Zanja de Cota Creek is an environmentally and culturally valuable natural resource that historically provided over-summering habitat for steelhead trout and water for the Chumash Reservation. The Santa Ynez Chumash Environmental Office (SYCEO) is concerned with nearby pesticide and nutrient uses by growers in the Zanja de Cota Creek Watershed. Land use changes throughout the area appear to have led to increased pesticide and nutrient application. Tribal members are concerned about health impacts that could result from this increase in chemical usage. The funding will be used to perform a watershed-scale assessment of agricultural and vinicultural land uses in order to quantify impacts to the watershed. The assessment will first identify pesticides and nutrients currently used by growers that may be present in runoff. The frequency and timing of chemical applications will be assessed as will the potential fate of those chemicals entering receiving waters. The SYCEO will use the information generated by this project to inform their outreach with regulators, land owners, and agricultural and vinicultural operators. This project is the first step in understanding these impacts and outlining actionable steps to reduce future pesticide and nutrient loading to the watershed.
Santa Ynez Band of Chumash Indians – Environmental Department
Assessment of Agricultural and Vinicultural Land Use Impacts on the Zanja de Cota Creek Watershed
California Watershed Protection Fund, 2019
Water Resources/Watershed Protection
Santa Barbara County