Our freedom is tied to the question of who decides what happens to the resources we hold in common: our watersheds, forests, and oak woodlands. Will it be the voters of Napa County, or the financial interests of the very wealthy and the wine and hospitality industries that decide?
With the county’s most-accessible valley bottomlands now filled with vineyards, new vineyard developments can only be developed into our precious watersheds. The only thing standing in their way are the precious trees. Our natural oak woodlands and conifer forests are under assault. Ultimately this poses a major threat to our water quality and quantity. Without enhanced protections for the streams which originate in hills, they and the Napa River will see increasing pollution with silt, nutrients and water-borne pathogens.
Conn Creek, the major water supply to Napa’s main reservoir, will be completely destroyed without additional protections such as water quality buffer zones and a much needed cap on deforestation of both oaks and conifers. Next year you will see a ballot initiative that will offer our citizens the right to determine how much is enough. Stay tuned. Our water future is at stake.