California has 11 coal-fired power plants, all used to heat limestone into cement — making us one of the biggest cement-producing states in the country. These kilns produce 95% of the state's airborne mercury pollution and 2% of its greenhouse gas emissions. Mostly, they've slipped under the radar of regulators, but that is changing fast.
Buildings, concrete, asphalt, tar roof tops and industry have caused cities to reach higher temperatures than surrounding rural areas. Now, green-minded architects are taking cooler approaches to their designs.
Consumer appetite for salmon is booming at a time when the supply is about to dry up. With an impending year-long fishing ban in place, prices for wild salmon — that is, salmon caught in the ocean off California and Oregon — are expected to skyrocket. What are the alternatives for shoppers?
Many Bay Area cities are trying to clean up their acts by putting in place new green initiatives. But from San Jose to Berkeley, some city leaders are finding out it's not always so easy to turn over a new leaf.
The Light Brown Apple Moth is seen as a threat to California crops. Now the State Department of Food and Agriculture is planning to spray a synthetic hormone over Bay Area neighborhoods this summer to stop the moth from reproducing, but some angry residents are worried it would be unsafe.
A new law is forcing California's dry cleaners to switch to eco-friendlier cleaning technologies. But what will the cost of environmental progress be for these small family businesses? And will customers put up with the changes?
Last month, a Mill Valley wastewater treatment plant dumped five million gallons of sewage into the San Francisco Bay. The real shocker: Sewage spills happen all the time, even in the eco-conscious Bay Area.
In Silicon Valley, a battle between neighbors has turned into a different kind of face off: solar energy versus trees. It turns out that growing redwood trees can actually be a crime in California, if they block solar panels… as one couple in Sunnyvale found out the hard way. David Gorn reports.
This month, the Federal Trade Commission is looking at carbon offsets. Demand is booming for these green credits, where customers cancel out their greenhouse gases emissions by paying companies to preserve forests or subsidize renewable energy. Critics wonder, however, if consumers are really getting what they are paying for.
This has been a month of dashed hopes for astronomers around the world. Last month it seemed possible that an asteroid the size of a Boeing 737 jet was due to collide with Mars on January 30. Today that seems far less likely, but, as Amy Standen reports, astronomers consider it a wake up call.
QUEST visits the National Ignition Facility in Livermore, where scientists will soon aim the world's largest laser at a target the size of a pencil eraser. The goal? Nuclear fusion — and, they say, the answer to the world's clean energy needs.
If investment is any guide, California's renewable energy companies are leaping into the new year. Investors poured billions of dollars into clean tech firms in 2007 to catapult green technologies to market. Lauren Sommer followed the trail to several Bay Area companies to see what breakthroughs lie ahead.
California is making headlines around the world this week after federal environmental officials denied the state's request to slash greenhouse gas emissions from cars and trucks. Amy Standen went looking for answers about what other options the state can pursue.
Last November, San Francisco became the first city in the country to outlaw plastic check out bags at large supermarkets, arguing that the bags are dangerous to marine life and hard to recycle. But some studies say paper bags can be just as harmful for the environment. So why target plastic?
What will global warming mean to the San Francisco Bay? QUEST explores how sea level rise could affect Bay Area wetlands, following researchers who are taking sediment cores from local marshes to discover climate history and to get a glimpse of the bay's future.
San Francisco is studying a London-style plan to charge drivers a fee when they travel to high-traffic areas, like downtown San Francisco, or Doyle Drive during peak commute hours. But is congestion pricing a boon for public transportation? Or the death of downtown?
A growing number of parents, children's advocates and political leaders are worried that our culture's disconnection from nature is harming kids. Concerns about long-term health consequences like obesity have spawned a movement to "leave no child inside."
It has been nine days since a Chinese freighter hit the Bay Bridge spilling 58-thousand gallons of bunker fuel into the Bay. After a massive effort only 25 percent of the oil has been cleaned up. And experts say they may not be able to recover much more. Amy Standen reports.
NASA has announced a new effort to send humans back to the moon, possibly to build an outpost by 2020. Mountain View's NASA Ames Research Center identifies scientific investigations that could be performed there on everything from geology to global warming. But some critics question the space agency's priorities.