Local and State Policy Platform - Energy and Natural Resources
The extraordinary quality of the physical environment of our region is critical to the quality of life we enjoy. It is also the underpinning of various sectors of our local economy, particularly our tourism and recreation industries. The droughts and fires we have experienced in recent years highlight the need to use our natural resources in a manner that is sustainable in the long-term and to promote land use and management practices and building codes that minimizes the impact of natural disasters.
We support stewardship and sustainable use of our water resources, as a key element of securing our community’s agricultural and recreation industry and to allow for the growth of our region.
We support the development of a sustainable groundwater plan that ensures long-term availability of groundwater supplies and allocates costs and benefits equitably across sectors.
Minimizing Risk of Fires
Much of California has seen an increase in risk of wildland fires. To help mitigate the risk locally, we support: Initiatives to reduce the volume of combustible materials in the forests and rangelands of Sonoma County; smart management practices for property and forests that minimize the likelihood and spread of fires; and improvements to the electric distribution system that would serve to minimize fire risk.
Large scale Public Safety Power Shutoff (PSPS) events have come at an enormous economic cost to our region. Even when areas are not impacted with the loss of power, during the recent wide-spread PSPS, the community at large was unable to continue with normal routines and patterns, making small business in particular endure extreme depressions in activity. With losses in the millions of dollars per event, we need immediate interim solutions to minimize the impact of PSPS events in low-risk fire zones.