Welcome to Monitor Notes, a weekly roundup of news items, event announcements, and updates on past Bay Area Monitor articles.
Coast Along a Survey
Take a California State Coastal Conservancy survey and help guide the agency in its effort to create equity and environmental justice guidelines. “The Coastal Conservancy’s vision is of a beautiful, restored, and accessible coast for ALL Californians,” according to the agency’s website. The survey is open until March 6 and seeks feedback on a range of priorities to help remove barriers preventing the coast from being equitable. The Monitor’s Aleta George wrote about a similar push recently as it relates to making accommodations more affordable to families seeking to explore the coast.
Upward to the Mobility Summit
Interested in hearing new ideas about transportation, congestion, and mobility? Head to San Ramon on Friday, March 8 for the fifth-annual “Redefining Mobility Summit” hosted by the Contra Costa Transportation Authority, its GoMentum Station for testing autonomous vehicles, and other partners. A new addition this year includes a “Shark Tank” inspired competition for start-ups to submit ideas about how they’re redefining mobility. Drive into early registration before it closes February 15.
Clean Engine Grants
The Bay Area Air Quality Management District recently announced a package of grants totaling $6 million to help cut Bay Area air pollution and greenhouse gases. One of the grants is for upgrades to Napa Valley Wine Train diesel locomotives to make sure they meet current emissions standards. Other funding will be used for electric-powered school buses, which are expected to begin serving several Bay Area schools this year. Caltrain’s electrification project is also part of the grant, representing the last installment of the Air District’s $20 million commitment. Caltrain expects to begin operating electric trains by 2022.
A new survey found that 18 million trees died in California last year, with below average precipitation in 2017-2018 cited among stress factors hurting forest conifers. Dead trees pose a “significant hazard” to people and critical infrastructure, mostly on the west side of the southern Sierra Nevada range, according to a USDA Forest Service press release about the survey. To promote healthy forests, the focus remains on restoration, including thinning dense areas to increase resilience to wildfires, drought, and bark beetle outbreaks, the agency said. Knock on wood to read more.
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