Kern county

Comité Lost Hills En Accion Meeting With Caltrans

Organizing For Community Safety in Lost Hills, California

April 8, 2019

Last month, the Comité Lost Hills En Accion, a group of community members that I work with to advocate for public health and community wellbeing measures in Lost Hills, invited representatives from Caltrans to do a presentation on the expansion of Highway 46. Highway 46, which runs through the Lost Hills community, is also known as a "Blood Alley" for the high number of motor-related deaths that take place on it. The current Caltrans proposal is to expand the highway from 2 lanes to 4 lanes.

Recent headlines on California Groundwater

Behind Those California Water Headlines: Problem Solved! Let's All Go Home!?

July 6, 2016

What's behind the recent headlines on California groundwater? Does a new study suggest the problem is solved, and that we can all go home? Er...no! 

Helen and Cesar Chavez with six of their eight children in 1969 near Delano, California. Standing from left are Anna, Eloise and Sylvia. Seated from left are Paul, Elizabeth and Anthony. (Photo: United Farm Workers)

Remémbrense — In Memory of Helen Fabela Chavez, 1928 to 2016

June 13, 2016

On June 6, 2016 we said goodbye to Helen Fabela Chavez, a first generation Mexican American, wife, mother, activist, union bookkeeper and visionary, born in Brawley, California. 

Rosanna Esparza (center) with residents in Kern County

Lost Hills Residents Don't Want Company-Sponsored Gym Memberships—They Want Clean Air and Clean Water

May 26, 2016

This blog is in response to David Brooks’ recent op-ed published in the New York Times on May 17, focused on improving the health and lives of residents in Lost Hills, California, a community in which I work with Clean Water Action. We submitted a letter to the editor to the paper in response to Mr. Brooks' article, but the editors chose not to publish it. Still, you might want to read Mr. Brooks' piece before you dive in, here. 

Still In the Pits

Speaking up from the belly of the oil beast

March 18, 2016

Kern County is the "belly of the beast" for the California's oil and gas industry, where almost 80 percent of the state's oil is produced. It’s where the vast majority of the environmental and health fallout is.

Still In the Pits

Dumping toxic oil and gas wastewater into unlined pits—How is this still a thing?

March 10, 2016

For some reason, California STILL allows oil and gas companies to dump their toxic wastewater in open and unlined pits.

Rosanna in a respirator in front of a Bakersfield's sign

Wearing a respirator in Bakersfield—where the town motto is "life as it should be."

February 23, 2016

Lately I’ve been thinking about signs I’ve seen scattered around neighborhoods in Bakersfield with the proclamation, “Bakersfield – Life As It Should Be.” They’re kidding, right?

An oil well near an almond farm in Shafter CA

California green lighted more irrigation with oil wastewater

December 18, 2015

Last week, regulators approved the expanded use of oil wastewater for irrigation of crops in Kern County.