25 Big Asks to the County Supervisors from the Climate Coalition
Ventura County Board of Supervisors
Show support for our 25 Big Asks on climate, health, ecosystems, safety, food security, and resilience that were sent to the Ventura County Board of Supervisors. They will meet for the last time on September 1 at 1 p.m. to make decisions for the next 20 years.
CLICK HERE to read the full text of what we submitted. It's a 42 page list with more about why. Use "Control F" and use key word search or scroll down the list of 25 Big Asks explained HERE and the list of all 40 recommendations HERE. The lists are in the same order. Five of the bolder or more impactful are starred.***
Sign the Petition in Support of our Recommendations for modifications and new policies and implementation programs in the County's General Plan Update.
VC CLIMATE COALITION TOP 25 RECOMMENDATIONS ARE LISTED HERE
PUBLIC FACILITIES AND SERVICES (PFS) Policy and Program:
- 1 Single Use Plastics Phase Out ***
CONSERVATION AND OPEN SPACE (COS) Policies:
- 2 Tree Planting
- 3 Oil Well Distance 2500′ from Homes, not just 1500′ ***
- 4 Tree Protection Ordinance with city-county law enforcement cooperation to ensure that illegal harm to trees anywhere in the County is quickly stopped
- 5 Tree Planting Implementation Program with tracking for survival
- 6 Oil and Gas Tax must to all oil wells, not just new oil wells ***
- 7 GHG Inventory (including methane and refrigerants; calculations using full warming potential of methane)
- 8 Climate Action Council representing all stakeholders
- 9 Office of Climate Action and Sustainability (OCAS) ***
COS NEW Programs:
- 10 OCAS Director – A Transformational Leader getting everyone going ***
- 11 Pesticide Risk Communication Concerning Ecosystems
- 12 Decarbonize (Electrify) Existing Buildings (replace natural gas, especially gas stoves for homes near outdoor air pollution)
- 13 Local Renewable Energy Development (Solar+Battery) and Community Microgrids
HAZARD AND SAFETY ELEMENT (HAZ) NEW Policies:
- 14 Oil Producer Performance Clean-Up Bonds
- 15 Oil Facilities Inspections (like aging pipelines)
HAZ NEW Programs:
- 16 Pesticide Risk Communication Concerning Public Health
- 17 Farmworker Protection – OSHA Certified and Bio-Monitoring to Study Exposure to Dust and Pesticides
AGRICULTURE (AG) ELEMENT NEW Policies:
- 18 Flood Plain Management Preparing for Extreme Rain Events (think atmospheric rivers)
- 19 Small-Scale Farmer Land Access
- 20 “Ventura-County Grown” Products Sales Incentives
- 21 County Food Service Buys More Local Products to Support Local Farmers
- 22 Put Carbon Farming in a Regenerative Agriculture Framework
AG NEW Programs:
- 23 Regenerative Agriculture Incentives, Assistance, Access to Markets
- 24 Socially Disadvantaged Farmers to Learn Regenerative Agriculture Practices
- 25 Stormwater Management Accountability – Use to Reward Regenerative Farmers
Same order as Top 40 Recommendations submitted by the Climate Coalition.
Now it's time to let the Supervisors know your stories and suggestions for improvement in the Draft Plan up for discussion on Tuesday, September 1, at 1 p. m.
- Deadline to email comments to Susan.Curtis@ventura.org August 31, 3:30 p. m.
- Instructions: How to send email comments and speak live during the meeting HERE.
Ventura County Board of Supervisors
From: [Your Name]
Our 350 Climate Coalition petition was sent to Susan Curtis on Thursday with over 300 signatures and we share it again today with over 500 residents signing in support of strengthening the General Plan. We expect there to at least 700 signatures by the end of the week.
Here is the petition. It is the same that was shared on Thursday with Susan Curtis with almost double the signatures including more comments:
Whereas, climate action is urgent, I therefore support the recommendations for improvement in the General Plan from 350 Climate Hub, Citizens’ Climate Lobby-Ventura, dozens of climate and environmental justice advocates, regenerative farmer friends, and professionals in related fields.
Please give your utmost attention in all policies and programs to recommendations that protect and provide opportunities for disadvantaged populations.
• Ambitious benchmarks to fix the fragility of our local food supply.
• Creative support for Small-Scale Farmer Land Access and Socially Disadvantaged Farmers to Learn Regenerative Agriculture.
• Recognition of “Ventura-County Grown” to localize the food supply.
• Purchase of increasing amounts of products from local farmers by County Food Service so farmers are set up to supply in a crisis.
Qualified, robust leadership is the most important part of the Plan.
I want the Plan to put Climate Action leadership at center stage. A knowledgeable Director of an Office of Climate Action and Sustainability (OCAS) should speedily deploy climate programs across all departments and agencies and the whole community with public-private and inter-city cooperation. The Director will have the authority inherent in the CEO’s office, highlighting the most impactful goals to each department, and giving encouragement and coaching.
I want the Climate Action Council to represent all perspectives in a radically transparent and inclusive process to find and vet the best information. But we cannot wait for the Climate Action Council in order to get an accurate, comprehensive GHG inventory.
The OCAS Director will work with the Ventura County Air Pollution Control District to do a Greenhouse Gas Inventory using accepted science to measure and calculate the warming impact of methane from all sources. It should be informed by the latest estimates of fugitive unburned methane from leaking infrastructure and from oil and gas that is taken out of the county to be burned elsewhere. If it is not in another jurisdiction’s inventory, it is ours! After all, we let it be extracted. We must also accurately count the use of artificial fertilizers. I want our share of HFCs recognized in the inventory, even if the solutions are mostly at a higher structural level, yet people who use refrigerants in air conditioners and refrigerators need to know how and why to prevent escape of the gas and what kinds of replacement appliances to look for.
Then start studying the best design for a Carbon Tax on production from all wells, not just new ones.
The Climate Action Council’s first assignment should be an ordinance for replacing natural gas in existing buildings that prioritizes help for people with gas stoves in areas with high outdoor air pollution.
Removal of barriers to development of community microgrids is long overdue.
Methane emissions and oil production infrastructure must be phased out, along with other polluting industries.
I, therefore, support
• Single use plastics phase-out
• Oil well distance 2500' for homes (not just 1500')
• Oil producer clean-up performance bonds
• Oil facilities inspections, especially aging pipelines
• Education about how and why to prevent release of GHG refrigerants
• Pesticide risk communication (labels don’t tell the whole story)
• Anti-coagulant rodenticide and Roundup ban
Regenerative agriculture is the roadmap to Farmland Preservation, Compatible Land Use, successful Innovative farm plans, Food Security, Sustainability, and Resilience—All Six Goals of the Agriculture Element. Regenerative Agriculture is perceived as and proving to offer a wider range of benefits than ‘organic’ or ‘sustainable’. The term belongs in policy statements. It saves on water (soil carbon increases water-holding capacity), fertilizer (living soil regenerates nutrient cycling) and pesticides (healthy plants have more immunity to pests and diseases). Farmworkers on regenerative farms generally do not need biomonitoring for pesticide exposure that should be a requirement to provide, but is not provided, for farmworkers. Four of the 25 climate coalition recommendations call for an added spotlight on Regenerative Agriculture because we so need of its benefits.
Stormwater Management Accountability needs attention to ensure runoff is well-managed and stored or infiltrated for potential use as a reward for regenerative farmers.
The Floodplain Management Ordinance needs to be updated to prepare for the intense storm events and flooding of the future.
The Tree Protection Ordinance needs to include inter-jurisdictional cooperation and a true valuation of trees to ensure that no matter in what jurisdiction it occurs illegal harm to trees can be swiftly stopped, trees that were illegally destroyed are fully paid for, and the offsets for permitted tree removal are planted within a year under penalty of large fines.
The Tree Planting Program needs a plan for ensuring smart species selection and keeping the trees alive! that may be helped by a Tree Committee.
Most of all, however, we need a new level of leadership in the CEO's office to speed up implementation of the Climate Plans in the next five years. Effective communication from our proposed new Director of the Office of Climate Action and Sustainability with all sectors will create a culture of cooperation, accountability and transparency.