San Diego Earth Times by jolinmilioncherie


									Cut to the Chase – From the editor
How Democracy Dies                                                                LocaL Issues
                                                                                     Nature – awesome, affordable, and accessible! .......... 4
                                                      by Carolyn Chase                 Nature play is healthy – get your kids outside for Family Nature

              hile we’re supposed to know that power corrupts, doing                   Days. No kids? Get yourself out into nature.
              something about it is something else again isn’t it? I never           New Urban Forestry program in San Diego ................ 8
              thought I’d see the current levels                                       “Urban Forestry is American’s frontline defense in the fight
of propaganda being accepted in America                                                against climate change”
today – not just accepted, but promoted by                                           No California dream: all the leaves are brown,
                                                                                       and the oaks are dying ........................................... 9
power brokers as if their actions have no conse-
quences for others, including the environment
                                                                                     Sick transit gloriously mundane .............................. 10
upon which we all depend.
                                                                                       The publisher apologizes for the title of this fine article.
    What is this cowardly new world where
                                                                                     Putting transit first… ................................................ 12
thoughtlessness trumps all and truth is ignored                                        Senator Christine Kehoe tries to steer the transportation
as if it doesn’t matter? What can be done?                                             agencies toward fast, safe, convenient transit. Best of luck.
Activism works. If enough of us don’t “do politics” then we deserve               earTh Day 2011
what we get.                                                                         EarthFair 2011 takes Balboa Park on April 17 ......... 13
    This is not an age to be on the sidelines. So many of us hate politics,            A quick guide to what to see and do at this landmark event.
but this is just another feature of the game. Despite what anyone says,              Attend Awards Reception in honor of Earth Day ..... 13
politics is designed to discourage participation, so that power is kept              Award inspiration ...................................................... 14
by those who already have it. The answer: don’t try and do politics                    Nominate your own environmental hero to receive an EARTH
alone. It’s a group game. Join with others and give to groups that do                  Award at the Very Important Planet Reception in May.
politics. Locally, I recommend the Sierra Club. Founded in 1892 by                   EarthFair 2011 Program Guide ................................. 15
                                                                                  poLLuTIon anD WasTe
John Muir, only the Sierra Club uses the full array of advocacy tech-
niques available to the public in our American democracy: grassroots                 Red Cups .................................................................. 21
                                                                                       Unconscious action can betray our best intentions.
organizing, education, litigation (when necessary) and lobbying (see
                                                                                  GLobaL cLImaTe chanGe
their ad on page 9).
                                                                                     Crazy weather: How it’s linked to climate change .... 22
    Attacks on basic science and public efforts to protect our environ-
                                                                                     Greenhouse gasses and YOU .................................... 24
ment are gaining ground. Everyone who cares about nature and the
                                                                                  marIne ecoLoGy
environment must do more. Earth Day is a great place to start getting
                                                                                     Off California, many common fish now
connected, and then get active – every other earth day.                                spawn earlier ......................................................... 27
               take it Back, We’re takin’ it Back                                    Coastal dead zones.................................................... 27
                     in honor of Earth Day                                             Study shows trouble in San Diego Bay and Tijuana Estuary.
  Take back our rivers                   Take back the straws
  Take back our air                      Take back the bags                          Growing a new generation of gardeners ................... 29
  Take back our food                     Take back your landfills                    San Diego Sierra Club’s Nature Knowledge
  Take back our seas                     Take back your waste                          Workshop 2011...................................................... 30
                                                                                  Cover photo by Carolyn Chase: The Mer de Glace (sea of
  Take back our climate                  You’re takin’ it back!
  Take back our land                       for nature’s sake
                                                                                  ice) is the second largest glacier in the Alps, near Chamonix,
  Take back our water                    You’re takin’ it back!                   France. It is estimated to contain approximately 4,000 million
  Take back our trees                      for our sake                           cubic metres of frozen water. During the 20th century, all alpine
                                         You’re takin’ it back!                   glaciers receded. The Mer de Glace receded 7.5 meters every
  We’re takin’ it back                     for future’s sake                      year on average.
   for nature’s sake                     You’re takin’ it back!
  We’re takin’ it back                     for earth’s sake
   for our sake                                                                             San Diego Earth Times
  We’re takin’ it back                   Take back our cities                       is published by Earth Media, Inc. The April SDET is printed on recycled
   for future’s sake                     Take back our farms                        paper. Our internet version is printed with recycled electrons and
  We’re takin’ it back                   Take back our beaches                      can be found at
   for earth’s sake                      Take back our parks
                                                                                    staff                                 Communication
                                                                                     Editor/Publisher: Chris Klein Mail: P.O. Box 99179
  Take back your pollution               Take back democracy
                                                                                     Editor/Features: Carolyn Chase          San Diego, CA 92169
  Take back your trash                   Take back the truth                         Assignments: Alice Martinez Phone: (858) 272-7423
  Take back your plastics                Take back our politics                      Proofreaders: Liz Dexia,       Email:
  Take back your ash                     Take back our government                      Laura Silver                 Twitter: SDEarthDay
                                                                                                                    Facebook: San Diego EarthWorks
                                                (Continued on page 30)

April 2011                                                                    3                                                San Diego Earth Times
San Diego Earth Times   4   April 2011
                                Local Issues
Nature – awesome, affordable, and accessible!
                                                                          by Anne S. Fege, Chair, San Diego Children and Nature Collaborative

         ature is as close as your backyard or    •	 Children are smarter. Nature play stimu-
         neighborhood canyon. And spend-             lates creativity, imagination, and problem
         ing time in nature is the best gift         solving. Students learn to care for nature,
you can give a child. In April, get your kids        get a sense of their place in the world, and
outside for Family Nature Days throughout            better understand how they impact the
the San Diego region. Find out where to go           environment.
and what to do, on the new website for the
San Diego Children and Nature Collaborative       What happened to outdoor
at                   play?
What’s so awesome about                                A few decades ago, children spent hours
children and nature?                              each day playing outdoors. Now free time is
                                                  taken up by scheduled sports and activities,
     Research shows that nature is essential      and electronic media. A 2010 study by The
for child development.                            Kaiser Family Foundation reported children
•	 Children are happier. Nature play in-          ages 8 to 18 spend more than 7 hours daily
   creases self esteem, improves psycho-          in front of a screen or on a cell phone. This
   logical health, and reduces stress. Children   leads to a range of physical and social ills that      Be part of something BiG together
   learn self-discipline and are more coopera-    award-winning author Richard Louv called             Choose more nature activities for the chil-
   tive.                                          “nature	 deficit	 disorder”	 in	 his	 2005	 book,	   dren in your life. When children connect
•	 Children are healthier. Nature play im-        Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children         with nature, they connect with each other,
   proves physical conditioning and reduces       from Nature-Deficit Disorder.                        families and community. They become part
   obesity. Children develop lifelong habits                                                           of something BIG!
   of	fitness	and	recreation.	                    What’s affordable about                                      Build memories together
                                                  nature?                                              Take a walk around the block or in your
                                                                                                       nearby park or canyon. Listen for songbirds
 april Family nature Days                             Nature is in your yard or nearby canyon.         and look for hawks circling in the sky. Spend
                                                  You can walk, take a short drive to a natural        time in the yard pulling weeds together, look-
      Family Nature Days events are
                                                  area, or explore nature in other parts of San        ing for insects, or sitting in the dark.
 family-centered nature activities that
                                                  Diego County. Your time together can be
 engage children’s sense of curios-
                                                  meaningful, simple, and fun.                                               (Continued on page 7)
 ity, exploration and creativity. Locate
 them on the new website, www.
 •	 Exploration	and	discovery	activities	
    encourage children to use their
    senses – seeing, hearing, touching,
    and smelling – to discover the won-
    ders of wildlife and habitat.
 •	 Knowledge	and	observation	activi-
    ties help children learn to use tools
    in nature – maps, field guides, mag-
    nifying glasses and binoculars – to
    get to know the local wildlife and
 •	 Stewardship	 activities	 encourage	
                                                                                                                                                 Photo by Anne Fege

    families to take care of nature and
    include service projects such as habi-
    tat restoration, wildlife observa-
    tions, trail clean-ups, and planting.

April 2011                                                                5                                        San Diego Earth Times
               Sometimes, actions speak louder than words.

         At Cox, working to preserve our environment and striving to be your friend in the digital age

         go hand in hand. Cox is taking steps to build a better world. Steps like using low emission

         vehicles, installing solar power and low-emission fuel cells, and recycling cable wiring. All

         part of our Cox Conserves initiative. Our planet’s future depends on what we do today and

         we believe we can make a difference. Thanks for being a part of it.

San Diego Earth Times                                6                                                   April 2011
Nature                                                              zations that offer nature education
(cont.	from	page	5)                                                 programs.
              Learn together                                              To highlight local events that
Nature is an outdoor classroom in which                             are posted on the website, the Col-
students experience science, math, language                         laborative worked with partners
and group learning by observing, touching,                          to schedule Family Nature Days
listening, smelling, telling and doing. Take                        during the month of April. They are
one child, or take a whole class! Walk with                         designed to engage children’s sense
the class to a nearby canyon or park. Create                        of curiosity, exploration and creativ-

                                                                                                         Photo by SAn Diego AuDubon Society StAFF.
a Schoolyard Habitat with native plants that                        ity, for ages that range from toddlers
attract	birds	and	butterflies.	                                     to teenagers. Look on the website
          Get outdoors together                                     for information about these events,
Playing outdoors in nature is a high-touch                          as well as family-centered nature ac-
alternative to a technology-saturated lifestyle.                    tivities throughout the year. Thanks
Go outside to play for a “green hour” each                          to the Sempra Energy Foundation
day. Ask that nature walks be part of your                          for supporting the coordination and
child’s pre-school or after-school program.                         promotion of these events in April.
Volunteer for a nature-based community
service activity as a family.                                       Who cares about
  March together in the Children’s
                                                                    children and nature?
     at EarthFair on April 17 to celebrate the                           San Diego Children and Nature                                               website of-
variety of life on earth and demonstrate a                          Collaborative was founded in 2009 by indi-                                       fers a wealth of information for families,
commitment to a clean, healthy environment.                         viduals and educational, environmental and                                       educators, and communities.
                                                                    community groups with shared concerns that                                            Anne S. Fege, Ph.D., has been an advo-
Where is this accessible                                            today’s children have less and less opportu-                                     cate for nature throughout her career and a
nature?                                                             nity	to	experience	nature.	Over	50	organiza-                                     leader in environmental education, urban
                                                                    tions and corporations are collaborating to                                      forestry, and wilderness management. She
    Families can search for places to go and                        promote access for San Diego’s children to                                       served as Forest Supervisor of the Cleveland
family-centered events to participate in, on                        learn in nature and play outdoors. The Col-                                      National Forest from 1991-2004, Fege is
the new website just launched at www.                               laborative is building on a national movement                                    Adjunct Professor in the San Diego State Uni- The website is                             and network of programs in more than 60 cit-                                     versity Department of Biology, a co-founder
hosted by the San Diego Children and Nature                         ies, states, and countries called the Children                                   of the San Diego Partners for Biodiversity and
Collaborative,	and	profiles	dozens	of	organi-                       and Nature Network, inspired by Richard                                          San Diego Fire Recovery Network, a lifelong
                                                                    Louv’s book Last Child in the Woods. Their                                       Girl Scout, a quilter, and an avid bicyclist.

     Plan ahead for Good,
           safe Fun
  •	 Bring	a	camera	to	take	pictures	of	
     nature and create an album.
  •	 Start	 a	 nature	 journal:	 draw	 and	
     write about your experiences in
  •	 Take	water,	snacks	and	a	simple	first	
     aid kit.
  •	 Remind	children	about	safety	rules.
  •	 Wear	 sunscreen,	 a	 hat	 and	 sturdy	
  •	 Be	 flexible	 –	 follow	 your	 child’s	
     natural sense of curiosity, wonder
                                                   Photo by Rick hAlSey

     and awe.
  •	 Bring	 a	 magnifying	 glass,	 bug	 jar,	
     binoculars and field guides.
  •	 Invite	friends	or	another	family	to	
     join you.

April 2011                                                                                 7                                                                     San Diego Earth Times
New Urban Forestry program in San Diego
      Trees and landscaping reduce greenhouse gases while conserving waTer and energy.
                                                                                       provided by California Center for Sustainable Energy

       he California Center for Sustainable     both the how-to and best practices in urban       cal Assistance Center can be found online
       Energy has launched an innovative        landscaping. Through education, outreach          at or call
       program in urban forestry in San Diego   and technical assistance, ATAC provides met-      858-244-1177.
that	will	promote	the	many	benefits	of	trees	   rics for use by decision-makers and citizens
and landscaping as means for reducing green-    alike when reaching to meet pressing water        upcoming program schedules
house gas emissions and conserving water        conservation and greenhouse gas emission          Tips from a pro: sustainable Landscape
and energy resources in the region.             reduction goals under Assembly Bill 32 (The          practices – Low cost/high Impact
    Funded by a $400,000 grant from the         Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006) and             April 14, 2011: 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.
California Department of Forestry and Fire      the Integrated Regional Water Management            Lynlee Austell Slaytor, a UC Davis-trained
Protection (CAL FIRE), CCSE’s urban for-        Plan (IRWMP). The ATAC also offers public           sustainable landscape expert and UCCE
estry program will offer advice and technical   workshops, community events and a lending           master gardener, introduces three simple
assistance for individuals, businesses and      library.                                            tiers of strategies to manage landscapes
municipalities. The program will also conduct       “Our goal is to instill a sense of urgency      more sustainably. She will surprise you
workshops and community outreach events         about planting more urban trees in San Di-          with energy-saving best management
exploring the relationship between landscap-    ego by providing the latest information and         practices that range from no-cost pro-
ing and sustainability issues.                  resources for best landscaping practices,”          cedural changes to complete landscape
    To improve understanding of the im-         said Robin Rivet, CCSE’s urban forester for         makeovers.
portance of plants and trees in developed       ATAC,	an	ISA	certified	arborist	and	UCCE	         make sustainable Tree choices to
areas, the Advice and Technical Assistance      master gardener. “Urban forestry is America’s      Increase property Value
Center (ATAC) for Urban Forestry has been       frontline	defense	in	the	fight	against	climate	     May 16, 2011: 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.
established. ATAC’s main goal is to enable      change.”                                            Robin Rivet will offer advice on choosing
and facilitate a wide range of urban forestry       Further information about CCSE’s new            and locating the best species and speci-
projects in the San Diego region. ATAC is       Cal Fire Urban Forestry Advice and Techni-          mens for your home, school or business.
the central meeting place for people to learn                                                                       (Continued on the right)

San Diego Earth Times                                               8                                                         April 2011
   This presentation will offer advice about
   why trees enhance property value, how to
                                                  No California dream: all the leaves
   purchase the best and healthiest trees and
   which trees appreciate in value the most
                                                  are brown, and the oaks are dying
   over time.                                                           provided by Agriculture and Natural Resources, University of California

sustainable Fruit Trees: best practices                    ecord numbers of oaks are dying in
  for home and schools                                     San Diego and Riverside Counties,
   June 2, 2011: 5:30 - 7:30 p.m.                          killed by a suite of new pests and
   Tom	Del	Hotal	is	an	ISA	certified	arbor-       pathogens.	Most	can	be	transported	in	fire-
   ist, Southwestern College adjunct faculty      wood and other raw wood products, which
   member and chairman of the California          means that any oak woodland in southern
   Rare Fruit Growers San Diego chapter.          California can become the next point of
   He will provide an overview of which fruit     outbreak.
   trees do best in our region and some tips on        The Goldspotted oak borer beetle has         Goldspotted oak borer beetle – be on the
   getting the best results from your choices.    killed	or	irreparably	damaged	more	than	95%	 lookout.
    These workshops take place at CCSE            of oaks in several woodlands in less than 10 and was most likely brought here in the mid
8690 Balboa Ave., Suite 100, San Diego,           years. Brown, dead landscapes have become 1990’s	in	firewood.	The	adult	beetle	is	about	
CA	92123;	phone	(858)	244-1177;	toll	free	        all too familiar in the rural communities of 1/2-inch long, with gold spots on its dark
866-SDENERGY Register online at ener-             Alpine, Descanso, Campo, Crest, Cuyamaca, green iridescent back. It is known to attack                                 Guatay, Jamul, Julian, Laguna, Lake Hen- mature coast live oak, canyon live oak, and
    CCSE is a nonprofit organization that         shaw, Pine Valley, Santa Ysabel, and Ramona California black oak. During late summer,
helps individuals, businesses, municipalities     since 2002.                                      beetle larvae emerge from eggs laid in bark
and others to adopt greener practices and              The culprit of oak decline and mortality crevices and begin boring into the wood.
save energy and money through rebates,            is an exotic beetle, the Goldspotted oak borer Larvae feed between the sapwood and phloem
technical assistance and education. For more      (GSOB; Agrilus coxalis),	first	found	in	2004,	 under the bark, essentially starving the tree
information on CCSE programs, rebates and         and later linked to oak damage in 2008. To of nutrients and killing it within 1-3 years.
services, please visit www.energycenter.          date, it is responsible for tens of thousands of Evidence of GSOB injury include D-shaped
org.                                              oak mortalities in San Diego County. GSOB exit holes, twig die-back, crown thinning,
                                                  is native to Arizona, Mexico, and Guatemala,                         (Continued on page 30)

April 2011                                                              9                                     San Diego Earth Times
Sick transit gloriously mundane
               less affluenT socieTies Than ours have high-speed TransiT ThaT makes you wanT
               To leave your car aT home – if you even own one. why are freeway gridlock
               or glacial TransiT schedules our only choices?
                                                                                                                                     by Elyse Lowe

        he San Diego region is at a crossroads. draft of SANDAG’s new forty-year transpor- short trip (that happens to be in an area with
        Our population and economy are grow- tation	plan	(2010-2050)	calls	for	an	overall	 decent transit service), it takes a lot more time
        ing. But will our transportation system increase in transit investments. However, the than driving (often 2-3 times as long). San
keep up? Or will we become a region with a majority of the transit improvements are free- Diego needs to design transit so that getting
second-rate transportation system: perpetu- way related, and don’t happen until around around without a car for most workers is as
ally	caught	in	traffic,	always	late,	constant- 2035,	after	the	agency	has	fully	built	out	its	 easy and convenient as stepping onto a train,
ly apologizing to our visitors, employees, highway network.                                          flex-trolley,	 or	 modern	 bus	 –	 that	 actually	
friends, and potential residents about how              Pushing transit investment until the dis- goes from where you live to where you work,
hard it is to get around without a car?            tant future won’t stop population growth; it study, or play. That’s how it is in much of the
     Transportation is a re-                                                                                     developed world, and there is no
source that can enable one             San Diegans spend more time in traffic – 50                               reason it can’t be that way here.
place to be successful while                                                                                          Transportation emissions ac-
                                       hours per year more – than New Yorkers, whose
another “hits the wall” and                                                                                      count	 for	 46%	 of	 San	 Diego’s	
becomes unlivable.                     extensive transit system keeps their roads moving. region’s greenhouse gasses. That
     San Diego might become                                                                                      is more than any other region
another Bangkok, a beloved city choking on will	simply	put	us	all	into	a	gigantic	traffic	 in the nation! By reducing the amount that
its	own	traffic,	with	only	a	symbolic	transit	 jam, ever-deepening our dependence on we drive, we can do our part to protect the
system that can never keep up. Or maybe a imported oil, and making our region an ever environment from climate change. In fact,
miniature Los Angeles, built on dreams but more unattractive as a place to live and work. by taking transit or biking just one day per
living a daily grind of stop-and-go freeways,           San Diegans spend more time in traf- week instead of driving saves more energy
clogged onramps, and smog.                         fic	 –	 50	 hours	 per	 year	 more	 –	 than	 New	 in a year than switching out all of our light
     There are more hopeful models. We could Yorkers, whose extensive transit system bulbs, windows and appliances.
be more like Singapore and Sydney: thriving keeps their roads moving. Studies show that
world economic powers with an outstanding building more freeway lanes relieves short move san diego to the
quality of life built on effective transportation. term congestion, but provides only short-term future
     To date, our region has prioritized moving relief. Transit improvements provide more
cars over moving people. Making local transit long-term	 benefits	 and	 cost-effectiveness.	             Move San Diego (MSD) is a San Diego
better has not been a priority.                    Transit also provides many additional ben- -based	non-profit	organization	whose	mission	
                                                   efits,	including	road	and	parking	cost	savings,	 is to prioritize, fund, and implement sustain-
a matter of priorities                             consumer cost savings, crash reductions, able, healthy, convenient transportation and
     Is there anything that can be done about improved mobility for non-drivers, energy related land use solutions that get people
it? Senator Christine Kehoe thinks so. She conservation, emission reductions, and sup- and goods wherever they are going, on time,
recently introduced SB 468 that would require port for strategic land use.                           throughout the San Diego region.
transit improvements be made before freeways            The Senator’s bill may compel SANDAG             MSD sees a San Diego where employers
are widened in coastal communities (see story to prioritize transit funding in a way that will want to build, where young elite professionals
on page 12). By improving the coastal rail allow more people to give up their car for a want to be, and where people who could live
corridor (aka “double tracking”), and increas- more “carbon free” lifestyle. To do so, SAN- anywhere want to stay. A San Diego where
ing rail frequency, she hopes to offer viable DAG needs to focus on making transit trip housing is available because transportation
transportation alternatives for commuters that times the same as driving (or better!). Only links to every area are plentiful, rapid, con-
are less polluting and more sustainable.           faster transit services will attract new riders venient, and cost-effective.
     Ironically, just as L.A. is making huge and impact transportation-related climate                   MSD sees a San Diego where the free-
investments to catch up on its transit system, emissions.                                            ways are uncrowded and the air unpolluted,
San Diego seems to be living in the past.                                                            because many commuters don’t have to take
The San Diego Association of Governments Faster and cleaner                                          their cars at all. The vision for changing
(SANDAG) is the agency responsible for                  Taking	transit	is	not	the	first	thought	of	 transportation in the region is simple – though
regional transportation planning. The current most San Diegans. Unless you are taking a                                    (Continued on page 19)

San Diego Earth Times                                                  10                                                             April 2011
April 2011   11   San Diego Earth Times
                        I-5 from San Diego to
                                                                                                by Senator Christine Kehoe

                            nterstate	 5	 travels	 through	 some	 of	 the	   San Diego County.
                            most scenic areas of California, with the              Let’s ask ourselves:
                            Pacific	Ocean	on	one	side	of	the	freeway	        did	 voters	 think	 that	 I-5	
                        and six coastal lagoons on the other. Unfor-         would be a 40-year con-
                        tunately,	it’s	not	like	the	old	days	when	traffic	   struction zone that didn’t
                        congestion occurred only during weekday              offer viable transit op-
                        rush hours. Now it’s seven days a week               tions like bus rapid tran-
                        beginning early in the morning and ending            sit, the extension of light
                        well after dark.                                     rail and more use of the Coaster and Amtrak?
                             To respond to this gridlock, voters ap-         SB 468 says that transit options should be in
                        proved the TransNet extension in 2004.               place so commuters have real options during
                        The	27-mile	long	I-5	North	Coast	Corridor	           freeway construction.
                        Project, sponsored by Caltrans, SANDAG,                    SB 468 would also require Caltrans to as-
                        and the Federal Highway Administration               sess what would happen when up to 14 lanes
                        has proposed various widening options from           of	traffic	exit	onto	local	streets,	and	to	pay	for	
                        La Jolla Village Drive to Camp Pendleton,            improvements so that we don’t just move the
                        the largest of which would create a 14-lane          congestion from the freeway to local roads.
                        interstate	and	cost	$4.5	billion.	                        The legislation will also help Califor-
                             Depending on which alternative is se-           nia reduce its greenhouse gas emissions as
                        lected, it will take 40 years to build at a cost     required under AB 32, its landmark global
                        of	more	than	$125	million	per	mile	for	the	          warming law. Automobile and light trucks
                        least expensive option, to $166 million per          account	 for	 50	 percent	 of	 California’s	 air	
                        mile for the most expensive one.                     pollution and 70 percent of the state’s petro-
                             And what do commuters forty years from          leum use. By expanding trolley service north
                        now gain after spending $3.4 billion? It will        of the University of California San Diego/
                        take seven minutes longer to travel from La          University City area, double-tracking to ac-
                        Jolla Village Drive to Oceanside during rush         commodate increased ridership on the Coaster
                        hour.	For	$4.5	billion,	drivers	will	save	one	       and Amtrak, implementing a state-of-the-art
                        minute and carpools will save 10 minutes.            bus rapid transit program, and constructing
                             The public clearly wants realistic tran-        bike	paths	in	the	corridor,	we	may	finally	offer	
                        sit options and is committed to reducing             residents, tourists and commuters legitimate
                        greenhouse gas emissions, as we’ve seen              alternatives to jumping in their car, stalling
                        with voters soundly defeating Proposition            in	traffic,	and	fouling	our	air.	
                        23 last November, but none of the proposed                 There are better ways to move people
                        expansion options accomplish that goal.              through coastal communities than solely
                        An estimated 300 people attended a Senate            widening freeways. Improved transit service
                        Transportation Committee hearing I orga-             costs less, lowers pollution, and reduces
                        nized on the project last November, with an          congestion. Identifying and implementing
                        overwhelming number speaking against the             better transit should always precede freeway
                        Caltrans freeway expansion plans.                    expansion.
                             The problem is compounded because half               Senator Christine Kehoe (D-San Diego)
                        of all Californians live in the coastal zone, and    represents California’s 39th Senate District.
                        traffic	in	those	areas	will	only	worsen	as	the	      The district encompasses 847,000 residents
                        population increases, thus degrading the coast       from the City of San Diego, City of Del Mar,
                        as an attractive place to live, work, and play.      and parts of Spring Valley, Lemon Grove,
                             I recently introduced legislation that          and La Mesa.
                        would require the implementation of real
                        transit options in coastal communities before
                        Caltrans could add freeway lanes. The leg-
                        islation	would	apply	statewide,	but	the	first	
                        project	affected	is	the	I-5	expansion	project	in	

San Diego Earth Times                        12                                                               April 2011
                             Earth Day 2011

EarthFair 201 takes Balboa Park on April 17
               a quick guide To whaT To see and do aT This landmark evenT.
                                                                                                                                   by Chris Klein

       arthFair 2011 will the San Diego            and traditional health care products and           Hall	of	Champions.	Stop	by	and	find	out	how	
       EarthWorks’ 22nd annual event.              services, pet adoption services, clean air and     YOU can roll up your sleeves and get to work
       EarthFair in Balboa Park has become         clean water products, rainforest preservation      on your own garden.
the largest free annual environmental fair         groups… the list goes on and on.
and Earth Day celebration in the world!                If your organization, club, or company is      special for Kids
Produced by 400 volunteers, EarthFair 2011         interested in exhibiting at EarthFair, please          In our Children’s’ Activity Area you’ll
will	feature	more	than	350	exhibitors,	special	    visit                         find	crafts,	games,	face	painting,	story-telling,	
theme areas, a food pavilion, a special Kids’                                                         and a hands-on activities for children of all
Activity	Area,	five	entertainment	venues,	the	     spotlight on home gardens                          ages. Activities are designed to educate,
Children’s Earth Parade, and the Alternative            Small, sustainable gardens in our yard        entertain, and inspire youth in the spirit of
Fuel Vehicle Show.                                 is becoming more common. With economic             Earth Day. This year, participants can make
                                                   hard times for many, and repeated contamina-       take part in a number of eco-friendly crafts.
exhibitors                                         tion of our food supply, it is more useful than    Our Children’s Stage features performances
     The exhibitors are the heart of EarthFair.    ever to locally grow our own food.                 throughout the day.
They represent every type of environmental              The Sustainable Personal Gardens project
organization, governmental program and com-        says: if you’ve got a lawn anywhere in San         Children’s earth Parade
mercial enterprise with goods, services, and       Diego, or a plot just about anywhere, you              The Children’s Earth Parade starts at
causes that address our environment and qual-      can put in your own little garden and grow         10:30am by the Spanish Village and marches
ity of life. EarthFair exhibitor fees are gradu-   for yourself or your local Farmer’s Markets.       through the Park to the Children’s Area in the
ated to allow everyone to participate, from             A group of exhibitors concerned with          Pan American Plaza. Participants are invited
the smallest club to the largest corporation.      food and farming will be showing a demon-          to dress up as endangered species or present
     It’s impossible to list everything you’ll     stration “Victory Garden.” Hosted by the Fair      their favorite earth-friendly messages. To
find	 at	 EarthFair:	 traditional	 conservation	   Food Group, you’ll see an inexpensive and          find	out	more	about	the	Parade	or	to	register,	
organizations, wildlife preservation groups,       easily-installed garden that most people can       please visit
green building, products made from natural         manage, even the elderly (with some help).
and organically grown crops, organic garden-       The Victory Garden, and the groups that are        earth Gallery
ing information, alternative energy vehicles,      presenting it, will be located in the exhibit         The eARTh Gallery features artwork
eco-tourism opportunities, many alternative        area just off Presidents Way and east of the       made from recycled materials, or depicting
                                                                                                                            (Continued on page 14)

                   Attend Awards Reception
                   in honor of Earth Day
                                                                                                          Earth Artists
                                                                                                            Do you have art works or craft
                                                                                                        pieces that are made from recycled,

       an Diego EarthWorks presents the 21st          services and entertainment packages.              found or sustainable natural materi-
       annual V.I.P. (Very Important Planet)       •	 A	buffet dinner and no-host bar.                  als, or that are concerned with the
       Reception and E.A.R.T.H. Awards:            •	 san diego earthWorks’ “earth”                     environment? If so, we invite you to
Wednesday, may 11th, 6:00pm-9:00pm                    awards, presented by Councilmember                display your works at the eARTh
9601 ridgehaven court, Kearny mesa                    Todd Gloria.                                      Gallery at EarthFair on April 17.
     Business and community members will                For more information, to donate to the si-      There is no charge to show your
gather at the V.I.P. (Very important Planet)       lent auction, to volunteer, or to purchase tick-     works, and a modest fee if you would
Reception to celebrate Earth Day, acknowl-         ets, visit, email vip11@             like to offer them for sale.
edge individuals and organizations who   ,	or	call	(858)	272-7370.                 You	 can	 register	 for	 the	 eARTh	
have taken extraordinary action on behalf               V.I.P. Reception sponsors include San           Gallery online at the EarthWorks
of our environment, and support San Diego          Diego Gas & Electric and Solar Turbines.             website,
EarthWorks programs. The evenings activi-          Volunteer online at www.earthdayweb.                 For more information, please call the
ties will include:                                 org.                                                 EarthWorks office at: (858) 272-7370.
•	 A	silent auction with eco-friendly goods,
April 2011                                                               13                                        San Diego Earth Times
Award inspiration
nominaTe a deserving individual or group for an e.a.r.T.h. award
                                                                                                                                by Alice Martinez

         ften, the people making extraordi-    Award. It could be a student that has set up          ter yourself on the system, and click the
         nary efforts on behalf of the envi-   a recycling program at school, a restaurant           “E.A.R.T.H. Award 2010 Nomination” but-
         ronment and our quality of life are   that has converted to recycled paper products,        ton. If you don’t have web access, please call
unappreciated beyond their small circle of     a government department that has elimi-               the	EarthWorks	office	at	858-272-7370.	The	
associates. EarthWorks’ E.A.R.T.H. Awards      nated pesticide use, or an organization that          nomination deadline is April 22, 2011 – Earth
(Environmental Action & Restoration That       is promoting zero-waste. The possibilities            Day! Self-nominations are welcome.
Helps) give these special individuals and      are endless.                                              The awards will be presented to the win-
groups the wider acknowledgment they de-            EarthWorks asks YOU to nominate po-              ners by San Diego City Councilmember Todd
serve, and encourage others to follow their    tential recipients for the E.A.R.T.H. Awards.         Gloria on May 11 at the 21st annual V.I.P.
example.                                       A	 nomination	 form	 can	 be	 filled	 out	 at	 the	   Reception (see story on page 13).
    In your daily life, you may know indi-     EarthWorks on-line registration system. Just
viduals or groups worthy of an E.A.R.T.H.      go to, regis-

                                               your home more environmentally sustain-               show? Visit the website for more information
EarthFair 2011                                 able and healthy. Find out about energy- and          and to register.
(cont. from page 13)                           resource-saving products and materials, such
“Endangered Spaces” in San Diego County.       as	energy-efficient	appliances	and	low-E	win-         First, you have to get there
The artwork will be presented next to the      dows. A wide variety of solar-electric systems            EarthFair attracts around 60,000 visi-
Children’s Area in the Pan American Plaza      can help you get “off the grid.”                      tors. That’s a lot. It you plan on arriving at
(close to the Auto Museum).                                                                          EarthFair after 11:00am, there may be little
                                               Cleaner Car Concourse                                 or no car parking close to the park. Instead
Green Building                                     The Cleaner Car Concourse features                of sitting in your car looking for that one
    Exhibits in the Pan American Plaza show-   alternative-fuel	and	high-efficiency	vehicles	        needle-in-a-haystack parking place, try one of
case products and technologies that can make   of all descriptions (hybrids included). This          these alternatives: bike, use transit, or use
                                               isn’t just “the future” – these are vehicles          off-site parking with a free shuttle ride.
                                               being used on the road today. The vehicles
      Try Transit for                          will be on display in the Pan American Plaza.
                                                                                                                     ride a bike
                                                                                                         The San Diego County Bicycle Coalition
        earth Day!                                 Do you have a vehicle that belongs in the         will offer free, guarded bike parking available
      Riders	can	take	any	Blue	or	Or-                                                                in two locations:
                                                                                                     •	 On	Village	Place	(off	of	Park	Blvd.,	south	
  ange Trolley Line to the City College            on-line exhibitor                                    of the Zoo) behind the Natural History
  Station in downtown San Diego.
  The station is located between 11th                   Finder                                          Museum.
  Ave. and Park Blvd., and C St. and                   We have always listed the names               •	 In	front	of	the	Museum	of	Man,	just	over	
  Broadway.	 The	 Route	 7	 bus	 stop	 is	        of our exhibitors on our website,                     the Laurel St. bridge.
  just steps away at the corner of 11th           and	links	to	their	websites.	However,	                 If you don’t want to ride the entire way to
  Avenue	and	C	Street.	Remember	to	               searching through hundreds of ex-                  the park, drive part way, park in a convenient
  get a Day Pass when you start your              hibitors is daunting.                              spot, and ride the rest of the way.
  trip on the trolley.                                 To help you find the specific ex-                    ride public transportation
      Use the Transit Trip Planner on-            hibitors you are interested in visiting,              There is a trolley stop about a ten-minute
  liine at For                 we’re launching a new web-based                    walk from the Park. See the details in the try
  automated schedule info, call: 619-             service this year. Starting April 6,               transit for earth day below.
  685-4900.                                       go to                                trolley and Free shuttle
      Remember,	 riding	 MTS	 buses	              exh_Info.html. You will find a list                    Take the free shuttle service from City
  and	trolleys	make	every	day	“EARTH	             of 60 topics, like “Climate Change”,               College. From the trolley stop on Park Blvd.,
  DAY.” When you take transit instead             “Peace”, “Solar - electric” and “Waste             cross to the east side of Park Blvd. and walk
  of driving a car you reduce green-              Reduction.”	Check	off	the	topics	you	              up to Russ Blvd. The shuttle stop is close to
  house gases, slow global warming,               are interested in, press the “Show Ex-             the corner of Russ Blvd. and Park Blvd.
  and improve our air quality. Saving             hibitors” button, and the system will                 off-site Parking and Free shuttles
  just one gallon of gas can eliminate            list the exhibitors that specialize in                Free shuttle services will take you
  19 pounds of carbon dioxide emis-               those topics, their exhibit description,           between the Fair and two free off-site
  sions.                                          and a link to their website.                       parking locations: at City College, and
                                                                                                                          (Continued on page 19)

San Diego Earth Times                                               14                                                             April 2011
                                                   Go straight two blocks and park in the lots
EarthFair 2011                                     opposite	Garfield	Jr.	High	School.	The	shuttle	
                                                                                                          and… VoLuNteer!
(cont. from page 14)
                                                   stop is marked with a sign.                                 It takes about 400 volunteers to produce
at the County administration Building                  To get to the County administration                this event. Come make a difference, and help
on Pacific highway. the shuttles will run          north parking lot (and observe the one-                create a fun, safe, productive event for 60,000
from 10:30 am to 6 pm. NOTE: EarthFair             way	streets),	take	Pacific	Highway	and	turn	           of our closest friends. There are 17 different
shuttle buses cannot accommodate bicycles,         west on West Ash Street, turn right on North           volunteer jobs. Some are active and physical,
unlike MTS buses.                                  Harbor Drive, and right again on West Grape            others mental and social, still others almost
    To get to the City College lot, from the       Street. Enter the north parking lot by turning         contemplative. Work one 3-hour shift, or pitch
163 freeway, exit on Park Blvd. and follow         right off of Grape. Note that parking in the           in all day. Your choice. Check it out: www.
the signs: turn right (south) on Park, turn left   north lot is free; if the north lot is full, parking
(east) on C St., and left again (north) on 16th.   is available in the south lot for a fee.

Sick transit
(cont. from page 10)
getting it changed is not.
                                                               earthFair 2011
     Please join MSD. Let’s build a thriving,
                                                        60,000 Visitors – 400 exhibitors
clean, livable future for San Diego – where                   5 stages – 1 parade
people can use both cars and transit in a future                                          managed by
that works for all of us and the environment.
Move San Diego needs your help to transport                                400 Volunteers
us to a stronger, more prosperous, more enjoy-
able future. Visit to learn
                                                                             and YOU
more,	and	find	out	what	you	can	do.	                                          pretty cool, huh?
     Elyse Lowe is Executive Director of Move
San Diego, a regional non-profit dedicating to                    VOLUNTEER
improving the performance of our transporta-
tion planning and investments.                        

April 2011                                                                 19                                          San Diego Earth Times
San Diego Earth Times   20   April 2011
                 Pollution                                              and                    Waste
                                              Red Cups                                                                              by Dani Ito

         s I wade shin-deep through piles in Isla Vista, try offering your party cleaning bad it is for the environment. As a generation
         full of crunching plastic, all I see is services door-to-door; the general population that was brought up to “Reduce, Reuse, Re-
         red.	 Shiny,	 fire-engine	red	 that	has	 seems pretty receptive to it.                cycle,” most of Isla Vista’s student population
become oh-so familiar. But for now, the living       Some were dripping in jungle juice, sincerely believes they are doing their duty
room is unrecognizable. A fort has accumu- some half-full of stale beer, some completely by placing the debris of last night’s party in
lated out of stacks of red plastic party cups. destroyed; then there were the obligatory ash- the blue bins. The standard red cup, how-
Solo, Kirkland, Dixie, Hefty – the gang’s all tray red cups, but mostly there were cups that ever, is inscribed with a deceptive recycling
here… all two thousand and thirty of their were almost perfectly clean and otherwise symbol, but also numbered 6PS, standing for
cups, to be exact. They sit, im-                                                                              Polystyerene, the type of plastic
patiently scarlet, waiting to be       We’re a community of students who have                                 that is not recycled around here.
turned into some masterpiece           a reputation for being committed to the                                     And so the hundreds of
of the recycled-trash-art genre.                                                                              thousands of cups used and re-
The task seems insanely daunt-
                                       environment and to having the absolute best time                       jected on the streets of Isla Vista
ing, or maybe just insane. How         possible in the best location possible. So why do                      find	their	way	to	the	landfill	to	
did I get into this mess?              we continue to relentlessly trash the town and                         be	“stored”	indefinitely.	At	least,	
                                       beaches we love every weekend?                                         this is the fate for the majority
mission possible?                                                                                             of the 2,000 cups we collected
    The mission was simple: conduct a little reusable. No matter the state of the cups, from sticky weekend aftermath inside the
experiment to see just how many of those they had a common destination: the good ol’ houses. Many, however, were rescued from
red cups are generated in Isla Vista [a town Santa	Barbara	landfill.	When	I	explained	the	 gutters, dumpsters, and cliff-side yards where
populated by students from UC Santa Bar- project up and down the street, people were they hung perilously above the beach below.
bara] over any given weekend. Armed with prompt to inform me: “It’s OK, we recycle Plastics in this quantity blowing from back-
a family-sized box of trash bags, rubber all our red cups.”                                    yard parties into the ocean continually, year
gloves, and a couple of very loyal friends,          The sad truth of the matter is that Santa after year, has surely impacted the surrounding
we set off down the 6600 block of Del Playa Barbara County does not recycle the type of beaches – not to mention that great swirling
Drive, one of the most notorious hangouts plastic red cups are made of. Essentially, it vortex,	the	Great	Pacific	Garbage	Patch,	out	
of the infamous red cup. Knocking on every is the same stuff as Styrofoam, the out-dated in the ocean we love.
door along the ocean side of the street, we material used in all take-out food containers          We’re a community of students who have
met our neighbors, explained the project, and of previous decades until people realized how                            (Continued on page 22)
took their generous donations of all the cups
they used the previous night. Really, if you’re
looking for a way to make some new friends                                       By the numbers…
                                                           (based on the number of cups collected one Saturday and Sunday)

           Polystyerene                                2,030 Number of cups collected over 1 weekend from the ocean side of
                                                             the 6600-block of del Playa drive.
     Polystyerene is very rarely recycled,             6,090 Number of cups used on any given weekend just on the ocean side
 for technical reasons and low value.                        of del Playa (excluding the 6800 block).
 First made from a tree in the 19th cen-             316,680 Number of cups used over the weekends in 1 school year on del
 tury, polystyerene became an industri-                      Playa alone.
 al product through the Nazi-associat-                   108 Number of cups each person uses in 1 school year if he or she uses
 ed corporation IG Farben (now Bayer,                        3 red cups per weekend.
 BASF and Agfa). The name Styrofoam                      432 Number of cups each person uses in 4 years in i.V. at a rate of 3
 is Dow Chemical’s polystyerene. In Ger-                     cups per weekend.
 many today polystyrene is collected                  20,000 Population of isla Vista
 as a consequence of the packaging                    22,240 total number of cups sold at the Goleta Costco and albertsons in
 law (Verpackungsverordnung) that                            1 weekend.
 requires manufacturers to take re-                 $1050.11 amount spent at those two stores on red cups in 1 weekend.
 sponsibility for recycling or disposing                 700 Number of uCsB students majoring in environmental or hydrologi-
 of any packaging material they sell.                        cal studies.

April 2011                                                             21                                       San Diego Earth Times
        Global Climate Change
Crazy weather: How it’s linked to
climate change
                                                                                                                         by Cary Lowe & Patricia Butler

       he story leading up to the Super Bowl         a short-term phenomenon. Climate change                    Any given winter may be cooler or
       was whether it would happen at all.           represents a long-term pattern, averaged over          warmer, but that just represents expected
       For the previous week, Dallas, along          many seasons and weather events. Since data            variation in a very long-term natural process.
with the rest of the Midwest and Northeast,          recording began in the late 1800s, it con-             As the National Center for Atmospheric
had been buried in a blizzard that dumped            sistently documents trends in temperature,             Research points out, there still will be record
record amounts of snow, closing airports,            rainfall, ice melt, ocean rise and weather             cold days, but fewer of them, and there will
clogging highways and causing rolling power          intensity supporting the conclusion that global        be more record highs than record lows. The
blackouts.                                                                                                  trend is what matters, and the trend is one
    Commentators wondered sarcastically                   Global warming is not just                        in which each of the past several decades
about what had happened to global warm-                   about the world getting hot-                      has been warmer, on average, than the one
ing. Actually, even if counter-intuitively, this          ter. It is also about the weather                 preceding it, and the most recent decade was
major	weather	event	was	a	confirmation	that	              getting crazier, as Southern                      the warmest ever recorded. At the same time,
global warming is here, and it’s getting more             California also has been expe-                    there are cyclical conditions like El Niño and
serious all the time. Global warming is not               riencing recently in the form of                  La Niña that change ocean temperatures and
just about the world getting hotter. It is also           sudden temperature changes                        thereby sharply alter usual weather patterns.
about the weather getting crazier, as Southern            and abrupt storms.
California also has been experiencing recently                                                              Climactic climate
in the form of sudden temperature changes            warming is increasing. This correlates directly            Against this backdrop, it is the increase
and abrupt storms.                                   to the amount of carbon dioxide and other              in weather intensity that underlies events like
                                                     greenhouse gases emitted into the atmosphere           those we have been seeing throughout the
Weather or not                                       by human activity, mainly from consuming               country this winter. As the atmosphere warms,
    Climate scientists, such as those at the         carbon-based fuels. That is the fundamental            even slightly, it absorbs more moisture. This
World Meteorological Organization, caution           point underlying the reports issued by the             is accelerated by warming of the oceans and
that	 any	 individual	 storm,	 drought	 or	 flood	   United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on              the resulting increase in evaporation. This
should not be viewed as proof of anything.           Climate Change, the principal network of               doesn’t necessarily lead to more storms, but
These events constitute weather, which is            scientists studying climate change.                                         (Continued on page 24)

Red Cups                                                  year. You save money and the environment             or	 even	 bring	 your	 own	 flask!	 Washing	
(cont. from page 21)                                      while decreasing your likelihood of pick-            and reusing is always cheaper and more
a reputation for being committed to the envi-             ing up diseases!                                     sustainable than using a disposable cup.
ronment and to having the absolute best time         •	   Skip	 cups	 altogether	 and	 buy	 cases	 of	      •	 Spread	the	word	and	host	a	BYOC	–	Bring	
possible in the best location possible. So why            beer. The cans are recyclable and many               Your Own Cup – party! Tell everyone to
do we continue to relentlessly trash the town             of I.V.’s local can collectors will be more          bring a plain cup from their kitchen and
and beaches we love every weekend? For a                  than happy to take them off your hands the           offer Sharpies to decorate with. Everyone
good time? Surely we’re entitled to have a                next day.                                            gets a pimp cup they can show off at all
good time. But we can do it in a sustainable         •	   Break	the	mold!	Buy	different	cups.	Sev-             future parties.
way. It just takes stepping out of the typical            eral brands such as Solo make cups that are           Red cups (#6PS plastic/polystyrene) are
I.V. mindset and thinking about some alterna-             recyclable (though they may not be red).          not recycled in San Diego, either! The above
tive options.                                             Just check the bottom to make sure it has         article originally appeared in the current
     What can you do instead?                             the recycling triangle with a number 1, 2,        edition of the UCSB student magazine Word,
•	 Play	water	pong!	It’s	just	like	beer	pong,	            6 or 7 – NOT 6PS – before you buy it!             edited by Hector Diaz.
   but much cleaner and more hygienic. Fill          •	   Petition	 your	 local	 stores	 to	 stock	 more	       To learn more about the plastic plague,
   the cups with water instead of beer, and               cups that are made of recyclable plastic.         see the award-winning documentary Our
   each time someone makes a shot, drink                  They’re the ones that can determine our           Synthetic Sea (available in Spanish too)
   a third of your side drink. The game is                choices by giving us more options.                available from the Algalita Marine Research
   the exact same, but the cups stay clean so        •	   When	 you’re	 drinking	 at	 home	 or	 at	 a	      Foundation and read Culture Change articles
   you can reuse them throughout the entire               friend’s place, try to use kitchen cups,          on the plastic plague.

San Diego Earth Times                                                       22                                                             April 2011
April 2011   23   San Diego Earth Times
Greenhouse gasses and YOU
                                                                                                                               by Andrea Cook, Ph.D.

        y now, everyone has heard of climate        our clothes; the electricity we use to power the    to be more conscious about my energy use and
        change and knows that what we do            lights, television, computer and microwave;         stop wasting so much of it. I didn’t even real-
        locally has an impact on our whole          the	propane	we	use	to	fire	up	our	barbecues;	       ize I was wasting energy… I was just living
planet. In our own neighborhoods, we have           the fuel in the airplanes we take to go on          daily life as I knew it. I am making changes in
witnessed dirty air coming out of vehicles,         vacation; the off-road vehicles and boats we        my behavior, but I’m also looking into ways
polluted water running down the street and          recreate on, etc. Of all GHG emissions in           I	 can	 make	 my	 home	 more	 efficient	 –	 so	 I	
overflowing	trash	cans	on	trash	day.	We	drive	      San	Diego	County,	91%	come	from	carbon-             don’t have to work so hard at saving energy.
our cars, watch TV and take hot showers             based energy use (fossil fuels). The other               The new Energy Upgrade California pro-
without batting an eye. It is just daily life as    9%	of	GHG	emissions	come	from	industrial	           gram	is	a	good	opportunity	to	fix	the	whole	
we know it. How big of an impact could our          chemicals,	landfill	gas,	manure,	wastewater	        house at once. After I stop wasting energy,
residential life possibly have on the earth?        treatment and the like. GHG-emitting dirty          I’ll use the money I’ve saved to invest in
You might be surprised.                             energy is the biggest cause of climate change.      clean energy, like solar or wind that won’t
                                                        And there is something that we can do           pollute the planet so much or lead to climate
Who, me?                                            about it.                                           disruption.	It	is	not	a	sacrifice;	it	is	ceasing	
     When we look at greenhouse gas (GHG)               I suggest beginning at home and sur-            to waste energy immediately – and investing
emissions within San Diego County by eco-           rendering to the fact that we are wasteful          in a healthier planet for now and later.
nomic sector, it’s a real eye opener. The resi-     with how we use energy. Here are just a few              Andrea Cook, Ph.D., is the Climate
dential sector is the largest emitter, contribut-   ideas of how you can change your energy             Change Program Manager at the California
ing	56%	of	all	greenhouse	gasses	(Anders	et.        behaviors:                                          Center for Sustainable Energy. For backgro-
al. 2008). In San Diego, we cannot point our        •	 Carpool	or	take	public	transportation            ound on the numbers, please visit www.
finger	at	the	commercial	(21%)	or	industrial	       •	 Turn	off	or	unplug	computers,	televisions, For
(11%)	 sectors	 and	 declare	that	they	are	the	        microwaves and video games                       more information about Energy Upgrade
big polluters. If our planet is to avoid climate    •	 Turn	down	your	 hot	water	heater’s	 tem-         California see and
disruption – higher temperatures, drought, sea         perature                               
level rise and extreme weather events – it’s        •	 Buy	water	and	food	from	local	sources                 Editor’s note: Addressing climate change
up to us residents to take action (along with       •	 Take	your	cloth	bags	to	the	grocery	store	       will require political action in addition to
the other sectors of the economy).                  •	 Turn	off	your	car	rather	than	letting	it	idle	   individual action. Locally, you can volunteer
                                                       while waiting for friends                        with the Sierra Club Climate Change commit-
it’s all about energy                               •	 Quit	using	water	wastefully,	and	save	the	       tee. Visit
     Largely, it’s the energy that we use and          energy it takes to pump it here
waste that is the problem. The gasoline and         •	 Take	pride	in	recycling,	reusing	and	repur-
diesel we put in our cars and SUVs; the natu-          posing
ral gas that we use to heat our homes and dry           I know what I’m going to do – I’m going

Crazy weather
(cont. from page 22)
it does result in storms being more severe,         past year, we have seen the hottest summers         for the short run, whenever the temperature
with stronger winds and greater precipitation.      ever in Russia, the heaviest monsoons ever          drops into the freezing range, stormy weather
In recent months, this has been exacerbated         in	South	Asia,	the	worst	floods	in	decades	in	      will take the form of blizzards, like the ones
by a change in the condition known as the           China and the greatest Arctic melting ever re-      that have been blasting the Midwest and
arctic oscillation, which has shifted cold air      corded. These extreme occurrences, coupled          Northeast.
from the northern latitudes downward, where         with extreme winter weather elsewhere, led               The next Super Bowl will be played at an
it has combined with moist air from the south       commentator Thomas Friedman to suggest              indoor stadium in Indianapolis, substantially
to produce cold precipitation, that is, snow,       that global warming is better seen as “global       north of Dallas. No one is predicting the
sleet and ice. This collision of a long-term        weirding,” as climate change leads to increas-      weather for game day, but it would be prudent
warming trend with a short-term cooling             ingly severe but erratic conditions.                to bring a parka, or at least a raincoat, for the
condition resulted in winter days where it              In the long run, as the climate continues       trip to the stadium.
was colder in the Southwest than in parts of        to warm, the freakish weather events will                Cary Lowe is a San Diego land use and
Alaska and Canada.                                  increasingly be of the warm variety such            environmental lawyer. Patricia Butler is an
     At the same time, heat waves and droughts      as monsoons and hurricanes, particularly in         environmental planner and adviser to the San
are	intensified	in	some	regions	of	the	world,	      the middle latitudes, where the ocean and           Diego Foundation.
as precipitation patterns also shift. In the        atmosphere are warmer. However, especially

San Diego Earth Times                                                   24                                                              April 2011
April 2011   25   San Diego Earth Times
San Diego Earth Times   26   April 2011
! w D zdK)                                       Marine Ecology ( c 9 o ^ L #
Off California, many common fish now
spawn earlier
                                                                                                                   provided by California Sea Grant

           n land, among the most compelling         larvae in water samples collected during the       ing earlier are doing so by, on average, 29
           pieces of evidence for ecosystem          California Cooperative Oceanic Fisheries In-       days.
           restructuring under climate change        vestigations (CalCOFI) cruises, which began            Meanwhile, for the species that are
are the observed shifts in seasonal animal           in	the	early	50s.                                  spawning later, Asch notes that they are
migrations, breeding cycles and home ranges.              “We don’t know why there is this trend        predominately coastal dwellers that spawn in
New	findings	from	California	Sea	Grant	show	         toward earlier spawning,” says California Sea      winter and fall, when upwelling is weak and
that life history characteristics of marine spe-     Grant Trainee Rebecca Asch, a doctoral stu-        larvae are less likely to be swept offshore,
cies in the California Current ecosystem are         dent at Scripps Institution of Oceanography        where	the	fish	would	perish.	The	hypothesis	
also	in	a	state	of	flux.                             at UC San Diego. “But, it’s likely related to      Asch is now exploring is that these species are
     In particular, California Sea Grant re-         temperature.”                                      responding to changes in upwelling patterns
searchers report that 18 of the region’s 43               “Many marine organisms use temperature        and	associated	offshore	flows.
most	abundant	fish	species	are	now	spawning	         as a cue for when to initiate spawning, so the         Asch	presented	her	findings	at	the	North	
between 14 days and 62 days earlier than in          idea that changes in seasonal temperatures         Pacific	Marine	Science	Organization	(PICES)	
the	early	1950s.                                     would affect spawning time shouldn’t come          conference on the effects of climate change
     Some of the earlier-spawning species            as too much of a surprise,” she says. “Similar     on	fishes	and	fisheries	in	Japan,	April	2010	
include: jack mackerel, chub mackerel, hake,         patterns of earlier reproduction have been         and is preparing a manuscript on this work,
Senoritas,	medusafish	and	the	aurora,	split-         observed in many terrestrial ecosystems and        as well as including it in her doctoral dis-
nose	and	short-belly	rockfishes.                     have been frequently attributed to climate         sertation.
    Eight species are also spawning later –          change, in general, and the earlier arrival of         California Sea Grant, a part of NOAA’s
between	15	days	and	35	days	later.	Among	            spring	more	specifically.”                         National Sea Grant, is a network of 32
these	 are	 chilipepper	 rockfish,	 blacksmith,	          Sea surface temperatures off California       university-based programs related to the
two	species	of	flatfishes	and	three	species	of	      are now reaching their seasonal peak about         marine sciences.
mid-water	fishes.                                    25	days	earlier	today	than	in	the	early	1950s.	
    The	findings	are	based	on	counts	of	fish	        Compellingly,	the	fish	species	that	are	spawn-

Coastal dead zones
       research idenTifies 530 coasTal “dead zones” and 228 marine euTrophic siTes
                                                                                                               provided by World Resources Institute

              ithin	 the	 past	 50	 years,	 eutro-   of	nitrogen	and	tripling	of	phosphorus	flows	      as: loss of subaquatic vegetation, change in
              phication – the over-enrichment        to the environment when compared to natural        species composition, coral reef damage, low
              of water by nutrients such as          values.                                            dissolved oxygen, and the formation of dead
nitrogen phosphorus – has emerged as one                  Before nutrients – nitrogen in particular –   zones (oxygen-depleted waters) that can lead
of the leading causes of water quality im-           are delivered to coastal ecosystems, they pass     to ecosystem collapse.
pairment. The two most acute symptoms                through a variety of terrestrial and freshwater
of eutrophication are hypoxia (or oxygen             ecosystems, causing other environmental            dead on-line
depletion) and harmful algal blooms, which           problems such as freshwater quality impair-            If you want to view these coastal areas,
among other things can destroy aquatic life          ments, acid rain, the formation of greenhouse      visit:
in affected areas.                                   gases, shifts in community food webs, and a        tion/map, This Interactive Map of Eutrophi-
     The rise in eutrophic and hypoxic events        loss of biodiversity.                              cation & Hypoxia lets you zoom in on trouble
has been attributed to the rapid increase in              Once nutrients reach coastal systems,         spots around the world. Here are two entries
intensive agricultural practices, industrial ac-     they can trigger a number of responses within      for our local area:
tivities, and population growth which together       the ecosystem. The initial impacts of nutrient                  San Diego Bay
have	increased	nitrogen	and	phosphorus	flows	        increases are the excessive growth of phy-            US-California (32.671, -117.141) – Hy-
in the environment. The Millennium Eco-              toplankton, microalgae (e.g., epiphytes and           poxic
system Assessment (MA) found that human              microphytes), and macroalgae (i.e., seaweed).         San Diego Bay is a natural harbor adjacent
activities have resulted in the near doubling        These, in turn, can lead to other impacts such                          (Continued on page 29)

April 2011                                                                 27                                       San Diego Earth Times
Growing a new generation of gardeners
       kids across america are growing, and some are earning, a loT of “green” parTicipaTing in
       The naTional Bonnie planTs caBBage program.
                                                                                                                                provided by Bonnie Plants

        his	 year,	 more	 than	 1.5	 million	 third	   safe place to experience nature, discover the            water your plant.
        graders	in	45	states	have	gotten	hands-        cycles of life and develop an understanding           tLC: Keep weeds out of the cabbage patch
        on gardening experience growing co-            of our environment. It also exposes children,            – they compete for the food and water
lossal cabbages with high hopes to win “best           first	 hand,	 to	 the	 benefits	 of	 growing	 your	      your cabbage needs. Be on the lookout for
in state” and receive a $1,000 scholarship             own nutritious food and it’s a great source              brown or white moths – these come from
towards education from Bonnie Plants.                  of physical activity. The cabbage program,               worms that love to munch on cabbage. If
     Each year, Bonnie Plants delivers free            over	the	past	15	years,	has	proved	to	be	an	             you see any, get rid of them right away.
O.S. Cross, or “oversized,” cabbage plants             enriching hands-on experience that kids and              Cold weather can damage your cabbage.
to third grade classrooms, nationwide, whose           teachers across America have embraced. See-              If the weather gets below 32° F, cover your
teachers have signed up for the program,               ing students excited about learning and the art          cabbage with a bucket.
online at If nur-                of gardening is what we strive for”.                  time: In just 10 to 12 weeks, you should
tured and cared for, cabbages can grow bigger                                                                   have a huge head of cabbage you can be
than a basketball and tip the scales at nearly         Getting it Growing:                                      proud of.
40 pounds!                                                  Growing a colossal cabbage may seem                   Green thumbs and perseverance can pay
     First	 launched	 in	 1995,	 the	 program	         like a giant undertaking for little kids, but it’s    off, providing participating children with as
awards a $1,000 scholarship to one student in          easier than you think. All you need is:               great sense of pride and accomplishment, a
each participating state. At the end of the sea-       sunshine: Cabbages need at least six hours            humongous cabbage, and for the lucky state
son, teachers from each class will select the             of full sunlight, more if possible.                winner, the beginning of an educational
student who has grown the “best” cabbage,              space: Bonnie O.S. cabbages need at least             fund for college. To see the 2010 winners
based on size and appearance. A picture of                three feet on each side to spread out. If          and learn more about the 2011 contest, visit
the cabbage and the student entry is submit-              you don’t have that much space, use a    
ted to Bonnie Plants by mail or online. That              large container.
student’s name is then entered in a statewide          soil: Work some compost into the soil - cab-
drawing. The winners of each state’s drawing              bages love nutrient-rich soil.
are randomly selected by the Commission of             Food: Start your cabbage off right with an all-
Agriculture, state by state.                              purpose vegetable fertilizer, then fertilize
     “The Bonnie Plants Cabbage Program is                it every 10 days to keep it growing strong.
our way of engaging children in the joy of gar-        Water: Your cabbage needs at least one inch
dening”, said Stan Cope, President of Bonnie              of rainfall each week. If it doesn’t rain, use
Plants. “Gardening provides children with a               a watering can or a garden hose to gently

Dead zones                                                between California and Mexico; three                   the primary source of fresh water to the
(cont. from page 27)                                      quarters of the estuary catchment is lo-               estuary; it is also a source of untreated
   to San Diego, California; it is separated              cated in Mexico. Extended periods of                   sewage from the city of Tijuana, Mexico.
   from	the	Pacific	Ocean	by	a	long	narrow	               drought leave parts of the estuary dry                 An estimated 0.13 square kilometers have
   strip of land called Silver Strand. High               during	 some	 periods,	 while	 flooding	 in-           been affected by periodic hypoxia in the
   population density leads to high levels                undates the same areas during others. The              past decade, though oxygen levels have
   of	nutrients.	An	estimated	4.5	square	ki-              Tijuana River Estuary is one of the few                been improving since 1990.
   lometers have been affected by periodic                salt marshes remaining in Southern Cali-               Source: Sanger et al. 2002; Wenner et al.
   hypoxia since the 1990s.                               fornia, where over 90 percent of wetland               2004; Bricker et al. 2007
   Source:	Collias,	1985;	Rabalais,	1998                  habitat has been lost to development. The               The World Resources Institute is a global
              Tijuana Estuary                             site is an essential breeding, feeding and         environmental think tank that goes beyond
   US-California	 (32.559,	 -117.128)	 –	 Im-             nesting ground and key stopover point on           research to put ideas into action. They work
   proved                                                 the	Pacific	Flyway	for	over	370	species	of	        with governments, companies, and civil soci-
   Tijuana Estuary is a small intertidal                  migratory and native birds, including six          ety to build solutions to urgent environmental
   coastal estuary on the international border            endangered species. The Tijuana River is           challenges.

April 2011                                                                    29                                         San Diego Earth Times
                     San Diego Sierra Club’s
                Nature Knowledge Workshop 2011
                                                   Friday-sunday: June 10-12

     oin	us	for	a	weekend	that	may	influence	      society respecting and preserving all living       life shaping event is held at the Sierra Club’s
     the rest of your life. This annual event is   co-habitants. Included is a comprehensive          scenic Foster Lodge in the Laguna mountains
     one of the two big Sierra Club happen-        190-page Naturalist manual, meals, two             and	 Cleveland	 National	 Forest	 (el.	 5,800	
ings of each year (the other is the Wilderness     night’s lodging, a Bluegrass concert, hikes,       feet, San Diego County) on Friday evening
Basics Course). The Nature Knowledge               and a t-shirt. Evening workshops on a variety      through Sunday noon, June 10-12, 2011. Cost:
Workshop (NKW) combines education and              of subjects, given by biologists and lay-          $125.00	per	Sierra	Club	member,	$135.00	per	
appreciation for our precious and dwindling        biologists. Subjects include plants, mammals,      non-member. For more information, contact
natural resources with a sharing and a build-      birds, insects, reptiles, Indian history/lore,     Barry Hite (619) 990-6414 or email: NKW@
ing of new friendships. You will leave the         ecology/conservation, astronomy, population
weekend with a renewed vigor towards a             issues, nature photography, and more. This

                                                   firewood	locally	and	don’t	move	firewood.          eye out for GSOB damage. At a minimum we
Dying oaks                                             This effort alone is not enough. With          are hoping that you will log on to our website,
(cont. from page 9)
                                                   more than one million of acres of oaks in, to learn more about the
and staining and oozing on the bark surface.       southern California, it is nearly impossible for   outbreak and keeping oak trees healthy. If
Goldspotted oak borer is easily transported        agencies to monitor all woodlands for signs of     you’d like to speak to someone personally
long	distances.	Oak	firewood	brought	from	         infestations. So, we are asking you to help us     please contact Tara Piraneo tpiraneo@ucr.
infested areas has a high probability of           create an early warning system by keeping an       edu	at	951-313-4193.
containing GSOB, and could devastate oaks
around	 any	 location	 where	 the	 firewood	 is	
stored. Currently, there are no known treat-       Take It Back
ments to eradicate GSOB once it becomes            (cont. from page 3)
established, and a GSOB outbreak is likely          We’re takin’ it back                Take back your preaching          Take it back
to kill many of the coast live oak and black         for nature’s sake                  Take back your lies                 for our sake!
                                                    We’re takin’ it back                Take back your dogma              Take it Back!
oaks in an area. This could cost a community
                                                     for our sake                       Take back your wars
millions of dollars in removal and restoration      We’re takin’ it back
costs. To stop this insect from spreading to         for future’s sake                  You’re takin’ it back!
other parts in southern California, purchase        We’re takin’ it back                  for nature’s sake
                                                     for earth’s sake                   You’re takin’ it back!
                                                                                          for our sake
                                                    Take back your illusions            You’re takin’ it back!
                                                    Take back your God                    for future’s sake
                                                    Take back your devils               You’re takin’ it back!
                                                    Take back your hate                   for earth’s sake

                                                            Carolyn Chase is editor of the San Diego Earth Times, chairperson of the San Diego
                                                   Sierra Club, past member of the City of San Diego Planning Commission, and a founder of
                                                   San Diego EarthWorks, the host of the EarthFair in Balboa Park.

San Diego Earth Times                                                  30                                                            April 2011
April 2011   31   San Diego Earth Times

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