Ocean acidification prevention measures not up to muster

As they are now, criteria for preventing the acidification of waters off of the coast of California, Oregon and Washington are inadequate, this being the conclusion of a study published in the journal Ocean & Coastal Management.

The study calls for major changes to take place on how the trio of states handles high levels of carbon emissions that trigger ocean acidification and have been linked to climate change.

“The West Coast is on the front line in the fight against climate change and ocean acidification. We need water quality standards that match the magnitude and urgency of the problem, not outdated versions designed more than 40 years ago,” said Abel Valdivia, Ph.D., a marine scientist with the Center for Biological Diversity.

California Assemblyman Das Williams, D-Santa Barbara, recently passed a bill that would require the Ocean Protection Council to make recommendations for action on ocean acidification, but in light of the new study, the Center for Biological Diversity is advocating for the bill to be strengthened.

Area leaders to advocate in D.C. for EPA

Oxnard Mayor Pro-tem Carmen Ramirez, Downtown Ventura business woman Michelle Stevens (owner of the Refill Shoppe) and Mayor Jan Marx of San Luis Obispo are in Washington, D.C. Thursday, April 21, advocating for the Central Coast Heritage Protection act, which would designate some coastal lands as components of the National Wilderness Preservation System.

Representatives from Ventura-headquartered Patagonia and Toad & Company will also visit D.C. in support of the bill.

If adopted, Senate Bill 1423, introduced by Senator Barbara Boxer, D-California, would designate 2,174 acres of Los Padres National Forest as the Machesna Mountain Potential Wilderness Area, 41,617 acres as Fox Mountain Potential Wilderness Area, 18,666 acres as the Condor Ridge Scenic Area and 15,846 acres as the Black Mountain Scenic Area.

The bill would also designate specified segments of both Piru and Sespe creeks as components of the National Wild and Scenic Rivers System.

The trio will meet with Senators Boxer and Diane Feinstein, D-Califoria, as well as with members of the House Natural Resources Committee ahead of the meeting of The Energy and Natural Resources’ Subcommittee on Public Lands, Forests and Mining.

Expert to speak in Ojai on accelerating climate change

Guy McPherson, Ph.D., Professor Emeritus of Natural Resources and Ecology, and Evolutionary Biology at University of Arizona, will give a series of talks on the risks of near-term human extinction due to climate change and our collective response to the dangers in May.

McPherson, author of more than a dozen books on climate change, appeared alongside Bill Nye on a National Geographic program on the subject.

The talks will begin on Friday, May 13, at Bookends Books, 110 S. Pueblo Ave. in Ojai from 7 to 8 p.m. with readings from McPherson’s book Extinction Dialogues, continue from 1-2 p.m. on Saturday, May 14, with readings from his children’s book Ms. Ladybug and Mr. Honeybee: a love story at the end of time, and conclude at The Ojai Valley Grange, 381 Cruzero St. in Ojai on Sunday, May 15, from 6:30-8:30 p.m. with a full presentation dubbed “Responding to Abrupt Climate Change in Southern California.”

For more information, visit www.guymcphersontour.com.

Rep. Lois Capps receives Environmental Hero Award

U.S. Rep. Lois Capps, D-Santa Barbara, has received the Environmental Hero Award, presented by the Community Environmental Council of Santa Barbara. In the spirit of the award, Capps said, “It may sound cliché, but we know that one day a year is not enough — every day must be Earth Day.”

— Chris O’Neal