Clay, “is about creating closer community and saving money, but mostly about finding ways to reduce our carbon footprint.”C-Rogers-bilingual-6104868581_8709eabf2a_o

Clay, who is hoping that other groups of neighbors in the Valley will follow in his neighborhood’s carbon-reduced footsteps, and form other Transition Streets groups. He points out that interested people can find information about how to do that on the Transition Sonoma Valley website.

“The greatest part of the whole process is the sense of community that’s developed in our neighborhood, just by coming together to talk about these issues.”

If you are interested in launching a Transition Streets group in your neighborhood, send us a comment below or come to one of our Steering Team meetings.

Read the Full Story at Sonoma Index Tribune >>

Sonoma Index Tribune Logo

Economics of Happiness – short film

A powerful new film that cuts deeply to the heart of the global crisis. Magnificent!”  – David Suzuki, environmentalist

“This passionate film presents a clear and articulate vision of what a shift in the scale at which we do things would look like…Very timely and powerful.” – Rob Hopkins, Co-founder of the Transition Network

Local Futures is now sharing a free, shortened version of the award-winning documentary film The Economics of Happiness. This 19-minute abridged version brings us voices of hope of in a time of crisis.  Cut down from 68 minutes to less than 20, it provides an introduction to the concept of localization – a systemic alternative to corporate capitalism – and shows how it addresses the serious problems caused by economic globalization.

Continue reading Economics of Happiness – short film

Official Plant List of Sonoma County

View a beautiful online guide of plants well suited to our area, and get detailed recommendations on where to plant, when and how much to water, valuable rebate programs, and more.

Visit the Sonoma Marin Water Saving Partnership today.qwel-logo-transparent

Do-It-Yourself or find a Qualified Water Efficient Landscaper in your area. Trained in water-wise landscape practices including plant selection, irrigation system design and water management, a QWEL graduate will help meet your landscape needs while keeping your outdoor water use in check.

Check the list to choose a QWEL Landscaper from the many who serve Sonoma Valley.

Is your current landscape company conspicuously missing from the QWEL list?

Ask them why they aren’t training and certifying their employees in the latest best practices.

Transition Streets – Comes to Sonoma

Do You Know Your Neighbors? Evidently 43% of Americans do not, according to Pew Research.

TRANSITION STREETS  is a pilot program recently launched by Transition Sonoma Valley to see if we can begin to change that, making Sonoma a better, more resilient place to live in the process.

We believe that no amount of nonsense or political gridlock can hold back neighbors who know and care about one another, who want to improve their community, and are ready to work together to make a difference for the better.

Transition Streets is based on a very innovative and successful program first developed by Transition Towne Totnes, a town in the UK about a three-hour drive southwest of London.

Continue reading Transition Streets – Comes to Sonoma

PRMD Winery Events Public Hearing

The proliferation of public wine tasting venues and events on agricultural land has provoked substantial backlash in both Sonoma Valley and Healdsburg’s Dry Creek Road area over the past few years. Some larger wine facility proposals have also drawn substantial neighborhood opposition.

The hot-button issue of winery events will be discussed by the Sonoma Valley Citizen’s Advisory Commission in a public workshop at the Sonoma Veterans Center on Jan. 27.

Read More >>

Image: The Drunkenness of Noah by Giovanni Bellini (1515)

MARCH TO SONOMA PLAZA FOR CLIMATE ACTION

On the eve of the critical United Nations COP21 Climate Summit in Paris (Nov 30 to Dec 11), concerned citizens all around the world will be coming together for a week of marches and demonstrations to ensure that world, national and local governmental leaders understand that people demand action to stop the increase of carbon in the earth’s atmosphere.

Transition Sonoma Valley and the Earth Care Committee of the First Congregational Church of Sonoma are co-hosting a local “Global Climate March” around the Plaza on Sunday, November 29. Beginning at 12:00 noon, a pre-march rally in Burlingame Hall (252 W. 252 W. Spain Street), will convene for making posters and signs and receiving actionable items before the March kicks off at approximately 12:30 p.m.

Everyone is welcome including senior citizens, students, children, grandchildren and pets, for the march from Burlingame Hall around the Plaza before congregating near the sidewalk at the intersection of Broadway and Napa Street for a public witness in support of sustained political action on behalf of the environment.

Learn More >>

Download the Press Release >>

Protecting and Preserving Sonoma Valley

Protecting and Preserving Our Beautiful Sonoma Valley: What Needs To Be Done?

An Evening of Dialogue with Richard Dale Executive Director Sonoma Ecology Center, and Dave Koehler Director Sonoma Land Trust

November 13 – Burlingame Hall 7:00PM  <add to calendar>

As population, housing, and commercial development have increased, there has been consequent challenge to the Sonoma Valley. Bio-diversity in agriculture has been sacrificed and now California’s sustained drought has placed further stress upon the environment of this special valley.

You are invited to bring your questions and opinions to this evening of dialogue with two thoughtful leaders whose organizations are working to respond to such environmental issues as water supply and quality, protection and purchase of open space, access to public lands, biodiversity, the challenges to the wildlife corridor in the Valley, energy source and use, and climate change.

These issues affect your quality of life and that of your children and grandchildren. What should we do to sustain this valley for the future? How can we ensure the preservation and restoration of waterways, natural habitats for animals and the protection of our natural heritage and public lands? How can we preserve open space? And how can you best join these efforts?

Download the Flyer >>

Harnessing the Economy

In a talk entitled Harnessing the Economy to Fight Climate Change: Carbon Fee and Dividend, Dr. Peter Joseph will address why he believes that the quickest and most efficient way to reduce greenhouse gas emissions is to put a meaningful price on carbon through adoption of a carbon tax (fee) combined with a re-distributive dividend policy.

Dr. Joseph has been invited by the Earth Care Committee of The First Congregational Church (FCC) United Church of Christ in Sonoma to engage the public on this timely and critical subject on Tuesday evening, October 20th at 7:00 pm in Burlingame Hall, on the FCC campus, located at 252 West Spain Street.

Continue reading Harnessing the Economy

Peak Wine? Let Them Eat Cake

Sonoma County’s 40+ year love affair with grape alcohol may be on the rocks. Or is it time to pop a cork to celebrate the apex of high times in Wine Country?

It depends on whom you ask.

Writing for The Bohemian, Stephanie Hiller reports that Big Vineyards Face a Sustainability Gap in Sonoma County. Napa winederkind [sic] Joe Wagner’s proposal to build a huge new winery, distillery and events center at Dairyman ranch off Highway 12 near Sebastopol has led to a groundswell of opposition.

Does Wagner care?

Continue reading Peak Wine? Let Them Eat Cake

Networking for Resilience