The North Coast Water Quality Control Board has proposed a draft Laguna Water Quality Credit Trading Program – which is really a pollution trading program. The Water Board’s draft pollution trading framework proposes to set up a “marketplace” for trading phosphorous, a nutrient that drives the profound pollution affecting the Laguna de Santa Rosa Watershed. Too much phosphorus causes massive algal blooms that can be toxic to humans and removes the oxygen fish need to breathe.
Bob Legge, Russian Riverkeeper’s Policy Director and former staff at the Water Board, has reviewed every other existing program in the United States and discovered not one program has produced claimed reductions in pollutants. Russian Riverkeeper learned in working with fellow Waterkeepers on the Chesapeake Bay tributaries like the Susquehanna River that pollution trading programs are rife with abuse. Public funds go to farmers who simply move manure around before it ends up in the Chesapeake Bay.
Russian Riverkeeper will be working diligently to stop any potential abuses in any approved trading in the Laguna and to ensure that all trading is based on sound science, transparency and accessibility as the Clean Water Act requires.
You can help by sending an email to the North Coast Water Quality Control Board.