State OKs forest-to-vineyard plan in Sonoma County
| by Brett Wilkison
May 8, 2012
Santa Rosa Press Democrat
State forestry officials on Tuesday approved a controversial timber-to-vineyard conversion project in northwest Sonoma County, following through with a decision expected months ago.
The decision on what is considered the largest timber-to-vineyard project in state history clears the most significant regulatory hurdle facing Artesa Vineyards and Winery.
The Napa-based vintner, owned by the Spanish wine giant Grupo Codorniu, wants to turn 116 acres into chardonnay and pinot noir vineyards on 324 acres of second-growth forestland, former orchards and grazed meadows just east of Annapolis. Another 30 acres would be cleared for a reservoir, roads and a corporation yard. . .
The approval came over the objections of a number of environmental groups, local Indian tribes and some neighbors, who have voiced concerns about harm to water, wildlife, archeological sites and disturbance of the rural landscape. . .
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State OKs forest-to-vineyard plan
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Artesa Winery vineyard conversion
CAL FIRE approved the Final Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for Artesa Winery’s plan to clear-cut 154 acres of coastal redwood forest to plant a vineyard in Annapolis. The EIR states that the project will have no significant environmental or cultural impacts.