SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - As many as 17 large wildfires are burning in California, destroying homes and other structures, forcing thousands of people from their homes. The American Red Cross is on the ground, providing shelter, relief supplies and comfort for those affected.

Over the weekend the Mendocino Complex Fire grew to 267,000 acres and is only 33 percent contained. The fire has destroyed 130 structures, including 67 homes. It is now the fourth largest wildfire in state history. The Carr Fire has burned 160,000 acres and is 43 percent contained. The sixth most destructive fire in California history, the fire has destroyed more than 1,500 structures, including 1,080 homes. The Ferguson Fire, which has closed Yosemite National Park, has burned more than 89,000 acres.

Large wildfires are also burning in Washington and Oregon where Red Cross disaster workers are providing shelter for those affected.

In California, more than 1,000 Red Cross disaster workers and nine emergency response vehicles are responding to the fires. The Red Cross has more than 20 shelters open and has provided more than 6,700 overnight shelter stays. Red Cross workers have also provided more than 73,000 meals and snacks and distributed more than 18,200 relief items. Health and mental health disaster workers have provided more than 6,100 services and caseworkers are meeting one-on-one with people to assist them in getting the help they need.

As evacuation orders are lifted in some areas and people return home, the Red Cross will continue working closely with state and local officials to ensure people get the help they need.

STAY IN TOUCH People can reconnect with loved ones through both the Red Cross Safe and Well website at redcross.org/safeandwell and by using the “I’m Safe” feature of the Red Cross Emergency App. The Safe and Well site allows individuals and organizations to register and post messages to indicate that they are safe, or to search for loved ones. The site is always available, open to the public and available in Spanish. Registrations and searches can be done directly on the website. Registrations can also be completed by texting SAFE to 78876.

DOWNLOAD RED CROSS APPS The Red Cross app “Emergency” can help keep you and your loved ones safe by putting vital information in your hand including shelter locations and severe weather and emergency alerts. The Red Cross First Aid App puts instant access to information on handling the most common first aid emergencies at your fingertips. Download these apps by searching for ‘American Red Cross’ in your app store or at redcross.org/apps.

HOW YOU CAN HELP You can help people affected by disasters like wildfires and countless other crisis by making a gift to American Red Cross Disaster Relief. Visit redcross.org or text REDCROSS to 90999 to make a $10 donation. Your gift enables the Red Cross to prepare for, respond to and help people recover from disasters big and small. Contributions may also be sent to your local Red Cross chapter, or to the American Red Cross, P.O. Box 37864, Boone, IA 50037-0864.

You can also help people affected by the California wildfires. Donors can designate their donation to the California wildfires relief efforts and the Red Cross will honor donor intent. The best way to ensure your donation will go to a specific disaster is to write the specific disaster name in the memo line of a check. We also recommend completing and mailing the donation form on redcross.org with your check. The Red Cross honors donor intent, and all donations earmarked for California wildfires will be used for our work to support these disasters.

About the American Red Cross:

The American Red Cross shelters, feeds and provides emotional support to victims of disasters; supplies about 40 percent of the nation's blood; teaches skills that save lives; provides international humanitarian aid; and supports military members and their families. The Red Cross is a not-for-profit organization that depends on volunteers and the generosity of the American public to perform its mission. For more information, please visit redcross.org or cruzrojaamericana.org, or visit us on Twitter at @RedCross.

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Former Athletics and Giants pitcher to make an appearance for River Cats game on August 10

WEST SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - Former Sacramento River Cats, Oakland Athletics, and San Francisco Giants pitcher Barry Zito will be at Raley Field on Friday, August 10, 2018 to sign autographs for fans and throw the ceremonial first pitch.

The River Cats will host a pregame VIP meet and greet with Zito, which will include those who have purchased a Giant Pack. He will also be available for autographs on the concourse after throwing out the first pitch.

Barry Zito began the 2000 season with the River Cats, the franchise's first year in Sacramento, and made his Major League debut that same year with the Oakland Athletics. Zito spent seven seasons with the Athletics before signing with the San Francisco Giants after the 2006 season. Two World Championships highlighted his seven seasons with the Giants. Zito was a member of the Nashville (Triple-A Oakland) roster in 2015 and pitched six shutout innings at Raley Field during the team's series against Sacramento that year.

The fan-favorite Giant Pack includes a Senate level seat for each of the 13 biggest River Cats games of 2018 and is available for just $299 (an $800 value). Fans who purchase the package are also guaranteed premium giveaway items for the 2018 season, including a limited edition Madison Bumgarner Sactown jersey t-shirt. A full list of included game dates is available online at rivercats.com.

Giant Pack buyers will also receive exclusive access to a presale for the 2018 exhibition game on March 24 at Raley Field between the Sacramento River Cats and the San Francisco Giants. Presale date has not yet been determined.

For more information, please call the River Cats ticket hotline at (916) 371-HITS (4487) or email tickets@rivercats.com.

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Coast is Clear in Mendocino County

By Visit Mendocino   |  2018-08-08

Celebrate National Motorcycle Week (August 14-20, 2018) on Mendocino’s scenic Highway 1. Photo courtesy Visit Mendocino County

MENDOCINCO, CA (MPG) - Tourism to Mendocino County remains 100 percent operational with all major highways, lodging and attractions unaffected despite the flank of wildfires located in the region’s wilderness areas, according to Visit Mendocino County.  As of August 8, 2018 only six percent (6%) of the Ranch Fire is located within Mendocino County.  www.VisitMendocino.com.

Northern California’s crown jewel, comprising 4,000 sq., miles -- roughly the size of Delaware, Rhode Island and the District of Columbia combined – reports that its 90 miles of Pacific coastline, 11 wine appellations and inland tourism areas are open for business.  The Mendocino Complex Fire remains in a remote wilderness region 60+ miles east of the coastal destinations of Fort Bragg and Mendocino.  

California Scenic Highway 1 and Mendocino’s “Inspiration Highway” 101 welcome visitors, along with the county’s 450+ hotel properties and 90+ wine tasting venues.  Key tourism sites including the cities of Ukiah, Hopland and Willits as well as the nearby attractions of the City of 10,000 Buddhas, Ridgewood Ranch (home of Seabiscuit), the Skunk Train, Vichy and Orr Hot Springs and the ancient redwood forests of Montgomery Woods State Reserve remain untouched.  

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Two fireworks nights and an appearance from Barry Zito highlight quick homestand

WEST SACRAMENTO, CA (MPG) - The Sacramento River Cats will welcome the El Paso Chihuahuas (San Diego Padres) to Raley Field this weekend (August 9 – August 12) for the final time this season. The season’s tenth homestand is presented by Jackson Rancheria Casino Resort, and includes Thirsty Thursday, Orange Friday fireworks featuring an appearance by former San Francisco Giants and Oakland Athletics pitcher Barry Zito, Sutter Health Fireworks Saturday to go along with Faith & Family Night, as well as and K-LOVE Sunday Funday.

Thursday, August 9 – River Cats vs. El Paso Chihuahuas

·         Game Time: First pitch is at 7:05 p.m. Raley Field gates will open to all fans at 6:00 p.m. 

·         Broadcast: Tonight’s game will be broadcast live online at rivercats.com and on the River Cats radio affiliate Money 105.5 FM.

·         Thirsty Thursday – Craft Beer Edition: 12-oz craft beers are just $5 in the beer garden, and 12-oz beers are just $2 in the Sactown Smokehouse BBQ area!

·         Tito’s Shuttle: A free shuttle service, courtesy of Tito’s Handmade Vodka. Part of the Spare The Air Road Relief Program, the shuttle makes stops at deVere’s, Punch Bowl Social, and Sauced before arriving at Raley Field for the game. More route information, including times, available at rivercats.com/parking.

·         Canned Food Drive: Supported by Bush’s Baked Beans, donate canned goods at the ballpark which will benefit local Sacramento area food banks.

Friday, August 10 – River Cats vs. El Paso Chihuahuas

·         Game Time: First pitch is at 7:05 p.m. Raley Field gates will open to all fans at 6:00 p.m. 

·         Broadcast: Tonight’s game will be broadcast live online at rivercats.com and on the River Cats radio affiliate Money 105.5 FM.

  • Food Trucks: It’s Nacho Truck food truck will be on the Toyota Home Run Hill.
  • Barry Zito Appearance: San Francisco Giants postseason hero Barry Zito will be at the ballpark to throw out the first pitch and sign autographs from 7:00 p.m. to 7:45 p.m.

·         #OrangeFridayLive music from Robby James and the Streets of Bakersfield and $2 off craft beers in the Knee Deep Alley from 5:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m., postgame fireworks, and of course, orange Sactown jerseys.

Saturday, August 11 – River Cats vs. El Paso Chihuahuas

·         Game Time: First pitch is at 7:07 p.m. Raley Field gates will open to all fans at 6:00 p.m. 

·         Television Broadcast: Tonight’s game will be broadcast live on CW31/KMAX. Coverage begins at 7:00 p.m.

·         Radio Broadcast: Tonight’s game will be broadcast live online at rivercats.com and on the River Cats radio affiliate Money 105.5 FM.

·         Faith & Family Night supported by K-LOVE: Live pregame music in the beer garden from Thrive Worship of Bayside Church, and a Q&A with River Cats players who will discuss how their faith has impacted their baseball career.

  • Food Trucks: Drewski’s and Bacon Mania food trucks will be on the Toyota Home Run Hill.

·         Saturday Night Fireworks: Enjoy themed fireworks shows after every Saturday game, courtesy of Sutter Health.

Sunday, August 12 – River Cats vs. El Paso Chihuahuas

·         Game Time: First pitch is at 1:05 p.m. Raley Field gates will open to all fans at 12:00 p.m. 

·         Radio Broadcast: Today’s game will be broadcast live online at rivercats.com, and on the River Cats radio affiliate Money 105.5 FM.

·         Sunday Funday: K-LOVE Sunday Funday features pregame player autographs and Kids Run the Bases after the game.

Tickets are still available for all games and can be purchased online at rivercats.com, over the phone by calling (916) 371-HITS (4487), emailing tickets@rivercats.com, or by visiting the Round Table Pizza Box Office at Raley Field.

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Grants Fund Tahoe-Central Sierra Forest Health Projects

AUBURN, CA (MPG) - Today, CAL FIRE awarded four grants totaling $27.5 million to fund high-priority forest health projects designed to combat climate change and reduce the risk of wildfires.

Awarded to the Sierra Nevada Conservancy, California Tahoe Conservancy, National Forest Foundation, and American River Conservancy, the grants fund forest health projects in Placer, Nevada, Sierra, and El Dorado counties. The grants provide significant investment in the 2.4-million-acre Tahoe-Central Sierra Initiative area where state, federal, environmental, industry and research representatives are working together to restore the resilience of forests and watersheds. The U.S. Forest Service Tahoe National Forest, Eldorado National Forest and the Lake Tahoe Basin Management Unit serve as the critical federal counterparts in this work.

“With much of the state battling large, damaging wildfires, it’s more important than ever to make long-term investments that reduce wildfire risk and protect carbon storage,” says Jim Branham, Executive Officer of the Sierra Nevada Conservancy. “These grants show a real commitment on behalf of the state of California to improving forest health and carbon sequestration in the Sierra Nevada.”

The grants, funded by CAL FIRE’s California Climate Investments Forest Health Grant Program, use proceeds from California’s cap-and-trade program to combat climate change. Through the California Climate Investments Grant Program, CAL FIRE and other state agencies are investing in projects that directly reduce greenhouse gases while providing a wide range of additional benefits – such as prevention and reduction of wildfires -- for California communities.

“Healthy forests are one of our best climate regulators,” says Mary Mitsos, president and CEO of the National Forest Foundation. “However, the forests surrounding the greater Tahoe area, like much of the Sierra Nevada region, need significant restoration if they are going to withstand wildfires, insects and disease and continue to provide the myriad benefits we rely on them to provide.”

The four grants awarded fund projects that are part of an all-lands regional restoration program and will be implemented by a collaborative of national forests, state agencies, nonprofits, and private land owners. The USDA Forest Service manages a large portion of the landscape within the Tahoe-Central Sierra Initiative area and will complete much of the work. The lands draw visitors from around the world and restoring their resilience will ensure that they continue to be an asset for the public.

“By protecting and restoring the health of our headwaters, we are also protecting the many benefits that flow from them,” says Alan Ehrgott, Executive Director for the American River Conservancy. “This work is important both to those of us that live and work in the headwaters, and to the state as a whole.”

Today also marks the one-year anniversary of the creation of the Tahoe-Central Sierra Initiative. The partnership was launched at the 2017 Tahoe Summit, and to date has secured nearly $32.5 million in grant funds and $3.5 million in investments from water agencies and beverage companies to restore forest and watershed resilience.

“We are thrilled that our efforts to coordinate federal, state and private projects across a 2.4-million-acre landscape are paying off,” said Patrick Wright, Executive Director of the California Tahoe Conservancy. “These large-scale efforts are essential to effectively manage our forests in the face of rising temperatures and increasing megafires.”

In additional to the grants awarded within the Tahoe-Central Sierra Initiative area, several grants were also awarded for similar work throughout the Sierra Nevada region.  Information about the focus of each of the grants awarded and the dollar amounts awarded is available on CAL FIRE’s website: http://www.fire.ca.gov/grants/downloads/ForestHealth/17-18_CCI_FH_Grant_Awardees_Web.pdf

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SACRAMENTO REGION, CA (MPG) - The largest wildfire burning in California has now claimed the lives of seven Redding residents, with a dozen or more missing. More than 38,000 Shasta County residents have been evacuated because of the Carr Fire.

Cal Fire estimates there are more than 300 fires burning across California as of Sunday morning. But the current CalFiremap shows 18 active fires burning and five contained.

"Since 2012, according to state emergency management officials, there has not been a month without awildfire burning — a stark contrast to previous decades, when fire officials saw the fall and winter as a time to plan and regroup," the New York Times reported about California's wildfires.

California Governor Jerry Brown has declared a state of emergency, and requested help from the federal government. President Trump and Federal Emergency Management Agency granted California's request for a Presidential Emergency Declaration for Direct Federal Assistance to provide extra support.

Many are asking why there are so many fires burning again in California.

I am a California native. In my five decades in this state, wildfire "season" was limited to summer into fall, and the raging, violent explosive infernos were rare.

What's the significance of 2012? It is interesting that the New York Times mentioned the 2012 date, but only attributed the wildfire increases to "the recent historic drought," and "rising temperatures," caused by... Climate Change. Nothing could be further from the truth.

California wildfires are historically either natural occurrences, accidental equipment or auto spark started, or arson. Many Californians have been asking why the increase in wildfires in the last five years. And as the NYT pointed out, there is no longer a "wildfire season;" rather the wildfire season never seems to end. Today's non-stop wildfires are government created.

Obama-Era Eco-Terrorism Enviro Regs

Under Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, "The Obama administration finalized a rule governing the management of 193 million acres of national forests and grasslands, establishing a new blueprint to guide everything from logging to recreation and renewable energy development," the Washington Post reported in 2012. "The rule will serve as the guiding document for individual forest plans, which spell out exactly how these lands can be used."

And that's exactly what happened. The Obama-era regulations introduced excessive layers of bureaucracy that blocked proper forest management and increased environmentalist litigation and costs. This is the result of far too many radical environmentalists, government bureaucrats, leftist politicians and judicial activists who would rather let forests burn, than let anyone thin out overgrown trees, or let professional loggers harvest usable timber left from beetle kills, or even selectively cut timber. Forests are the ultimate natural renewable resource.

But now California burns 12 months of the year. If you wanted to tear a state down economically, what better way than to burn it down?

In a 2016 Townhall column, Paul Driessen explains:

"Eco-purists want no cutting, no thinning – no using fire retardants in "sensitive" areas because the chemicals might get into streams that will be boiled away by conflagrations. They prevent homeowners from clearing brush around their homes, because it might provide cover or habitat for endangered species and other critters that will get incinerated or lose their forage, prey and habitats in the next blaze. They rarely alter their policies during drought years."

"The resulting fires are not the "forest-rejuvenating" blazes of environmentalist lore. They are cauldron-hot conflagrations that exterminate wildlife habitats, roast bald eagle and spotted owl fledglings alive in their nests, boil away trout and trout streams, leave surviving animals to starve, and incinerate every living organism in already thin soils ... that then get washed away during future downpours and snow melts. Areas incinerated by such fires don't recover their arboreal biodiversity for decades."

The left does not care that homes and businesses burn down, or that people die. They do not care that deer, bunnies, snakes, raptors, bears, squirrels, bluejays, coyotes, mountain lions or wolves are incinerated by wildfires. If they did care, proper forest management would be the priority.

Government Intervention

In the early 1990's the Clinton administration embraced the Forest Stewardship Council following the Rio Earth Summit. The FSC was created "to promote environmentally sound, socially beneficial and economically prosperous management of the world's forests."

Yale 360 contributor Richard Conniff explained: FSC was to work with the timber industry "to set standards covering the conservation and restoration of forests, indigenous rights, and the economic and social well-being of workers, among other criteria. For industry, FSC certification promised not just a better way of doing business, but also higher prices for wood products carrying the FSC seal of environmental friendliness."

It was an epic fail. All industries using timber-related products were extorted into becoming "FSC Certified." Paper products, furniture, construction, cabinets, power poles, and hundreds of industries use timber. At the time I worked as the Human Resources Director for my husband's large commercial printing company. We bought a lot of paper – $10 million worth each year –  and found ourselves under pressure to achieve FSC Certification, which I knew was a scam. It was also very expensive, which made it clear that it was extortion. When my BS meter goes off, it's like a small atomic bomb.

"A quarter-century later, frustrated supporters of FSC say it hasn't worked out as planned, except maybe for the higher prices: FSC reports that tropical forest timber carrying its label brings 15 to 25 percent more at auction," Conniff reported. "But environmental critics and some academic researchers say FSC has had little or no effect on tropical deforestation."

Prior to FSC Certification, environmentalists and eco-crooks refused to acknowledge that for millennia, timber had been prized as a renewable, recyclable natural resource, and the timber industry prioritized proper care of forests.

Fast forward to the George W. Bush administration: "In June 2009, a federal judge sided with environmentalists and threw out the Bush planning rule that determines how 155 national forests and 20 national grasslands develop individual forest plans, governing activities from timber harvests to recreation and protecting endangered plants and animals. Clinton appointee, Judge Claudia Wilken of the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of California ruled that the Forest Service had failed to analyze the effects of removing requirements guaranteeing viable wildlife populations (Greenwire, July 1)."

By 2012, the Obama administration issued a major rewrite of all of the country's forest rules and guidelines.

In 2015, Washington D.C. District Court Judge Ketanji Brown Jackson, an Obama appointee, rejected claims from a coalition of timber, livestock, and off-highway vehicle organizations that the Obama sustainability provisions in the 2012 Planning Rule would cause an economically harmful reduction in timber harvest and land use and an increase in forest fires. "Defendants Klamath-Siskiyou Wildlands Center and Oregon Wild, represented by the Western Environmental Law Center, as well as The Wilderness Society and Defenders of Wildlife, represented by Earthjustice, argued that existing federal law provided ample authority for the Forest Service to promulgate the Planning Rule provisions, which place emphasis on ecologically sustainable forest management," Earthjustice reported.

"'Hotter, drier, longer' forest fires we are witnessing today have nothing to do with 'dangerous manmade climate change,'" Driessen said. "They have a lot to do with idiotic forestmismanagement policies and practices."

As with the Clinton administration in the 1990's, the Obama administration worked against all drilling, mining, ranching, farming, property ownership, and made it happen through the 2012 eco-terrorism regulations.

So-called environmentalists have a very narrow view of nature, not recognizing that without management, which means an appreciable amount of logging, they are actually hurting wildlife and the long term health of the forest. And now California is on fire.

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AUBURN, CA (MPG) - The Placer County Public Health Officer and Placer County Air Pollution Control District are re-issuing a joint air quality advisory to notify the public of the potential of poor air quality conditions due to smoke from fires currently burning throughout the state. This advisory will be active for today through Friday, Aug. 10.

Wildfire smoke continues to affect large areas of Placer County with elevated levels of particulate matters and ozone concentrations. Poor air quality has the potential to cause negative health impacts, particularly for sensitive groups. These potential negative health impacts may be exacerbated by prolonged smoke or ozone exposure.

Smoke contains very tiny particles that can be inhaled deep into the lungs. While all people may experience varying degrees of symptoms, the more sensitive individuals — such as young, aged and those with respiratory conditions — are at greatest risk of experiencing more aggravated symptoms. Symptoms may include but are not limited to coughing, watery and itchy eyes, scratchy throat and difficulty in breathing.

If you can see or smell smoke, avoid unnecessary outdoor activities, especially if you are in an area where visibility is greatly reduced.

Here are recommended ways to reduce your smoke exposure:

  • Stay indoors with the windows and doors closed; if possible run the air conditioner on the “recirculation” setting
  • Limit outdoor exertion and physical activity
  • Leave the smoke-impacted areas until conditions improve, if possible
  • Reduce unnecessary driving. If traveling through smoke-impacted areas, be sure that your vehicle’s ventilation system is on recirculate
  • Avoid the use of non‐HEPA paper face mask filters, which are not capable of filtering out extra fine particulates

Anyone experiencing questionable or severe symptoms should contact their doctor if they have any questions.

Keep in mind that air quality can change rapidly at different times during the day due to wind shifts; therefore, it is important to monitor the smoke throughout the day in your area and make outdoor plans accordingly.

Information on air quality and smoke can be found at www.placerair.org/infoandeducation/wildfiresmoke or www.sparetheair.com. The Spare the Air website is a useful site to monitor current air quality values. Additional statewide information can be found at the California Smoke Blog at www.californiasmokeinfo.blogspot.com

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