Climate Justice (News)
Assemblyman Sandré Swanson, chairman of the Assembly Committee on Labor and Employment, recently joined with nearly 1,000 labor leaders, port drivers, environmentalists, clergy and others in a march and rally to draw attention to the plight of California’s port truck drivers, including those working at the Port of Oakland.
“The current system is broken. It is wreaking economic havoc and creating a public health crisis for our workers and local communities,” said Swanson.
The march began at the Oakland Marriott and ended at the Port of Oakland headquarters near Jack London Square.
RICHMOND — A sulfuric acid spill at the Chevron refinery this morning has caused no injuries or adverse effects to surrounding areas, the company said.
A leak in a pipeline containing the chemical was discovered around 8:10 a.m. and involved about 1,000 pounds of the liquid, said Chevron spokesman Walt Gill.
Because the sulfuric acid was in liquid and not vapor form, there was no harmful odor emitted, Gill said. Crews have been dispatched to clean up the spill.
Even though the spill did not cause any significant damage or harm, Gill said, the volume of the spill required the company to report it to county and state authorities.
William Acevedo, a Richmond resident and attorney who leads the Green Business Practice Group at a large Oakland law firm, can now expand his environmental interests following his recent appointment to the East Bay Regional Parks Foundation.
The 39-year-old nonprofit foundation provides direct support for the East Bay Regional Park District, raises donations and invests funds for future use, bringing in more than $35 million in donations, land and in-kind services since 1969.
Acevedo, an attorney and partner at the Oakland law firm Wendel, Rosen, Black & Dean, was appointed to a two-year term on the foundation board.
NOT SINCE 1994 when another billion dollar Chevron project was up for approval, has the Richmond City Council rolled over so completely as it did on July 16 when a five-person majority (Maria Viramontes, Nathaniel Bates, Ludmyrna Lopez, John E. Marquez and Harpeet Sandhu) certified a fatally flawed EIR, gutted essential conditions from a use permit and adopted a "Community Benefits Agreement" — all these actions leaving stunned Richmond residents asking "Who is representing us?"
(07-25) 12:07 PDT SAN FRANCISCO -- A federal appeals court dealt a setback to California and environmental groups today in their battle with the Bush administration over the state's efforts to restrict vehicle emissions of gases that contribute to global warming.
The Ninth U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in San Francisco dismissed a lawsuit filed by California and 15 other states in January over the Environmental Protection Agency's refusal to let the state enforce its limits on greenhouse gas emissions from new cars and trucks. The court said the suit was premature because the EPA hadn't yet taken formal action to deny the state's request.
The plan would require drivers using certain city streets during rush hour to have their vehicles equipped with a transponder – similar to the FasTrak devices used by bridge commuters.
Since the city solar-incentive program came into effect in July, it has become financially viable for even small energy consumers to install solar-power systems. The San Francisco incentive covers between $3,000 to $6,000 for homeowners to install solar panels, as well as $10,000 for businesses and nonprofits, and $30,000 for nonprofit affordable housing. The program runs for a decade.
Hundreds of people on both sides of the issue jammed into Richmond City Council meetings on both Tuesday and Wednesday nights.
Chevron wants to upgrade its facility by building a new power plant, hydrogen plant and reformer.
Representatives of the oil giant said the improvements would allow the refining of a wider range of oil.
But environmental groups argued the project would allow the company to refine heavier crude oil that would increase pollutants in the area.
With the statewide drought upsetting homeowners who cling to their gardens and lawns, the concept of "gray water" irrigation systems is enjoying a kind of revival in interest.
"Whereas we used to get one or two requests a year about gray water before the drought, now we get about one inquiry a day," said Dick Bennett, water conservation administrator for East Bay Municipal Utility District. EBMUD supplies brochures and guidelines on how to install gray water systems.
(07-10) 11:47 PDT San Francisco -- Golden Gate Bridge officials are expected this morning to boost the cost of crossing the landmark span by $1 - the first of two toll increases looming for commuters.
The toll increase, approved by the bridge district's finance committee Thursday, is expected to be adopted by the board of directors and to take effect Sept. 1. It would raise tolls to $5 for those paying with FasTrak and $6 for cash-payers.
"This increase is for our financial stability," said Mary Currie, bridge district spokeswoman.