Letters to the Editor

Difference in governance

Let me clear up Debi Wood’s confusion as to why I wrote last September that I’m against an “additional unnecessary overlay of governance” regarding the Paso Robles groundwater basin and the Sustainable Groundwater Management Act, but I think the establishment of a Chumash Heritage National Marine Sanctuary would be a good thing (“More governance,” letters, March 9).

The groundwater act is a good thing because it makes unnecessary the deeply flawed proposed Paso Robles Groundwater Management District — which, as I wrote, would only cover one portion of a basin. The act’s mandate allows the county to manage all our impacted basins in order to address our serious groundwater depletion problem.

Likewise, the National Marine Sanctuaries Act provides what no other state or federal statute can provide. A Chumash Heritage National Marine Sanctuary would permanently bar oil drilling off our coast and provide a framework for managing the marine ecosystem as a whole while continuing to allow multiple uses, not just focusing on particular species.

That’s the difference between a national marine sanctuary and the “local, state and federal agencies with policies, statutes and laws” Ms. Wood offers.

It’s better, and it’s necessary.

All clear?

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