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August 9, 2017

Sierra Happenings

Events and Activities

Alliance's Annual Member Group Meeting

The Alliance is hosting our Annual Member Group Meeting to build our partnerships and strategize how to best work together to protect and restore the Sierra. The afternoon will feature Member Group presentations, annual Alliance board election, Member Group breakouts to share and network, and a program strategy session to brainstorm improvement of the Member Group program. Free for all member groups.

Date: September 7th, 1 pm to 5 pm
Location: Markleeville, CA

Please click here for more info and to RSVP.

SNAP Graduation Ceremony

Join us as we congratulate our 2016-17 Sierra Nevada AmeriCorps Members on successful completion of their terms and thank them for their service. All are invited to this celebration.

Date: September 8, 4 pm to 5 pm
Location: Markleeville, CA

Please click here for more info.

Exclusive Sierra Keeper Event

Join the Alliance's Executive Director on a cruise aboard the Garwood Boat to tour Lake Tahoe's historic Thunderbird Lodge. This unique opportunity will allow attendees to learn more about the current and future work of the Sierra Nevada Alliance while also hearing captivating stories of Tahoe's past. Attendance is limited to those who are Sierra Keepers with the Alliance. Don't worry, if you're not yet a Sierra Keeper, you can become one and join us for this event!

Date: September 9th, 10 am to 3 pm
Location: Lake Tahoe, NV

For more details and to purchase tickets, click here!

Webcast: State climatologist to offer perspective on the historic Water Year 2017

Water Year 2017 will go down as one of the wettest in California history. Look back at the significance of this water year during a free webcast by State Climatologist Michael Anderson. He will examine the events that led to a historic string of storms, plus talk about the responses that helped mitigate the damages.

Date: August 15th, 12 pm to 1 pm

For more details and to purchase tickets, click here!

2017 Lake Tahoe Summit

Since the first Lake Tahoe Summit in 1997, we have learned a great deal about the threats to the lake and made great strides in protecting and restoring this natural treasure. This year’s summit will be an opportunity to reflect on what we’ve learned, the progress we’ve made, and the challenges that lie ahead. The theme of the summit this year will be “2017- A Pivotal Point for the Future of Lake Tahoe.”

Date: August 22nd, 10 am to 12 pm
Location: Tallac Historical Site, South Lake Tahoe

For more details and to register, click here!

Evening Lecture: Little Known Stories from Tahoe's Past

Come hear intriguing, firsthand stories about Tahoe's past with Bill Morgan. Bill's experience working in the U.S. Forest Service and Tahoe Regional Planning Agency gave him a unique perspective of Tahoe. No-host happy hour at 5:30 and public presentation at 6 p.m. at the UC Davis Tahoe Science Center in Incline Village, NV. Registration required.

Date: August 24th, 6 pm to 7:30 pm
Location: Tahoe Science Center, Incline Village, NV

For more information about the event and to register, please click here.

Creating Equilibrium Conference

Creating Equilibrium's two-day conference - appropriately named Visions - will inspire leaders to visualize and unearth real-world solutions to both current and future environmental crises.The goal of the event? Foster radical new approaches to solving critical environmental issues. Build bridges between world-renowned technologists and world-saving environmentalists. Invite business, industry and government into the discussion.

Date: August 25th to 27th, 2017
Location: Olympic Valley, CA

For more information about the event and to apply to attend, please click here.

California Climate Action Planning Conference

Cal Poly and the Governor’s Office of Planning & Research will hold the third California Climate Action Planning Conference (CCAPC), addressing climate issues with an emphasis toward action, including—the new CA Scoping Plan, pathways to deep de-carbonization, successful financing and implementation, community vulnerability assessment, state planning guidance, and climate justice.

Date: August 24 & 25, 2017
Location: Cal Poly, San Luis Obispo campus

Please click here for more details and to review the agenda.

Malakoff’s French Connection Celebration

The Friends of North Bloomfield & Malakoff Diggins have collaborated with researchers and local Francophiles to plan a new event honoring the French mining pioneers responsible for much of the early technological and cultural developments around Malakoff Diggins. We will celebrate the early French emigrants in the gold mining era of the Sierra. Free admission!

Date: September 9th, 2017
Location: Malakoff Diggins State Historic Park

Please click here for more details and to review the agenda.

Job Announcements & Volunteer Opportunities

SYRCL is hiring!

The South Yuba River Citizens League (SYRCL) and is seeking to hire several positions, including an Executive Director, a Finance Manager, a River Education Manager, an Educational Assembly Presenter, and three AmeriCorps members.

For more info, click here.

Associate Director Wanted - JMIE!

UC Davis's John Muir Institute for the Environment is seeking an Associate Director.

Apply by August 11th, 2017

For more info, please click here.

California Legislative Advocate with NRDC

NRDC is hiring a California Legislative Advocate to work with the Center for Policy Advocacy department’s California Advocacy team to increase our presence and effectiveness in the State Capitol.

Open until filled.

For more info, please click here.


Tahoe State of the Lake Report for 2016 Released

The UC Davis Tahoe Environmental Research Center released today its annual Tahoe: State of the Lake Report for 2016 - a year marked by the hottest temperatures on record followed by a winter of unprecedented levels of rain and snow in the Sierra Nevada mountains, where Lake Tahoe resides.The report summarizes data collected in 2016 as part of the center’s ongoing, decades-long measurement programs, while also presenting research driven by important questions of the day. This includes how drought has impacted Tahoe’s forests, and the lake’s response to increasing levels of algae on the shoreline, climate change, and invasive species. It also takes a first look at what new technologies, including autonomous underwater vehicles, are finding in the deepest parts of the lake.

Please click here to review the report.

Request for Proposal: TRWC

The Truckee River Watershed Council has released 1 RFP seeking native seed collection services to support a long-term noxious weed treatment project. Please see the links below for more details.

Proposals due: August 11th

For more info, please click here.

Film Submissions Are Open For 2018 Wild & Scenic Film Fest

At SYRCL's Wild & Scenic Film Festival, environmental and adventure films are highlighted which illustrate the earth's beauty, the challenges facing our planet, and the work communities are doing to protect the environment.

Open submissions run from May 15 through September 24, 2017.

For more information and submission deadlines, please click here!

State of Cap-and-Trade Spending in the Sierra Nevada

A fact sheet from Sierra CAMP that highlights 2016 cap-and-trade funding distribution in the Sierra Nevada. 21 projects in the Sierra Nevada received a combined total of ~$19.8 million from the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund.

For more info, click here!

CalTrans Grant Opportunity

Announcing Climate Change Adaptation Planning Grants ($20 million over three years) to local and regional agencies for climate change adaptation planning. This funding will advance adaptation planning on California’s transportation infrastructure, including but not limited to roads, railways, bikeways, trails, bridges, ports, and airports.

For more info and elegibility information, click here!


Nevada City Becomes 41st City in Nation to Commit to Transitioning to 100% Renewable Energy!


Today, Nevada City, California became the latest in a growing movement of mountain communities to commit to move to 100 percent clean, renewable energy.

Surrounded by city council members, key members of the community and partners, Mayor Duane Strawser announced the city’s unanimous vote to ensure that the city’s electricity will come entirely from renewable sources by 2030 and that all energy sources would be renewable by 2050.

Nevada City is now the 41st city in the country to establish a 100 percent renewable energy goal and comes on the heels of similar pledges from South Lake Tahoe, California and Park City, Utah, showing that mountain communities are taking control of their energy future.

Nevada City’s resolution is grounded in a burning reality as the growing impacts of climate change threaten this mountain community. Fourteen of the 15 hottest years on record globally have occurred since the beginning of this century, and 2017 is predicted to be the second warmest on record.

“If this summer is any indicator of what climate change can mean for the future of our community, it is time to do all we can to avoid its impacts,” said Don Rivenes with the Nevada County Climate Change Coalition. “Over the last three years and particularly the last few months we have seen citizens from across our community come together to tackle climate change by helping our city officials take bold action. We’re thrilled to see Nevada City commit to 100% renewable energy today.”

Nevada City has an existing Energy Action Plan (EAP) with a goal of a 28 percent reduction in electricity use by 2020. The resolution will lead the way toward updating the EAP to transition to 100 percent renewable energy by 2050.

“The South Yuba River Citizen’s League is thrilled that Nevada City is joining other communities committing to 100% renewable energy”, said Caleb Dardick. “We are proud that Nevada City supports our Wild and Scenic Film Festival that has brought activists and concerned citizens to learn about the latest efforts to protect the environment.  Nevada City’s environmental leadership is a model for the type of municipal advocacy that is needed nationwide.”

The Sierra Nevada Alliance is proud to work with cities like Nevada City. Nevada City recognizes the many impacts on the local economy and environment that climate change will bring. At the Sierra Nevada Alliance, we bring together the passion to fight climate change with the passion to protect our mountain communities to make an unstoppable force for change. That’s why it is no surprise that mountain cities are leading the way on renewable electricity.

”I am proud to be part of the community of Nevada City,” said Paul Jorgensen owner of The Magic Carpet. “I look forward to helping others commit to and attain a transition to 100% clean energy. Our future depends on it. Nevada City's success gives a blueprint to other mountain towns, cities, states and countries across the globe to be a part of the climate change solution.”

The Alliance looks forward to working with the next Sierra mountain town on their transition to 100% renewable energy.

Spotlight on SNAP: Indigo Johnson of Eastern Sierra Land Trust!

Education in the Eastern Sierra


Indigo Johnson- Education Coordinator for Eastern Sierra Land Trust

Indigo Johnson is the Education Coordinator at Eastern Sierra Land Trust (ESLT) in Bishop, California - a small town nestled in the Owens Valley between the Sierra Nevada and the White Mountains.

Indigo earned her BS in Earth Systems from Stanford University in spring 2016. This program combines biological and ecological foundations with public policy and science communication, and it allowed her to justify taking a broad and engaging course load. While many in this field decide to go into some form of education, growing up in a family of educators led Indigo to feel that this was not the path for for her. Little did she realize that, ironically, each of her collegiate and post-collegiate jobs would involve education in some way or another.

After graduation, she found herself working as a Senior Residential Assistant for a summer-long intensive educational program for high schoolers. Not only had Indigo turned back to education, but she had committed to a summer living in and overseeing a house and housing complex with close to 200 high school students.

While trying to ensure that all of her students went home alive, Indigo learned that Eastern Sierra Land Trust was hiring for a new Education Coordinator and AmeriCorps Member through the SNAP program. It was the perfect opportunity.


Indigo planting Bitterbrush seedlings during a volunteer day at ESLT’s Swall Wildlife Preserve

During her time working as a SNAP member at ESLT, Indigo has loved the opportunities for her to get involved with and give back to the amazing community she has found.

One of her primary roles with Eastern Sierra Land Trust is to oversee their “Eastside Pollinator Garden Project.” Indigo has worked with 20 homeowners and businesses to help them create and certify pollinator-friendly spaces that are not only beautiful, but also important for conserving our environment as well. These gardens will join the 75 pre-existing gardens that ESLT has certified with the assistance of previous SNAP members to create a thriving pollinator corridor in the Eastern Sierra.

Another responsibility Indigo has filled with ESLT is to lead their Sunflower Garden Project - in which she helps local third-grade classes learn about the life cycle of plants through hands-on learning games in the ESLT garden. While sneakily teaching them ecology, Indigo has been lucky enough to watch their passion for bees and native plants come to light.


Indigo and families having fun at ESLT’s inaugural “Crayons and Paint” - a Family Day she helped bring to life

When Indigo is not in the garden, she is enjoying doing everything from coordinating volunteers and volunteer projects, to running events and workshops for kids and adults, to helping restore wildfire-affected lands by planting native bitterbrush. Outside of work, she can usually be found scampering up boulders or eating her way across town.

Learn more about what she has been up to by checking out Eastern Sierra Land Trust’s blog or facebook page!

Thank You to Kate Gladstein!

The Alliance owes a huge thank you to Kate Gladstein who worked with us to create the Sierra Resource every other week for the last few years. Kate helped us maintain the excellent quality of the Resource through her carefully selected news articles, resources, and events, and through her attention to detail. Every Resource she developed reflected the hard work she put into it. Thank you, Kate!


The policy of the Resource is to include articles that appear in local or major media outlets relevant to Sierra conservation. We also include news releases, event notices, funding opportunities and job announcements sent to us from our Member Groups and friends. If you as a reader disagree with the content of a submission we encourage you to submit a letter to the editor of the issuing publication to reach the broader audience who read the article. You are welcome to forward your letter to the editor to the Alliance for inclusion in our new "Letters to the Resource" section. We also invite Letters to the Resource to be directly submitted on any article with which you're concerned.

Newsletter contents prepared by Carley O'Connell, Program Associate with the Sierra Nevada Alliance.
If you have articles, events or announcements that you would like included in this newsletter or if you have feedback,
please email Carley!.

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Recent News

Climate Change

In leaking a federal climate change report, scientists send a message to Trump: Global warming is real
Los Angeles Time, Times Editorial Board, 8/8/17

Sierra Link: The Sierra is seeing undoubtable effects of climate change. Read about how federal actions may affect the Sierra.

New version of California General Plan Guidelines posted, first update since 2003
Governor's Office of Planning and Research, 8/2/17

Sierra Link: An updated version of California's General Plan Guidelines has been released by the Governor’s Office of Planning and Research. This is the first comprehensive update to the guidelines since 2003. It includes a chapter on climate change. Read on to see how plans may affect the Sierra.


China's Gobi Desert feeds Yosemite National Park's forest, study says
LA Times, Joseph Serna, 8/2/17

Sierra Link: What does the Yosemite National Park forest have in common with the Amazon rainforest? A food supply from a far-off place.

Let Forest Fires Burn? What the Black-Backed Woodpecker Knows
New York Times, Justin Gillis, 8/6/17

Sierra Link: The black-backed woodpecker is one of the rarest birds in California, and lately it has become something more: a symbol of a huge scientific and political debate over the future of fire in American forests.


Defunct ski areas: Why healing is so hard
Mercury News, Lisa M. Krieger, 8/5/17

Sierra Link: Throughout the Sierra there are dozens of abandoned resorts that hark back to a different era, when snow was plentiful and skiing a favorite pastime. With increased competition from bigger resorts and a decline in skiers, many have closed and the scars they have left behind may have dramatic impact on our watershed. Special Feature: An interview with Alliance Director, Jenny!

A wet winter makes some California hikes more treacherous than usual
Los Angeles Times, Meg Bernhard, 8/2/17

Sierra Link: While many long-distance hikers have not been deterred, hundreds of others have skipped the Sierra range this year to pick up the trail on easier terrain.


McClintock: Abundance Of Water Or Shortage Of Water?
My Mother Lode, Mark Truppner, 8/10/17

Sierra Link: Read to hear opinions from one of the Sierra's congressmen on the GROW Act, an act said to intend to expand water storage, improve infrastructure, protect water rights and create more abundant and reliable water resources to benefit both communities and the environment.

Be Skeptical of NID Scare Tactics
Yuba Net, Peter Van Zant, 7/24/17

Sierra Link: Update on the Centennial Dam proposal from former Alliance Interim Director, Peter Van Zant.


1.8 million California acres were set aside for frogs. Ranchers say decision ignores them
Sacramento Bee, Dale Kasler, Carolyn Wilke, Ryan Sabalow, 7/31/17

Sierra Link: Tiny frogs and toads used to swarm over the Sierra Nevada. Now, the government says nearly 2 million acres of land needs to be preserved to prevent them from going extinct.

Moth causing damage to forest near Marlette Lake
Lake Tahoe News, Admin., 8/6/17

Sierra Link: The non-native white satin moth is causing medium to heavy defoliation in the North Canyon and Marlette Lake areas at Lake Tahoe Nevada State Park.

Other Articles

One of the Largest Dam Removals in California History Inches Forward
Water Deeply, Michelaina Johnson, 8/7/17

Sierra Link: Nestled in the mountains of the quiet California town of Ojai is Matilija Dam, which has become a poster child of the national dam removal movement. Could removal of this dam spark removal of dams in the Sierra?

Congress takes aim at the Clean Air Act, putting the limits of California's power to the test
Los Angeles Times, Evan Halper, 8/3/17

Sierra Link: California is confronting the limits of its power to save federal environmental protections as Congress and the Trump administration take aim at a landmark law the state has relied on for decades to clean the air of noxious smog.

Sierra Nevada Alliance

P.O. Box 7989
South Lake Tahoe, CA 96158

phone: 530.542.4546

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Since 1993 the Sierra Nevada Alliance has been protecting and restoring Sierra lands, water, wildlife and communities. The regional climate change program shapes and implements county and regional resource plans that promote smart land use, incorporate sustainable water management practices, aggressively reduce greenhouse gases and adapt to climate change.