We urge Mark Tillemans and his fellow Inyo County supervisors to reject the proposed Renewal Energy General Plan Amendment that would permit industrial scale solar projects such as the one proposed by the L.A. Department of Water and Power east of Manzanar.

We bought the Mt. Williamson Motel in Independence and moved here in large part because of the stunning vistas of the Owens Valley and beyond provided by the Eastern Sierra and Inyos. Many of our customers — tourists and hikers from around the United States and the world — are drawn here for the same reasons. Such industrial development in the Owens Valley will create highly visible scars that will do irreparable harm to one of the most unusual and visually breathtaking areas in the world.

Any short-term potential economic benefits to Inyo County are greatly outweighed by the permanent damage such projects will cause. We need to be supporting tourism, not undermining it.

We ask Mark Tillemans and his colleagues, who were all elected by residents of Inyo County,  to carefully consider the past as well as the future of the Southern Owens Valley and ask “why here?” We urge them to oppose the proposed General Plan Amendment.

Doug Bunnell and Cris “Strider” Chater,
co-owners, Mt. Williamson Motel and Base Camp,

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