Point Reyes lawsuit settlement harms dairies, climate change fight

By Albert Straus : sfchronicle – excerpt

Photos of Marin Seashore by zrants

The Point Reyes National Seashore is at a turning point. The settlement agreement in U.S. District Court pits environmentalists and farmers against one another by requiring the national park to consider reducing or eliminating the historic ranches that have been on the land for more than 100 years.

As the son of farmers and environmentalists who helped create the park, I believe that this divide is misguided. Eliminating the park’s cattle ranches and dairies would remove six out of 25 organic dairy operations in Marin County. As a lifelong dairyman, I have spent the past four decades building a successful model for organic and sustainable dairy production. In fact, organic farming and ranching, combined with carbon farming practices, are a critical step in the urgent fight against climate change…

UC Berkeley scientists have spent a decade on a large-scale research project here in Marin County. They found that if one-quarter inch of compost were applied over just 5 percent of the state’s grazing lands, the soil could capture the equivalent of a year’s worth of greenhouse gas emissions from California’s farm and forestry industries…(more)

Why would anyone want to remove working family farms that produce the high value quality food California residents like to eat? What do they have in mind for this land that is not near any city jobs and is a tourist favorite? Is someone planning to construct a “transit rich” development project here? Fog Tower at the beach?


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