Rail woefully underfunded in Fresno County’s half-cent transportation sales tax measure

In November two-thousand-six, when it came time to vote a second time on extending Fresno County, California’s Measure C – the half-cent sales tax referendum to improve county transportation (the first attempt failed to garner enough support), I voted “No.” I knew that the extension, post-2006 all the way out to 2027 (the time the … Read more

SAPS: Potato concerns raking in energy, waste, water savings with sustainability actions

Number 7 in the Sustainable Agricultural Practices Series. The place where food is grown – the farm – is not a place one typically thinks of when thinking of entities adopting sustainability practices. But, more and more, agriculture is, in fact, getting with that program. In this installment we take a look1 at two potato … Read more

Progress Report: California on track to reach 2020 GHG target of 427 MMTCO2e

Another year has passed and California’s greenhouse gas emissions continue to fall. For purposes of this discussion, representative data covers years 2000 to 2015, inclusive. “California’s GHG emissions have followed a declining trend since 2007,” the California Environmental Protection Agency Air Resources Board (ARB) emphasized in the Overview section of “California Greenhouse Gas Emissions for … Read more

Making an impact: The effect on air from electric cars – NONE!

Year after year on the world-transport-activity stage, on-road travel accounts for the largest share.1 In the USA alone, meanwhile, there are over 250 million registered automobiles and trucks and buses total, yet only a small fraction derive their propulsion means from 100 percent electric power – about 160,000 light-duty vehicles in 2016. Across the globe … Read more

The quintessential air quality public engagement apparatus – the PSA

Well, it’s 2018, a new year and I’m looking at the newest edition of the American Lung Association’s “Breathtaking Views 2017-2018 Clean Air Calendar.” A highlight (and I would expect nothing less): not a single photo throughout showing polluted air. Moreover, in the photo accompanying the month of April, which, incidentally, is of Holmdel Park, … Read more

The ridiculously resilient ridge is back

Have you heard? The ridiculously resilient ridge of high pressure is back. We’re talking over the U.S. west. It’s been parked here for quite a while. It’s a familiar refrain. Regarding the characteristic dry spell and unseasonably warm temperatures, as is usual, tied to this high-pressure center is stagnant air in California’s Central Valley and, … Read more

Incandescent bulbs in U.S. to go the way of the rotary-dial telephone?

It was only a matter of time that incandescent lights would one day meet their replacements – that’s replacements with an “s”. That “one day” is today. Credit the change to technological advancement and innovation. Light-emitting-diode (LED) and fluorescent lamps have rendered incandescents practically obsolete. Why? The LEDs are roughly 10 times more energy efficient … Read more

Conventional roadwork can’t hold a candle to constructing Cal. high-speed rail

With reference to California high-speed-rail- versus typical road-work, there really is no comparison. The difference, to put it succinctly, is like night and day. So, what makes the former so different? What makes California-high-speed-rail-construction stand alone is the cleanliness or should I say “air-friendliness” of related operations. The building of the California high-speed rail system … Read more

Lowering emissions from transportation now more important than ever

For almost 40 years U.S. transportation held the No. 2 spot. In 2016, this sector moved to the top in emissions output, outstripping energy for the first time since 1978. There are two reasons and two reasons only for the reversal: 1) transportation emissions increased; and 2) energy emissions fell. It’s that simple. The good … Read more

Merced, California air quality: Getting better, worse or staying the same?

So check out this headline: “Air quality in Merced County is getting worse. Officials say it might be your fault.” The headline with accompanying article was published in the Dec. 12, 2017, edition of the Merced Sun Star newspaper. Wow. This one sure caught my eye! So, what was meant, exactly, by Merced County air … Read more