On October 11th, the California Natural Resources Agency released its draft Natural and Working Lands Climate Smart Strategy for public comment. In some ways, this document is a win for environmentalists. We have been saying for years that, if stewarded properly, our natural and working lands can contribute to the climate solution instead of the climate crisis. We also appreciated the process through which this document was created. The agency held numerous public input hearings where they took testimony from Californians from across the State. They also specifically highlighted the need for equity in determining the future of California’s lands.
That’s why the released draft is so disappointing. It appears that the timber industry has managed to influence this document so that the section on California’s forests mimics their talking points. The document is replete with misinformation and, if the Natural Resources Agency doesn’t hear from the public, soon they’ll be the driving force behind California’s forest carbon strategy during the immensely important next few years.
That being said it’s not too late to submit your comments on the draft strategy! The close of comments is November 24th, 2021. Comments can be submitted in 3 ways:
1. Emailed to CaliforniaNature@resources.ca.gov
2. Sent by mail to the California Natural Resources Agency, 715 P Street, Sacramento, CA 95814.
3. Phone. You can even leave a voicemail by calling 1-800-417-0668. Let them know that you support transforming more of California’s forests into carbon reserves and that logging is not a climate change solution.
To read more information about this and get ideas about what to say in your comments, click the following link: wildcalifornia.org.