What: Raptor Ramble
When:Saturday March 2, 2013 at 8:00AM.
Where:Los Cerritos Wetlands. Meet us in the driveway near 1st street and PCH. You may park in the driveway.
Our walk begins with a brief orientation to our wetlands.We will stroll through heritage coastal sage scrub and historic dredge spoils, while looking for raptors (birds of prey) and a number of other species that nest in the area. As we pass the salt flats we may see tiger beetles and coyote tracks before hiking up to the Heron Pointe Cultural trail to discuss how tidal circulation shapes our local wetlands.
Our walk leaders will share their knowledge and passion for the wildlife of the wetlands. Bring binoculars, if you have them; we will observe many different kinds of interesting wildlife.
For more information or to RSVP email email@example.com
Our next wetlands kayakng trip will be Sunday, December 13th from 9:00am until noon. We will leave from the Leeway Sailing Center on Ocean Blvd. and kayak to Steamshovel Slough and back. Our trips are led by our partners from Tidal Influence and are open to anyone who is comfortable kayaking for a few hours and has a sense of adventure. No experience necessary. If you are interested, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we will send you further details.
The lovely Hellman portion of Los Cerritos Wetlands
Despite all the holiday rush of activities, it's a great time to get out and enjoy the outdoors. Join us and our partners, biologists and environmental educators from the environmental consulting firm Tidal Influence, on a wonderful hike at Los Cerritos Wetlands on Saturday, December 5th, at 8:00AM sharp. Parking lot gate will open at 7:45AM and close at 8:10AM. No late-comers can be admitted for the tour, and all participants must stay for the entire tour, which will end by 10:00AM.
A great blue heron enjoying our local wetlands. You will likely spot one if you attend our upcoming wetlands nature walk.
If you were unable to attend our recent community meeting, featuring Heal the Bay's Senior Policy Director Rita Kampalath, where we heard her presentation on the proposal to keep the AES cooling water pumps running in the Los Cerritos Wetlands, below is a little re-cap of our meeting and what we learned.
We learned that there are already many laws and regulations in place that deal with water pollution; also there are existing permits mandating how pollution is to be addressed. We heard how in the coming years those permits need to be enforced throughout the entire San Gabriel River Watershed. We learned that while the Alamitos AES plant pumps do, indeed, circulate water through Alamitos Bay, the circulation they offer provides limited benefits and comes at a great cost to marine life killed in the process. We heard about better solutions that reduce bacteria, trash and other pollution at its source, and do so without degrading the local marine eco-system.
New rules, recently adopted into enforceable permits, require up-stream cities to clean up pollution before it gets into the San Gabriel River, and other waterways, so that Long Beach will no longer be the unwilling recipient of all that is now dumped into its roughly 700 square mile watershed.
Due to regulations that prohibit once-through cooling, AES Alamitos is shutting down their pumps that use seawater to cool its generators. These new regulations are designed to protect marine life. AES plans to build newer style generators that do not require water; therefore the pumps that bring cooling water from Alamitos Bay will no longer be used by AES.
Currently AES's pumps indiscriminately kill important marine life that makes up the web of life in the ocean and our local wetlands. The cessation of AES's cooling pumps will help restore this fragile ecosystem, which will mean more abundant and diverse wildlife in Los Cerritos Wetlands and Alamitos Bay.
The conversion of AES's generators, so that they no longer harm marine life, is a slow planning and approval process, to be sure, but an important one. The Los Cerritos Wetlands Land Trust believes the conversion must be done in a way that maximizes environmental protection for our community and for our fragile local wetlands.
However, what will be done with the pumps when AES stops using them? There are a variety of opinions about how to answer that question. It is a common assumption that the pumps play a role in keeping Alamitos Bay clean and relatively free of pollution. That might be the case, given that the pumps running at maximum capacity pull through enough seawater to replace the water in Alamitos Bay twice a day. This recirculation explains why some people have expressed support for having the City of Long Beach continue to run the pumps.
But it's not clear if the City can "repurpose" the AES pumps for pollution control when they do so much damage to the ecosystem, the reason they are being abandoned in the first place.
Furthermore, it is unclear whether the agencies regulating pollution abatement will allow the City of Long Beach to continue discharging polluted water into the San Gabriel River, another water body that is already polluted. That is because there are smarter and better ways to ensure there will be clean water in Alamitos Bay to swim and recreate in without adding to the pollution.
These other methods may take a little more time to implement, but the multiple benefits are likely to make it time well spent. Will the City of Long Beach continue running the pumps, and what approvals does it need if it decides to do that? The permitting process would be complicated, and we aren't aware of any other City that has ever proposed doing something like this. That's why we are excited to host Rita Kampalath, Science and Policy Director for Heal the Bay, as the speaker at our upcoming community briefing. There is no one better to explain water quality science and regulations, why the proposal to run the pumps is controversial, and what better alternatives exist to keep the water clean both for people and wildlife. Please mark your calendars and plan to join us this Thursday, November 19th.
What: A community briefing about the details of the AES Alamitos conversion and pumps proposal.
When: Thursday, November 19th at 7:00 p. m.
Where: Kettering Elementary School, 550 Silvera Avenue, Long Beach, CA 90803
Who: Rita Kampalath, Science and Policy Director for Heal the Bay
Ms. Kampalath has a B. S. in Chemical Engineering from Columbia University and an M. S. and Ph. D. in Chemical Engineering and Civil and Environmental Engineering, respectively, from UCLA. Prior to joining Heal the Bay, Ms. Kampalath served as an engineer at Geosyntec Consultants, where she helped manage a number of significant environmental initiatives.
To RSVP or for more information, email me at Elizabeth@lcwlandtrust.org or call 714-357-8576.
Hope to see you this Thursday!
Los Cerritos Wetlands Land Trust
On Saturday, November 7th, we will be hosting a nature walk featuring the charismatic green sea turtles of Los Cerritos Wetlands.
Our walk will begin with a brief orientation to our wetlands. We will walk along Pacific Coast Highway to the bridge and look for sea turtles. For part of our tour we will view and discuss the Zedler marsh eco-system while keeping an eye out for local wildlife. Part of our walk will take us through the Signal Hill Petroleum oil operations where we will talk about the history of oil operations and their impact on the wetlands. We will wrap up our walk by hiking along Calloway marsh, taking the PCH bridge over to the western levee and walking past city-owned wetlands, past the Pumpkin Patch portion of Los Cerritos Wetlands and campground marsh
What: Turtle Trek nature walk of Los Cerritos Wetlands.
When: Saturday, November 7th, 2015, from 8:00AM until 10:00AM
Where: Meet us in the driveway at 1st street and PCH in Seal Beach. You may park in the driveway.
Download flyer for further logistical information about the walk and a map of where we meet. Closed toed shoes required, and kids under the age of 16 must be accompanied by a parent or guardian.
See you on Saturday, I hope!
Los Cerritos Wetlands Land Trust
P.S. Above is interesting and compelling footage of scientists rescuing a sea turtle from the San Gabriel River that was hampered by fishing line. Hope all you fishermen out there are careful about how you use and dispose of your fishing tools.
Embedded in this decades-old zoning is language from Long Beach's own Local Coastal Program that high-density development should be concentrated downtown in order to help the south east area of our city remain low-scale and less dense to protect sensitive resource areas like Los Cerritos Wetlands. And for years the City of Long Beach has been permitting development based on that vision.
For example on page 4 of this City authored memo...they, themselves, make the case that "dense and high-rise development along the City's coastline should be focused in the downtown area along Ocean Boulevard in order to protect the down-coast areas of the City from such development pressures in the future. This planning principle is consistent with the. . .Coastal Act because it works to protect overcrowding and overuse of the more sensitive resource areas in the eastern or down-coast coastal areas of the City while encouraging higher density in the downtown area that is better able to accommodate high volume activity."
Could that balanced vision, described above, be changing? It sure looks like it, given that the initial study document outlines a much higher density proposal than was discussed in previous workshops and community meetings. That's why I plan to attend the upcoming SEADIP updating scoping hearing and hope you will too. The public scoping meeting, as well as the release of the required Initial Study (IS) and Notice of Preparation (NOP), kicks off the legally required public review process for what will eventually result in a final Land Use Plan.
The SEADIP updating Scoping Meeting will be held on Wednesday, November 4th, at 6:00 p.m.at the Best Western Golden Sails Hotel at 6285 Pacific Coast Highway, Long Beach. The Scoping Meeting will describe the proposed SEADIP updated project, the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) process, the purpose of the Initial Study/Notice of Preparation and upcoming Environmental Impact Report, and offer an opportunity for members of the public and other interested parties to comment on the environmental "scope" (or breadth of topics and issues) that should be analyzed in the eventual Environmental Impact Report.
Please make plans to join me at this meeting and share your vision for the future of southeast Long Beach. For example, if you are worried about how the proposed increased density, building heights and traffic would impact fragile wetlands and local neighborhoods, attend this meeting to help decision makers understand your concerns.
After all, whatever comes out of the SEADIP updating process will shape the future of south east Long Beach for us and for generations to come. Let's make sure it is a plan that protects our local wetlands and the character of this unique area.
There has been a lot of speculation about what will happen when the AES power plant stops using pumps that pull in sea water to cool their generators. Because the pumps suck in and kill marine life, AES must discontinue using seawater in order to comply with new State regulations to protect ecosystems and fisheries. But there are those who are concerned that shutting down the pumps may result in degraded water quality in Alamitos Bay. And there may be good reason to be concerned aboutwater quality in Alamitos Bay, Los Cerritos Wetlands, and the San Gabriel River. In fact, the City of Long Beach is considering a plan to continue running the pumps after AES abandons them to help protect water quality. However, that plan raises new questions.
How to sort through all these concerns and come up with a plan that is good for water quality in Alamitos Bay and the San Gabriel River that also protects marine life is a complicated question. That's why the Los Cerritos Wetlands Land Trust is excited to host a community meeting featuring Rita Kampalath, Science and Policy Director for the well-respected water quality advocacy organization,Heal the Bay.
Ms. Kampalath is not only an expert on water quality issues but also on the laws that regulate water quality in our bays, ocean, and streams. So mark your calendar and plan to join us on November 19thfor what is sure to be an interesting and informative evening.
What: Informational Meeting about the proposal to run AES pumps in Alamitos Bay
When: Thursday, November 19th, 2015, at 7:00 p.m.
Where: Kettering Elementary School, 550 Silvera Avenue, Long Beach, CA 90803
Who: Rita Kampalath, Science/Policy Director for Heal the Bay.
Ms. Kampalath has a B.S. in Chemical Engineering from Columbia University and a M.S. and Ph.D. in Chemical Engineering and Civil and Environmental Engineering, respectively, from UCLA. Prior to joining Heal the Bay, Rita served as an engineer at Geosyntec Consultants, where she helped manage a number of significant environmental initiatives.
With summer behind us, it's time to get out and enjoy the outdoors. Join us and our partners, biologists and environmental educators from Tidal Influence, on a wonderful hike at the Los Cerritos Wetlands on Saturday, October 3rd, 2015. Guides will lead us on a walking tour that will take us to Marketplace Marsh on the City of Long Beach's wetlands parcel and over to the San Gabriel River on the property held by the Los Cerritos Wetlands Authority.
We will likely come across great blue herons, which measure up to 4 feet tall. Their wing spans are huge, 5.5 to 6.5 feet. During this 2-mile urban hike, you will learn about the history of land acquisitions in Los Cerritos Wetlands, and leaders will show us some freshwater marsh habitats that few people have ever viewed. Participants will get a behind-the-scenes look at how wetlands and oil operations co-exist at Los Cerritos Wetlands.
WHAT: Heron Hike around the Marketplace Marsh at Los Cerritos Wetlands.
Great Blue Heron
A great blue heron enjoying our local wetlands. You will likely spot one if you attend our hike on
Saturday, October 3rd.
WHEN: Saturday, October 3rd, 2015, at 8:00 am sharp! Parking lot gate will open at 7:45 am and close at 8:10 am. No late-comers can be admitted for the tour, and all participants must stay for the entire tour, which will end by 10:00 am.
WHERE: Meet in the driveway/parking area at the corner of 1st Street and PCH in Seal Beach. There will be signs. Close-toed shoes are required, and kids under 16 must be accompanied by an adult.
If you support the protection and preservation of wetlands eco-systems, chances are you support protecting marine eco-systems also. A sad and inhumane disruption of the marine eco-system is the capture of orcas from the wild that are then sold to marine parks, zoos and other inappropriate places. While the United States has not been issued a permit for the taking of a wild orca since 1989, other nations perform hunts in order to capture orcas for display. And within the U.S., the problem of already captive orcas housed in marine parks, like Sea World, remains.
Interestingly, however, the future of captive orcas at Sea World will be before the Coastal Commission, when they meet in Long Beach on October 8th. The Coastal Commission will be voting whether or not to allow Sea World to expand the size of the tanks that house their whales. At that meeting the Commission could decide to condition their approval of Sea World's orca tank expansion so that the breeding and transfer of orcas will be phased out forever.
If this is an issue you would be interested in learning more about, I urge you to attend the upcoming Sea World Coastal Commission informational meeting featuring former Coastal Commissioner Sara Wan, co-founder of the Wan Conservancy, and Lindsay Larris, Regional Director for the Animal Legal Defense Fund.
This informational meeting will take place at 6:30PM this Tuesday, September 22nd, 2015, at Long Beach Main Library which is located at 101 Pacific Ave, next to Long Beach City Hall. Ever since the release of the movie Blackfish, more and more awareness has been building about the immorality of housing intelligent and sentient animals like whales in such harsh conditions. The Coastal Commission's meeting in Long Beach in October could put an end to that practice. Learn the details and how you can help this Tuesday evening. For more information or to rsvp, email email@example.com.
Our kayaking trips to the Steamshovel Slough portion of Los Cerritos Wetlands sure have been a lot of fun. And popular too! Steamshovel Slough is one of the most pristine salt marsh areas in Southern California and a glimpse of what much of Los Cerritos Wetlands will look like once it is restored.
Our final three wetlands kayaking trips for 2015 will be on October 11th, November 15th and December 13th. I urge you to sign up for a spot by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. We meet at Leeway Sailing Center at 9:00AM, and our trips always wrap up by noon. As with our nature walks, our kayak trips are lead by naturalists from our partners over at Tidal Influence. Cost is $13, paid directly to Leeway, which covers the cost of kayak, paddle and life-vest rental. Sure do love the photos our colleagues from Tidal Influence took during of our most recent kayak trip. They paint a great picture of what is it like to kayak through Alamitos Bay to Steamshovel Slough and back. Check them out. I think they will inspire you to join us!
The Los Cerritos Wetlands Land Trust for Long Beach and Seal Beach is a community based nonprofit
California corporation chartered to hold land in the public interest and dedicated to acquisition,
restoration and preservation of the San Gabriel River Estuary.
Coastal Cleanup Day is an amazing event where tens of thousands of people from up and down the state of California come together to clean up our coast. In just a few short hours, with everyone working together, our coast becomes cleaner and more inviting for people and for wildlife.
I am proud to share with you that locally, Long Beach and Seal Beach have quite a few coastal cleanup sites going on, some sponsored by close partners like Friends of the Colorado Lagoon, Save our Beach, or the Algalita Foundation.
I urge you to take a few hours out of your day this Saturday and join your fellow Californians everywhere. After all, our coast is one of California's most spectacular resources. Let's help keep it that way. Details are below.
Los Cerritos Wetlands Land Trust
Friends of the Colorado Lagoon invites you to meet them this Saturday, September 19th, at 9:00AM at the Wetland and Marine Science Education Center at 5119 E. Colorado Street. They will provide the gloves, supplies and good times needed to pick up trash and debris around the lagoon. All ages welcome.
Save Our Beach will host coastal cleanups at two different locations. They will be at their regular 1st St. location, their other clean up location will be at the base of the Seal Beach Pier. Free parking is ONLY provided at the 1st St. location. Please be a part of the solution and attend this important event! You can register today at www.saveourbeach.org
The Algalita Foundation is participating in Coastal Cleanup Day alongside the El Dorado Nature Center at the Belmont Pier in Long Beach from 9am-12pm.
There are 7 locations where the City of Long of Long Beach will be hosting a coastal cleanup event this Saturday. Participating is easy. All you have to do is show up and sign in. For more information visit the City's website.
The Long Beach Press Telegram recently ran a comprehensive article with the latest news about the proposed mitigation bank for portions of Los Cerritos Wetlands. As you may recall, there is a proposal for a huge swath of Los Cerritos Wetlands, currently privately owned, to be used as a mitigation bank. In other words, our local wetlands would be fixed up in order to offset environmental impacts in other areas. Once the mitigation bank is wrapped up and finished, the land owner has committed to moving the restored wetlands into the pubic trust.
One important step along the way is an agreement to a "term sheet." The Los Cerritos Wetlands Authority (LCWA) voted to approve the term sheet framework at their last meeting. Term sheets don't obligate either party (the land owner or the LCWA) to anything, but serve as an outline for negotiating the details of this land deal. To check out the LCWA's recent agenda item on the matter that includes the term sheet you can click here. To read the Press Telegram article click here. It's a slow but steady process, one that could result in the vast majority of Los Cerritos Wetlands owned by the public and protected forever. But there are many steps along the way, and all of us must be vigilant to be sure that the deal that is reached is best for our local wetlands.
We had a great time at City Roots Festival earlier this month. It was a beautiful Saturday night for a concert at the Colorado Lagoon, our sister wetland, and we have to say that all of our organizational partners and vendors made an exceptional effort. Our thanks to our friends, old and new, that came out in support of natural open space and to hear some great live bluegrass under the stars.
We appreciate the support of the community for this important outreach opportunity for conservation in Long Beach. A huge thanks to Friends of Colorado Lagoon, the CSULB Mobile Science Museum,Aquarium of the Pacific, Long Beach Folk Revival Festival, Councilwoman Suzie Price, Congressman Alan Lowenthal, and all of our dedicated volunteers for helping to make this event possible. We hope that City Roots inspired a few newcomers to spend time in these magical vestiges of nature in the city, and to fight for them, too! Until next time. .
Dear Friend of Los Cerritos Wetlands,
Don't forget that our first ever free City Roots urban nature festival and concert is this Saturday, September 5th. What a great way to spend part of your Labor Day weekend. Not only will you get to know some of the interesting groups that are working to bring nature back to our urban environment but you will get to spend time at the Colorado Lagoon, a wonderful natural area that is also a great venue for a concert.
Most people don't know that the Colorado Lagoon was once an unbroken parcel of Los Cerritos Wetlands, before urban development fragmented and divided these once-vast natural lands. So we are excited to partner with Friends of Colorado Lagoon for this fun celebration of all that urban nature offers us here in Long Beach and surrounding communities.
The music will be great, too! Our featured band will be the Salty Suites, who will start their performance at 7PM, giving attendees plenty of time to check out the hands-on exhibits, kids' activities, and local organizations promoting natural open spaces, outdoor education, recreation, natural history, wildlife, and more. Lawn and beach seating for the free concert is limited, so I urge you to arrive at 5PM to stake out your spot with your blanket or lawn chairs.
Our valued partner South Bay Wildlife Rehab will also be there with their impressive raptors, along with two mobile science and ecology museums that can be explored for no charge. For dinner you can purchase yummy choices from the Canvas Food Truck or bring your own picnic, plus Councilwoman Suzie Price's office is hosting a fun s'mores bar.
We will be gathering on the north bank of the Colorado Lagoon. Festival attendees can enter from 6th St adjacent to the golf course, or from the south bank, crossing the pedestrian bridge over the water. Free bike valet sponsored by Representative Alan Lowenthal's office for those arriving on two wheels. Sorry, dogs have to sit this one out, they aren't permitted at the Lagoon.
See you this Saturday, I hope!
Los Cerritos Wetlands Land Trust
Thanks to their community sponsorship, we'll be happily doling out Aquarium of the Pacific tickets to lucky winners all night at City Roots Festival. We're proud of our long partnership with the aquarium and all that they do for conservation efforts in Long Beach. Please check out all of the great upcoming events the aquarium is offering this season.
What better way to send off summer than with Ice Cream Ian! He'll be joining us at City Roots to pass out *free* treats to our guests.
City Roots is also pleased to be partnering with the Long Beach Folk Revival Festival, coming back for its third year on September 19. Enjoy picturesque views on the grassy lawns of Rainbow Lagoon Park in Downtown Long Beach from 11am to 11pm while enjoying the best in Folk, Roots, Americana, & Bluegrass music acts-- over 20 bands! In addition to the great music, all the fan favorites are back including contests, amazing gourmet food & craft beers, interactive kids' area, the "Vintage Bazaar" shopping experience & much more. Tickets are on sale now. Kids 12 and under as well as Seniors 75 or older get in free. While you're there, come visit us at the Los Cerritos Wetlands Land Trust booth!
Our "Raptor Ramble" through the now-publicly owned Hellman portion of Los Cerritos Wetlands is one of my favorite nature walks. Not only will you get a chance to check out Los Cerritos Wetlands from the Seal Beach side, but you will likely spot a Belding's Savannah Sparrow. The Belding's love to nest in the salt marsh that is found in Los Cerritos Wetlands. And with only about 2,000 pairs of these birds left in the world, to spot one is a special treat. Another special thing about this Saturday's nature walk is the opportunity you will have to learn about the native people who once lived in and near our local wetlands. Who were they? How did they live? And what happened to them? Those are some of the questions that will be answered if you join us on our walk.
WHAT: Raptor Ramble Nature Walk of Los Cerritos Wetlands.
WHEN: Saturday, September 5th, 2015, at 8:00 am sharp! Parking lot gate will open at 7:45 am and close at 8:10 am. No late-comers can be admitted for the tour, and all participants must stay for the entire tour, which will end by 10:00 am.
WHERE AND WEAR: Meet in the driveway/parking area at the corner of 1st Street and PCH n Seal Beach. There will be signs. Wear close-toed shoes; and kids under 16 must be accompanied by an adult.
For more information or to rsvp send an email to email@example.com.
Planting a wetlands plant. P.S. After our nature walk, from 12:30 to 2:30PM volunteers will be helping to restore Los Cerritos Wetlands. You are invited to join them. Meeting place is where we gather for our nature walks. For more information about restoration opportunities within Los Cerritos Wetlands, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Each September electric vehicle advocates, including Plug In America, Sierra Club, and Electric Auto Association, host a national weekend of electric vehicle events. In Long Beach, at Houghton Park, there will be electric buses, cars, 18 wheelers, bicycles, lawn equipment and motorcycles, as well as information about all the benefits of electric propulsion. Also at the event you can check out interesting presentations, alternative fuel food trucks, and lots of fun discussions about the future of transportation.
This event is co-sponsored by Representative Alan Lowenthal, Congresswoman Janice Hahn, Senator Ricardo Lara, Long Beach Councilmember Rex Richardson, as well as the Sierra Club - Long Beach Group, TeslaClubLA, OC Tesla, BYD, Southern California Association of Electric Vehicles, AQMD, CARB, Audubon Society, Children's Day USA, Pedego, AGZA, Evergreene, Ameco Solar, Solar City many neighborhood associations, the Long Beach Coalition for a Safe Environment and the Long Beach Surfrider.
Where: Houghton Park, 6301 Myrtle Ave., Long Beach 90805
When: Saturday, September 12th, 2015, from 9:00AM until noon.
For more information check out the National Drive Electric Week webpage.