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Thursday, April 17, 2014
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Author Archive: San Francisco Chronicle

California residents divided on drought solution

By Kurtis Alexander As California faces one of its worst droughts in decades, residents remain split on the question of whether environmental protections should be eased to free up water for cities and farms. A new Field Poll indicates that 49 percent of state voters support rolling back regulations that protect fish in order to […]

Feinstein pressure boosts farms over fish in water dispute

By Carolyn Lochhead WASHINGTON — First came the urgent e-mail to two Cabinet secretaries from San Joaquin Valley farm interests, demanding that officials allow “maximum pumping” of water from recent storms for agriculture and cities and minimize flows for endangered fish making their river migrations amid the worst drought in years. Two days later, on […]

April 10, 2014 | Posted in Agriculture + Environment | Tagged , | 1 Reply

Bay Area ‘Rosie the Riveters’ honored

By Carolyn Lochhead WASHINGTON — Applying for a welding job at the Richmond shipyard during World War II, Agnes Moore dressed in her best black suit, with matching kid gloves, patent leather shoes and a hat with a veil. She declined an office job. “I want to be a welder,” she said, and soon she was […]

Strike averted at hospitals as UC, union reach deal

By David R. Baker A planned, five-day strike this week at University of California hospitals was averted Sunday after school officials and the union representing patient care technical workers reached a tentative agreement. The proposed four-year contract covers 13,000 workers and could end months of tension between the university system and the union, which represents […]

Kamala Harris: California’s ‘truancy crisis’ must be stopped

By Melody Gutierrez SACRAMENTO — California is in the midst of a “truancy crisis” that needs to be stopped where it starts: in elementary school, state Attorney General Kamala Harris said last week as she joined lawmakers to announce a package of bills to help the state better collect truancy data. More than 690,000 elementary school […]

California lawmakers look to change college admission rules

By Nanette Asimov California voters once again may be asked to decide whether public universities should be able to use race, ethnicity and gender in admissions if state lawmakers succeed in placing on the ballot a constitutional amendment to change Proposition 209. It has been illegal for universities to take into account an applicant’s demographics […]

California’s drought-prone pattern forcing farmers to adapt

By Carolyn Lochhead Shawn Coburn farms land that holds senior water rights to the giant Central Valley Project, rights that usually assure him water. Not this year. He already has decided to let his pomegranates die, abandon alfalfa and cut his tomato crop by half. He may not plant any row crops if the state […]

Bill eases process for student aid

By Melody Gutierrez SACRAMENTO — Some 50,000 college-bound high school seniors filled out applications last year for state financial aid, but were disqualified because they failed to submit the required transcripts from their schools. Now, a San Francisco legislator wants to fix that problem by requiring school districts — not parents and students — to send […]

Snowpack grows, but not enough

By Kurtis Alexander Fresh snow is blanketing the Sierra this week, but not enough to put a big dent in the statewide drought. State surveying crews, making their monthly trek on skis and snowshoes to high-elevation weather stations, said Thursday that the snowpack is just 24 percent of average for this time of year. That […]

Fukushima radiation could reach Pacific coast by April

By David Perlman Radiation from the Fukushima nuclear disaster has not yet reached ocean waters along the Pacific coast, but low levels of radioactive cesium from the stricken Japanese power plant could arrive by April, scientists reported Monday. The report came even as some Internet sites continue claiming that dangerously radioactive ocean water from Fukushima […]

College savings, accreditation focus of state legislation

By Nanette Asimov A pair of higher education bills — one to stimulate college savings and the other to radically change the way community colleges are accredited in California — were introduced this week by Bay Area lawmakers. State law currently requires California’s 112 community colleges to be accredited by the private Accrediting Commission for […]

Berkeley is latest UC campus fined in deaths of lab animals

By Nanette Asimov The U.S. Department of Agriculture announced Tuesday that it has fined UC Berkeley $8,750 for allowing five lab animals to die of thirst in 2011. The creatures were small, long-tailed rodents called voles that were part of a study of circadian rhythms looking at how light affects physiology, said Roger Van Andel, […]

Tips for conserving water

The state’s Save Our Water program, which seeks to cut everyday water use, offers the following suggestions: Indoors * Do only full loads of dishes and laundry and get water-efficient appliances, including toilets. * Install an aerator on the kitchen faucet to reduce the flow. * Install low-flow shower heads, reduce shower time to five […]

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