Baykeeper's E-Newsletter for December 2014

Welcome to San Francisco Baykeeper's December E-News.
 

San Francisco Baykeeper E-News
Monthly Update for December 2014
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San Francisco Bay

Baykeeper Lawsuit Aims to Stop San Jose's Runoff Pollution of the Bay

Baykeeper recently sent the City of San Jose a notice that we intend to sue the city for failing to keep trash, bacteria, and other pollution from washing into major creeks and tributaries to San Francisco Bay.

Our two-year investigation shows San Jose has some of the highest levels of polluted storm water runoff of any city in the Bay Area. The pollution threatens seals, shorebirds, and other wildlife, harms spawning fish, and can cause illness in people who spend time on or near the water.

We will focus on compelling San Jose to install new and effective controls that will significantly reduce polluted storm water runoff, to bring them into compliance with the Clean Water Act.

Read more about Baykeeper's lawsuit to stop San Jose's runoff pollution of the Bay.

Baykeeper Fights to Keep Railroads from Shirking Responsibility for Oil Spills

The oil and railway industries are pushing to transform the Bay Area into a major hub for crude oil shipped by train to refineries and ports. Now, the railway industry is trying to block a new state law that requires railroads to be prepared for an oil spill caused by a train accident.

Baykeeper worked hard to pass the law, which helps protect the Bay's watershed from oil spills and explosions that may result from the influx of crude oil being shipped into California by train. Much of the oil coming to California is from the Canadian Tar Sands and Bakken shale fields, and is extremely dirty and dangerous.

Last week, Baykeeper led a coalition of nonprofits throughout the state to file a legal brief in support of the new oil spill response requirements. We insist that railroads abide by the improved standards.

The law requires railroads to prepare comprehensive oil spill response plans; share shipping schedules and routes with first responders; and maintain liability funds to cover the cost of cleaning up oil spills. The railway industry is now trying to circumvent the requirements, in a bid to prevent all states from setting similar standards.

Californians have a right to protect our rivers and San Francisco Bay from the threat of oil spills from crude oil shipped by rail. Baykeeper fought hard for these new oil spill protections, and we're going to see that they're enforced.

Read more about Baykeeper's fight to hold railroads responsible for oil spills.

Syar Napa Quarry Agrees to Protect the Bay from Contaminated Runoff

In the 23rd victory for Baykeeper's Bay-Safe Industry Campaign, Syar Industries Napa Quarry recently agreed to keep contaminated storm water from running off its facility into Arroyo Creek, which flows to the Napa River, and then to San Francisco Bay.

At its open-pit quarry in Napa, Syar Industries mines rock for use in construction and paving. Operations at the facility include drilling, blasting, mining, and crushing of rock, often outdoors. In addition to its mining activity, the company has also allowed large amounts of debris to accumulate on the site. For five years, storm water runoff from the quarry has contained pollutants above EPA levels of concern.

Syar's legally-binding agreement with Baykeeper resulted from our Clean Water Act lawsuit and will protect the Bay from pollutants that include aluminum, lead, oil, grease, and nitrate.

Read more about Baykeeper securing pollution cleanup at Syar Industries Napa Quarry.

Join the SUP Trash Cleanup in Sausalito, Sunday December 14

Join Baykeeper and stand up paddleboard instructor Jen Fuller at a group trash cleanup of San Francisco Bay and shoreline in Sausalito on Sunday, December 14, 9 am-12 noon. Meet at 9 at Sausalito's Dunphy Park.

Bring your stand-up paddleboard or kayak and pick up trash along the shore from on the water. Paddleboards will be available if you don't have your own. Groups will be formed to clean up different areas of the Bay, from Sausalito to San Rafael.

You are also encouraged to join the cleanup on foot and remove trash from the shoreline. The cleanup is sponsored by the city of Sausalito and lots of local businesses. Thanks to all for helping keep the Bay litter-free!

Get more details and RSVP for the SUP Trash Cleanup on Facebook.

2014 Baykeeper Annual Report Highlights 25 Years of Protecting the Bay

Baykeeper's 2014 Annual Report is out, celebrating 25 years of successful action for a clean and healthy San Francisco Bay.

Our Annual Report also showcases the biggest victories for a healthy Bay of 2014.

We've posted our Annual Report online. Along with it, you can see a complete list of Baykeeper's generous supporters who funded our work for 2013-14.

Thank you to everyone who donated to Baykeeper on behalf of a healthy San Francisco Bay!

Read Baykeeper's 2014 Annual Report.

Happy Bay-Healthy Holidays from Baykeeper!

GiftBaykeeper's staff and board of directors wish you a happy holiday season and a wonderful new year. Thank you for helping us defend San Francisco Bay from pollution, all year round.

We have big plans for 2015. We're ready to start work on the projects that will make the most difference for the Bay's health in the coming year. These include stopping industrial pollution of the Bay, compelling San Jose to stop contaminating the Bay with trash, and standing up for strong oil spill protections. All we need is help from you.

Please help make 2015 a great year for our beloved San Francisco Bay, by making a gift to Baykeeper today.

Donations to Baykeeper are fully tax-deductible. Your gift helps make San Francisco Bay a place where the ecosystem is healthy, recreation is safe, and wildlife thrives.

(Photo at top by Roberto Soncin Gerometta)