Helping Our Peninsula's Environment

 

Billion Dollar Bonehead Idea? - Clint Eastwood's Pebble Beach Company - or just Greed Unlimited?

"We are not developers!"
-Pebble Beach Company head Peter Ueberroth to our Coastal Commission March 2004 - HOPE's 2005 Whopper Award Winner

Pebble Beach Co. "Stewardship" Equipment Bulldozing 5th Gate Through Endangered Species Habitat, March 1989

"There is reason to doubt the authenticity of the Pebble Beach Company's version of any 'story.'" - Jake Tapper, Salon, Jan 2003

(Dec 15, 2009) Pebble Beach Company Abandons Forest Golf Course proposal and agrees to genuinely protect 635 acres of healthy native Monterey pine forest ecosystem (good start) -- in exchange for support for 90 more mansions, a new 100 room hotel at Spyglass Hill, a huge new parking lot and major expansion of existing hotels.

(June 13, 2007) WE WIN !!! Calif. Coastal Commission votes 8-4 to reject Pebble Beach Co.s rezoning effort. Fifteen year long battle over forest vs. golf course seemingly over. Supervisor Dave Potter shows his real face Quarterback for the forest destruction by Clint Eastwood and Pebble Beach Company.

HOPE Sues Supervisors over Illegal PBC Project Approval (April 12, 2005)

The Lawsuit Itself (100k PDF file)

Coastal Commission Appeal Filed by HOPE, March 17, 2005

Project Approved By Monterey County Supervisors 5-0 on March 15, 2005, even though they admit it is illegal.

Pebble Beach Overdevelopment - Yet another Golf Course, Subdivisions & Hotel Expansion (by the Concerned Residents of Pebble Beach).

 

Supervisor Dave Potter - Pebble Beach Company's Elected Advocate

Coastal Commission Warns County they will be Violating laws if they Approve Pebble Beach Co.'s project (Feb 28,2005)

Coastal Commission Tries to Halt Pebble Beach Company Train Wreck (Dec. 22, 2004)

Monterey Pine Forest Overview

Magical, Misty, Mystery Monterey Pine Forest, by Vienna Merritt-Moore

California Resource Protection Agencies Blast Pebble Beach Project

Offsite Golf Course Alternative Would Not Harm Forest, Water Supply or Imperiled Species

"I Object" Letter on The Pebble Beach Comp Project

Coast Weekly Article Oct 30, 2003

 Calif. Tree Cutting Penal Code 384.5(a)

Pebble Beach Company, controlled by billionaire Clint Eastwood and Peter Ueberroth, has three (3) active applications with Monterey County to build two more golf courses (one of which would destroy the irreplaceable Jeffers' Forest), hundreds of mansions and expand their hotels. 

  • Any one of these three projects would be the largest single development ever on the Monterey Peninsula. 
  • Contrary to popular belief, Pebble Beach Company's 1992 Application to turn Jeffers' Forest into a golf course has not been cancelled or withdrawn. It is still alive and could be revived at any moment. 

Each of these projects requires destroying our extremely rare, natural Monterey pine forest ecosystem. It would also put further substantial strain on our highly overpumped Carmel River worsening the highly imperiled situation of the Steelhead and Red-legged frogs.

This massively destructive proposal has ignited international concern. Among others, New Zealand's Minister of Forestry has officially written with their concerns about the proposed damage to vital genetic biodiversity of our ecologically valuable and imperiled Monterey pine forest. 

The original Environmental Impact Report (EIR) stated the project would cause "Significant and unavoidable impacts to hundreds of acres of Monterey Pine forest and associated wildlife habitat", the loss of "57,000 trees or more", and "Endangerment To The Monterey Pine Species Itself."

When a forest is threatened with extinction - you do not cut down the best remaining square mile of it - as Pebble Beach Company wants.
 
 

"If the Lone Cypress Company [which owned Pebble Beach Co.]

gets approval of their vast golf course project,

their name will be a self-fulfilling prophecy."

- Janice O'Brien

Carmel River Harm

Pebble Beach Company's huge project would dramatically increase pumping of the imperiled Carmel River which is enduring an official "Water Supply Emergency." Current overpumping of our Carmel River is killing endangered species every year -- West Coast Steelhead (Oncorhynchus mykiss) and the California Red-Legged Frog (Rana aurora draytonii).

Pebble Beach Company Threatens Imperiled Forest & Flowers 

Other certain impacts from their proposed projects include the loss of federally ESA listed endangered species and habitat for Hickman's Onion and Yadon's rein Orchid.

___________

Pebble Beach Company's Horrible Environmental Track Record

 
"But there is reason to doubt the authenticity of the Pebble Beach Company's version of any 'story.'"

From Jake Tapper's, "Poisoned Fairways" Salon article of Jan 2003 sets the context for this article. Http://www.salon.com/politics/feature/2003/01/31/golf/index_np.html
 
 

For decades many people have had to fight Pebble Beach Company's highly aggressive greedy efforts to destroy our last remaining healthy Monterey pine forest ecosystem, to further imperil our Carmel River, and to hide their actual pesticide use. 

Pebble Beach Company was formerly owned by a person closely linked with the Japanese Mafia (Yakusa). It was recently bought by a partnership now controlled by Peter Ueberroth and Clint Eastwood who take great pains to hide 68 of their 72 partners. Independently Pebble Beach Company and Mr. Eastwood have well deserved reputation as extremely aggressive developers. Neither has credibility locally as environmental protectors. In fact the opposite is true, they are both environmentally hostile. 

Examples include - The Ventana Chapter of Sierra Club sued to stop Eastwood's Canada Woods / Montera Golf Course (now renamed Tehama). The local chapter of the California Native Plant Society is furious with Pebble Beach Company's phony restoration of imperiled native dune habitat, required in exchange for approval of the Spanish Bay Resort & Golf Course, which now barely hosts several imperiled (ESA listed) flowers. 

Perhaps the most brazen was a bald-faced comment by Peter Ueberroth to the Coastal Commission in March 2004. With a straight face he declared "We are not developers." He even said it a second time for emphasis. Apparently destruction of imperiled forest to build a golf course, mansions and hotels is not development in Mr. Ueberroth's profit-focused mind. 

On April 14, 1994 a Federal Jury found Pebble Beach Company President Tom Oliver guilty of Bank Fraud, but Judge James Ware (the Federal Judge caught lying) threw out the conviction claiming the jury wasn't smart enough to make that decision. 

Similarly, In December 1992, a decade after approval of their Spanish Bay Golf Course and Resort a County Supervisor, Bill Peters, was named in an indictment by a Federal Grand Jury for taking money for his favorable vote on the project.

The indictment stated "to secure Peter's favorable vote on the application of the Pebble Beach Co. To develop oceanfront properties in Monterey County known as 'Spanish Bay.'" Peters never went to jail or even to trial. The subject just mysteriously disappeared. 

Wetland Harm
In 1999 Pebble Beach Company tried to destroy wetlands (and imperiled flowers) to expand their driving range. Year after year they have "accidentally" destroyed wetland plants in the Huckleberry Hill Restoration area. Their "wetland surveys" have "overlooked" wetlands that would interfere with their golf course and mansion plans. They have paid "experts" to dispute the definition of wetlands so that they could build over wetlands. 

Hiding Pesticide Use
From the article "Poisoned Fairways" by Jake Tapper, Salon Jan 2003 -- 

"Still, Pebble Beach Company officials refuse to tell me the amounts of pesticides they use. 'We don't have a volumetric amount,' Huesgen insists, though he has the exact numbers at his fingertips for less controversial fertilizers. (He is much more forthcoming when asked if Pebble Beach uses methyl bromide. 'No,' he says. 'Definitely not. Absolutely not.')"

Habitat Harm
Pebble Beach Company has been aggressively fighting the Endangered Species (ESA) listings of Monterey pine, the Hickman's Onion flower and Yadon's Rein Orchid, and the Critical Habitat designation of the two flowers. Their underpaid landscaping staff regularly 'weed-whack" orchids; Yadon's rein orchids protected with criminal penalties by our Federal Endangered Species Act.

In 1985 in exchange for their Spanish Bay resort and Golf Course approval Pebble Beach Company was required to close and dig up a road in Environmentally Sensitive Habitat Area (ESHA) by the California Coastal Commission. As of Feb 2005 (19 years later) they have not yet lifted a spoonful of dirt. In fact Pebble Beach Company has increased the road's use with daily mining trucks 

and highway access for major golf tournaments. 

Not incidentally, their huge Golf Tournaments draw hundreds of thousands of people - yet they have never had to prepare an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for these events. Even the Pope had to prepare an EIR for his 1986 visit.

Pebble Beach Company's persistently environmentally hostile attitude is an outrage to anyone who actually cares about protecting our little remaining Monterey pine forest ecosystem, restoring our formerly beautiful and healthy Carmel River or protecting our Monterey Bay National Marine Sanctuary and its rare sea otters from pesticide runoff. 

If Pebble Beach Company are "stewards" of the landscape they paid for, why do they fight every effort to protect the imperiled, IMPERILED animals, trees and flowers?

________

 "I Object" Letter on The Pebble Beach Comp Project

Final EIR

Draft Environmental Impact Report)

Pebble Beach Company - Fake Water

Measure A - The phony "Save the Forest for Clint" ballot Measure

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This Page Last Updated May 6, 2009