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I obtained a copy of the draft environmental impact report for Napa Oaks, the proposed development on the western hills of Napa. My grandson Hunter, a junior at Napa High, was doing a photo essay on the project.

We looked through the document and he opted to view it online. "It would be easier to cut and paste," he said. He’s obviously more technologically savvy than his grandma! I reviewed the “Summary of Project Impacts and Mitigation Measures” in the report as the information was divided into easy-to-read columns.

Under a heading of “Significant and Unavoidable” it said: “This report has determined that no environmental impacts would remain significant following mitigation.” I looked up the word “mitigate” in my Webster’s Dictionary and it said: "To render or become mild or milder, mollify; to make or become less severe, harsh, etc.”

The word “solve” is not mentioned. So, what the report says is there are many “significant impacts” that will be “mitigated”, not “solved, ” no environmental impacts would remain! I’m not a geologist, biologist, hydrologist or traffic expert, and the report was not written for laymen, but this statement seems incredibly presumptuous and, quite frankly, hard to believe.

In the first column, “impacts” are listed, the second “mitigation measures” and in the third column “resulting level of significance.” I counted a total of 45 “impacts,” 19 of which recommended “mitigation measures,” 26 where “no mitigation was warranted,” and in the “Resulting Level of Significance” column, all impacts were noted as “Less than Significant.”

So are the "experts” saying that after the necessary “mitigations” are completed, (remember this doesn’t mean solving the problems), any impacts will be so small, they won’t be noticed? Who are they trying to fool?

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Putting 53 McMansions in an area that features unspoiled rolling hills, an oak woodland and wildlife habitat is going to make one huge impact!

Destroying this natural area is only part of the problem. There are safety, seismic, and water runoff issues, to name a few. Go to to find out more. This is Davidon Homes' third attempt to build homes on this property. Napa needs to make sure this is the last time!

Karen Scriven