Welcome to Monitor Notes, a weekly roundup of news items, event announcements, and updates on past Bay Area Monitor articles.
Nonprofit group Sustainable Conservation is asking a key climate question during a webinar today at 3 p.m.: “Can dairies be environmentally sustainable?” A panel of experts — including professionals from UC Davis, Valsigna Farms, Point Reyes Farmstead Cheese, and the State Water Resources Control Board — will discuss California dairies’ contribution to greenhouse gas emissions and what they’re doing to address these challenges. Cows represent a significant source of methane emissions, one of three short-lived climate pollutants targeted by air quality regulators, the Monitor’s Air Reporter Leslie Stewart discovered in a 2016 article.
Parks, We Owe You One!
In our excitement to return to normalcy, don’t forget to pay your respects to the local and regional parks that helped sustain our mental and physical health during the pandemic. A May 3 Vice article reminds us that parks “carried the pandemic year on their backs,” and cleaning up green spaces, pushing for pro-park policy, and funding projects are just a few ways to be engaged, say thank you, and show gratitude. The article suggests following your local parks department on social media to keep up with its programming and volunteer needs. In fact, California State Parks Foundation said on May 10 via Twitter that it’s bringing volunteers back safely for much-needed work. Where will you lend a hand?
Route of the Matter
What do you think about merging BART and Caltrain? A May 13 virtual discussion with advocacy group Seamless Bay Area and other organizations offers a chance to hear background information about this potential union and timely news about transit governance models for the Bay Area. In many cities worldwide, transit is governed centrally, with an emphasis on integrated, rider-focused service. According to Seamless Bay Area, the region could benefit from these features to reduce car reliance. Its policy director Ian Griffiths (pictured), and a panel of experts from Eno Transportation Center and Transportation Choices for Sustainable Communities, will drive the discussion. Read about transit governance reform in Seamless Bay Area’s new report, Governing Transit Seamlessly, and look for an interview with Griffiths in the Monitor’s upcoming June/July edition.
Greenbelt Alliance’s climate leader series on May 26 at 5 p.m. also plunges into a critical question: “Where has the water gone?” During this 30-minute event, Dr. Newsha Ajami (pictured), director of urban water policy at Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment, will talk about the Bay Area’s drought and how it can affect cities, open spaces, and other aspects of our lives. Also weighing on these topics is Justin Wang, advocacy manager at Greenbelt Alliance. The two professionals will discuss nature-based solutions and green infrastructure to help the region address climate change impacts affecting water availability.
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