Legislative Agenda Energy and Natural Resources
Energy and natural resources are integral to the health of our local and regional economy and include conservation; maintenance of infrastructure; achieving efficiency of water, locally produced and procured energy usage and funding. The Chamber specifically recognizes water supply, quality, storage and infrastructure are continuing critical issues for our region.
Surface water supply, storage and distribution
Our region is dependent on stored water in upstream reservoirs. California remains in a 3-year drought with snow pack and state-wide reservoirs at historically low levels. Our region has received sufficient rain in December 2014 to raise water levels in our local reservoirs that may eventually lead to release of stored water for flood control requirements. These requirements are based on archaic formulas in Federal law. The Chamber will work with other organizations and our Federal representatives to change the laws to provide a scientific-based decision-making process that balances water supply with flood control.
The Chamber supports recent regional efforts to characterize our groundwater resources. New State and local regulations on groundwater resources may detrimentally affect our Members’ rights and ability to responsibly use this common resource. These regulations must have stakeholder involvement and be carefully considered. The Chamber will continue monitoring the Groundwater Management Act and the development of the groundwater agencies being formed in Sonoma County.
Energy and water improvement of efficiency of use
The Chamber recognizes energy and water efficiency of use can have major and positive impact to our economy and our Members. The Chamber will work to support those conservation efforts that conserve our natural resources while not having a negative impact on our economic health, and advocate for the use of recycled water within the City.