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.
Broke Your CFL? Don't Panic! The typical dose of mercury in a CFL is about the size of a pen tip (circled in red), and these doses have been getting smaller and smaller. (Photo provided by EPA.)Australia has already begun to phase out the incandescent light bulb, and the energy legislation recently signed by President […]
In the North Bay, a new nursery is lending Mother Nature a hand. On a recent foggy morning, I drove up to the San Pablo Bay National Wildlife Refuge to tour their native plant nursery with biologist Giselle Block and nursery manager Leia Giambastiani. The Refuge hugs the northern reaches of the Bay (If you've […]
For decades, California has gotten waivers in order to enact air quality standards more strict than federal law demands. But this time, for the first time, the Environmental Protection Agency said no. And the reason was that California hadn't given a compelling reason why it should have authority to regulate the tailpipe emissions that cause […]
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.
Listen! You can hear the sounds of the ocean, but is it getting quieter? Last week while snorkeling in Roatan, Hondoruas, I came face to face with a Conch. Not a shiny shell in a gift shop, but a moving creature, shuffling along the sea floor, munching on grasses and just being a mollusk. I […]
A Nebraska weatherization crew member blows in dense-pack cellulose insulation into an attic. (Photo by Pete Davis.)I am just back from the National Weatherization Training Conference in Orlando, Florida. The Weatherization Assistance Program is funded by the Department of Energy and other government agencies and serves low-income households in the United States. Weatherization professionals– the […]
This 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? You may listen to […]
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?
Which is bigger, an electron or an atom? If you're reading this science blog, you probably know the right answer. And that would make you a little more informed than the average American, according to a recent National Science Foundation report. Getting kids grounded in science at a young age can go a long way […]
Often, an Academy biologist or docent will bring out one of the snakes for guests to see and touch. There are many common questions when a guest comes up close and personal with a Ball Python or Boa Constrictor. The most common question asked is – is this snake poisonous? And it is not only […]
What will global warming mean to the San Francisco Bay? QUEST explores how sea level rise could effect Bay Area wetlands, following researchers who are taking cores from local marshlands to discover their climate history and potential future. Craig Miller reports. You may listen to the "Rising Seas" radio report online, as well as find […]
Bad news for housing may be good news for efficiency. This house, built by students at the University of Maryland, won second place in the Solar Decathlon, held on the Mall in Washington DC in 2007. Photo by Amy E. Gardner.The recent news about home prices has not been good. In the United States, home […]
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? Take our poll to share your opinion. You may listen to the […]
Adding more straw to the Bay's back. Image source: Jim M. Goldstein, JMG-GalleriesTalk about kicking someone when they're down down. When the Cosco Busan collided with the Bay Bridge earlier this month, spilling 58,000 gallons of heavy-duty bunker fuel into the Bay, it was a heartbreaking reminder of the Bay's vulnerability. But what makes the […]
Ting explores Halloween enrichment. No, that is not a real giant candy corn. Zoo guests and especially young students often ask us how we get our animals, imagining myself or a zoo keeper running after zebras in the savanna sun with nets and ropes. Of course, this is quite illegal these days and I would […]