Community Groups in Sacramento Launch Effort for Sustainable Urban Farming
On May 14th a coalition of residents, non-profits, and governement officials launched a campaign to create new opportunities for local sustainable farming in the City of Sacramento. This is the next step in a series of efforts around food and sustainability issues for groups trained by Pesticide Watch in Sacramento. With dozens of local residents gathered at Oak Park Sol Garden on Broadway in Sacramento these local leaders introduced their proposal to make sustainable urban farming a reality in the self-proclaimed farm-to-fork capitol.
The language for the newly proposed ordinance was inspired by borrowing from programs from other cities around California and the United States. Some of the changes include:
- Allowing gardens and farms in all zones
- Improve policies to ease the process of establishing urban farm stands and community markets
- Allow the raising of animals when the lot size and infrastructure is appropriate
- Make unused public land available for urban agriculture projects
- Reduce property tax and water rates for certain lots used for urban agriculture
- Promote sustainable water and agricultural practices.
Pesticide Watch Helps Bring Attention to New Report by California Department of Public Health
California health officials just completed a groundbreaking analysis of pesticide use near schools that raises concerns about what the state’s schoolchildren are being exposed to. While California currently tracks pesticide use on school grounds, this report points to the problem of harmful and difficult-to-control agricultural pesticides being used, sometimes in very high quantities, in close proximity to where children learn and play. They are being exposed to pesticides linked to learning disabilities, falling IQs, and childhood cancers. And Latino children are more likely to attend schools in regions with the heaviest pesticide use.
For more information read our full press release.