BlueRibbon Coalition BRC: Study Restores Hope for Reasonable Clear Creek Plan

Discussion in 'Land Use News' started by BlueRibbon Coalition, Mar 23, 2011.

  1. BlueRibbon Coalition

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    Don Amador, BRC Western Representative
    - Phone: (925) 625-6287
    - Fax: (925) 625-5309
    - Email: brdon@sharetrails.org
    - Webpage: http://www.sharetrails.org/staff/#DonA

    Date: 03/23/2011

    SACRAMENTO, CA (March 23)--A national trail-based recreation group believes a new asbestos study strengthens the calls for restoration of some public access to a popular central California destination. A broad array of organizations raised concerns about the original "science" used by the federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) as the basis for the 2008 emergency closure of the 75 thousand acre Clear Creek Management Area (CCMA). The BLM claimed that uncertainty about human health risk from naturally occurring asbestos (NOA) left little option but to close CCMA.

    The new science report released today by the Off-Highway Motor Vehicle Recreation Division of California State Parks suggests otherwise. The study states, " ...this risk [health-risk from NOA while using OHVs in CCMA] is similar to the lifetime risk of death for smoking less than one cigarette over the same one year period. Other recreational activities such as swimming, hiking, and snow skiing are over 100-fold more dangerous."

    Don Amador, Western Representative for the BlueRibbon Coalition (BRC), states, "I believe the state OHV Division did the public a great service by having a team of experts perform additional studies to assess the health risks from recreational exposure to NOA. This study has state-wide implications since NOA is found in 43 California counties and in various State Park, National Park, Forest Service and Bureau of Land Management units."

    "BRC believes this new information will be helpful as recreation groups and other public land interests try to work with BLM Director Bob Abbey and other officials toward a reasonable solution at Clear Creek and beyond. It is ridiculous to close public lands over the fear of minute theoretical risks. We know and accept greater risks upon leaving the trailhead - the public does not want handrails on our trails." Amador continues.

    "I want to thank all of the OHV partners who continue to work in a collaborative manner to reopen CCMA. Those organizations include: the Friends of Clear Creek Management Area, Timekeepers Motorcycle Club, Salinas Ramblers Motorcycle Club, California Off Road Vehicle Association, California Association of Four Wheel Drive Clubs, American Motorcyclist Association, BlueRibbon Coalition, and American Motorcyclist Association District 36, " Amador concludes.

    Link to CA OHV Study/News Release:
    http://ohv.parks.ca.gov/

    Link to July 8 BRC Legal Department Letter Questioning EPA/BLM Science
    http://www.sharetrails.org/releases/?story=652&filter=media

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    The BlueRibbon Coalition is a national recreation group that champions responsible recreation, and encourages individual environmental stewardship. With members in all 50 states, BRC is focused on building enthusiast involvement with organizational efforts through membership, outreach, education, and collaboration among recreationists. 1-800-BlueRib - www.sharetrails.org

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