Lake Tahoe, CA/NV -A measure to advance environmental restoration and forest management activities in the Lake Tahoe Basin yesterday passed out of the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee. The legislation would reauthorize the Lake Tahoe Restoration Act, originally passed in 2000, which has helped advance one of the most comprehensive watershed restoration programs in the nation-the Lake Tahoe Environmental Improvement Program, or EIP.
The bill was introduced last year by U.S. Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Harry Reid (D-NV), Dean Heller (R-NV), and to provide critical tools for programs to improve water clarity, reduce wildfire threat, and combat invasive species at Lake Tahoe. A complementary bill has been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives by Congressmen Mark Amodei (R-NV). TRPA Executive Director Joanne S. Marchetta hailed the Senate Committee’s announcement.
“The Basin-wide efforts to restore Lake Tahoe are emboldened by the leadership and support shown by the Committee’s action,” Marchetta said. “The foundation of the restoration program is a shared commitment among property owners, local and state agencies, and the federal government to protect a national treasure. We applaud the continued work by our congressional delegation in Washington to shepherd this important legislation.”
Senator Boxer, Chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, commented yesterday on the Committee’s passage of this and several other measures.
“I am pleased the Committee has approved these common-sense bills that protect vital habitat, invest in needed research, reform critical programs and restore important water bodies, such as Lake Tahoe, which is one of the most treasured places in my home state,” Senator Boxer said in a press release. “I look forward to working with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle as we move forward with this legislation and the six nominations that were approved by the Committee today.”
The second phase of the EIP builds on more than a decade of successful restoration at Lake Tahoe credited with a host of environmental improvements such as flattening the decline of lake clarity loss.
Since 1997, EIP accomplishments include:
* Fuels reduction treatment of 54,444 acres
* Wildlife habitat improvements on 15,850 acres of land, including 1,509 acres of Stream Environment Zones
* Acquisition of 3,103 acres of sensitive land
* Addition of 2,579 linear feet of shoreline for public access
* Creation of 134 miles of bike and pedestrian routes
The Tahoe Regional Planning Agency leads the cooperative effort to preserve, restore, and enhance the unique natural and human environment of the Lake Tahoe Region, while improving local communities, and people’s interactions with our irreplaceable environment. For additional information, call Jeff Cowen at (775) 589-5278 or email him at firstname.lastname@example.org<mailto:email@example.com>.