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Walnut Creek and San Rafael ban plastic bags; statewide ban moves ahead in the Senate

San Rafael became the 100th municipality statewide to ban single-use plastic shopping bags. Nearly a third of Californians, 12.3 million people, live in communities with bag bans. IndyBay, March 3, 2014 Walnut Creek is the fifth city in Contra Costa County to adopt a bag ban, joining Richmond, El Cerrito, Pittsburg, and San Pablo. San Jose Mercury News, March 5, 2014 Meanwhile a bill that would enact a statewide ban is moving through the committee process in the state Senate....
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Assembly bill targets cigarette filters

For some reason, people who would never “litter” drop cigarette butts on the sidewalk or toss them out car windows without thinking twice. Municipalities spend millions of dollars each year cleaning up cigarette trash; what may be worse, even a few cigarettes that reach creeks or the Bay through local storm drain systems pose a real threat to water quality. A bill recently introduced in the state legislator would outlaw the sale or any other transfer of filtered cigarettes. Los...
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Statewide Plastic Bag Ban in Sight

Under a compromise negotiated with opponents of last year’s bill, disposable plastic shopping  bags would be banned from grocery check-out stands in California and consumers would pay at least a dime for a paper or re-usable plastic bag a under a compromise proposal negotiated with key opponents of last year’s bill to ban plastic shopping bags. The new measure, to be formally announced on Friday, January 31,  would ban single-use carry-out bags in California grocery stores starting July 1, 2015,...
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Seagulls feasting on coastal trash also take young wild salmon

One more reason to clean up our trash: A new study by California Sea Grant-funded researchers shows that a young steelhead has about a 30-percent chance of being eaten by Western gulls during its transit to sea through creek mouths in San Mateo and Santa Cruz counties. California Sea Grant Research News, November 22,2013.
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California drought: Three more months of dry weather likely, National Weather Service announces

Comprehensive explanation of the causes of the drought, San José Mercury News, January 16, 2014.
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California declares drought emergency

Governor Brown makes it official. Los Angeles Times, January 17, 2014.
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Severe Drought Grows Worse in California

Summary of the drought’s environmental and economic effects. New York Times, January 17, 2014.
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Graze the Aisles

On Wednesday, September 25th, Whole Foods Market will donate 5% of net sales from its Northern California and Reno stores to California Rangeland Trust. This is a great opportunity to tell our story of conserving ranches to protect watersheds! Stock up and protect our food and ecosystems!
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Statue of Liberty

New York City unveils multi-faceted plan to protect against sea level rise

Mayor Bloomberg has released a $20 billion-plus plan to protect New York City against inevitable sea level rise and future mega-storms. New York Times, June 12, 2013 Graphic shows locations of 11 different infrastructure strategies, including wetland and dune restoration, permanent levees, and barriers and revetments.
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Scientists recommend revised flows classifications for climate change

Researchers at UC Davis and Utah State University explain that California’s allocations to agriculture and wildlife are based on water-year classifications that are becoming irrelevant in a global warming regime. California Water Blog, June 10, 2013
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A saltier Delta?

The Bay Delta Conservation Plan has serious impacts to the mechanics and allotment of freshwater flows in the delta. This article by the Sacramento Bee explains the current status and implications of this plan. Needless to say, the two tubes that are 35 miles long and 40 feet in diameter will have serious implications on the Bay and Delta regions.
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Statewide Plastic Bag Ban dies on Senate floor

For the third time since 2010, a bill that would ban single-use plastic bags throughout California failed to win approval in the Legislature. Los Angeles Times, May 29, 2013.
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Brown administration releases full Bay Delta Conservation Plan

By diverting river water through two huge tunnels before it reaches the Delta, and restoring more than 100,000 acres of habitat, water contractors hope to escape the endangered species restrictions that have reduced their Delta water deliveries in the past. Los Angeles Times, May 29, 2013 Read the full Plan, and view related materials here. The plan is supported by Sen. Dianne Feinstein and members of Congress from the Central Valley and the Los Angeles area, and opposed by several...
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Hybrid levee diagram

“Hybrid levees” to protect the bayshore from floods, sea level rise

The Bay Institute, a key SFEP partner, proposes fronting traditional earthen levees with restored marsh irrigated with treated wastewater.  The new study, The Horizontal Levee: Nature’s Low-cost Defense Against Sea Level Rise, shows the result will be equal or better flood protection at lower cost.  Mercury News, 2/24/2013  
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Railway flooded in Novato

DWR releases flood risk management report

Check out this executive summary, released in March 2013. “More than 7 million people and $580 billion in assets (crops, buildings, and public infrastructure) are exposed to the hazards of flooding in California.”
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Dry months are leaving anxious planners…

This article by CBS brings to light the serious state of our California snow pack. “Snowmelt provides about a third of the water used in households and on farms across California,” meaning there may be serious decisions that need to be made in the near future regarding fresh water flows and water allocation. An article by SFGate delves a bit deeper into the drought conditions in California, and sheds a little light at the end of the proverbial tunnel. However,...
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San José is very green — Could it be even greener?

KQED’s Quest reports on San José’s progress toward it’s very green goals…and some Bay Area environmentalists suggest the city could do more. Read the article, follow the links, and listen to the audio.
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Drough - tree in dry field with clear blue sky

Drought across the nation has serious implications

With most of the country experiencing drought conditions, many heads are turning to planners, scientists, and ecologists to answer a plethora of questions. Will we need to ration water? What are the implications on the wildlife that depend on fresh water flows? Will this drought end soon? These and other questions are certainly not easy to grapple with, but many agencies and municipalities are going to have to implement actions to ensure fresh water supplies meet both human and ecological...
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Artistic picture of a map of the san francisco coast line including marin and san mateo

The City by the Bay retreats as the Pacific moves in

The shoreline at Ocean beach has been a loved and well used recreational outlet for many San Francisco residents. There have been a battery of issues associated with its use and development, but the most recent surrounds the interaction the western coast of the city has with the relentless pacific. City planners and agencies have been working on methods to manage the beach and have decided to test one of their coping mechanisms. Read More online here
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Young boy holding goldfish bowl on table with plants and a fish inside.

Monster found in Tahoe!

Recently, a gigantic specimen of a well known invasive fish was pulled out of Lake Tahoe. This seemingly innocent variety of fish was most likely released into the lake by an unsuspecting aquarium owner wanting to evict their tenant. This is one of the most common methods of introducing both animal and plant invasive species. Visit this Live Science article to read more about this amazing find.
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The San Francisco Bay-Delta is named in the federal Clean Water Act as one of 28 “estuaries of national significance." For over 20 years, the San Francisco Estuary Partnership has worked together with local communities and federal and state agencies to improve the health of California’s most urbanized estuary.

San Francisco Estuary Partnership 1515 Clay Street, Suite 1400 Oakland, CA 94612 (510) 622-2304

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