Tahoe shows up in San Francisco | TahoeDailyTribune.com

Tahoe shows up in San Francisco

Gregory Crofton, Tahoe Daily Tribune

A 1979 Datsun is the centerpiece of a campaign to get more people to buy license plates that raise money to protect Lake Tahoe and the California coast.

The Datsun was made into the Lake Tahoe Art Car by San Francisco artist JeanAnnette Saulsbury. It has a model of Mount Tallac on its roof, a salmon swimming upstream on its hood, and a beaver dam on its trunk. The remade car will be unveiled today in San Francisco.

A license plate depicting a scene from Lake Tahoe or a plate showing a whale tail rising from the ocean can be purchased for $50. The money pays for restoration, public access, education and trail maintenance projects at the Lake Tahoe Basin and on the coast.

California Tahoe Conservancy began its environmental license plate program in 1996. It joined marketing forces with the California Coastal Commission in 2000 to form the ecoplate program.

Since 1996, it has raised more than $3.5 million, funding projects such as construction of the bicycle trail at 15th Street and along the city’s Linear Park.

More than 25,000 drivers in the state have an ecoplate, which requires a $45 renewal fee each year. Last year the program raised nearly $1 million, said Ryan Davis, staff council at the Conservancy.

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The Lake Tahoe Art Car will be on display at Justin Herman Plaza. An ecoplate can be purchased at the South Lake Tahoe Department of Motor Vehicles office or on-line at http://www.ecoplates.com.