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Otay Water District Gives Burrowing Owl Homes a Makeover

Burrowing owl homes maintained by the Otay Water District received a modern makeover this year. As part of its ongoing environmental mitigation efforts, the District managed construction of new nesting burrows to encourage breeding.

Ten acres of the 240-acre, District-owned San Miguel Habitat Management Area reserve and mitigation bank in eastern Chula Vista is a dedicated native grasslands area where the new artificial burrows are located. The California Department of Fish & Wildlife has designated burrowing owls as a “Species of Special Concern.”

California Legislature Votes to Keep Funding for Salton Sea Project in State Budget Proposal

The California legislature voted Monday to keep the Salton Sea in its budget proposal sent to Governor Gavin Newsom. Assemblymember Eduardo Garcia said he’s pleased the legislature found a way to allocate some funding for the Salton Sea despite the fiscal challenges created by the pandemic.

California Microplastics Definition Sets Stage for Investigation

California’s top water regulator on Tuesday approved a definition of microplastics in drinking water, setting the stage for the state to investigate the extent of contamination from the tiny plastics that have been found in fish, waterways, and other habitats.

Fleet Science Center Offers Virtual Summer Camps

This summer, the Fleet Science Center in Balboa Park will turn curious kids into happy campers with science-themed summer camps. The Fleet’s Summer Camps provide exciting experiments, intriguing investigations and fantastic fun for kids. Virtual Summer Camps began June 15 and end Aug. 14. Details: https://www.fleetscience.org/events/summer-camps

 

City Launches Website to Help Prospective Urban Farmers Get Started

With more people spending time at home due to the coronavirus pandemic, the city of San Diego launched a website Tuesday that provides information and assistance on how to become a successful “urban farmer.” Urban farming can come in many forms and sizes. It can be vegetables grown in containers on a home patio, a community garden that covers one or more city blocks, or raising certain animals such as chickens or bees.

Coronavirus Pandemic has Affected State’s Food, Agriculture and Environment

COVID-19 continues to affect parts of California agriculture in different ways. A new report from agricultural economists at the University of California examines the current and long-term impacts on California’s leading agricultural industries.

Profiles in the report illustrate the different ways the pandemic has impacted dairy, beef and produce — industries that have scrambled to repurpose products from foodservice to retail — and tree nuts, an industry that saw a temporary spike in sales as consumers hoarded storable goods. The report includes expert assessments of what the future holds for California’s cattle, dairy, produce, strawberry, tomato, tree nut and wine industries.

Water District Calls on Coastal Commission to Deny Cal Am’s Desalination Permit.

To a large extent, the fate of several multi-million dollar water projects on the Monterey Peninsula is in the hands of the California Coastal Commission. The question is whether the commission will grant a development permit for a desalination plant proposed by California American Water—or will the commission deny the permit and implicitly endorse a smaller project that would provide new water to the area by expanding the regional wastewater recycling facility. A vote is expected at the August 12-14 meeting of the commission.

In Protecting Endangered Fish, Muddy River flows, State Regulators Find Little Water Left In Basin Eyed by Coyote Springs

The state’s top water regulator issued a ruling Monday that is likely to have a significant effect on any future development in a large area northeast of Las Vegas, including the construction of Coyote Springs, a proposed master-planned community.