Environment

Nuclear Shutdown News April 2017: Safety Value Malfunction at Oyster Creek Nuke

May 3, 2017 by Michael Steinberg

By Michael Steinberg / Black Rain Press

Nuclear Shutdown News chronicles the decline and fall of the nuclear industry in the US and abroad, and highlights the efforts of this who are working to create a nuclear free world. Here is our April 2017 report:

40 + Nuke Club

On April 18 Patch Media reported “Nuclear Regulatory Commission Finds Oyster Creek Safety Valve Malfunctioned For Nearly Two Years.” The emergency safety valve in question was “inoperable between October 11, 2014 and September 19, 2016” in the New Jersey nuke plant’s reactor, patch.com reported.

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Trump Wants To Roll Back Two Decades of National Monuments

May 2, 2017 by Source

Editor’s Note: On April 26th, Trump signed an executive order that covers a review of national monument designations going back 21 years. It was an executive order that is monumental—and not in a good way.

By Mark Sumner / Daily Kos

In the spirit of patriotic occupiers of wildlife habitat who don’t believe any place is so beautiful, historic, or ecologically significant that it couldn’t be improved by a Walmart and/or a strip mine, Trump wants to do in a few national monuments.

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Why the People’s Climate March Matters Now More Than Ever

April 24, 2017 by Jim Miller

Climate March

By Jim Miller

In the lead up to Earth Day, Elizabeth Kolbert, the Pulitzer Prize-winning author of The Sixth Extinction, accurately observed that this year there wasn’t much to celebrate.

She’s right. An administration that can’t seem to stop stepping on its own feet in nearly every other area has been pretty darn good at gearing up to kill the planet. As Kolbert writes in the New Yorker:

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Present at the Creation: Walter Cronkite and the ‘Environment Story’

April 21, 2017 by Source

By Ron Bonn/ SanDiego350

You could say I was present at the creation.

Looking back in our lives, we rarely know exactly when something started. But regular television news coverage of man-made climate change, with all it implies, started on New Year’s Day, 1970.

The staff of “The CBS Evening News with Walter Cronkite”: producers, writers, technicians; a couple dozen of us in all, were sitting around the newsroom waiting for something to happen—because nothing happens on New Year’s Day—when the man himself stormed in. “Goddamn it,” he said to us, “we’ve got to do something about this environment story.”

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Proposed San Diego Budget Bad News for Urban Forestry

April 21, 2017 by Source

By Anne Fege / San Diego Free Press

The City’s FY 2018 budget was released on April 13, with a proposed cut of $880,000 for shade tree pruning—a grave disappointment.

With the City’s commitment to the Climate Action Plan, existing and large trees provide the most canopy cover, and they need to be managed and protected to maximize their health and life span.

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It’s Spring: Time to Save the Planet

April 20, 2017 by Source

planet

March for Science San Diego – Saturday, April 22, 10am

People’s Climate March San Diego – Saturday, April 29, 10am

Upcoming weeks offer several opportunities to join the fight against global warming. And in the age of a Donald Trump administration, the environment needs all the friends it can get.

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SeaWorld Ends Summertime Fireworks for Now

April 17, 2017 by Staff

SeaWorld has announced its Mission Bay theme park will not shoot off fireworks this summer. Fireworks will still go off during 3-day holiday weekends and a few other special events. Plus, SeaWorld will not disclose whether nightly fireworks are gone for good, only that they are on “hiatus for the foreseeable future.”

The “official story” is that SeaWorld is preparing for its new “Electric Ocean” a nighttime lighting display. In typical fashion, SeaWorld could not admit that maybe – in its effort to be more environmentally-sensitive – that the summertime tradition is halting due to public pressure. (For more of the official line, see SDU-T)

For years, San Diegans have signed petitions calling on SeaWorld to stop their summer explosions over the Bay.

From our July 2015 post,
Seaworld Pet vs firewords picHit the link and sign the Petition that calls on the San Diego City Council to ban the nightly fireworks at SeaWorld.

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OB Planning Board’s Project Review Committee Looks at Companion Unit Permit at 4528 Cape May on Wed., April 19

April 17, 2017 by Staff

On the agenda of the Project Review Committee – a subcommittee of the OB Planning Board – is an application for a permit to construct a 700 square foot companion unit over a carport and to demolish the existing car garage and storage shed.

The site is located at 4526 Cape May Avenue.

COME INSIDE FOR OFFICIAL AGENDA

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Ocean Beach Planning Board to Meet Wed., April 5th

April 4, 2017 by Staff

The OB Planning Board holds their regular monthly meeting this Wednesday, April 5th. They meet in the OB Recreation Center, at 4726 Santa Monica Avenue. The meetings usually begin sharply at 6pm.

The Board will certify the recent election results, review the applications of people who wish to be appointed to the Board for seats 1, 3 and 5, appoint a new Executive Committee for the year, decide whether to make a recommendation to the City about the Soccer City proposal for Qualcomm Stadium, and have a quick overview of the city’s development process by chair John Ambert.

Come Inside for the official agenda

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More Questions About “Villa Famosa” on Camulos Drive in Point Loma

April 3, 2017 by Frank Gormlie

After a closer look at the site of the planned project called “Villa Famosa” on Camulos Street right off Famosa Slough, this reporter, at least, has more questions about the project.

On March 28th, we reported:

The “Villa Famosa” project is slated for a remodel of one already existing 2-story apartment building at the site on Camulos Drive, the 90 degree “turning” of the other already-existing 2-story, and the construction of a brand new third 2-story building that will hold 6 units.

The plans also call for a underground parking garage that will include 22 spaces for cars, and an additional 2 for motorcycles and 8 for bicycles.

And it also calls for a new driveway into the lot at Temecula Street.
New Photos of Site Raise Questions

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Nuke Shutdown News for March 2017 : San Onofre Nuke Waste to Be 100 Feet from Ocean

April 3, 2017 by Michael Steinberg

Nuke Shutdown News chronicles the decline and fall of the nuclear industry in the US and abroad, and highlights the efforts of those working to create a nuclear free world. Here’s our March 2017 report:

By Michael Steinberg / Black Rain Press

San Onofre nuke owner wants to put lots of high level nuclear waste 100 feet from the Pacific Ocean.

On March 20 Surfer Magazine reported:

“They’re going to put nuclear waste 100 feet from the water.”

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Audubon Society Gearing Up for Weekend of Restoring Least Tern Nesting Areas on Fiesta Island

March 30, 2017 by Source

The San Diego Audubon Society is gearing up for a weekend of organizing volunteers to help restore the natural habitat on Fiesta Island.

On both Saturday, April 1st and Sunday, April 2nd, teams of volunteers will work to restore the nesting habitat of the endangered California Least Tern and to protect Nuttall’s Lotus, an endangered sand dune plant on Fiesta Island.

Here’s the break-down:

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Trump’s Climate Change Legacy: “The Coast is Toast”

March 30, 2017 by Doug Porter

Climate Change

By Doug Porter / San Diego Free Press

Southern Californians got some bad news this week with the release of a report from the U.S. Geological Survey saying two-thirds of beaches from Santa Barbara to San Diego could be completely eroded back to sea cliffs or coastal infrastructure by 2100.

Reporting by Joshua Emerson Smith in the Union-Tribune details this grim scenario and explains how scientists reached these conclusions::

The findings are the result of a new computer modeling program called the Coastal Storm Modeling System. The numerical modeling incorporates predicted sea-level rise as well as anticipated shifts in storm patterns as a result of climate change.

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Will SoccerCity Fill a Void in Mission Valley?

March 29, 2017 by Doug Porter

SoccerCity

By Doug Porter

Surprise, surprise, surprise! Those friendly folks collecting signatures for the billion dollar SoccerCity development to replace Qualcomm Stadium are being–how shall we put it?–less than honest.

Tuesday’s Union-Tribune includes a story involving an informal survey of 25 signature gathering locations around San Diego. Petition bearers are reportedly being paid $5 per signature and are making promises with little connection to what is actually contained in the document they are pushing.

The hope is that the San Diego City Council, with visions of $2.8 billion in economic benefits dancing in their heads, will vote to enact the ‘citizen’s ordinance’ without the need for an actual ballot measure.

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Collier Park in Ocean Beach – The Incredible Shrinking Park

March 28, 2017 by Source

(Originally p0sted Dec 6, 2010 as part of a series, “The Hitchhiker’s Guide to OB”)

By Citizen Cane

The Incredible Shrinking Park can still be observed in Ocean Beach at the intersection of Green and Soto Streets. It’s officially known as Collier Park, and consists of approximately 6.7 dedicated acres if you include the Point Loma Native Plant Reserve. That might sound large, but it’s barely a fraction of the original size of the park before it began shrinking.

Travel back in time with the aid of the Fall 1957 Thomas Brothers Map, and you can see the park was bounded by Soto, Green, Valeta, and almost to Wolcott (about two blocks from the present day Stumps Market.)

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“Villa Famosa” Project Promises to Be a Challenge for Famosa Slough

March 28, 2017 by Frank Gormlie

A new construction project coming to the shores of Famosa Slough promises to be a challenge to one of the last natural vestiges of Mission Bay.

The “Villa Famosa” project is slated for a remodel of one already existing 2-story apartment building at the site on Camulos Drive, the 90 degree “turning” of the other already-existing 2-story, and the construction of a brand new third 2-story building that will hold 6 units.

The existing lot is on the edge of Famosa Slough at 2727 Camulos Dr.within the perimeters of the Peninsula Community Planning Board (ed. we don’t know when the project is scheduled for their meeting review). It’s on a .38 acre site. The applicant is Alex Miller, and the project manager at the City of San Diego is Derick Johnson.

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Ebers and Greene Project Contractor Has License Suspended

March 27, 2017 by Frank Gormlie

The owner/ contractor of the controversial Ebers and Greene project has had his contractor’s license suspended.

Curtis Nelson of Nelco Contracting of Vista, California, had his license recently suspended “for failure to comply with an Arbitration Award. The suspension occurred on March 23, 2017.

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Park City Is Damned: A Case Study in Civilization

March 27, 2017 by Source

]Park City Ski Runs

See “A Note to My Readers” INSIDE

By Will Falk / San Diego Free Press

At the south end of Brown’s Canyon, about 6 miles northeast of Park City, Utah, there’s always an engine running. Usually, there are more than I can count.

If it’s not commuting car engines coughing to life in cold, winter air, it’s snowblowers blasting snow from driveways. If it’s not cars or snowblowers, its excavators flattening the next hill over, clawing out one bucketful of earth at a time. If it’s none of these, it’s diesel generators compressing air for nail guns popping boards together.

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Big Step Taken in STVR Fight

March 25, 2017 by Source

From Save San Diego Neighborhoods:

Panel advances home-sharing proposal, declines on whole-home rental plans

MARCH 24, 2017 – In a victory for opponents of short-term vacation rentals, San Diego’s Smart Growth and Land Use Committee today agreed that only a proposal regulating home-sharing should go before the entire City Council with its recommendation. At the same time, the panel declined to push for any of three options brought by the Development Services Department (DSD) dealing with whole-home rentals.

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San Diego Council Committee to Hear Proposals for Short-Term Rentals – Fri., Mar. 24th

March 22, 2017 by Frank Gormlie

A San Diego City Council committee is posed to hear three different options for short-term vacation rentals being proposed by the Planning Department this coming Friday, March 25th.

The Smart Growth and Land Use Committee of the Council will meet in the morning at the Jacob Center and attempt – once again – to juggle the contentious issue of how to deal with these particular types of rentals, an issue that the Council and city staff have bounced around now for 2 years.

The issue of short-term rentals have roiled the beach areas and Ocean Beach in particular.

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OB Planning Board Unofficial Election Results and Current Make-up

March 21, 2017 by Frank Gormlie

The results are in from last Wednesday’s OB Planning Board annual election (they’re not official until certified by the Board, which is expected to occur at the next regular meeting, April 5, 2017).

From the OBPB website:

The unofficial results of the 2017 general election of the Ocean Beach Planning Board are:

DISTRICT 2
Tom Gawronski

DISTRICT 4
Blake Herrschaft

DISTRICT 6
Dan Dennison

DISTRICT 7
Richard Aguirre

Come Inside for an Analysis and Current Make-up of Board

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Peninsula Planners: Carleton Mixed-Use Project Too High; Election Results

March 20, 2017 by Source

By Geoff Page

The Peninsula Community Planning Board’s yearly election to fill five seats had a large turnout on Thursday, at the March 16 regular monthly meeting. The final tally was 553 votes.

The winners were incumbents Jon Linney, Don Sevrens, and David Dick along with newcomers Fred Kosmo and Margaret Virissimo. A “slate” of five candidates that circulated before the election, contrary to the election rules, had four of the winners on it. Incumbent David Dick, who did not appear on the slate, defeated one of the five people shown on the slate. The new members will be seated at the regular monthly meeting in April.

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San Diego City Attorney Issues Memo Stating Short Term Vacation Rentals Are Illegal in Residential Zones

March 16, 2017 by Source

From Save San Diego Neighborhoods:

City Attorney: Short-term vacation rentals not permitted under City’s Municipal Code

San Diego City Attorney Mara Elliott has issued a memorandum of law advising the City Council and Mayor that short-term vacation rentals (STVR) are illegal in the city’s residential zones.

“The City has a “permissive zoning ordinance.” This means that any use that is not listed in the City’s zoning ordinance is prohibited. Short-term vacation rentals are not specifically defined, expressly permitted, or listed in any of the zone use categories, including residential or commercial,” Elliott said in her memo, issued on March 15.

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Why Restore Kellogg Beach? A Look at Its Inheritance and Legacy

March 16, 2017 by Source

By Michael Winn

A real estate speculator has proposed to replace a single family home on Kellogg Street in La Playa with a concrete sea wall and 9 condominiums, where there is now a beach.

How can the community assess this proposed development without consensus about the fate of this beach? Colloquially called, Kellogg Beach it’s actually the last remaining part of the beach for which this community was originally named, La Playa, perhaps, in the 17th century.

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Neighbors Mobilize Against Additions to Short Term Vacation Rental on Saratoga in Ocean Beach

March 15, 2017 by Frank Gormlie

Neighbors in and around a property on the 4900 block of Saratoga Avenue are mobilizing tonight, Wednesday March 15th, at the OB Planning Board’s subcommittee meeting.

They aim to speak out against planned additions to the property at 4925 Saratoga, because the recently rehabbed main house is being used as a short term vacation rental – and they view this permit to add a garage and a house over the garage as an expansion of yet another STVR and a threat to their neighborhood.

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Reader Rant: “We Need a Point Loma Town Council”

March 15, 2017 by Source

By Michael Winn

We need to elect a Point Loma Town Council that appropriately reflects demographics on the Peninsula, and charge it with promulgating a vision to preserve and restore quality of life on the Peninsula.

The Emerson project and San Diego airport (SAN) flight path expansions show us what we should expect from traditional back-door politics and ad hoc citizen protests.

Kellogg Beach shows us that unless we organize better, this will continue to plague our community because we must organize unpaid labor for each new proposal, while developers can budget it.

Our Peninsula Community Planning Board carries little political weight, has no authority and is limited in scope.

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Wisteria Garden Party – Sunday, Mar. 19th

March 14, 2017 by Source

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Saratoga Addition on Project Review Agenda – Wed., March 15th

March 14, 2017 by Frank Gormlie

The Project Review Committee, a sub-committee of the Ocean Beach Planning Board, has one project before it at its upcoming meeting on Wednesday, March 15th.

It’s a permit application to build a 918 square foot residence over a garage at 4925 Saratoga Avenue.

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A Freshly-Paved Newport Avenue

March 13, 2017 by Source

Taken by South OB Girl, around noon on Friday, March 10th.

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San Diego Lifeguards Want to Leave the Fire Department Because of New Dispatching Procedures

March 10, 2017 by Frank Gormlie

San Diego City lifeguards and their union are seriously considering getting out from under the San Diego Fire-Rescue Department.

The lifeguard union leader claims that recent changes in dispatching procedures initiated by the new fire chief, Brian Fennessy, now route all water-related 911 calls to the fire department instead of directly to lifeguards- who have historically made all water rescues.

This is leading to longer response times and a waste of resources, says Sgt Ed Harris of the lifeguard union.

In a recent Op-Ed piece in the OB Rag, Harris wrote:

“We cannot afford to have the Fire Department divert our trainers, personnel and budget. … Teaching Fire Fighters how to swim and perform river rescue is not acceptable.”

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