"When the well is dry, we will know the worth of water." – Benjamin Franklin
As summer temperatures increase and rain and snowmelt become less predictable, California needs to vastly improve its ability to deliver clean, reliable water to farms and families from its increasingly threatened forests and watersheds.
Proposition 3, the water bond on California's Nov. 6 ballot, is a critical measure to improve the reliability of the state's water supply, provide safe drinking water for millions of residents, and protect and restore fish and wildlife. It will bring at least $100 million directly to Lake Tahoe, and $250 million to improve forest health, prevent fires and combat climate change in the Sierra Nevada.
The Sierra Nevada and Tahoe regions will also be able to draw from more than $3.4 billion in statewide funding for flood control, storm water, and water quality programs. It's a win for the health and resiliency of our forests, our watersheds and our communities.
In Lake Tahoe, Proposition 3 will help improve the lake's famed clarity, reduce the threat of uncontrolled fires, expand the basin's network of hiking and biking trails and lakefront parks, and restore the Upper Truckee River, the most impaired watershed in the Tahoe Basin.
Its passage will also provide a boost to the efforts of the Tahoe Fund and other nonprofit groups to leverage their contributions with reliable public funding to get more work done.
We've seen how Sierra watersheds and local communities are hurt by megafires and a changing climate. Proposition 3 will help us recover and prepare for an increasingly uncertain future.
On Nov. 6, vote "yes" on Proposition 3.
Amy Berry is the CEO of Tahoe Fund, a nonprofit that supports environmental projects around the Lake Tahoe Basin with an emphasis on recreation, conservation and education.
Summer is here, and with it, beautiful wildflowers, construction delays, and long days of Tahoe sun. With so many options to enjoy this beautiful place, what to do while you are here can be a little overwhelming.
Thanks to a partnership of more than 20 organizations, there is a now a new tool to help you discover new things to do at Tahoe.
The new TakeCareTahoe.org website is home to information on more than 200 events to attend, more than a dozen centers to visit, and plenty of volunteer opportunities to dig into.
Take Care Tahoe is a collective group that loves Lake Tahoe and wants to see more people connect with its beautiful natural environment. So we spent the better part of a year, thanks to grants from AT&T and the Tahoe Fund, building a tool that would do just that.
Ah you ask, "You did all of this out of the goodness of your hearts?"
You are on to us. There is a small catch. Not only do we want you to enjoy Tahoe, we also would love for you to take care of it. Last year, volunteers with the League to Save Lake Tahoe cleaned up more than 1,600 pounds of trash left behind after the July Fourth holiday, including more than 5,000 cigarette butts. Clearly, we all have a lot of work to do.
By attending beach cleanups, wildflower hikes, insightful discussions, and environmentally friendly festivals, we are pretty sure you are going to have fun and learn ways you can take care of Tahoe.
You also can find information on more than a dozen centers where you can spend time learning more about the science, history and environment of Tahoe. And once you know more about Tahoe, you are destined to take better care of it.
To help you out, the website also includes some funny messages on how you can help us take care of Tahoe while you are here — like being No. 1 at picking up No. 2 or remembering trash day is a bear's buffet.
We invite you to visit TakeCareTahoe.org. Search by location, dates you will be here, or other options to find the event that is just right for you. Visit a center you haven't before or volunteer to help with trail work.
Show us how you take care of Tahoe by posting a photo and tagging @takecaretahoe on Instagram or Facebook.
We love it here, and we know you do too. Thanks for helping us take care of it.
Amy Berry is CEO of Tahoe Fund. The Take Care Tahoe Team Outreach Committee consists of Tahoe Fund, Tahoe Resource Conservation District, Tahoe Regional Planning Agency, The League to Save Lake Tahoe, UC Davis- Tahoe Environmental Research Center.