April 7, 2011

Save Our Shores storms the capitol on Oceans Day!

On Monday, Emily and I ventured to Sacramento for the 4th annual Oceans Day at the capitol. We met with 12 legislators to talk to them about supporting some environmental bills we stand behind.

The main bill we were supporting is SB 568 (Lowenthal) which is the state-wide Styrofoam (polystyrene) ban. This bill would prohibit the distribution and use of polystyrene foam containers by food vendors for prepared food. It includes definitions for customers, food vendors, polystyrene foam food containers, and prepared food.

We are also supporting AB 376 (Fong), the ban on the sale of shark fins since the hunting of sharks for their fins have lead to the sharp decline in shark populations around the world.

Emily actually meet with Assemblymember Fong (D-Mountain View) and thanked him for his work on this important bill. She also met with Assemblymember Ma (D-San Francisco) who is pictured above, Senator Yee (D-San Francisco), Assemblymember Ammaniano (D-San Francisco), Assemblymember Pan (D-Sacramento), Senator Leno (D-San Francisco) and Assemblymember Beall (D-San Jose).

I had a very busy day as well, my group met with 5 legislators: Senator McLeod (D-Chino), Assemblymember Gorell (R- Camarillo), Senator Hernandez (D-Los Angeles), Senator Cannella (R-Ceres) and Senator Correa (D-Santa Ana).

Senator Correa was great to talk to, he was talking of some problems with the conservation of the Santa Ana River and how he has been trying to grow a conservation group for this beautiful river. He also took us to the Senate Floor after our meeting to take a picture, it was so beautiful and actually a lot smaller than it seems on screen.

I also got to talk to a staffer from Senator Kehoe's office to talk to them about their upcoming bill to ban copper from boat paint (SB 623). Copper has long been linked with pollution in harbors and is toxic to many marine animals and plants which is why it is used on the hull of boats, so the boater does not get excessive growth on the bottom of their boats so they do not have to clean it as often. I told her that there are many alternatives out there such as E-Paint and told her I would help out in any way I can to get more research on the subject since it is very important to us to prevent boating pollution as part of our Clean Boating Initiative.

Overall it was a great day at the capitol and we were rewarded with a sustainable seafood reception put on by Monterey Bay Aquarium where we got to hear from Gavin Newsom, the lieutenant governor of Santa Cruz and the ex-mayor of San Francisco. Thanks to everyone who made the event happen and we hope to see these bills we support get through and become law!

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