We’ve won big — Here’s what’s next

Bay Area voters’ approval of Measure AA is the biggest win for our Bay in decades, and it would never have happened without Save The Bay’s supporters. Our victory will mean cleaner water, more abundant wildlife, and greater climate change resilience for our Bay. Because of Measure AA, we’re on track to pass on a healthier and more vibrant Bay to our children and grandchildren.

It feels great to celebrate this amazing moment, but the truth is Save The Bay is just getting started with the next phase of our critical work. There is so much more to do.

Our Measure AA victory gives us enormous momentum to tackle the biggest threats to our region in the coming decades—pollution and climate change.

We have an ambitious strategy to tackle these head-on.

Measure AA will raise about 1/3 of the funds needed to restore 30,000 acres of wetlands. With your continued help, Save The Bay will lead the fight for federal funding to secure the rest of what’s necessary. The President and Congress should match Measure AA funds with major investments, just as they have in Chesapeake Bay and Puget Sound, especially because so much restoration here will occur within federal wildlife refuges.

We’ll also continue directly restoring Bay habitat by putting more volunteers to work improving the Bay. And as always, we’ll bring the best science to decisions on how the Bay adapts to climate change.

We’ll also boost our work to help cities reduce trash flowing into the Bay to zero by 2020. And while we have secured plastic bag bans in most Bay Area communities, bag manufacturers have blocked a statewide bag ban and forced a referendum vote on California’s November ballot.  We’ll play a leading role to win that statewide bag ban.

Our next step is to make Bay Area communities “Bay Smart.” That means we will be promoting nature-based solutions to stormwater pollution prevention, fresh water conservation, filtration, and storage – which low-impact development advocates call “green infrastructure.” It also means we will be supporting a broader set of sustainable and equitable development practices. These “Bay Smart” standards will reduce energy use and emissions of greenhouse gases that fuel climate change, address the disproportionate impacts of sea-level rise upon disadvantaged communities, and expand public access to the shoreline.

I’m excited about this work ahead of us, and encouraged that we have strengthened our movement by leading Measure AA to victory.  The partnerships we built and people we mobilized can do so much more together to protect and restore San Francisco Bay for wildlife and people.