OFPC once again has the great honor of working alongside dedicated, passionate and fiercely smart advocates for a environmentally healthy and food secure Oakland. Our collaborative proposal for the expansion of Priority Conservation Areas (PCAs) that include urban greening factors and food security as a priority was approved unanimously by the Planning Commission.
The map presented by planning staff was a deeply collaborative creation with community outreach through key organizing agencies Oakland Food Policy Council (OFPC), Climate Action Coalition (OCAC), Urban ReLeaf, Merritt College Environmental Program and the West Oakland Environmental Indicators Project. In addition we now a map that reflects priority concerns such as low income, low access to food, elevated rates of particulate air pollution, communities of concern and other key factors. However the PCA project unfolds the map can serve as a tool for continued community partnership with the city’s planning department.
As always, one victory is a step in a larger process and much remains to be done. We are thrilled to have the support of the Planning Commission in the next steps of forming an community advisory committee with guidelines for project funding prioritization. The next big step is presenting these plans to the Community Economic Development (CED) Committee of City Council. The date is to be determined. We will announce it and hope to see you there!
What can you do now?
OFPC’s recommendation for Edible Greenways will be heard by the Oakland Planning Commission this Wednesday, April 15th at 6PM! Hearing Room 1 of City Hall. The meeting starts at 6:00 and the item is fifth on the agenda. The agenda and Planning Staff Report can be viewed here (click). We encourage supporters to let the Planning Commission know you support OFPC’s proposal for including the following designations within the proposed PCAs:
1) Priority “Communities Of Concern” Urban Greening Target Zones: Communities that are disproportionately burdened by multiple negative environmental impacts of pollution should be the foci for urban greening and for efforts to improve healthy food security through urban agriculture.
2) Citywide Parklands With Overall Potential For Supporting Community-Accessible Urban Agriculture: Adopt a policy goal of a “minimum” 10% of existing parklands be made available for community-accessible urban agriculture (a great strategy to convert high water use lawns to lower water consumption).
3) Large Vacant Lands With Potential For Urban Agriculture: As with existing parklands, while it is not the OFPC’s expectation that all sites be used for urban agriculture but rather in so far as they are suitable and identified for urban greening, they have potential and this attribute is critical to map in the context of local food security planning and investment. We support the designation of lots that are 3 acres in size or larger for urban agriculture potential.
4) Creek Watershed Buffers: These proposed greenway corridors – already strongly articulated in prior City Plans- also provide unique watershed habitat for targeting new trees (including fruit trees), “edible landscaping” and floodplain agriculture.
You can access a support letter draft here!
Oakland Food Policy Council has been a proud member of the HOPE Collaborative since 2008!
HOPE Collaborative, is a group of public agencies, organizations, and Oakland residents working together to create community driven and sustainable environmental changes in our local food system and built environment that will significantly improve the health and wellness of East and West Oakland residents most impacted by social inequities. On April 19, they are throwing their first ever fundraiser at Pizzaiolo. OFPC members and other great folks will be there! We invite you to join us to enjoy a delicious prix fixe meal, wine included. It will be a great event and benefit a cause we all care deeply about. Tickets are $60 and can be purchased here: Brown Paper Tickets
Hours of the event:
5:00pm Cocktail hour
5:30pm-7:30pm 1st Seating
8:00pm-10:00pm 2nd seating
10:00pm-11:00ish Cocktails continue