A publication of
Bureau of Land Management in California
Issue date: 11/14/2002
This week in News.bytes:
- Mountain biking:
- New plan for public lands
- Public lands rights-of-way controversies:
- Power line
- Mining controversy: Soledad Canyon
- Not for Educators Only:
- Weed of the Week: Wavy leaf thistle
- Wildlife Trivia of the Week: Slow copies
- Wildfires: Plan now for safety
- Headlines and Highlights, including:
- Native plant repair
- Changes in species protection procedures
- Selected upcoming events
RELEASES FINAL NATIONAL MOUNTAIN BICYCLING STRATEGIC ACTION PLAN"
(BLM news release, 11/12/2002)
Final plan signed by BLM Directory Kathleen Clarke on Oct. 25, incorporates
many public comments received on draft. Plan "promotes environmentally
sound use of mountain bicycles and other muscle-powered, nonmotorized
modes of transportation on BLM-managed public lands."
BILL PITS BIKERS vs. HIKERS" (Sacramento Bee, 11/14/2002)
Skyrocketing numbers of mountain bikers, with stronger and lighter bikes
taking them deep into the backcountry, are running into conflicts with
hikers and wilderness preservationists. One point of contact: proposed
bill that would affect 2.5 million acres of California wilderness, including
lands managed by BLM.
PUBLIC LANDS RIGHTS-OF-WAY CONTROVERSIES
"LINE MAY BE ON HOLD"
(Riverside Press-Enterprise, 11/11/2002)
"An administrative law judge's recommendation to kill a proposed
high-voltage line through southwest Riverside County did not sound the
death knell for the project. Industry experts expect state regulators
to keep San Diego Gas & Electric's proposed 500,000-volt Valley Rainbow
Interconnect on life support indefinitely."
Related: "AGENCY HEARS
PROS, CONS ON POWER LINE" (Riverside Press-Enterprise, 11/13/2002)
California Public Utilities Commission will decide whether San Diego Gas
& Electric's proposed Valley Rainbow Interconnect will be built, and
which routes it could follow -- could require BLM rights-of-way permits.
"CONVERTING OIL PIPELINE
PROPOSED" (Bakersfield Californian, 11/12/2002)
Proposal to convert crude oil pipeline through Kern County into natural
gas transport. Environmental impact report to examine rerouting pipeline
or including special mitigations, say BLM and California State Lands Commission.
A residential subdivision was built over the pipeline right-of-way since
it was built in the 80's. No public comments offered from 30 people attending
first public meeting on proposal. Two more meetings scheduled, comment
deadline Nov. 22.
CONTROVERSY: Cemex in Soledad Canyon
"CITY ASKS DAVIS TO
ENTER MINE FIGHT" (Los Angeles Daily News, 11/13/2002)
"The [Santa Clarita] City Council has asked Gov. Gray Davis and Attorney
General Bill Lockyer to intervene in the federal court battle over a massive
sand and gravel mine..." in Soledad Canyon. Cemex obtained BLM permit
for its mining operation.
"CITY IN GRITTY FIGHT, TURNS TO GOVERNOR" (The Signal,
The Santa Clarita City Council "unanimously called for a resolution
to be drafted and sent to Gov. Gray Davis and Attorney General Bill Lockyer
asking them to intervene in a lawsuit filed by Louisiana-based mining
giant Cemex Inc. against Los Angeles County."
FOR EDUCATORS ONLY
OF THE WEEK - WAVY LEAF THISTLE
Perennial from simple taproot, sometimes creeping. Stems erect, branching,
1 to 3-1/2 feet tall, white wooly. Upper leaves smaller, toothed, spiny.
Flowers one to few, pink to lavender to white. (Photo courtesy California
Department of Food and Agriculture)
TRIVIA OF THE WEEK
What are the slowest reproducing mammals on earth, for their size?"
(In other words, slow mammals that reproduce slowly.)
See answer near end of this issue of News.bytes.
HONOR MARY ANN HENRY FOR ENVIRONMENTAL EFFORTS" (Ridgecrest News
BLM and several groups honor widely-recognized native-plant expert "In
recognition of her pioneering efforts to conduct the first systematic
inventory of Short Canyon flora; her decades of service to environmental
education; and her years of commitment to sustaining the desert's beauty
Related: "BOTANIST, ENVIRONMENTALIST
HONORED FOR LIFETIME WORK" (Ridgecrest Daily Independent, 11/14/2002)
"Mary Ann Henry has made the desert her life's work, and in doing
so has made a monumental difference to the desert. An estimated 100 friends,
relatives, supporters and fans gathered in Short Canyon on Nov. 3, to
YOU'RE INVITED: Clean up
Coachella Valley Mountains Conservancy -- of which BLM California is a
member -- and Friends of the Desert Mountains invite you to "Clean
up the Canyon" this Saturday, Nov. 16.
This weekend's project: Habitat restoration in Cathedral Canyon 8 a.m.
to 4 p.m. Saturday. "Enjoy a great day in this beautiful canyon and
help us remove non-native tamarisk to restore the habitat for bighorn
sheep and other wildlife," organizers say. Meet at the IMAX Theater
in Cathedral City, with your comfortable hiking/work shoes, work clothes,
gloves, lunch and water. Be prepared to hike one or two miles into the
canyon, and please bring large loppers or handsaws if you have them.
Please call if you plan to attend, or need information: (760) 776-5026.
"COACHELLA VALLEY MOUNTAINS CONSERVANCY" (State of
California Web page)
The Coachella Valley Mountains Conservancy is governed by 21 voting members,
representing local, state and federal governments -- including BLM California
-- the public at large and the Agua Caliente Band of Cahuilla Indians.
The Conservancy was established by the California Legislature in 1990
to protect the mountains surrounding the Coachella Valley, from Palm Springs
to the Salton Sea. The Conservancy grew out of a community-based conservation
group seeking partnerships to achieve that goal.
"THE EAGLE PASS AREA
GETS A FACE LIFT" (Needles Desert Star, 11/12/2002)
BLM and other agencies invite public to help clean up items such as old
refrigerators and other household appliances, from public lands near Eagle
Pass Road. Site was historical dump site until 1976 law instituted public
landfills. More information forthcoming about event, Nov. 21 and Dec.
"DESERT VANDALS SOUGHT"
(Needles Desert Star, 11/06/2002)
About 60 volunteers cleaned up 20 tones of trash near Mojave Trail --
and came across an example of vandalism on public lands.
TRIVIA OF THE WEEK
PLAN NOW FOR SAFETY
SAFE PLAN - COUNCIL WORKS TO REDUCE FIRE DANGERS" (Mammoth Times,
"Created at the height of the 2002 fire season, the Fire Safe Council
has prepared a handbook to help east-side residents improve their chances
against wildfires." National Forests in the Bishop area prepared
handbook in conjunction with the council, which includes BLM.
"FIRE SAFE COUNCIL ADDRESSES FIRE HAZARDS, PREVENTION"
(Ridgecrest Daily Independent, 11/14/2002)
Fire Safe Council including BLM working on projects including prevention
and demonstration "defensible lots" to stop wildfires from burning
houses. Kern County fire official says, "This year approximately
$100 million was spent on the Biscuit fire. That money would be better
spent on prevention than fire fighting and structure loss."
HEADLINES AND HIGHLIGHTS
"BLM HAS ITS SIGHTS
ON VEGETATION REHAB" (Inyo Register, 11/12/2002)
Subtitled: "Organizations work toward re-greening and protection
of local wild lands." Native California plants grown to repair damage
from fire and off-road vehicles. Efforts also to improve signage to keep
off-road areas open.
FOR HEADWATERS FUND BOARD" (Eureka Times-Standard, 11/14/2002)
Humboldt County received $22 million from state and federal governments
in 1999 during sale of the 7,400-acre Headwaters Forest and two smaller
groves from Pacific Lumber Co. County now taking applications from people
who will help decide how that money is invested.
"HEADWATERS FOREST RESERVE" (BLM California Web site)
BLM California-managed areas of the preserved forest.
"BLM ACCEPTING COMMENTS
ON REVISED DESERT TRAVEL" (Imperial Valley Press, 11/12/2002)
Written comments must be received or postmarked by Nov. 18.
"WESTERN COLORADO (WECO) OHV ROUTE OF TRAVEL DESIGNATION UPDATE
PROJECT" (BLM California Web site)
"PUBLIC MEETINGS SET for draft amendment and associated environmental
assessment for Western Colorado Desert routes of travel designations"
(BLM California news release, 11/6/02)
"CHANGES IN SPECIES
PROTECTION PROPOSED" (Mt. Shasta News, 11/13/2002)
Actions involving court settlement that requires U.S. Forest Service and
BLM to "substantially review, and potentially change, the way species
are protected in areas designated for timber harvesting in the pacific
northwest." BLM California's nearest impact would be near Oregon-California
TO: What are the slowest
reproducing mammals on earth, for their size?"
Bats! Most bats produce only one young per year, which makes them more vulnerable
Learn more about bats and other mammals that occur on BLM-managed lands, on our
(Note: see comment on "secure server" under Selected
Upcoming Events below.)
SELECTED UPCOMING EVENTS
(Note: the Upcoming Events Web site is now on
a more secure server, and your browser may state "You are about to view
pages over a secure connection" and ask you to "Trust a Security Certificate"
from the Department of Interior that hosts this site. To view the pages, you
must select "Yes" or "OK" for both questions.)
11/14/2002 - WECO routes
of travel designation public meeting
11/14/2002 - King Range NCA scoping meeting
11/14/2002 - Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument public workshop
11/16/2002 - King Range
NCA scoping meeting
11/18/2002 - Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument public workshop
11/20/2002 - Santa Rosa and San Jacinto Mountains National Monument public workshop
12/05/2002 - Oil and Gas
12/05/2002 - Ridgecrest
Ridgecrest Field Office
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News.bytes published by
Bureau of Land Management
California State Office
2800 Cottage Way, Suite W-1834
Sacramento, Ca 95825
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