Victory for High Desert Residents?
The Planning Commission meeting of May 24, was a victory for those opposed to locating massive solar projects in rural residential areas, many local Newberry residents and residents of other high desert rural communities like Joshua Tree, Lucerne Valley, and Morongo in attendance with the overwhelming majority of voices expressing vehement objection to textual changes that had been proposed by Land Use Services (LUS) in the Renewable Energy Conservation Element (RECE), a document being incorporated into the County Development Code, that would allow massive utility scale solar projects currently planned to closely abut or infiltrate rural residential areas.
Sludge Dumping Plot Thickens
May 17, 2018 – A call to our Association yesterday from Mr. Jason Phillipe of San Bernardino Environmental Health indicated that any action to implement land-spreading changes to the County Code will be delayed until the impact of SB1383 provisions have been considered. The bill was passed in September of 2016, and although it is supposed to reduce dairy methane emissions it could also have implications related to the dumping of methane containing elements of sewage sludge as well.
MWA Approves Five Percent Ramp-down
February 28, 2018 – The Mojave Water Agency in its role as Watermaster voted, on a thin four to three majority, to continue to ramp down water usage in our valley by major water users subject to the 1996 water judgment, Directors Lowry, Cox, and Ventura voting against the ramp-down. The ramp-down reduces the base annual water allotment to each major water user to thirty-five percent of their usage prior to that 1996 judgment.
Communities Protest Solar Projects
Many high desert residents, both private individuals and organization members commented at the February 13th County Supervisors meeting protesting a number of solar projects having pending applications with County Land Use Services in Lucerne Valley, Daggett, and Newberry Springs as well as the removal from the Renewable Energy and Conservation Element (RECE) adopted in August of 2017 of Policy 4.1, and the failure so far of the county to integrate the RECE into the County General Plan.
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