Friends of the Desert #14

Friends of the Desert
E-News Issue #14
September 18, 2002
*A project of the Coalition for Sonoran Desert Protection*
Please visit our website for more information: http://www.sonorandesert.org

If you know of anyone who would be interested in receiving this
newsletter, or if you would like to be removed from this list, please
reply to csdp@azstarnet.com.

IN THIS ISSUE: 
* New Coalition Reports 
* Coalition Forum, September 21!! 
* Book Signing Benefit for Coalition, September 25 
* Ironwood Comments Needed! 
* Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan Update: Upcoming SDCP
Steering Committee Meetings, Marana MOU and HCP, Pima County RFP,
Conservation Community Preferred Alternative 

* New Coalition Reports
Since the beginning of September, the Coalition has released two
reports. The Coalition first released Economic Benefits of
Protecting Natural Resources in the Sonoran Desert, prepared for the
Coalition by Ernie Niemi of ECONorthwest in Eugene, Oregon.
Coalition members have met with editorial boards from the local press
and gave a presentation to the SDCP Steering Committee on this topic
at the September 14 meeting.

The second report, Protecting the Sonoran Desert: An Exploration of
Open Space and HCP Funding Mechanisms with Recommendations for Pima
County, is a collaborative project with the Sonoran Institute,
Arizona Open Land Trust, Arizona-Sonora Desert Museum, and The Nature
Conservancy. The Coalition presented this report to the SDCP
Steering Committee at the September 4 meeting.

Both of these reports are available on our website at
http://www.sonorandesert.org. For a hard copy, please call the Coalition at
(520) 388-9925. 

* Coalition Forum, September 21, 9a to noon
"The Potential Economic Benefits of Conservation"
Exploring the Relationship between Environmental Protection and the
Economy
Saturday, September 21
9 a.m. – 12 Noon
UA School of Law, Ares Auditorium
Room 146, 1201 E. Speedway Blvd.

The Coalition for Sonoran Desert Protection (CSDP) and Environmental
Law Society are presenting a free public forum for all who are
interested in the interrelation between the economy and resource
conservation. Speakers will address why the old "environment vs.
economy" dichotomy is outdated, the economic benefits of conservation
and a healthy environment, and other issues of land use and the
economy.

Featured will be Ernie Niemi, a national expert on economic impact
analysis and an economist with ECONorthwest of Eugene, Oregon. Ernie
will describe his findings for a report for the Coalition he has
authored, "Economic Benefits of Protecting Natural Resources in the
Sonoran Desert," which can be found at http://www.sonorandesert.org.

Also speaking will be John Carruthers, an Assistant Professor at the
University of Arizona’s School of Planning, describing his research
on the relationship between land development patterns and the cost of
infrastructure and services. Dennis Cory, Professor of Agricultural
and Resource Economics at the University of Arizona, will address the
economics of natural environments.

Discussion among the audience and speakers will follow.

An RSVP is recommended to ensure a seat. Contact Susan Shobe at 388-
9925 or csdp@azstarnet.com for more information or to RSVP. 

* Book Signing Benefit for Coalition, September 25
On September 25, 2002, from 6-8 p.m., Craig Childs, author of The
Secret Knowledge of Water, will be signing his new book, Soul of
Nowhere, at Silverbell Trading, 7119 N. Oracle. A portion of all
sales proceeds from that evening will be given as a donation to the
Coalition for Sonoran Desert Protection. Please contact Keith Kleber
at 797-6852 for additional information. 

* Ironwood Forest National Monument Comments Needed!
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) is in the process of developing a
management plan for the IFNM. But the Monument is threatened by many
activities. Please send your written comments by Sept. 27, 2002 to
Bureau of Land Management, Tucson Field Office, 12661 E. Broadway,
Tucson, AZ 85748. Ask BLM to protect the wildlife, wild places, and
cultural resources from increased roads, mining activities,
overgrazing, unregulated target shooting, and development and to
focus their efforts on restoring and building the integrity of this
area that is a critical piece of the SDCP. Please check our website
at http://www.sonorandesert.org for more detailed talking points. 

* Sonoran Desert Conservation Plan Update
**Upcoming SDCP Steering Committee Meetings
The SDCP Steering Committee has begun meeting again after their
summer off. The committee will continue hearing from stakeholder
groups regarding their visions of an SDCP preferred alternative and
working toward a recommendation for the Pima County Board of
Supervisors, due next Spring. The next two meetings are Saturday,
October 5, 8:30 to 11:30 AM, at the University Marriott, 880 E. 2nd
Street, and Wednesday, October 23, 6:00 to 9:00 PM, at the Pima
County Public Works Bldg, 201 N. Stone, Basement Rm. C. Visit our
website periodically, http://www.sonorandesert.org, for an updated Steering
Committee schedule.
**Marana MOU and HCP
Good news! Near the end of August, Marana and Pima County signed a
Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) that they will be working together
on regional habitat conservation planning. Marana has begun
preparing its habitat conservation plan (HCP), which is expected to
be a 2-year process, and will be adopting the County’s scientific
work as a foundation. Carolyn Campbell, Executive Director for the
Coalition, has been asked to sit on Marana’s 10-member Stakeholder
Advisory Group for their HCP, as has Jenny Neeley from Defenders of
Wildlife.
**Pima County RFP
The Pima County Board of Supervisors approved a Request for Proposals
from the County Administrator to seek proposals for an outside firm
to conduct an economic analysis of the Section 10 permit for the
SDCP. The County is now receiving bids and expects to hire a firm,
with the consulting help of a citizen committee, in October.
**Conservation Community Preferred Alternative
The Coalition, along with other conservation groups on the SDCP
Steering Committee, continues to work toward development of a
recommendation to present to the entire Steering Committee at one of
the October meetings. It is hoped that the Steering Committee could
eventually adopt the conservation community’s recommendation as
the "preferred alternative" to be sent on to the Board of Supervisors.

***If you enjoy this newsletter and would like to support our work,
please send contributions to the Coalition for Sonoran Desert
Protection, 300 E. University Blvd., Ste. 120, Tucson, AZ 85705.
Thank You!***

Susan Shobe
Assistant Director
Coalition for Sonoran Desert Protection
300 E. University Blvd., #120
Tucson, AZ 85705
(520) 388-9925
csdp@azstarnet.com

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