By Miriam Raftery
November 6, 2015 (San Diego’s East County) – East County Magazine has twice named Donna Tisdale our “Newsmaker of the Year” for her tireless efforts to battle massive energy projects and stand up for rural residents. She also received the People’s Mic Award from KNSJ Radio for her advocacy as a backcountry warrior.
But now the warrior is under attack by a series of articles (1) (2) (3) published by Voice of San Diego. The articles criticize Tisdale and her nonprofit, Backcountry Against Dumps (BAD) for suits filed in Imperial County over desert solar projects. In essence, the series faults cash settlements paid to farmers and claims eight suits yielded no environmental benefits.
But now Tisdale is firing back in a detailed response that contends VOSD’s stories contain false statements in a “misinformation campaign” she likens to Big Tobacco and Big Oil’s efforts to mislead the public. “It is no coincidence that San Diego Gas & Electric’s (SDG&E’s) Mitch Mitchell is on the VOSD Board of Directors,” she observes, noting that BAD has challenged numerous SDG&E projects. She denies personal financial gain alleged by VOSD (which presented zero evidence of such). While the VOSD article addresses issues in 8 lawsuits not in San Diego County, BAD has filed three times that many (24), many of which did result in big wins for the environment in our region-- or developers backing off projects completely, facts that VOSD failed to report.
Below is Tisdale’s rebuttal in full: