Most of the natural water cleaning, recharge and flood controlling functions of a watershed occur in the riparian or streamside area. Because living creatures need water, the riparian zone is where plant diversity is greatest; 70% of all animals either live in the riparian corridor or are frequent visitors. Loss of native vegetation leads to erosion, water pollution, faster water flow and flooding and less water seeping into the ground for natural storage. Increasing population in Sonoma County means that more natural stream sides are being cleared for human uses and stronger regulations are needed.
Questions & Answers about Riparian Protection in Sonoma County
During the General Plan Update process, County staff and the Citizen's Advisory Committee that worked on the draft recommended:
- Increasing the number of county streams protected
- Widening the protected area around each stream to 100' on each side, and 200' for the Russian River
- Decreasing the uses - like buildings, roads or crops - allowed within the corridor
To send the message to the Board of Supervisors that you agree with these increased protections, please click on the link below, fill out the 'postcard' and send it to the Sierra Club at PO Box 466, Santa Rosa CA 95402. For more information, call 544-7651. We'll take the postcards to the Supervisors.
Riparian Protection postcard
The Sonoma Group has submitted the following comments to the Planning Commission: