Third Time Is Not The Charm:

By Miller Starr Regalia : sexology – excerpt

Fourth District Affirms Judgment Setting Aside San Diego County’s Climate Action Plan And Related Supplemental EIR Approvals Due To CEQA Violations

In a mammoth 132-page published opinion (with an additional five pages of appendices) filed on June 12, 2020, the Fourth District Court of Appeal (Division One) mostly affirmed the trial court’s judgment invalidating San Diego County’s approvals of a 2018 Climate Action Plan (CAP), related Guidelines for Determining Significance, and related Supplemental EIR (SEIR). The opinion – which marked “the third time the County’s attempt to adopt a viable climate action plan and related CEQA documents” had been before the Court – resolved consolidated appeals in three cases, in which the lead plaintiffs were Golden Door Properties, LLC and the Sierra Club. (Golden Door Properties, LLC v. County of San Diego (2020) ___ Cal.App.5th ___.)…

The SEIR’s Cumulative Impacts Analysis Violated CEQA By Failing To Address The Impacts Of GPAs Mitigating GHG Emissions Under M-GHG-1 And Failing To Analyze A “Smart-Growth” Alternative, And Its Finding That M GHG-1 Was Consistent With SANDAG’s Regional Transportation Plan (RTP) Was Not Supported By Substantial Evidence(more)

Please read the article as it is full of interesting facts and comments on this published case.

Bribery, fraud and wildfire: How a PG&E contractor with a sketchy past made millions

By Scott Morris, Bay City News Foundation : sfexaminer– excerpt

Utility hired a company with a history of illicit dumping to clean up after the Camp Fire

It was a last-ditch effort to save a scofflaw business. For years, the owners of Bay Area Concrete Recycling had run an unlicensed dump in the city of Hayward, California. Neighbors complained about dust blowing off a massive pile of crushed concrete. A city water pollution expert warned the runoff could be polluting San Francisco Bay. City planners had fined the company nearly $60,000 and ordered it shut down.

The company appealed in hopes of winning a permit to operate. But at a city Planning Commission meeting in November 2018, commissioners were unmoved.

“At the end of the day, this is really an illegal business that’s asking to continue operating,” Commissioner Gary Patton said at the meeting, “and it’s been illegal since 2013.”…

Within weeks of Bay Area Concrete losing its battle before the Hayward Planning Commission, PG&E had hired the company to build and run a dump outside of Paradise, 180 miles to the north. Trucks began dumping potentially toxic slurry at the disposal site, which did not require environmental review as an emergency project and helped speed cleanup operations…(more)

Coronavirus mutation has taken over. Scientists don’t know why.

sfgate – excerpt

When the first coronavirus cases in Chicago appeared in January, they bore the same genetic signatures as a germ that emerged in China weeks before.

But as Egon Ozer, an infectious-disease specialist at the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine, examined the genetic structure of virus samples from local patients, he noticed something different.

A change in the virus was appearing again and again. This mutation, associated with outbreaks in Europe and New York, eventually took over the city. By May, it was found in 95% of all the genomes Ozer sequenced…(more)

Like Poking a Beehive’: The Worrisome Link Between Deforestation And Disease

By Nathan Rott : npr – excerpt

In 2013, an 18-month old boy got sick after playing near a hollow tree in his backyard, in a remote West African village. He developed a fever and started vomiting. His stool turned black. Two days later, he died.

Two years and more than 11,000 deaths later, the World Health Organization put out a report saying the Ebola outbreak that likely emanated from that hollow tree may have been caused in part by deforestation, led by “foreign mining and timber operations.”

The tree the boy played near was infested with fruit bats — bats that may have been pushed into the boy’s village because upwards of 80 percent of their natural habitat had been destroyed.

“When you disturb a forest, it actually upsets, if you want, the balance of nature, the balance between pathogens and people,” says John E. Fa, a professor of biodiversity and human development at Manchester Metropolitan University, who was part of a team of researchers that linked recent forest loss to 25 Ebola outbreaks that have occurred since 1976.

A finding, he says, that showed a strong correlation between recent deforestation and disease outbreaks…

Zoonotic spillover

A disease that jumps from animals to humans is called a zoonosis. The jump itself — the event in which a pathogen jumps from animal to human or vice versa — is called a zoonotic spillover, or simply a spillover. And it’s more common than you might think.

Six out of every ten diseases in humans, and three-quarters of the world’s emerging infectious diseases, are zoonotic…(more)

SFPUC could be accepting PG&E’s nuclear energy

By Tim Redmond : 48hills – excerpt

It’s free. It’s worth $1.4 million a year. But it’s by no means ‘clean energy’ — so why is CleanPowerSF considering it?

The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission is facing an unusual choice: PG&E wants to give the city’s clean-power agency $1.4 million worth of free power a year – from the Diablo Canyon nuclear plant.

That would violate Clean Power SF’s basic charter. It would undermine efforts to shut down the dangerous plant. But the PUC is considering accepting some version of this deal…

PG&E claims that nuclear energy is environmentally sound because it generates no greenhouse gases. That’s not entirely true – and in every other way, it’s an environmental disaster.

“It doesn’t qualify as green energy under state regulations,” John Rizzo, a leader in the SF chapter of the Sierra Club, told me. “It’s dangerous to produce, it creates highly toxic waste and there’s no way to get rid of it.”… (more)

Squatter/Denser Plans for Lower Potrero Hill Site

socketsite – excerpt

Plans to level the low slung commercial complex at 300 De Haro and develop a 13-story building at the corner of 16th Street appear to have been abandoned.  But a squatter set of plans for the odd shaped Lower Potrero Hill site have been drawn.

While the 13-story structure was envisioned to yield 204 apartments, with 6,200 square feet of new ground floor retail space and stacked parking for 49 cars, the new set of plans call for a denser 7-story building to rise across the site, with 290 units of “group housing,” 3,400 square feet of ground floor commercial space and stacked parking for up to 55 cars…(more)

Group housing in the era of a pandemic? Please say it is not so.

ACA25 is wrong for California

By Jon Coupal : sbsun – excerpt

Times are strange indeed when the Howard Jarvis Taxpayers Association finds itself fighting on the same side as left-leaning organizations such as Voices for Progress, Common Cause and the ACLU. The saying that politics makes for strange bedfellows is never more true than in times of crisis and confusion.

When the COVID-19 virus descended on California, it caused near panic throughout the state. Because we knew so little, our elected leaders were probably justified in heeding the advice of health officials who recommended strict shelter-in-place orders.

Among the institutions placed on lockdown was the California Legislature. The emergency necessitated immediate action back in March, but on June 10, when lawmakers returned to the Capitol, the California Assembly quickly passed Assembly Constitutional Amendment 25 to address how the legislature would operate during a statewide emergency in the future.

Proving the adage that “haste makes waste,” ACA25 was rushed through the Assembly in only three weeks. By the time transparency advocates were aware of what was happening, they had little opportunity to analyze it or provide meaningful commentary. The proposed constitutional amendment is now pending in the California Senate. Without mincing words, ACA25 lays waste to the notion of legislative transparency…

First, as currently worded, ACA25 authorizes both houses of the legislature to use proxy voting…

Second, although the chance is remote of a statewide catastrophe where one-fifth of the members of a House are “deceased, disabled, or missing,” under those circumstances ACA25 would allow appointment of substitute members by some process to be determined by a majority-..

Moreover, the terms “disabled” and “missing” in ACA25 are not clearly defined and should be replaced with more precise language, such as “incapacitated” and “presumed deceased.” …

Third, ACA25 lowers the quorum requirement to a majority of members “able to attend” when more than one-fifth of a House’s members have been incapacitated…

We’re hopeful that the broad spectrum of interest groups supporting legislative transparency can convince the Senate this week to either reject or substantially amend ACA25 in a way that does not return to the days when the Legislature operated in darkness…(more)

BayREN

bayren – excerpt

The Bay Area Regional Energy Network (BayREN) is a collaboration of the nine counties that make up the San Francisco Bay Area. Led by the Association of Bay Area Governments (ABAG), BayREN provides regional-scale energy efficiency programs, services, and resources. BayREN is funded by utility ratepayer funds through the California Public Utilities Commission, as well as other sources, drawing on the expertise, knowledge, and proven track record of Bay Area local governments…

BayREN implements energy savings programs on a regional level in collaboration with the nine bay area counties..​..(more)

One of those many organizations we never heard of that we need to looks into that is funded by utility rate payers. We know where they get there money. Where do they spend it and on who’s behalf?

Plan to streamline environmental reviews for S.F. development projects hits opposition

By : bizjournal – excerpt

A San Francisco ordinance aiming to standardize policies and requirements for proposed housing and development projects in a bid to expedite the environmental review process was stalled this week following community pushback.

Under the Standard Environmental Requirements Program Ordinance, introduced earlier this year, pre-determined mitigation requirements would be applied to projects that would otherwise face a longer and more intensive environmental evaluation. Currently, mitigation measures are applied on a project-by-project review basis, and streamlining the process is expected to allow mandated reviews to be conducted “roughly three months faster on average” for certain projects, said Planning Department spokesperson Candace SooHoo… (more)

The U.S. can get to 90% clean electricity in just 15 years

By Adele Peters : fastcompany – excerpt

And by 2045, the electric grid could be entirely renewable.

Until recently, climate experts projected that it wouldn’t be possible to decarbonize the electric grid until 2050—and that moving to fully renewable energy could raise the price of electricity for consumers. But the cost of wind, solar, and battery storage has fallen so quickly that in just 15 years, the U.S. could feasibly run on 90% clean electricity, with no increase in electric bills. And adding new renewable infrastructure could create more than half a million new jobs each year. By 2045, the entire electric grid could run on renewables… (more)

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