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Environment

In major setback for Gov. Brown, Westlands Water District votes no on Delta Tunnels Project

By Dan Bacher | September 19, 2017 |

In a major victory for Delta Tunnels opponents, the Board of Directors of the Westlands Water District today voted 7 to 1 against their participation in Governor Jerry Brown’s California WaterFix project.
Growers in the massive district, located on the west side of the San Joaquin Valley, cited the high cost of the state-federal proposal as their reason for rejecting the project. Politically powerful Westlands is the largest irrigation district in the country. 
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Earth’s oldest trees in climate-induced race up the tree line

Bristlecone pine and limber pine trees in the Great Basin region are like two very gnarled, old men in a slow-motion race up the mountaintop, and climate change is the starting gun, according to a study from the University of California, Davis.

The study, published in the journal Global Change Biology, shows that the tree line has been steadily moving upslope over the past 50 years in the Great Basin. The region extends from California’s Sierra Nevada, across Nevada to Utah’s Uinta Mountains. Its north and south are framed by the Columbia and Colorado rivers’ watersheds.

The study also found that limber pine is successfully “leapfrogging” over bristlecone pine. They are growing in soils once almost completely dominated by bristlecone pine, and they are moving upslope at a faster rate than the bristlecone pine.

Charging upslope... Read More

Central Basin Water Board, LA City Council committee delay Delta Tunnels vote

By Dan Bacher | August 30, 2017 |  
On August 28, the Central Basin Water Agency board in Compton voted 5 to 2 to postpone a decision supporting the controversial Delta Tunnels plan, a joint public works project between the Governor Jerry Brown and President Donald Trump administration.  
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Fitch ratings concludes Delta Tunnels Project would further increase water rates

The San Joaquin River at Lauritzen Yacht Harbor. Photo by Dan Bacher. |
By Dan Bacher | August 18, 2017 |

On August 16, Fitch Ratings confirmed what Delta Tunnels opponents have been saying for years — the proposed California WaterFix project being currently fast-tracked by the Trump and Brown administrations would likely drive a significant increase in monthly water rates.
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‘Getting to 80 percent’ on energy cutbacks cannot occur unless behaviors change

California’s plan to cut energy consumption by 80 percent by 2050 cannot be achieved with current proposed policy changes because most solutions focus on changing technologies rather than changing behavior, a new University of California, Davis, study suggests.

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Astronomers spy supernova’s giant companion star

Astronomers have spied the short-lived blue glow from a giant companion star struck by a spectacular supernova. The discovery offers compelling evidence for a leading theory about the origin of Type Ia supernovae — that these enormous explosions occur when a white dwarf steals matter from a larger star.

 

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Kaiser Permanente Vacaville honored For environmental excellence

Kaiser Permanente Vacaville honored For environmental excellence

Kaiser Permanente Vacaville Medical Center has been named a top 25 hospital for environmental excellence by Practice Greenhealth, a national group dedicated to environmental sustainability in healthcare. In all, Kaiser Permanente received 16 Practice Greenhealth Environmental Excellence Awards. The Environmental Excellence Awards are given each year to honor environmental achievement in the health care sector. Kaiser Permanente has been recognized by Practice Greenhealth for its sustainability work every year since the awards program began in 2002.