Le Colline: A letter from Roger Lutz, Jr., Oakville Pump Service, Inc.


Le Colline: A letter from Roger Lutz, Jr., Oakville Pump Service, Inc.

July 30, 2023

Respectively to the Napa Valley Supervisors: 

Please accept my comments on the Le Colline Vineyard Agricultural Erosion Control Plan, FEIR, its findings P14-00410-ECPA. 

  1. Please deny the EPA and uphold the appeal of this project due to the impact on our Angwin neighborhood, Conn Creek Watershed, Linda Falls, Lake Hennessy, and the Napa Valley water supply.
  2. As a resident of Angwin and a citizen of Napa County, starting in the very late 1940s until the present with absences due to Military Service, and Educational attainment, I feel a responsibility to share my concerns regarding the Future for our children as well as my perspective based on personal experience and history. 

   A: I have served many of those Residents in the Area where this planned vineyard is proposed.  Those neighbors on Cold Springs Road for the last 20-40 years have been struggling to meet the residential water demand due to the lowering of the water table in that area. They have drilled new and deeper wells, added storage tanks, and consistently implemented water-saving devices on their homes and properties. This project may be the turning point that brings them to have water delivery by truck. This will certainly be disastrous for them as well as their home values. A detail that I was made aware of a few years ago indicated that existing communities have protection from projects that would adversely impact them. Certainly, this project would adversely impact the water supply and would qualify as an adverse impact on the neighborhoods, environment, and public water supply. 

   B: Linda Falls Terrace has a public water system that we have been privileged to help, support and manage. Not only is water quality at risk, but quantity as well. 

  1. Napa County/City, as well as St Helena, rely on this watershed as refill of the various Lakes and reservoirs.  This Vineyard project will impact the quality of the water that is refilling that water supply.  This means substantial costs in filtration and chemicals of the water to be delivered to the Napa Valley public, along with the deterioration of the water quality provided to our communities. 
  2. Each of the above residential areas mentioned have been in use for  70-100 years; I can attest to this as a living witness for a good share of that time.
  3. As a senior resident, I remember well the problems and the heartache of the Lake Berryessa project in the 1950s. I was too young to understand the details nor understand the impact, good or bad–but later, I realized that the elders of Napa County gave a good share of the water resources to Solano County without realizing the impact it would have on later generations.  The History Lesson: I do not want our future generations in Angwin adversely impacted by this project.

FINALLY: Please review this project with a total understanding of the impact this project will have on the water needs, water quality, and the impact it will have on not only the Angwin Community, the environment and the whole Napa Valley Community. 

Thank You for Your Consideration: 

(PS: I will be unable to attend the meeting on Aug 15, 2023—I am leading a Public Health Project in a remote area of the South Pacific)

Roger Lutz, Jr.
Oakville Pump Service, Inc.

Among the values threatened by the controversial Le Colline project is the water quality of Lake Hennessey, source of some 70 percent of the City of Napa’s drinking water.

Also in the crosshairs: habitat for rare species such as the foothill yellow-legged frog and Coast Range newt. Adjacent Linda Falls Nature Preserve, with its popular trails and impressive 50-foot waterfall (pictured above), would be within view of the project’s expansive deforestation.

Contact Napa County officials to speak out against the Le Colline Vineyard Project!

The environmental report covering the proposal is incomplete with regard to carbon emissions, giving the lie to its touted “net zero” billing.

(Starting in 2016 Forests Forever campaigned for what became Measure C on Napa County’s 2018 ballot. It would have established no-cut stream buffers and limited the destruction of watershed-buffering oak woodlands in the county. Despite being outspent by millions Measure C came within a mere 641 votes of victory. The campaign added momentum to the fight against the sprawling Walt Ranch development, which was recently halted.)

There is a hearing Aug. 15 on a Le Colline appeal now under consideration. Email or phone the county planning staff and supervisors, and/or attend the hearing in person on the 15th.

For a glimpse of the area scroll down to our Resources section and view a three-minute video.

Let’s save Napa County’s forests and watersheds! Stop Le Colline!

For the forests,

Paul Hughes

Executive Director
Forests Forever