When it comes to solving complex issues, reasonable people can disagree. This has certainly been the case on the question of how to best protect and preserve our watershed and woodlands, while simultaneously supporting our county’s agricultural-based economy. There is no perfect answer.
That said, I believe Measure C represents a real step in the right direction. Here are three reasons why:
Water – In light of our changing climate, we are faced with the prospect of prolonged drought and challenges to our available fresh water. Measure C will help reduce pressure on our limited water supplies.
Woodlands – Our oak woodlands support an amazing diversity of wildlife, including biological “hot spots” with unique species of flora and fauna. Moreover, our trees sequester carbon dioxide, reinforce hillsides from soil erosion, support riparian zones, and provide other important ecoservices.
Measure C sets reasonable limits on tree removal associated with development, and increases the ratio of replanting required when trees are removed.
Compromise - Measure C is the much-improved successor of a similar initiative attempted last year. It was developed with an eye toward compromise – and I mean that in the best sense of the word. It is straightforward, but does not overreach. Indeed, I believe the Napa wine industry will benefit from its provisions over the long run. (No doubt that is what some of the leaders of the wine industry thought, too, when they helped to write Measure C.)
I urge the sensible voters of Napa County to vote YES on Measure C.