Opinion » Letters

Oso Flaco isn't for development


The Oso Flaco Lake region is recognized as one of the most sensitive and valuable ecological regions in California. Its coastal freshwater dune lakes are geologically rare, and its vegetation is home to a number of rare plant species. By their nature, these species are very sensitive to human disturbance. Why then has the Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area proposed to increase mechanized and human activities in this area?

The public is allowed only daytime foot traffic around Oso Flaco Lake, much of it confined to boardwalks. This restricts human intrusion and is one of the reasons its natural values persist. Most visitors engage in quieter activities of walking, birding, and fishing. More intense activities would degrade these natural values.

The park's public works plan does not recognize the virtue of these restrictions. They seek to increase vehicular traffic through road construction and increase human impacts by converting agricultural land to overnight camping areas, and they want to pierce vegetated areas with off-highway vehicle trails! Don't the authors of these intrusive plans recognize the sensitive nature of this unique natural area?

The answer is obviously, no! And my answer to their proposal is also no, no! A thousand times no to any plans that do not recognize and seek to preserve the quiet, sensitive nature of this environmental gem.

How many times do we have to go over this? How many dollars have to be wasted to teach these planners the same lesson? How pathetically ineducable are they?

So, let's try one more time: Oso Flaco is too sensitive and too valuable for your destructive plans. Go somewhere! Get educated! Return with a plan that incorporates the preservation of these natural virtues or don't come back at all!

Mick Bondello

Arroyo Grande

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