Southern California environment news and trends

Gov. Brown orders new green building standards

Mercer 20116

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

California Governor Jerry Brown

Thanks to an executive ordered issued by Gov. Jerry Brown this week, California state buildings are going to be charged with meeting an updated and stringent green criteria.

Among the many goals of the executive order include half of all new state buildings being zero net energy facilities (AKA carbon neutral) by 2020. By 2025, all state buildings will be required to meet that mark. New or renovated state buildings over 10,000 sq. feet will have to reach the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED Silver certification or higher, as well as incorporate clean energy generation.

“Doing something real about the growing threat of global warming requires more than just new laws. We must lead by example,” said Governor Brown in the Imperial Valley News. “Greening the state’s buildings will shrink our environmental footprint and save taxpayers millions of dollars.” 

Read More...

Sierra Club’s new clean energy initiative targets California Gov. Jerry Brown

Mercer 11740

Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

the nine-point bill lays out exactly how the state can invest in clean energy solutions in order to generate “jobs, savings, clean air and a more equitable and prosperous economy," 

Sierra Club, America’s longest-running grassroots environmental organization, has launched a new initiative asking members to petition Gov. Jerry Brown to sign a “Clean Energy Bill Of Rights.”

Tagged “My Generation,” the nine-point bill lays out exactly how the state can invest in clean energy solutions in order to generate “jobs, savings, clean air and a more equitable and prosperous economy," according to the Sierra Club.

Among those bill elements are “universal access to clean energy,” the “right to earn money from abundant and unlimited clean energy sources such as sunshine and wind,” and “reduced harm to low income communities & communities of color, which, according to Sierra Club, suffer disproportionately from the effects of dirty energy such as coal generation.”

Read More...

Monterey County supervisors vote to reconsider strawberry fumigant

Mercer 10096

Oli Scarff/Getty Images

Pesticide methyl iodide has been generating controversy for years. By the time the State of California approved its use on local crops, California Senator Diane Feinstein had already called the fumigant into question over findings that it causes cancer. 

Last week, the Monterey County Board of Supervisors voted 4-1 in favor of a resolution that asks California governor Jerry Brown to take another look at the just how safe it is to use the much-debated chemical, according to the Californian.

It’s a hotly contested debate in Monterey County, as methyl iodide is used to fumigate strawberry crops, which is a $751 million industry in the county. It had been approved by the EPA as a replacement for pesticide methyl bromide in 2007, with California’s Department of Pesticides getting onboard in 2010, despite methyl iodide being on the state’s list of cancer-causing agents.

Read More...