The LA Times recently called Mary Nichols a “rock star.” In 2013 Time Magazine called her one of the 100 most influential people in the world and the Thomas Edison on environmentalism. She’s the chair of the California Air Resources Board, and if it has something to do with air quality or climate change in the state, she probably has something to say about it.
With the final vote for the Fresno General Plan Update and Environmental Impact Report just around the corner, activists are appealing for changes to the plan that could potentially alter the health of children in the region.
A group of activists an d health leaders met today at the site of a proposed new park in Northwest Fresno near Highway 99 to protest what they call a big problem with the city's proposed new general plan. Their concern - this park and another would be built next to busy freeways - and the polluted air that comes from them.
This week on Valley Edition we talk about immigration and the President's executive action with San Joaquin College of Law's Jessica Smith Bobadilla and Vicente Sanchez Ventura, the Consul of Mexico in Fresno.
A coalition of environmental groups is suing Kern County over its approval of a project that would expand oil-by-rail shipments at a Bakersfield refinery.
The Kern County Board of Supervisors unanimously approved the railyard expansion at the Alon Refinery on Rosedale Highway in September. The project would allow the refinery to process crude oil from the Midwest, delivered to Bakersfield by train.
Kassie Siegel is with the Center For Biological Diversity, one of the groups in the lawsuit.
Tweet Me: - One charge will last up to 125 miles for Clovis PD's 5 new electric motorcycles. Oh & they go up to 95 mph. - Clovis has 5 electric motorcycles & they have the most of any PD in the nation.
It’s the dead of summer and the air quality in the San Joaquin Valley is red or unhealthy for sensitive groups. But one Valley police department is doing their part to change that. FM89’s Ezra David Romero reports.
New research this week questions the connection between air pollution and asthma.
In 2011, a study by the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District established a link between asthma-related ER visits and levels of PM2.5, or fine particulate matter in valley air. But after a follow-up to that study, the Air District now reports that for a number of years, asthma-related ER visits increased even as PM2.5 levels dropped.
David Lighthall, health science advisor to the Air District, says the findings should not be interpreted as black and white.
People in Central California love barbecue. From backyard grills to popular new restaurants featuring tri tip, ribs and brisket, it’s one of the biggest food trends in the valley. One Fresno destination is so popular, a line wraps around its building daily.
Fresno’s Dog House Grill is Valley famous for tri-tip, pulled pork and their family recipe barbecue sauce.
Connie Nicholson and her husband visit Dog House weekly.
“I like the Barbecue sauce, it’s really good and the tri-tip’s always just right,” Nicholson says. “I get the tri-tip sandwich every time.”
In the decades-long effort to clean up the San Joaquin Valley's notoriously poor air, 2013 might be a milestone. For the first time, the air basin had zero violations of the hourly federal ozone standard.
That news prompted the governing board of the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District to vote Thursday to formally request that the EPA lift a required a $29 million annual penalty.
Is there a profit to be found in reducing children’s asthma attacks? A diverse team of public health advocates, asthma care providers, financiers, and foundations has set up a pilot program with the goal of making money for investors while solving a deeply entrenched health crisis in and around Fresno, California.
The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District has announced that it intends to issue an "Air Alert" early next week. The alert will begin Monday August 19th and continue through Wednesday August 21st.
This district is urging residents to take steps that can reduce the amount of ozone pollution, and prevent a potential violation of the 1-hour ozone standard. In addition to health risks posed by ozone pollution, violating the standard could also result in a $29 million federal penalty.
If you’re expecting clean air in the San Joaquin Valley, don’t hold your breath.
The American Lung Association released this week its annual State of the Air report. It shows that Valley cities continue to top the lists for the most polluted areas in the nation for ozone, short-term particle pollution, and annual particle pollution.
This week on Valley Edition, Rebecca Plevin reports on the California Air Resources Board's approval of a plan intended to bring the Valley's particulate pollution into compliance with federal standards. But residents and health advocates expressed concern that the plan doesn't act quickly enough to protect public health.
The San Joaquin Valley’s polluted air is a daily concern for Mario Talavera.
“When I go to the pharmacy, they ask why I need medicine," said Talavera, of Fresno. "For Mario, Angelica, Tomas, Jose. And for me too, Mario. I have asthma. The only person who doesn’t have asthma is my wife.”
It’s a constant stress for Fresno resident Teresa Vidales, too. Her husband, a construction worker and the family breadwinner, has asthma. One of her four kids does, too.
NASA scientists and aircraft took to the skies above Fresno and Bakersfield today. It's part of a project that one day hopes to predict and air quality from space.
Two aircraft, including a converted Navy P3-B flew repeated loops over various valley cities today, one of them as low as 1,000 feet, to gather air samples. It's part of a program NASA calls DISCOVER-AQ which aims to better understand pollution spikes and how pollutants react with sunlight throughout the day.
This week on Valley Edition we talk about plans by a local Native American tribe to open a casino on land north of Madera along Highway 99. The effort took a big step forward in recent days as the Bureau of Indian Affairs agreed to put the land for the new casino in trust for the tribe.
The small Kern County community of Arvin has some of the worst air in the nation. Surrounded on two sides by mountains at the southern end of the San Joaquin Valley, the city's 16,000 residents breathe air polluted by cars, trucks and industrial operations from nearby, and from across the valley. But now some members of the community are taking matters into their own hands, with a "bucket brigade" that aims to clean up the air. But their efforts are not without controversy.
The California Air Resources Board has created a map that shows the state’s biggest emitters of greenhouse gases. It is a significant step in the development of California’s Cap and Trade program.
On the new Google Earth map are 625 facilities that each produce more than 25,000 metric tons of greenhouse gases annually. The map breaks down facilities by industry, zip code and emissions. But, Stanley Young with the Air Resources Board says state-to-state comparisons aren’t yet available.
This week on Valley Edition, we look at how budget cuts are threatening patients who rely on California's Adult Day Health Care centers, how global warming may cause the San Joaquin Valley's air to become even worse, and how the Fossil Discovery Center in Madera County is bringing paleontology to residents of the Valley.