The Butte Environmental Council, funded by a grant from the Rose Foundation, has kicked off a year-long campaign to raise awareness about important water issues facing Butte County citizens.
Water issues in California can be “tricky and complex,” according to BEC Executive Director Robyn DiFalco, “But it’s never been more important for the public to have a solid understanding of what’s being proposed and the potential impacts on regional water." Educating and empowering citizen advocates has been one of BEC’s roles for more than 30 years.
The campaign, called “Code Blue,” will feature presentations, workshops, field trips and prizes throughout the year all focused on getting vital information concerning regional water out to the public and helping to translate controversial water issues and science for busy people to understand.
The Code Blue series recently kicked off with a speakers panel at the end of a day-long Water Track at the two-day “This Way to Sustainability” conference that was described by BEC Water Outreach Coordinator Nani Teves as a “forum of solution minded activists and scientists implementing water sollutions, from the movie theater to the court room ". This panel and the Environmental Coalition Gathering at the CARD Center on March 7 and 8 were the kick-off events which BEC hopes only whetted the county’s appetite for more.
This panel and the partnership with CSU, Chico was made possible by funding from a grant by the Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrologic Science (or CUASHI).
The next stop on Code Blue’s track is a showing of the film “Last Call at the Oasis” at the Paradise Grange Hall on Monday, March 25 from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m.
The film, a documentary highlighting the vital role water plays in everyday life and exposing the defects some researchers find in the global water system, will provide a good foundation for citizens interested in learning more about water issues and solutions, and will further BEC’s goals of “providing our community with the tools to engage in conversation and grassroots advocacy,” DiFalco said.
“The long-term goals of the [Code Blue] project will be increased public participation in demanding sustainable water policies that protect the Northern Sacramento Valley and Deltas water supplies for fish, wildlife and residents,” she explained. “It’s vital that the public is informed about the policies that will affect the health and vitality of our region’s water supply, and empowered to influence the outcomes.”
Page 2 of 2 - Additional events on Code Blue’s road map include water activism training on April 18 at the Chico Peace and Justice Center, a lecture titled “Science and Politics of Northstate Water” held May 1 in the Chico City Council Chambers and a “Roadtrip to the Bay Delta” in June to learn about Gov. Jerry Brown’s proposed Twin Tunnels project.