Seven years ago, after the fish died, Sarah Ryan decided she couldn’t wait any longer for help. California was in the depths of its worst drought in the last millennium and its ecosystems were gasping. For Ryan, the fish kill in Clear Lake, the state’s second largest and the centerpiece of Lake County, was the last straw.
Ryan is the environmental director for Big Valley Rancheria. She and others raised alarms for several years about increasingly dire blooms of toxic cyanobacteria.