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Tioga Pass, Sonora Pass closing this week

November 19th, 2018 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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With the first winter storm in the forecast this week, the National Park Service has announced that Tioga Pass (Highway 120 west) will close at 6:00pm tomorrow, Tuesday, November 20.

Tioga Pass will close tomorrow evening at 6:00pm due to incoming winter weather. Photo by Bartshe Miller from February 15, 2018.

In addition, Caltrans has announced that Ebbetts Pass (Highway 4) will close at 3:00pm tomorrow and Sonora Pass (Highway 108) will close at noon on Wednesday, November 21. Both agencies have noted that these closures are not necessarily the long-term seasonal closures yet. There are no expected re-opening times for the roads; that is weather-dependent.

Amazon will donate 5.5% of your purchase to the Mono Lake Committee

November 17th, 2018 by Andrew, Digital Engagement Coordinator
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The Mono Lake Committee online store has a wide selection of books and Mono Lake merchandise, but there are some items we don’t carry that you may search for on Amazon.

Bookmark monolake.org/amazon to dedicate 5% of your Amazon purchase to the Mono Lake Committee. You can also dedicate an additional 0.5% of your purchase to the Mono Lake Committee by registering for Amazon Smile.

You may be familiar with the Amazon Smile program, which allows you to designate a charitable organization of your choice to receive 0.5% of the price of your eligible Amazon purchases, but did you know you can have ten times the impact by simply following a special link before shopping on Amazon?

Since the Mono Lake Committee is an Amazon affiliate, visit monolake.org/amazon before adding items to your cart and the Mono Lake Committee will receive 5% of the price of your order as a donation from Amazon. To make it even easier … more »

The Information Center & Bookstore will be closed Thanksgiving Day

November 16th, 2018 by Lily, Information Center & Bookstore Manager
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The Mono Lake Committee Information Center & Bookstore will be closed Thanksgiving Day. On Friday we’ll resume our regular hours—open 9:00am to 5:00pm every day.

On Thanksgiving Day, we will be grateful for your generous donations, faithful support, visits to our Lee Vining headquarters, phone calls from far away, and most of all your love for Mono Lake. Thank you and happy Thanksgiving!

DWP takes unilateral land management action, causing litigation: Is dewatering of Long Valley meadows the first step in a new phase of water extraction?

November 15th, 2018 by Geoff, Executive Director
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The Mono Lake Committee celebrates its 40th anniversary this year. That means the Committee has been advocating for Mono Lake and its tributary streams for more than half the years that the Los Angeles Department of Water & Power (DWP) has been in the business of exporting water from the Mono Basin.

The Mono Lake Committee and our expert consultants, network of partners, and 16,000 members are always alert to threats to Mono Lake, its tributary streams, and surrounding lands. Photo by Bartshe Miller.

DWP has changed in many ways over those 40 years, some internally generated and many, like the protection of Mono Lake, resulting from intense advocacy efforts and new rules imposed by outside authorities. Institutional change has often been due to the citizens of Los Angeles requiring greater environmental responsibility from DWP, both directly and through elected city council members and mayors who have worked together with groups like the Committee to reach that goal. As a result Los Angeles is a leader in building a more sustainable and reliable water supply through conservation, reclamation, groundwater cleanup, and local supply.

The famously contentious relationship between DWP and the Eastern Sierra has changed as well. … more »

Give gifts that help Mono Lake by shopping in our online store

November 13th, 2018 by Lily, Information Center & Bookstore Manager
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As the holidays draw nearer, shopping in the Mono Lake Committee’s online store is a great way to support our work while also checking some items off your gift list. If you’re not already on our bookstore email list, sign up now to get a code for 10% off, plus special offers throughout the holiday season!

One hundred percent of the proceeds from our online store go toward protection, restoration, and education efforts here at Mono Lake; and we offer a selection of Mono Lake Committee-exclusive products that you can’t find anywhere else. You can also support Mono Lake while shopping on Amazon. Follow this link to make sure that 5% of your Amazon purchases benefits the Mono Lake Committee (that’s right—5%!).

Thank you for your continued support, and happy holidays!

On to the future: 40 years and rising

November 12th, 2018 by Sally, Board of Directors
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Editor’s note: To celebrate the Mono Lake Committee’s 40th anniversary in the Newsletter, Sally Gaines, co-founder and Board Chair, is writing a series of reflections on the past, present, and future of the organization.

Even if I squint or put on my reading glasses, most aspects of the future are impossible to foresee, as if the crystal ball is clouded with brine shrimp like the aquarium in the Mono Lake Committee Information Center & Bookstore.

Everyday technology and style is already beyond my understanding. Genetic engineering on plants, animals, and humans is a big unknown as is artificial intelligence, for just a couple examples. What is clear to me is that everything the Mono Lake Committee does today is with the future in mind. … more »

Fall 2018 Mono Lake Newsletter now online

November 9th, 2018 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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At the 40th anniversary storytelling roundtable held during the Defense Trust Weekend, listening to Sally Gaines, Martha Davis, Geoff McQuilkin, and Peter Vorster reminisce about the early days of the Mono Lake Committee, I had a sudden, clear thought:

What we’re doing—all of us, every day at Mono Lake—is defending the public trust.

The roundtable was held at the brand-new Pioneer Solar Pavilion in Hess Park, a project brought to life by the (extra) ordinary people of Lee Vining, who believe in a better future for Mono Lake and all who love it. They’re defending the public trust.

During the early days of the Committee’s efforts to save Mono Lake, even before the legal argument that the lake should be protected for the public good was articulated, Sally and David and the other founders were defending the public trust. … more »

Defending the public trust at Mono Lake

November 8th, 2018 by Geoff, Executive Director
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2018 Defender of the Trust Peter Vorster. Photo by Andrew Youssef.

The California Supreme Court begins its landmark 1983 Mono Lake decision with these powerful words: “The public trust is an affirmation of the duty of the state to protect the people’s common heritage of streams, lakes, marshlands and tidelands…”

Every other year, to celebrate the history of the public trust at Mono Lake, we organize a special three-day Defense Trust Weekend for the Mono Lake Committee’s high donors. The weekend is full of field trips, good food, and time spent with fellow Mono Lake enthusiasts and Committee Board and staff.

This year we had an open house in the Committee office, a Rush Creek tour with experts including … more »

Book signing at the Mono Lake Committee on Friday, November 9–Campfire Stories: Tales from America’s National Parks

November 6th, 2018 by Lily, Information Center & Bookstore Manager
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Photo of the editors courtesy of Dave & Ilyssa Kyu.

Join us this Friday, November 9, from 3:00–5:00pm at the Mono Lake Committee Information Center & Bookstore for a book reading and signing with editors Dave & Ilyssa Kyu, as they present their new compilation Campfire Stories: Tales from America’s National Parks.

Campfire Stories brings together tales about our national parks—some by well-known writers such as John Muir, Bill Bryson, and Terry Tempest Williams—with other essays from pioneer diaries and stories that have been passed down through generations of indigenous peoples.

Stop by on Friday to meet the authors, enjoy excerpts from their book, and pick up your own copy—we hope to see you there!

Registration open for 2019 Mono Lake winter field seminars

November 1st, 2018 by Elin, Communications Coordinator
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Registration is now open for the three winter field seminars taking place in January and February next year! Use the mobile-friendly registration system to sign up from your phone or tablet wherever you are.

South Tufa, pre-sunrise. Photo courtesy of Chris Decker.

The winter seminars include: Mono Lake by Moonlight, January 18–20, 2019 with Joe Decker; Winter Starry Skies Over Mono Lake, February 1–3, 2019 with Joe Decker; and Winter Ecology of the Mono Basin, February 9, 2019 with Nora Livingston.

If you’d prefer to call and sign up, we’re here answering the phones Monday through Friday from 9:00am to 5:00pm: (760) 647-6595. We hope to see you here this winter!

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The Mono Lake Committee is a non-profit 501(c)(3) organization.