Major excavation & fill destroying wetlands and seasonal tributaries of sediment-impacted Sonoma Creek.

This post was sent to the San Francisco District of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers. I attempted to email this, but their email form cut off most of the email.

NOTE: All images can be enlarged by clicking on them.


I emailed your regulatory link last week about construction and excavation activities in El Verano that will most certainly impact Sonoma Creek less than a mile from the affected areas.

My message contained a link to this Corps map and indicated the general area of the activities:

I have not heard from anyone.

I’ve uploaded a number of photos of this and other impacted areas to the web since then.

The ones below — taken on Friday, July 28, 2017 (except two which note they were taken July 23) — illustrate just two sites of many such in this area.

All the photos, below, look toward the east.

The two photos below are on the east side of Orange Avenue Between Grove and Solano.

The area is soggy much of the year — has persistent standing water in rainy season — and drains to seasonal creeks to the left (south) and east. It has taken more than three feet of fill to raise the building site above the water level.




The two photos, below, are of a site on the east side of Orange Avenue Between Grove and Craig. This site, too, has been too soggy to build on without fill.

The first one below shows a substantial seasonal stream on that begins at the lower left of the photo and runs diagonally to the right (south) side of the photo and then along the fence and trees.

As you can see, it is impossible to see the building site because of the fill already dumped.



Below is a July 23 photo that shows another view of the seasonal creek — the channel is 2 to 3 feet deep at the shoulder of Orange Avenue — and runs from the foreground through the middle of the fence posts and pretty much straight below the excavator near the fence.



Below is a wider view of the site with fill in progress:


And below is a wider view from the north side of the property, looking east (taken July 23)


These sites — along with others in this area — have not only destroyed habitat, but also eliminated those seasonal runoff areas that filter sediment running off from the hills to the west.

This situation means that the seasonal streams in both cases will not drop their sediment loads here, but be carried directly to Sonoma Creek which is already heavily impacted and less than a mile away.

I would appreciate a reply stating whether these are areas of concern, and if so, what might be the appropriate action.

As I stated in my email last week, I will be happy to give you a tour of these and similar areas that are being adversely impacted and which will make Sonoma Creek even less habitable for salmon and other aquatic species.

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