The early storm event that began on January 7 with over 5 inches of rain in some regions of the Lake Tahoe Basin before turning to snow, delivered a massive amount of runoff to the Lake in a short period of time. During this storm event the Tahoe RCD Stormwater Monitoring Program measured the highest flows ever recorded at all eight monitoring locations since monitoring began in 2013. Our Tahoe Valley site, located off Tahoe Keys Blvd, measured 1.5 million cubic feet of flow, nearly 90% of the flow that was observed throughout the whole 2016 water year!
The Tahoe RCD monitors urban stormwater runoff around the Lake Tahoe Basin, providing the science that helps guide stormwater managers in environmental improvement project design and informs them if projects and management strategies have been successful in reducing pollutant loading to Lake Tahoe. Each stormwater sample is analyzed for fine sediment particles (FSP), nitrogen, and phosphorus to estimate nutrient and sediment loading from urban stormwater runoff. This last storm produced over 18 million gallons of runoff just from the sites we monitor alone. All data collected throughout a “water year”, October to September, is compiled into an annual monitoring report, given to stormwater managers and posted on the Tahoe RCD website. With successful implementation of environmental improvement projects that promote infiltration of runoff before it gets discharged to the lake, we have had the pleasure of retiring two of our urban stormwater monitoring sites as we saw significant reductions in pollutant loading from these locations.
The Stormwater Monitoring Program is continuously looking for ways to improve stormwater monitoring efforts. New for the 2017 monitoring season, the majority of our sites were outfitted with remote monitoring equipment, allowing us to monitor these sites with smartphones. The new remotely accessible equipment effectively allows our team to view what is happening at our monitoring sites in real time, and determine the best way to manage each individual site during storm events. Our scientific monitoring team is deployed in the most inclement of weather, because good science doesn’t take a break. The severity of this recent storm brought downed trees, dangerous road conditions, and a wealth of water. However, with these remote monitoring systems in place, our team was able to monitor all of our sites without making extensive trips into the field from the safety and comfort of our homes. This new remote technology allows for more reliable data management and easier data reporting.
The Landscape Conservation Program is seeking input from past participants of the program in order to continue to serve the community with high quality services into the future.
If you have received services through the the Landscape Conservation Program in the past, we please ask that you take 5 minutes of your time to fill out the online survey at the link below.
Your feedback is highly valued and is integral to the continued development of the program. We thank all that participated this summer for for another great field season.
Come join and join us for a night of hands-on activities and presentations about the past, present, and future of aquatic invasive species control and prevention efforts.
This year’s annual public forum will be held from 5:30pm – 7:30pm at the Tahoe Center for Environmental Sciences in Incline Village which hosts a variety of hands on exhibits such as: an invasive species station filled with various invasive species and a timeline of introduction, including a fish tank displays with live native and invasive fish species. Step onto the boat exhibit and learn about the secchi disk and how it is used to describe Lake clarity, or take a tour of the hands-on information about Lake Tahoe and its history. Enjoy refreshments as you tour the interactive booths and learn about the numerous actions and ongoing Science that is being done to protect Lake Tahoe while the kids take part in an invasive scavenger hunt. Presentations will give participants information about Eyes on the Lake and invasive weed identification, control projects planned for 2016 and beyond, as well as a presentation from the Tahoe Keys Property Owners Association about their role in tackling invasive species (see schedule below).
6:00 – Welcome “Tahoe Keepers Video”
6:05 – “Eyes on the Lake” Invasive Weed Information
6:20 – Aquatic Invasive Species Control and Prevention Programs
6:35 – Tahoe Keys Invasive Weed Plan
For more information or to RSVP contact Sarah Bauwens 530-543-1501 ext.126 or email@example.com.
Contact: South Lake Tahoe Fire Chief, Jeff Meston (530) 542-6160
- Vegetation surrounding a building or structure is fuel for a fire. Even the building or structure is considered fuel. Research and experience have shown that fuels reduction around a building or structure increases the probability of it surviving a wildfire. Good defensible space allows firefighters to protect and save buildings or structures safely without facing unacceptable risk to their lives. Fuels reduction through vegetation management is the key to creating good defensible space.
- Properties with greater fire hazards will require more clearing. Clearing requirements will be greater for those lands with steeper terrain, larger and denser fuels, fuels that are highly volatile, and in locations subject to frequent fires.
- Creation of defensible space through vegetation management usually means reducing the amount of fuel around the building or structure, providing separation between fuels,and/or re shaping retained fuels by trimming.
- In all cases, fuels reduction means arranging the tree, shrubs and other fuel sources in a way that makes it difficult for fire to transfer from one fuel source to another. It does not mean cutting down all trees and shrubs, or creating a bare ring of earth across the property.
- A homeowner’s defensible space clearing is limited to 100 feet away from his or her building or structure or to the property line, whichever is less, and limited to their land.
- Homeowners who complete fuel reduction activities that remove or dispose of vegetation are require to comply with all federal, state or local environmental protection laws and obtain permits when necessary.
South Lake Tahoe, Calif. – Lake Tahoe’s fire departments are reminding people that it’s dangerous to dispose of fireplace, wood stove or barbecue ashes in improper containers and locations. Embers, often concealed in what appears to be cold ashes, can remain hot enough to kindle a fire for several days. It is recommended to wait at least 96 hours and/or 4 days before disposing ashes.
To safely dispose of ashes:
- Put discarded ashes in a heavy metal container, douse with water, and cover with fitted metal lid.
- Store the container outside and away from structures, decks, fences, wood piles and other combustible materials.
- Never use a vacuum cleaner to pick up ashes.
- Never put ashes in bags or boxes.
- Contact your local trash collection agency for their disposal recommendations after ashes have cooled and embers are out.
As the fall and winter heating season approaches, please remember to regularly inspect and clean your chimney. Soot and creosote are combustible materials that accumulate inside chimneys and create a dangerous fire hazard unless they are removed. Just recently, a lakeside home in Zephyr Cove was destroyed by an escaped fire due to a malfunctioning wood burning appliance https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MHJOMG51tp0.
If you have an older wood stove or fireplace in your home, please consider upgrading it with a more efficient heat source that can also help improve Lake Tahoe’s air and water quality.
Newer wood stoves that are EPA compliant have catalytic converters that pull many particulates out of the smoke before it is emitted. Similarly, gas stoves emit significantly less pollutants. Replacing inefficient wood heaters saves heat while protecting the Lake. Rebates are also available to help people replace their older, inefficient wood heaters and fireplaces. More information is available at http://www.trpa.org/permitting/homeowner-info/wood-stoves/.
Approved ash disposal can (photo courtesy of Meeks Lumber)
Other general fire safety tips for the home heating season:
- Make sure you have working smoke alarms on every level of your home, outside each sleeping area, and inside each bedroom. Test alarms at least once a month.
- Keep anything that can burn at least three feet from space heaters and other heat sources.
- Never leave the kitchen when something is cooking.
- Keep candles and matches out of the reach of children.
- Extinguish all fires, even candles, when you leave the room or go to sleep.
- Remember to call 911 for all fires, no matter how small.
People who properly can their ashes and follow these other fire safety tips can save lives and property. Please contact your local fire agency for more information.
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