Baykeeper's E-Newsletter for October 2011

San Francisco Baykeeper E-News
Monthly Update for October 2011
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Support a healthy
San Francisco Bay

Three New State Laws are Wins for the Bay

coastGovernor Jerry Brown has signed three important pieces of legislation that will help protect California's environment and public health.

AB 1112, a bill sponsored by San Francisco Baykeeper, provides much needed funding for oil spill prevention and response measures in California. Raising fees on oil by 1.5 cents per barrel will fund increased staffing and cleanup measures for the Bay and statewide.

The passage of AB 376 will ban the sale of shark fins in the state to help stop the slaughter of more than 70 million sharks each year for their fins. AB 1319 bans the use of bisphenol A (or BPA) in baby bottles; this toxic estrogen-mimicking chemical has been linked to reproductive disorders in aquatic animals, so limiting its use is not only good for babies, it's also good for California’s fish.

The passage of these three bills is a big victory for people, wildlife and the Bay. Read more about this new legislation.

Cosco Busan Financial Settlement Falls Short

CoscoBusanUnder a new financial settlement with government agencies, the shipping companies responsible for the November 2007 Cosco Busan oil spill must pay $44 million in damages. Less than $16 million is slated for wildlife habitat restoration, which Baykeeper believes is too little. We will advocate for increased funding to help restore the Bay's fish and bird populations.

Read more about the Cosco Busan damages settlement.

BCDC Approves Sea Level Rise Plan

BCDCOn October 6, the Bay Conservation and Development Commission (BCDC) passed an amendment to the Bay Plan that will help prepare for sea level rise in San Francisco Bay. The amendment requires future development around the Bay to consider the potential impacts of sea level rise caused by climate change and to plan accordingly.

Baykeeper has been an active proponent of this amendment, and we'll continue working with local cities to implement sound climate change policy for the Bay. Read more about the Bay Plan sea level rise amendment.

Federal Clean Water Act Under Threat

As we reported last month, the Clean Water Act is currently under attack in the U.S. Congress through numerous "dirty water" amendments to major appropriation bills. We now expect them to be considered by the Senate in November.

Senator Dianne Feinstein is a powerful member of the Appropriations Subcommittee, and we're urging her to continue standing up for healthy waterways. Learn how you can contact her office and ask the Senator to vote NO on dirty water riders.

Volunteers Pitch In for Coastal Cleanup Day

CCDBaykeeper volunteers removed more than 500 pounds of trash from India Basin Shoreline Park during California Coastal Cleanup Day on September 17. That's a lot of litter that won't end up in the Bay!

Statewide, more than 63,000 volunteers removed over 600,000 pounds of trash from the state's waterways and shorelines. Most of this debris originates from inland sources like fast food restaurants and travels through storm drains and creeks into the Bay and ocean.

Thank you to all the Baykeeper volunteers who came out to get their hands dirty for a clean Bay! Read more about Coastal Cleanup Day and see photos of Baykeeper's cleanup.

Stand Up for a Healthy Bay!

SUPJoin Baykeeper at the inaugural Battle of the Bay Stand Up Paddleboard Race and Expo on October 29! Held at McNear's Beach in San Rafael, the event will feature racing for all levels, from beginner to pro, as well as an expo and after-party. A portion of the proceeds will benefit Baykeeper's work to keep the Bay clean for paddlers, swimmers, surfers and all the recreationalists who enjoy its waters.

Join the Battle of the Bay Stand Up Paddleboard Race on October 29.