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Re: Pollution Prevention through Zoning

At 08:35 AM 8/11/99 -0700, you wrote:
>Does anyone have ideas for the City of Oakland, CA as they seek to
>P2 into zoning regulations?


Specific technologies or standards can, and probably should, be
incorporated into zoning ordinances, and zoning can be used to restrict
what can be sited in an area -- such as  prohibitng potential groundwater
polluting operations from locating within a municipal wellhead protection
zone. But there is a broader P2 issue connected to  zoning  and that is
land use and growth management    I would argue that without land use
planning and growth management, these other P2 measures are merely closing
the proverbial "barn door after the cows got out".  I believe that good
land use planning and growth management are inherently  a form of pollution
prevention.  And that our current system of  sprawl and reliance on market
force as the primary driver for land use is the opposite. ...more pavement,
more vehicle miles, more clueless rubanites with their SUVs and lawn
services, more air emmisions, more run-off and storm water going untreated
into water bodies, more lawn chemicals, more impermeable surfaces
affecting both groundwater recharge and surface water ecology (at 25%
impermable surface in a watershed, the stream ecology is compromised and at
30% it is destroyed due to storm water flooding and siltation among other
things.) These low density of housing and business mean that public
transportation is not cost-efficent contributing to more air emmissions and
reliance on foreign oil supplies. (So just how many Americans are we
willing to send to war to protect our" right "to drive a  car?) 

It is also impairing our food production system - a 30 kilometer increase
in all metropolitatan areas in the Great Lakes Basin will remove 66% of the
remaining cropland...some of the best in the world. Most of those cities
started because of proximity to rich soils and prime ag production.  Then
ag productions is moved to more marginal, and usually highly erodable
lands,  requiring more water, fertilizers and pesticides. This of course,
increases ag non-point source pollution and food costs.  The natural
systems, like forests that can help purify air and water are reduced and
those benefits are  also reduced.  

As P2 practioners we need to get involved in land use and growth management
issues and support not only zoning changes but land use tools like Purchase
of Development Rights and Lot Credits.  I believe that there is a natural
alliance between P2 and the folks working on land use and growth
management. and we need to facilitate more active dialog between these

Liz Nevers
Community Resource Development Agent
UW-Extension -  Sauk County
West Square Administration Building
505 Broadway
Baraboo, WI  53913-2404

Phone: 608-355-3252
Fax:      608-355-3550
Email:  enevers@facstaff.wisc.edu