Environment

News about energy and the environment

Kerry Klein / Valley Public Radio

In a new bid to clean the Valley’s dirty air, the local air district is flexing its political muscles, attempting to amend a federal law and appealing to the Trump transition team for help.

Local air officials have pulled another tool out of their toolkit: federal politics. Seyed Sadredin, director of the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District, says they’d like to see some changes to a well-known law.

Ezra David Romero / Valley Public Radio

After years of clean-up efforts and some notable progress, air in the San Joaquin Valley is still among the worst in the nation. Now there’s a new goal for cleaning up particulate pollution  from things that create dust and exhaust. FM89’s Ezra David Romero reports the effort has reached a new phase thanks to intervention from the state.  

Ezra David Romero

We all like to find ways to focus on leading healthy lifestyles. We search out healthy foods, join the gym, and want to breathe clean air. But what about health of the soil that grows our food? As FM89’s Ezra David Romero reports, some valley farmers are turning to cleaning soil in an effort to use less water and to help clean air.

Fifteen years ago tractors could be heard at Sano Farms near Firebaugh on any given day. Now the sound of tractors is rare.

http://tularecounty.ca.gov/emergencies/index.cfm/drought/drought-effects-status-updates/2016/november/week-of-november-28-2016/

Tulare County is perhaps the hardest hit region of the state when it comes to drought. Today there are almost 600 dry domestic wells in the county alone. Now the board of supervisors there is considering whether the county needs an emergency groundwater ordinance to help stop wells from going dry.

 

Ken Lund / https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/legalcode

A new study calls for more freshwater to make it from Valley rivers all the way to the San Francisco Bay Delta. FM89’s Ezra David Romero reports.

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The Bay Institute found that flows from Central Valley rivers into the bay is less than half of what it could be if river diversions weren’t in play. Bay Institute Scientist Jon Rosenfield says these water diversions for agriculture and cities has serious ramifications for marine ecosystems.

 

Kerry Klein/Valley Public Radio

In our last episode we brought you to Mono Hot Springs in Sierra National Forest. This time, we discuss hiking with dogs and we explore a not-so-visited grove of giant sequoias.

In this episode we talk less about humans and more about our pets: specifically, dogs. Neither of us (Kerry or Ezra) has dogs but hiking with them looks like a lot of fun.

Jeffrey Hess/KVPR

After decades of complaints from residents, a vote this week by the Fresno City Council could signal what some think is a new direction for southwest Fresno. The city is considering a new specific plan that will guide the future of the 3,000 acre neighborhood west of Highway 99 and south of Highway 180. At its heart is a goal to remake the area, and reduce pollution by telling big industrial facilities to move elsewhere.   

When she was a little girl, Kimberly McCoy lived near some of the heavy industry that marks parts of southwest Fresno.

Ezra David Romero

Scientists and researchers from across California are gathering in Three Rivers this week to discuss the effects of climate change in Sequoia and Kings Canyon National Parks. FM89's Ezra David Romero reports.

Climate change is a big deal in the Sierra Nevada. Think dying pine trees and dwindling numbers of species like the yellow-legged frog.

Ezra David Romero

Let's face it. America loves giant sequoia trees. Native Americans believe they hold spiritual value, early settlers tried to exploit the trees and today the trees adorn the National Park Service's badge. 

In a new book called "King Sequoia: The Tree That Inspired a Nation, Created Our National Park System, and Changed the Way We Think about Nature" author William C. Tweed weaves together a narrative of human contact with the big trees. He outlines who tried to exploit them and eventually what it took to protect them. 

The Wildlands Consservancy

The thousands of drivers that make their way up the Grapevine on Interstate 5 every day probably have little idea they’re passing through one of the most diverse ecological regions of the state.

 

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