Federal Action Taken Against Cadiz Water Project Pipeline

The Biden Administration has pulled approval of the pipeline which was approved by the prior administration without required review. The Cadiz water mining proposal has been fought against as detrimental to the health of the Mojave Desert by MBCA and dozens of other conservation organizations for years. Press releases by the National Parks Conservation Association and the Center for Biological Diversity explain the details, as does this Los Angeles Times story. Many prior news stories posted by MBCA about the Cadiz Water Project can be found by scrolling down our Water Issues pages.
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Eblast December 2, 2021

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  • Light Trespass Ordinance to be on Supervisor’s Agenda
  • Scenic 247 Proposal to Planning Commission
  • MBCA Supports California’s 30x30 Conservation Goal
  • Give the Gift of an MBCA Membership
 
 
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MBCA Joins Equity Appeal for California's Climate Change Strategy

In a coalition letter sent in late November, MBCA joined with 25 other non-profit organizations to recommend that equity and environmental justice must become key elements in California’s plans to deal with climate change. Numerous specific recommendations in the letter suggest improvements to the draft Climate Smart Strategy document published this fall by the California Natural Resources Agency.

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Plant Spotlight: Hollyleaf Cherry

Hollyleaf cherry (Prunus Ilicifolia) is a native and drought-tolerant shrub for home landscapes in the Morongo Basin. It is the most widely distributed native subspecies of holly in California.  
flowering hollyleaf cherry bush with white flowers
This shrub can be pruned into a quite tall hedge and should be trimmed to shape twice a year if need be. The red cherries appear in fall and are edible if you get them before the birds do! The plant is evergreen with glossy leaves that smell like almonds when crushed. The leaves and branches are useful for holiday wreathes and arrangements. 
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Eblast November 17, 2021

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  • Short Term Rentals
  • County Supervisors to consider Light Trespass Ordinance
  • Protect and Encourage Rooftop Solar
 
 
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MBCA Joins Request for Wildlife Crossings on Rail Corridor

As the Brightline West High-Speed Rail Project between southern California and Las Vegas rolls toward implementation, MBCA has again joined numerous organizations to insist that the state require three wildlife crossings to protect our world-class wildlife, including mountain lions and bighorn sheep, in the fragile desert environment. The letter signed by 35 organizations is addressed to Governor Newsom with copies to California's Senators and the heads of appropriate state and federal agencies. Prior MBCA news stories on the issue were posted on September 5, 2020, and November 23, 2020, and this September 16 Los Angeles Times article focuses on the value of the wildlife crossings for bighorn sheep.
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Daggett Solar 66 Plans Mitigation Actions Encouraged by MBCA

At a meeting with a Daggett Solar 66 Project representative initiated by MBCA Directors, the representative described several mitigation efforts directly related to MBCA's concerns listed in our April comment letter. As a follow-up, this November 2 letter was sent by MBCA to the Planning Commission to summarize the project's mitigation actions with reference to our original concerns and therefore our support for the Conditional Use Permit. The County Planning Commission will review the project at their  November 4, 2021 meeting.
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LA Times Provides Overview of Net Metering Issues

A November 2 news story by Sammy Roth of the Los Angeles Times provides a comprehensive overview of the many issues and viewpoints swirling around California's Net Energy Metering (NEM) program. MBCA's earlier news stories of May 8 and June 4 provide our history of involvement as we have signed on to Solar Rights Alliance letters seeking both local and distributed renewable energy commitment and climate justice goals. (If you cannot access the article, here is a text-only version.)
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Plant Spotlight: Jojoba

The jojoba is a native of the Morongo Basin and thrives in home landscapes.  Simmondsia chinensis is a wonderful plant for back of the border or to be used as at moderately-fast growing screen. Leaf color ranges from greens to greys. The leaves are small and the shrub can be kept compact in habit through pruning. It can grow from 4-7 feet high and wide. Care should be taken in higher elevations (up to 5000 feet) of our area as a hard freeze can kill a young plant. Despite needing good drainage, jojoba seems to tolerate and even appreciate clay soils. Deer prefer it but rabbits and other nibblers ignore it. 
large jojoba plant
Photos by Stacy Doolittle
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MBCA Addresses Housing Issues

To bring attention to the ongoing lack of housing availability in the Morongo Basin and the significant negative consequences, MBCA sent this letter of concern to state, county, and local officials. All California cities and counties are currently updating their Housing Elements, which are submitted to the State Department of Housing and Community Development (HCD) for approval. Jurisdictions also have to submit Annual Progress Reports which evaluate and record the status of housing availability for various income levels. However, the existing reporting structure entirely overlooks the effect of so much housing being turned into short-term rental properties with dire effects on the resident community including housing displacement and housing insecurity. Changes must occur to prevent even more damage being done to local families and to the fabric of our communities.
 
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