A California appeals court ruled that Napa County violated state law in approving the large Walt Ranch vineyard development in the mountains east of the city of Napa. The decision sends the project, which would have destroyed more than 300 acres of riparian, oak and native grassland habitat for vineyards, back to the trial court. “This is really an important victory for our climate and forest,” attorney Aruna Prabhala of the Center for Biological Diversity said on Tuesday.
Prabhala called the ruling “a blow to the project.” More must be done before it could go forward, she said. Responding to an appeal from the Center for Biological Diversity and the Sierra Club, the court held that Napa County failed to provide a clear plan to address the climate harms from the vineyard’s proposed destruction of 14,000 large trees.