Today's San Francisco Chronicle reports on the California Air Resources Board's decision to require automakers to produce more low-emissions cars such as plug-in hybrids and on the plug-ins that GM, Toyota and Ford are now testing. If you're curious about how plug-in hybrids actually achieve 100 miles per gallon, watch Plug-in Hybrid Cars, the story […]
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?
Image Source: AdactioThe expected shutdown of this year's salmon season in California is bad news not only for fishermen but for consumers too. It means that anyone buying wild salmon this year is going to pay some wild prices. There is another choice, of course, cheaper, farmed salmon. But that prospect has some consumers cringing… […]
A mysterious sea creature up to 7 feet long, with 10 arms, a sharp beak and a ravenous appetite, has invaded ocean waters off Northern California. Packs of fierce Humboldt Squid attack nearly everything they see, from fish to scuba divers. Marine biologists are working to discover why they’ve headed north from their traditional homes […]
Clara soars over San Jose. Credit: Evet Loewen.The remarkable Peregrine Falcons of the Bay Area are making news again. Last year, we followed Jose and Clara, a mating pair that settled directly on San Jose City Hall. Thanks to the efforts of the Santa Cruz Predatory Bird Research Group, a webcam was set up to […]
Polluting Makes Vatican List of Grave Social Sins Over the course of a week of working with concrete, this landscaping job produced only one bucket of wastewater. Credit: Ann Hutcheson-WilcoxAs a lifelong Catholic and former Catholic priest, I often find myself wishing that the Church would stick to what it knows best: the Sacraments. I […]
Richmond city officials are expected to approve a controversial upgrade to the Chevron refinery plant. Quest reports on the decision and explores the debate around Chevron's billion dollar proposal. You may listen to the "Chevron's Plans" Radio report online, as well as find additional links and resources. Amy Standen is a Reporter for QUEST and […]
With the appearance of spring, I have been noticing new couples and flirtations come alive after being dormant in the gloomy days of winter. When out with my girlfriend and her new beau last night, it was all the more apparent as the third wheel! This is not the first time that during this time […]
Humboldt Squid – known as "Diablos Rojos".I have to admit I had a bit of trepidation when QUEST set out to tell the story about Humboldt squid (Dosidicus gigas). The squid have aggressively expanded their territorial range from the warmer equatorial Pacific to waters off central California. These are not the little market squid you […]
Genetically, we're all pretty much the same. A massive volcanic eruption 75,000 years ago may be why. Lake Toba is all that is left of the volcano that nearly wiped out mankind.Last blog I talked about how East Africans are genetically more diverse than Asians. Who are genetically more diverse than Native Americans. From all […]
Image source: Michael PatrickMany 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. QUEST looks at the challenges municipalities face with budget constraints, legal […]
It's more than the genes that feed us. Some have dubbed it the "doomsday vault"; others, taking a more positive tone, call it a repository of biodiversity. However you look at it, the Global Seed Vault is a fortress. Buried under almost 500 feet of Arctic permafrost, secured against bomb blasts, earthquakes, and potential thieves, […]
It's almost spring: time for sultry nights, birds, bees, renewal and the sweet promise of new love. For us humans, that might mean flirty skirts, a new perfume, a dapper new hat or hip hair cut, all in the hopes of attracting a new, or very old and loyal, perfect mate. Plants also feel the […]
Just a few minutes outside of San Jose, you'll find a place to explore 100 million years of history. Alum Rock Park, created in 1872 as the first municipal park in California, offers both ancient rocks and new geologic changes (and lots of nice trails and wildlife, too). Despite its longevity and proximity to a populous urban area, it remains one of the less-visited jewels in the Bay Area's crown.
What will life be like when gasoline reaches $15 per gallon? We may have to slow down our too-often fast paced and frenetic lifestyles—a blessing in disguise? That's the question asked of a group of scientists, sociologists, others, and myself who gathered at the American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE) Summer Study in […]
A tiny moth, new to California, is at the center of a controversy pitting state officials against Bay Area residents and politicians. 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 […]
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.
Amundsen-Scott South Pole Station As the sun shines and the air warms in the Bay Area, take a moment to consider a place where it's always cold–the South Pole. Thanks to some local folk, we can get a taste of the science at the bottom of the earth without leaving balmy San Francisco. Berkeley graduate […]