by Bill Swindell
A new regulation aimed at improving the water quality of two tributaries that run into San Pablo Bay means vineyard owners in those watersheds will have to obtain new permits under more rigorous guidelines for their storm water runoff.
In approving the new rule last month, members of the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board said they were concerned that vineyards could be discharging sediment and pesticides into the watershed that would, among other things, trigger erosion and threaten fish habitat.
by Celcile Ruffino
Veraison Underway in Napa Valley
According to the Napa Valley Grapegrowers (NVG), veraison, an annual benchmark in the winegrape growing season, is officially underway. Known as the onset of ripening, veraison marks the colorful transition from grape growth to grape ripening, resulting in several changes in fruit development. They not only change color, but they also begin to increase in weight, volume, and sugar content.
by Cynthnia Sweeney
Vineyard owners in the Napa River and Sonoma Creek watersheds are facing new regulations after a decision by the San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board meeting July 12.
The decision is the result of a lengthy environmental-impact report years in the making that addresses protection of species and habitat in the area.
by Barry Eberling
Grape growers in the Napa River and Sonoma Creek watersheds face new regulations designed to help reduce sediment eroding into waterways where it can hurt fish.
The San Francisco Bay Regional Water Quality Control Board on Wednesday passed regulations that have been years in the making. Growers will have to prepare farm plans to control sediment, nutrients and other materials that can run off during storms from vineyards and dirt roads.
by Esther Mobley
Wake-up time is 4:30 a.m. for Jesus Angel Sanchez Victoria and Cesar Alegria Ruiz. It’s early — but then again, everyone wakes up early at the River Ranch Farmworker Housing Center in St. Helena, where breakfast is served between 3 and 6 a.m.
Before they leave for their vineyard jobs, Ruiz and Victoria grab a sandwich or a burrito from the River Ranch kitchen. When their workday with Corona Vineyard Management ends — often around 4 p.m., depending on how hot it gets — it’s back to River Ranch. They spend their evenings doing laundry, listening to music, playing basketball and, every night, calling their families.