16 December, 2015

Ballona Wetlands In Peril

This image appeared in my Facebook newsfeed while we waited to speak
opposing the building of yet another hotel, damning the little wetland
we have left in Los Angeles County to destruction. I would like to credit the artist,
but I don't have that information. 
Just another hotel.  We have a few already in Los Angeles, but yesterday, the County Board of Supervisors voted to build yet another hotel.

This time, they are building it in one of the few remaining wetlands in this county; the one with the easiest access to city schools for field trips to a truly natural environment. Ballona Wetlands is a small parcel, but because of it's unique position with a freshwater marshland up against a saline marshland, it is home to an astonishing diversity of wildlife that is the pleasure of so many Angelenos in our concreted city (and county).  

The fight will go to the courts, and now Ballona Institute has an appeal for money to bring the fight to the courts. So often we are led by newpapers and other news sources to see these as fights of one endangered species against human activity and who needs the 'black livered whosamawatchacallit' anyway?  That's a false dichotomy which divides humans and obfuscates the reality of our choices.   But it's not a valid argument. It is not 'us against them.'  It is us against ourselves to find a better way to do things, a better place to build things, a better world for all inhabitants.  

Our nation and our state have passed laws that recognize the health of our planet is wholly dependent upon diversity and the inclusion of all species in our world to maintain the processes of the planet.  Wetlands, especially coastal wetlands like Ballona, are homes for an amazing number of species that depend on this unique environment.  In fact, while wetlands account for a very small portion of the earth's ecosystem acreage, they account for the miraculous number of species that survive there.  

Here's a photo of a portion of the Marina Marsh & Meadow,
part of the historical Ballona Wetlands.
Feeding grounds for Herons, Egrets and Songbirds.
This is yet another glaringly flawed project that destroys OUR quality of life.  The hotel will add more congestion to an already frustratingly difficult commute. The loss of birds that use this on their commute from North to South and back again will leave our skies and our hears more dark. Our community, as a whole, much poorer than before.  The destruction of the wetlands will be a stain on this generation of Angelenos.  We must not let it happen.  Please help us protect the environment; that would be the right thing for "Wise, wise man," the literal translation for Homo sapiens sapiens.



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  2. Replies
    1. Diana -I finally do have some news... Marcia Hanscom, who has tirelessly lead the effort to keep Ballona Wetlands alive and intact, posted this (in part) to a Facebook page a few days ago:

      Quite a lot has happened since March 30, 2016, the day that our beloved Ballona Wetlands Champion, Bill Rosendahl, passed on from this physical plane.
      The next day, March 31, while we were stunned and beginning to grieve, a VERY happy announcement happened - one that Bill was strongly in support of - our Congressmember, Ted Lieu, announced his introduction of a bill to direct the National Park Service to study the concept of a Los Angeles Coast National Recreation Area. (HR4871)
      With him that day to make this announcement was US Rep. Maxine Waters, who is a co-author of the legislation. Also present in welcoming these two heroes of representatives of the Ballona Wetlands (their districts divide up Ballona!) - was LA City Councilmember Mike Bonin. I know many of you saw the announcement a couple of weeks ago, but - given I've been resting up (except for that day's announcement and the celebration for Bill yesterday) due to a particularly strong bronchitis and flu - I felt it's important to REVIVE this announcement - as it deserves ONGOING celebration.

      As you can see, the fight goes on. I encourage all Angelinos to support this cause. Our county is almost completely bereft of this kind of habitat and it would be criminal to allow this gem to completely disappear. Thank you for reading my blog.


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