California Off-Road Vehicle Association
<< First  < Prev   1   2   3   4   5   ...   Next >  Last >> 
  • April 08, 2021 6:02 PM | CORVA Administrator (Administrator)

    Call-in information: (712) 775-8968 | Access Code: #104206

    ANNOUNCING THE 2021 CORVA ANNUAL MEETING MAY 24th!

    All CORVA members are invited to join us for our Annual Meeting to be held by Conference Call on May 24th at 7:00pm. We will be electing members of the Board of Directors in the following positions: President, Secretary, Vice President of Land Use and Public Policy, and Vice President of Sales and Marketing. All members in good standing are encouraged to vote, and may run for office. Nominations may be submitted before or during the Annual Meeting. ALSO - please nominate the individuals and clubs most worthy of our annual CORVA awards! Forward your nominations to 

    info@corva.org. Awards will also be decided during the Annual Meeting.

    Download Annual Awards Criteria

    CORVA will be holding a preliminary meeting to talk about the most important issues facing off-road recreation on April 26th. More info please contact Amy Granat: info@corva.org

    We Need Your Help AGAIN to Save Carnegie SVRA!

    Follow the instructions below

    Alert_ORVLC SB 799-AB 1512_Sen NRW-Asm WPW_4-8-21

  • March 11, 2021 3:14 PM | CORVA Administrator (Administrator)

    Access for All, Oceano Dunes SVRA Peaceful Demonstration

    The Pismo Beach Chamber of Commerce has joined with outdoor enthusiasts to support Oceano Dunes SVRA! Please join everyone on March 14th, from 2:00 to 4:00pm at Oceano Dunes. See all event information here: https://www.pismochamber.com/events/details/access-4-all-oceano-dunes-peaceful-demonstration-194

    Join CORVA in supporting AB 232/ sponsored by Assemblymember Gallagher and help bring back equity for off-road recreationists who visit other states.

    Contact the legislators listed to express your support.

    Here is a list of the Transportation Committee members along with their city of residence and state capitol phone number. If you live or work near one of these committee members, that would be a good place to start. The bill is AB 232 by Assemblyman Gallagher. This bill will simply adjust California's long-held policy of reciprocity for OHV registrations vis a vis other states. Until last year every state that had an OHV registration system would honor the registration from residents of other states when they visited to recreate in another state. Last year Arizona, Utah and Idaho began changing their policy and began to require any non-resident of their state to first obtain an out-of-state OHV visitor permit for their vehicle before they could operate an OHV in the state. In other words, they are dropping the reciprocity that has ALWAYS existed for motor vehicle registrations between states. A California OHV registration (green sticker) will no longer be accepted as legal in those 3 states. This bill will simply change California's OHV statute to continue to allow reciprocity ONLY for residents of those states that recognize CA OHV registration as legal in their state. Visitors from states that do not recognize the CA green sticker will be required to purchase a CA OHV Visitor Permit in order to operate their OHV in CA. Visitors from states that continue to recognize the CA OHV registration will continue to be able to operate in CA with only their home state OHV permit.

    Here is the list of Transportation Committee members we need to contact, and contact your own Assemblymember as well.

     Laura Friedman  (Chair)  Glendale  916 319 2043
     Vince Fong  Bakersfield  916 319 2034
     Marc Berman  Palo Alto  916 319 2024
     Jordan Cunningham  San Luis Obisbo  916 319 2035
     Tom Daly  Anaheim  916 319 2069
     Laura Davies  Laguna Niguel  916 319 2073
     Mike Gipson  Carson  916 319 2064
     Ash Kalra  San Jose  916 319 2027
     Alex Lee  San Jose  916 319 2025
     Jose Medina  Riverside  916 319  2061
     Adrin Nazarian  San Fernando Valley  916 319 2046
     Janet Nguyen  Huntington Beach  916 319 2072
     Patrick O’Donnell  Long Beach  916 319 2070
     Chris Ward  San Diego  916 319 2078
     Buffy Wicks  Oakland  916 31915
     Transportation  Committee  916 319 2093
      

    Time to comment on the proposed Public Works Plan for Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area.

    Find the report here

    Comments need to be sent by March 18th to: OceanoDunes.PWP.EIR@parks.ca.gov

    Important Coastal Commission Meeting on March 18th to consider phasing out off-road recreation from our beloved state park!

    Please review all information for the meeting on the follow site: 

    http://www.coastal.ca.gov/meetings/agenda/#/2021/3

    Click on the "Special Meeting March 18th" Agenda Item to sign up to speak during the meeting. Also,written  comments may be submitted to the Coastal Commissioners by 5:00pm March 12th sent to the following email address: OceanoDunesReview@coastal.ca.gov

    Contact your legislators and ask them to support Oceano Dunes SVRA!

    Especially if you live in the LA Area and Central Valley, your legislators need to hear from you now! Find the contact info for your legislator here: http://findyourrep.legislature.ca.gov/

  • February 09, 2021 6:57 PM | CORVA Administrator (Administrator)

    A special Oceano Dunes OHMVR Commission meeting has been called for February 18th, 2021.

    Please click on the orange box below to learn how to join the meeting.

    A special OHMVR Commission meeting has been called for February 18th, 2021. Please see the information linked on how to join the meeting. View Information

    This special commission meeting reviews the Oceano Dunes District Public Works Plan and recommends a course of action that will be taken on behalf of the OHMVR Commission. This is an opportunity to hear a full report from State Parks on the Public Works Plan, and will help the public write their comments on the plan. Access the documents here: https://www.oceanodunespwp.com/en/documents/draft-eir It's important for all off-roaders that care about the future of Oceano Dunes to call into this meeting.

    CORVA fights for the rights of off-roaders and all the SVRA's! 

    Please read the letter sent to Governor Newsom about Carnegie SVRA, and how CORVA is fighting to get the truth out about the Carnegie SVRA expansion area. 

  • January 15, 2021 8:25 AM | CORVA Administrator (Administrator)

    50 Years of CORVA

    Celebrate 50 years of CORVA keeping California's OHV trails open with this limited edition 50th Anniversary Tee from CORVA Business Partner Off The Grid Surplus. Designed by APOC Design, this tee will be one for the history books! This is a PREORDER, so please select either Pick Up or Ship at checkout. If you can not make it out to King of The Hammers, we will mail the T-Shirts to you within 3 weeks after KOH, make sure you select "Ship" at check out.


    PREORDER YOURS TODAY!! 




    Going to KOH? Come Join Us!

    CORVA 50th Anniversary Party King Of The Hammers 
    OFF THE GRID BOOTH #48

    HammerTown USA, Johnson Valley OHV
    Wednesday, 02/03/2021
    4pm - 7pm

    RSVP Online

  • October 21, 2020 9:04 AM | CORVA Administrator (Administrator)

    California State Parks today announced a three-phased reopening plan for vehicular use at Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area (SVRA) and Pismo State Beach (SB), starting Friday, Oct. 30, 2020. Vehicular access to all state park units was closed in March to prevent visitation surges and help mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

    In recent months, State Parks has worked with local and state officials on a phased and regionally driven approach to increase access across the State Park System where compliance with state and local public health ordinances can be achieved. The phased-reopening plan for Ocean Dunes SVRA and Pismo SB is designed to support a safe and healthy environment for employees, visitors and natural resources such as the endangered Western snowy plover and California least tern. Though the first phase is expected to begin October 30, specific datesfor phases two and three have yet to be determined. Updates on all aspects of the phased-reopening plan will be posted on the Oceano District’s Twitter and Facebook social media accounts, and park unit webpages – ohv.parks.ca.gov/OceanoDunes and parks.ca.gov/Pismo.

    “Public safety during COVID-19, the protection of natural resources and providing recreational opportunities at Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area and Pismo State Beach are priorities for California State Parks,” Director Armando Quintero said. “We thank the public for their patience as this is the first time in the history of the department where safety measures such as vehicular access closures, full closures and cancellation of reservations have been implemented at such as large scale in response to a pandemic.”

    Below is a summary of the three-phased reopening plan for Oceano Dunes SVRA and Pismo SB:

         Phase One

         Scheduled for Friday, October 30

    • Day Use Hours: Both park units will be open daily from 7 a.m. until 8 p.m. for day use by visitors who can walk, bike or drive in with a “street legal” vehicle (e.g. jeeps or trucks).
    • Vehicle Access:
      • “Street legal” vehicles, such as jeeps and trucks, will be allowed on the dunes.
      • “Green Sticker” off-highway vehicles (OHV) will remain temporarily prohibited from entering the park at this time. Staff will monitor conditions and operations to determine when to restore “Green Sticker” OHV activity.
    • Visitation: As the State of California continues to protect Californians from the COVID-19 pandemic and for the protection of natural resources, the daily allowed number of “street legal” vehicles will be temporarily limited to 1,000 per day, for both park units. While State Parks does not anticipate this operational change to impact visitation since this is considered the off-season, over the next few weeks there may be instances where the maximum allowance of vehicles will be met and no further vehicles will be allowed to enter the beach due to the temporary capacity requirement.
    • Camping:
      • Oceano Dunes SVRA: During the initial reopening phase, no overnight camping opportunities will be provided at Oceano Dunes SVRA (beach camping area). Staff will monitor conditions and operations over the next few weeks to determine when to restore these experiences. The public is advised that when campgrounds reopen, they will do so at a reduced and limited capacity (100 sites) to support a safe and healthy environment for employees, natural resources and visitors.
      • Pismo SB: On September 21, developed campgrounds at Pismo SB reopened to visitors. Reservations are required. To book your reservation, please visit www.ReserveCalifornia.com
    • Reservations: Since the campgrounds at Oceano Dunes SVRA will not reopen at full capacity, the number of prior reservations in the system would exceed the reduced inventory under the phased reopening plan of the SVRA. In order to give everyone fair access to available camping, State Parks needs to restart the booking process at zero reservations. The department apologizes for the inconvenience as it continues to address operational considerations during COVID-19. Reservation cancellations and refunds will be automatic. As such, visitors do not need to take any action. Affected reservation holders will be contacted by ReserveCalifornia via email. Phase two of the phased-reopening plan will include the date new reservations can be made for Oceano Dunes SVRA.
    • Events: Special event applications are not being accepted at this time for both park units.
    • Concessions: These services will continue to be temporarily closed.

         Phase Two

         Date to be determined.

    • Vehicle Access: “Green Sticker” OHVs will be allowed on the dunes.
    • Visitation: The daily allowed number of “street legal” vehicles will continue to be temporarily limited to 1,000 per day, for both park units.
    • Camping: A total of 100 camping sites at Oceano Dunes SVRA will be become available to the public.

         Phase Three

         Date to be determined: State Parks expands day-use opportunities and camping inventory as environmental conditions allow and in alignment with state and local public      health orders.

    Drivers are advised that the dunes and topography changed during the closure of the park unit, creating unfamiliar terrain. All drivers are being asked to drive with care and provide shorebirds and pedestrians plenty of space as they enjoy the park. The speed limit on the beach is 15 miles per hour.

    Visitation and physical distancing will be monitored at Oceano Dunes SVRA and Pismo SB and if unsafe conditions develop, access may be restricted again. The public is reminded to plan ahead, maintain the proper physical distance, avoid crowds and wear face coverings and limit the group to people from the immediate household. For additional OHV COVID-19 tips, please visit www.parks.ca.gov/SafetyTips.

    As the department works to restore vehicular access at Oceano Dunes SVRA and Pismo SB, visitors will notice some maintenance activity to prepare for public access. Activities will include Air Pollution Control District wind fence and restoration projects, critical facility maintenance activities and emergency access maintenance which may require the use of heavy equipment.

    Located along California’s coastline in San Luis Obispo County, midway between San Francisco and Los Angeles, Oceano Dunes SVRA and Pismo SB receive more than 2.2 million visitors annually for off-highway vehicle recreation, surf fishing, camping and other coastal recreation activities. Both units are adjacent to each other. The SVRA is popular for the unique experiences it provides to visitors, such as beach camping, OHV recreation and a myriad of aquatic activities. This popular destination is also home to the endangered Western snowy plover and the California least tern.

    Article Source: https://www.parks.ca.gov/NewsRelease/980?fbclid=IwAR0zQITrwMx0LbZcTJeYXiHwOnDWwl6ZtoqC_jBTZPn2REZ3OCn63S2I7A8

  • September 25, 2020 1:06 PM | CORVA Administrator (Administrator)
    Please download CORVA's latest ORIA here. This is an online-only issue of the ORIA packed with valuable information! Please look at the ads and help support our wonderful business sponsors who are critical to the success of keeping public land open for off-road recreation. 

    Special Member Benefit from Rocky Mountain ATV/Race Gas

    Rocky Mountain ATV/Race Gas have generously offered to send all our new and renewing members a $25.00 coupon on purchases made through their extensive website: www.rockymountainatvmc.com

    In order for our CORVA members to receive this generous offer, we need you to opt-in to receive their offer. Please go to: https://corva.org/rocky-mountain/ to opt-in immediately to receive a Rocky Mountain ATV $25.00 credit!

    Board of Directors Conference Call

    Join us on Monday at 7:00pm for our monthly CORVA Board of Directors Conference Call.

    Call-in Information:

    Phone Number: (712) 775-8968
    Conference Code:
     104206


    Update on Forest Service Closures

    The USDA Forest Service Pacific Southwest Region announces that current closure orders and fire prohibitions in California have been extended. This decision will be evaluated daily, taking fire and weather conditions into account. The fire prohibition includes building, maintaining, attending, or using a fire, campfire, or stove. 

    Nine National Forests (NF) in California remain closed: Angeles NF, Cleveland NF, Los Padres NF, Inyo NF, Klamath NF, San Bernardino NF, Sequoia NF, Sierra NF, and Six Rivers NF. This decision will continue to be reviewed daily.

    Nine other National Forests may be open to varying degrees. Visitors should contact the following National Forests for more information on their status: Eldorado NF, Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit, Lassen NF, Mendocino NF, Modoc NF, Plumas NF, Shasta-Trinity NF, Stanislaus NF, and the Tahoe NF. For additional questions, please contact your local National Forest.

  • September 02, 2020 4:00 PM | CORVA Administrator (Administrator)

    We need your help! The Yolo County Parks and Recreation Division is determining whether to develop a NEW OHV park in Yolo County. They also want to enhance existing trail riding opportunities. With the support of the CORVA Board of Directors we want to know what you think about the potential of a new park and increased riding opportunities. The survey is not a sales or solicitation, your responses are anonymous and remain confidential. Thanks very much for your participation!

    To start the survey, click the link below.   https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/YC_CORVA

    CORVAS FIRST PROMO

    Running now until midnight September 15. Has your CORVA membership lapsed? Have you been thinking of becoming a member but just haven’t pulled the trigger yet? Head to our site and click the Become A Member button and you’ll be able to also select one of four of our #isupportoffroadrecreation License Plate Frames  . Normally $10 it’s yours for FREE for becoming a member! Applies to new or lapsed memberships only and not the Lifetime. We get a lot of people signing up at the annual shows and due to those all being cancelled we thought we’d come to you!


    Join Online

  • July 03, 2020 12:39 PM | CORVA Administrator (Administrator)

    The California Coastal Commission is meeting on Thursday, July 9th to deliberate 3 items relating to Oceano Dunes SVRA. Because this is a virtual meeting via Zoom, it is easy for many to participate and have your voices heard. 

    Step #1: https://www.coastal.ca.gov/meetings/agenda/#/2020/7 

    Oceano Dunes items are all on Thursday, items # TH9a, TH10a and TH11a. Make sure to click the Thursday tab and scroll down to link to the information about these items, including staff reports and recommendations. 

    Step #2: https://www.coastal.ca.gov/meetings/request-testimony/thursday/

    Sign up to speak via remote testimony. There are a number of questions to answer, then the Coastal Commission staff will send you a personal link via email to enter the meeting next week. This can be done on your phone, tablet or computer.

    Important points: 

    Coastal Commission staff are unlawfully targeting the park trying to change the nature and purpose of this SVRA enjoyed by off-roaders and paid for solely by off-roaders.  They want to mandate unnecessary measures that would make use of the park by motorized vehicles impossible and unenjoyable. 

    Coastal Commission staff have ignored non-motorized areas like Guadalupe Dunes, where extensive conservation measures can easily be implemented, instead are engaging in discriminatory proposals against off-roaders by targeting Oceano Dunes SVRA. 

    Conservation measures undertaken by State Parks and paid for by off-roaders' money (literally from our pockets) have been very successful. Expansion or additional conservation measures must be undertaken in other areas, like Guadalupe Dunes and not target our pockets or our park!

    Why does the Coastal Commission staff propose creating a virtual wildlife conservation area in the middle of an SVRA? So they can illegally steal money from the OHV Trust Fund, a fund paid solely by off-roaders.

    This is taxation without representation! Off-roaders pay for everything at this park, but Coastal Commission staff are proposing stealing the money from our pockets to pay for their efforts to close the park for no better reason than dislike of off-road recreation. 

    Please, DO NOT waste this opportunity to voice your opinion

  • June 29, 2020 3:45 PM | CORVA Administrator (Administrator)

    BY KAREN VELIE

    For more than a decade, San Luis Obispo County’s Air Pollution Control District (APCD) warned about silica dust blowing inland from the Oceano Dunes.

    It causes cancers, and lung and kidney disease.

    It was the result of off-roading at the Dunes.

    It was made up.

    Studies of air quality samples taken by both the APCD and State Parks consistently failed to find detectable levels of the dust. There was, in the words of an expert on the risks of silica dust, “no evidence of a realistic pulmonary (inhalation) risk with respect to respirable crystalline silica.”

    Even so, silica dust was an effective way to justify APCD regulation of the dunes. The APCD continued to warn mesa residents that off-highway vehicle recreation at the Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area was causing silica dust to blow on their properties. That, the APCD said, meant people were at risk of cancer and other diseases.

    The reports alarmed state and local agencies. They repeated the APCD’s warnings. Local media and the public bought into the claim.  The silica dust scare affected Nipomo Mesa real estate transactions and property values. Some real estate disclosure forms, required to warn buyers of risks associated with properties, were modified to note health hazards of crystalline silica in the air at the mesa.

    The form quotes from both the APCD’s Phase 2 report the Phase 1 report’s silica statements. The forms also note that the World Health Organization’s classification of “inhaled crystalline silica from occupational sources as carcinogenic to humans.”

    It was ultimately California State Parks, the managers of the Oceano Dunes, that refuted the silica fabrication. But that was more than 10 years after the APCD started pushing its silica dust argument.

    In 2007, the APCD first initiated the belief that the mesa air was filled with silica dust in a Phase 1 report, which documented airborne dust levels on the Nipomo Mesa that exceeded air quality standards. Silica is mentioned only once in the lengthy report, and that is on the last page, in a vague reference to the upwind coastal dunes.

    “Sand particles are high in crystalline silica, a known carcinogen with a high risk factor,” according to the report.

    Relative to other minerals, silica — also known as crystalline silica and quartz — is quite hard. The energy necessary to break it into fine dust particles is typically found in industrial and mining settings. The particles are 100 times smaller than what is found on beaches and sand dunes. Because of the acute health risks, exposure to silica dust is specifically regulated by state and federal health and safety agencies. OSHA says silica exposure remains a serious threat to nearly 2 million U.S. workers, including more than 100,000 in high risk jobs, such as abrasive blasting, foundry work, stonecutting, rock drilling, quarry work and tunneling.

    In March 2010, the APCD held a public workshop to announce the results of its Phase 2 report, and to receive written questions about their findings. The APCD subsequently prepared a document of responses to submitted questions,

    “While not specifically measured in the study, crystalline silica can be a significant portion of wind-blown sand and soil, and is a known lung cancer hazard,” according to the APCD’s written response.

    In Nov. 2011, the APCD board voted to adopt “the dust rule” based on the Phase 2 report, which blamed recreation on the Oceano Dunes for high dust levels two to four miles away on the mesa, and a claim that the dust was mainly silica. The APCD proposed a $1,000 fine to State Parks for each day dust concentrations on the mesa reached a certain level.

    During the 2011 meeting, APCD board members and the public voiced their concerns over silica dust.

    Despite having previously admitted silica was “not specifically measured” in their Phase 1 and Phase 2 studies, then-APCD director Larry Allen invoked silica as he argued for the dust rule, and the ability for his agency to fine the state.

    “We found that on days when we were exceeding the standards, it was predominately silica, which is sand essentially,” Allen said during the 2011 board meeting.

    At that time, the APCD had not yet tested the dust blowing on the mesa for silica.

    In 2011, unaware that silica had not been found in the two studies, the APCD Board voted to adopt the dust rule.

    With the passage of the dust rule, Allen’s claim that silica dust was blowing from the Oceano Dunes to the mesa was repeated many times by many people.

    Arlene Versaw, an organizer for the Mesa Community Alliance, is arguably the most vocal advocate of the APCD’s silica dust claims.

    In Feb. 2016, Versaw created a GoFundMe page to raise money for the group’s primary cause of holding State Parks accountable for silica dust blowing on the mesa through a nuisance lawsuit.

    “Why is your donation so critically necessary?” Versaw wrote on GoFundMe. “These ‘particulates’—fine silica particles—are dozens of times smaller than a human hair. They can cause respiratory problems, heart and lung problems, even premature death … with children and seniors most at risk.”

    For years, Versaw repeated the APCD’s claim that the dust blowing on the mesa was primarily composed of silica in newspapers and in letters to the editor.

    A few examples of Versaw’s assertions:

    ●  “Mesa residents are subjected to hazardous silica dust that truly threatens human health,” San Luis Obispo Tribune, March 22, 2016.

    ●   “The specific pollutant we face – silica dust – is cumulative and does not leave the body,” The Pulse, Nov./Dec. 2016.

    ●   “For years, it has been known, well documented and reported that the Ocean Dunes Off-Highway Vehicle Park is the source of particulate matter silica dust, which is a very serious health hazard.” San Luis Obispo Tribune, June 30, 2017.

    ●   “Second, the problem is not SAND. It is silica dust,” San Luis Obispo Tribune, Jan. 15, 2018.

    ●   “The funds are being spent unnecessarily all right—but the APCD is merely defending itself and defending its duty to do its job of protecting Nipomo Mesa residents from hazardous air pollution,” SLO New Times, July 20, 2016.

    In her New Time’s commentary, Versaw chastised former APCD Board member Debbie Peterson, who was consistently critical of the dust rule and the nearly $400,000 cost to taxpayers for the legal challenge that invalidated the dust rule. In the same article, Versaw praised Supervisor Adam Hill, a public official known to loudly challenge those who questioned the validity of Allen’s silica dust assertions.

    Versaw also claimed to know of information that “undermines any claim that the Oceano Dunes OHV is not the source of the hazardous silica dust.”

    In reality, there was no information. The APCD had not yet conducted any testing for silica dust in the mesa air. Apparently, unbeknownst to Versaw, it would not be until April 2017 that the APCD finally began sampling and testing mesa air specifically for silica dust.

    Versaw and other members of the mesa community would remain unaware of the testing for nearly another year because the APCD remained silent about the testing and the results.

    California Coastal Commission puts weight behind APCD’s silica argument

    Unaware that testing of silica in the air on the Nipomo Mesa had not yet occurred, in 2017, the deputy director of the California Coastal Commission’s north central coast district also began promoting the APCD’s silica claims.

    The commission is tasked with protecting California’s coast and ocean for present and future generations. It does so through planning, regulating development, and utilizing the “rigorous use of science,” according to the commission.

    In 2017, then-APCD Director Larry Allen spurred California Coastal Commission Deputy Director Dan Carl’s interest in the mesa in a letter in which Allen repeated his unsubstantiated claim that the dust in the mesa air is mostly silica.

    “Public exposure to unacceptably high levels of particulate matter, much of which occurs in the form of highly toxic crystalline silica, have continued to impact downwind residents,” Allen wrote in a letter to Carl on March 27, 2017.

    Two days later, in a letter to State Parks, Carl repeated the APCD’s false assertion that dust on the mesa was primarily comprised of silica, and as such, was a public nuisance.

    “The dust emissions are largely comprised of crystalline silica, which is known to be highly toxic,” Carl wrote in the March 29, 2017 letter. “Furthermore, the dust emissions constitute a ‘public nuisance’ as that term is defined in Civil Code Section 3480 because the dust emissions affect County residents in residential areas downwind of the Oceano Dunes State Vehicle Recreation Area riding areas. The dust emissions are significant, considering that the Superior Court and the APCD have characterized them as ‘unacceptably high,’ ‘highly toxic,’ and ‘a significant public health threat.’”

    After 10 years of warning Nipomo residents of the dangers of silica dust, the APCD decided to run tests for silica in the air.

    From April through June 2017, the APCD collected and tested dust samples from the Nipomo Mesa “CDF” air monitoring station. However, the results of the testing, or even the fact that testing had been conducted, were not made public.

    Months later, an APCD staffer admitted to State Parks that they had tested for silica, but gave no indication of the results. Eventually, the APCD provided State Parks the lab reports.

    State Parks tasked John Kelse, an industrial hygienist with experience in assessing risks posed by silica dust, to analyze the APCD laboratory reports. Kelse found no risk to the residents on the mesa from silica.

    “The analytical reports of the air filter samples collected at the CDF air monitoring station in April, May, and June 2017 offer no evidence of a realistic pulmonary inhalation risk with respect to crystalline silica,” according to Kelse.

    State Parks then asked Kelse to oversee its own collecting of air filter samples and have the samples submitted to an accredited laboratory for silica analysis. Air filter samples were collected in March 2018 within the Oceano Dunes and at the CDF air monitoring station on the mesa.

    “Results for all air filter samples collected on March 8, 2018 and analyzed for respirable crystalline silica (quartz) are below the detection limit of the analysis applied,” according to Kelse. “These results are consistent with those presented in my prior report dated Dec. 14, 2017. As such, the presented and reviewed data provide no evidence of a realistic pulmonary (inhalation) risk with respect to respirable crystalline silica.”

    Kelse noted that silica that creates health risks in industrial settings is not typically found in beach and dune environments.

    “As stated in my prior report, the respirable-size fraction of crystalline silica found in industrial environments is typically 100 times or more smaller (due to employed physical forces associated with processing) than that typically encountered in sand in beach and dune environments,” according to Kelse. “For this reason, it is unsurprising that crystalline silica was not detected in the air filter samples collected.”

    For years, disagreements over the validity of the dust rule spurred discord between State Parks and the APCD. The dust rule contained a provision for imposing $1,000 a day fines against State Parks whenever dust concentrations on the Nipomo Mesa reached a certain level.

    In July 2017, the APCD issued State Parks a notice of violation for failure to comply with the dust rule. Technical arbiter Dr. W. G. Nickling was enlisted as a special master in an attempt to resolve the ongoing discord that led to the notice of violation. Both State Parks and the APCD then provided Nickling documents in support of their respective positions.

    “The submission report provided by Parks is highly focused, well documented, and attempts to address the issues related to the NOV straight on and without embellishment,” according to Nickling’s Oct. 11, 2017 mediation report. “It stands in strong contrast to the submission provided by APCD, which contains inflammatory language, demonstrates a notable lack of objectivity, and fails to provide direct reference to supporting documentation and data.”

    Ultimately, Nickling recommended the withdrawal of the notice of violation because it was “unnecessarily punitive and unproductive.” Additionally, he encouraged cooperation between the parties to resolve concerns related to dust on the mesa.

    Appearing to ignore Nickling’s advice, Allen asked the APCD Board to vote to convene the APCD’s Hearing Board in an attempt to assert more authority over State Parks. However, the APCD Board denied Allen’s request based on the mediation report. The five-member Hearing Board is a quasi-judicial body whose purpose is to decide on matters of conflict between the air district and industry, according to the APCD.

    Undeterred, Allen filed a petition with the Hearing Board for an order of abatement against State Parks. The Hearing Board granted Allen’s request, which led to a series of public meetings that extended from Nov. 2017 through April 2018.

    At a March 21, 2018 meeting, Hearing Board Member Robert Carr questioned Allen over the lack of transparency regarding the 2017 silica dust testing. In the exchange, both Allen and Carr initially conflated the mineral silica with the synthetic compound silicone. Eventually, Carr landed on the proper term, followed by Allen.

    The exchange highlighted notable departures from previous declarations the APCD made, including that the dust in the mesa air was predominately composed of  silica.

    Carr: “I’d like to know Mr. Allen, why you didn’t release the silicone data when you first got it? And I wonder if you have a chance to complete your comments?

    Allen: “Well, so, the silicone data that was originally, you know the rule is not based on silicone at all, we do understand that it’s a natural component of all beach sand…”

    Carr, interrupting: “Why didn’t you release the data when you first got it?”

    Allen: “Well, so, when we look at it there was a new OSHA standard that came up and the public was saying we think we’re seeing levels that might be exceeding that standard. We only took four samples, and we weren’t doing a study. We just wanted to get an idea to see if this was worth exploring. If we were going to release the data, we would have wanted to have done a much broader study that would give us a much better understanding of what those concentrations…”

    Carr, interrupting again: “Where’d the idea come from in the first place to test for silica?”

    Allen: “Because the public brought it up, ah, OSHA came up with a brand new standard of that 50 micrograms and members of the public were coming to our board saying, well, you know — the concentrations that we’re breathing down there, if there’s a majority of it is crystalline silica we’re probably exceeding even the OSHA standard. And so we agreed to take a few samples out there. We weren’t hiding any data.”

    Carr: “So I hope this is the last we hear about silica.”

    Allen: “Well, you know it’s a red herring and I’m kind of disappointed it’s even mentioned in the, ah, abatement order, in the proposed abatement order because it’s really, it has no bearing whatsoever.”

    Allen’s red herring comment contrasts starkly with the many previous warnings given by the APCD regarding silica dust.

    State Parks Director Lisa Mangat

    In 2018, State Parks entered into a stipulated order of abatement with the APCD. The order mandates that the state reduce wind-blown dust, specifically dust particles that are 10 microns or less in diameter, on the Nipomo Mesa by 50 percent. Despite agreeing to the various terms in the order, State Parks still denied that off-roading causes the dust on the mesa.

    Meanwhile, the APCD quietly continued its quest to find silica dust in the air on the mesa that could be tied to Oceano Dunes. In 2018 and 2019, APCD staffers collected multiple air filter samples at their CDF air monitoring station for silica analysis. However, they again came up empty-handed.

    “None of the 26 samples exceeded the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) 8-hour workplace health-based standard for respirable crystalline silica. An estimate of the 2018 annual average silica concentration does not exceed the California chronic Reference Exposure Level,” according to APCD’s 2019 report on the testing.

    Over the past 10 years, the state has spent more than $15 million in taxpayer revenue to reduce dust concentrations on the mesa. State Parks covered approximately 200 acres of dune sand with hay, vegetation or orange plastic fencing.

    Additional dune-covering projects are anticipated in the coming months and years, under the disputed theory that the obstructions will help reduce dust produced by the blowing sand.

    State Parks has little to show for the money spent. In March, the state temporarily closed the Oceano Dunes to vehicle recreation because of the coronavirus.

    During May, the windiest month of the year, excessive dust days more than doubled with no off-road vehicles on the Oceano Dunes, data from two Nipomo Mesa air quality monitoring sites show.

    In January, State Parks Director Lisa Mangat shut down approximately half of the camping area, and about 5 percent of the riding area at the Oceano Dunes, or approximately 50 acres near the shoreline to reduce sand blowing on the mesa. The area was popular with campers, and provided 50 percent of the park’s camping availability.

    A 2017 study showed visitors to Oceano Dunes Recreational Area spent more than $200 million a year in the county. It has not yet been determined what economic losses the county will incur because of the closures.

    Even though the APCD’s silica fallacy has been refuted, the California Coastal Commission continues to find that off-road vehicle recreation is responsible for sand blowing two to four miles away on the Nipomo Mesa, based on APCD reports.

    On July 9, the California Coastal Commission deputy director will report on restrictions to off-road vehicle use on the Oceano Dunes, which were allegedly implemented to protect the health of Nipomo Mesa residents.

    ---

    View Original Article

  • June 23, 2020 8:56 AM | CORVA Administrator (Administrator)

    Amy Granat, Managing Director

    For a few years the California Air Resources Board

    (CARB) has been investigating potential changes to the redsticker/greensticker program for motorcycle

    registrations. Many off-road organizations were involved with staff from CARB during this time, alongside manufacturers and motorcycle dealers. Although some of the meetings became heated, for the most part staff listened attentively and made changes as deemed appropriate to the program/proposal that was submitted to CARB for review and a vote. On April 25th CARB passed new regulations for motorcycle registrations.

    The number one stated purpose for change to the redsticker program, was that manufacturers have been slow to develop and offer cleaner technology on new model 2 and 4 stroke bikes. The redsticker program was instituted to allow manufacturers to slowly improve emissions for 2 stroke bikes, with the anticipation that fewer and fewer redsticker bikes would be sold to consumers. Much to the concern of CARB, for model year 2017/8 almost 50% of all non-street legal (OHV) bikes sold in California were redsticker models. Instead of decreasing, purchases of 2-stroke bikes were increasing, necessitating these new regulations.

    These are the key components of the new rules:

    1. New rules were developed to allow manufacturers time to improve technology

    2. Redsticker sales (other than verified competition bikes) will cease in 2022

    3. All redsticker bikes including model year 2021 will be grandfathered into the greensticker program. They will still receive redsticker registrations until the Department of Motor Vehicles runs through their stockpile of redstickers.

    4. Although redsticker sales will end in 2022, redsticker riding restrictions will continue until 2025. After 2025, redsticker riding restrictions will cease.

    5. Starting in 2027, more stringent emission standards will go into effect.

    6. Cost of redsticker models are predicted to increase for consumers an average of $300 starting with the 2022 model year.

    Manufacturers will be subject to fleet averaging to achieve CARB emission standards, encouraging the development of lower emission models. CARB is predicting that manufacturers will add more greensticker models to satisfy consumer preferences.

    For enthusiasts, the most important components of the new regulations are the following:

    • These regulations will not affect existing redsticker bikes.
    • These regulations will not affect competition bikes.
    • These regulations will not affect youth models.
    • Competition bikes WILL ONLY be authorized for competition use, along with a minimum of practice sessions. Competition bikes will not be sold for general recreational use, or be legal for general recreational use.
<< First  < Prev   1   2   3   4   5   ...   Next >  Last >> 
Powered by Wild Apricot | Designed by TheARRC.com