Helping Our Peninsula’s Environment is the organization that lead the successful 15 year effort to protect the native Monterey pine forest from Pebble Beach Company’s (PBC) chainsaws. The effort succeeded when the Coastal Commission rejected Supervisor Dave Potter’s motion to approve the project (8-4).
HOPE is the only group which filed a lawsuit against the project; who attended and participated in every one of the hundreds of meetings, who objected with the best available science at every one of the dozens of comment opportunities over the 15 year timespan when the first version of the project was announced in 1992.
And of course HOPE is the group that was able to persuade Mark Twain himself to testify on behalf of the endangered red-legged frogs at a Coastal Commission hearing. ;-)
Three major changes have occurred since the PBC project was rejected by the Coastal Commission
1. Endangered Species: Due to the Coastal Commission decision – PBC must avoid Harm to Native Monterey pine forest because of Endangered species laws.
2. Lots: PBC has only provided evidence of 43 lots of record – but they claim they have 90.
3. Traffic: Event Traffic inside the Forest has dramatically worsened because the Coastal Commission (gently reminded by HOPE annually for a decade) finally forced PBC to permanently close the Haul Rd.
Now most Golf Event Traffic must use the Highway 1 gate – instead of the Haul Rd as they did heavily until a few years ago. Now during Golf Events using roads inside the Forest is much more congested and has many more detours and outright prohibitions.
(Incidentally No Golf event in Pebble Beach has ever gotten a Coastal Permit, yet if you or I hold an outside event with more than 50 people – we have to at least get a county permit.)
Water: PBC claims they obtained a “right” to 360 acre feet of water to use for development. This claim is not unlike the for-profit companies who will sell you the “right” to name a star – that is wholly unrecognized by the International Astronomical Union. Those companies have no recognized “right” to sell you a star name.
The PBC so-called “water entitlement” arises out of water given to them by an agency that had no legal right or authority to give water away. This claim has not yet been contested in a court.
WATER CONSERVATION IGNORED
What water conservation methods are all PBC’s golf courses using?
* Does PBC compact their soil? (No. Compacting alone has reduced water use by as much as 49%.)
* Do PBC golf courses get watered only when needed – or on a clock schedule? (Hint Spanish Bay and PBC operate on a clock causing shallow rooting and increases water need.)
* Does PBC water deeply and infrequently? (No.)
* Did PBC lower their mowing height? (No.)
* Does PBC use dull mowing blades? (Not on purpose ;-)
* Did PBC reduce fertilizer use to save water? (No.)
According to the US Golf Association all these methods significantly reduce water use.