Tags >> Sonoma County
Jun 09
2010

Primary Election Results

Posted by Bruce Robinson in women , Sonoma County , politics , Napa , Marin , government , employment , economy , California , business , budget

Bruce Robinson

Mike McGuire and Jill Ravitch  were elected Supervisor and District Attorney  in Sonoma County last night, while the match-ups for November were decided in a number of other contests.

As Noreen Evans has moved up the political ladder, from the Santa Rosa City Council to the State Assembly, and almost certainly to the State Senate in November, she has had a larger population to represent at each step. Her pending move to the far-flung 2nd State Senate District adds a lot of geography, but she says the key issue throughout the area is a familiar one.

The full roster of results in Sonoma County can be found here. For state offices and ballot measures, go here.

 

 

Jun 04
2010

Native Bees

Posted by Bruce Robinson in wildlife , Sonoma County , farms , events , environment , California , animals , agriculture

Bruce Robinson

Everything that’s in bloom right now was pollinated by a bee. That’s why we should care about the many threats these beneficial insects face.

California native bees are mostly small, but some are quite good sized. U.C. Davis entomology professor Robbin Thorp  explains he likes to use the familiar honey bee as a metaphorical “bread box” to compare the relative sizes of other bee species.

Carpenter bee People who are concerned about boosting the bee populations so they can do their pollinating, can do several things to help them out, Dr. Thorp explains.

 Ellen Zagory, Director of Horticulture at UC Davis The science salon on bees at the Bouverie Preserve will be Saturday afternoon, June 5, from 2:30 60 4 pm.  with  Ellen Zagory, Director of Horticulture at the UC Sweat beeDavis Arboretum, as one of the featured panelists.  Audubon Canyon Ranch Executive Director Scott Feirabend offers further details on what is intended to be the first in a series of educational events.

To see a previous Report on the conflict between beekeepers and mandarin growers in Central California, go here.

May 18
2010

Parenting Autism

Posted by Bruce Robinson in youth , students , Sonoma County , research , recreation , nonprofit orgs , medicine , lifestyle , jobs , healthcare , Health , families , education , children

Bruce Robinson

The incidence of autism is growing, now around 1 in every 110 births, a burgeoning epidemic that also carries huge consequences for the parents of those children.

Like many children diagnosed with autism, four-year old Peyton Price, shows few outward signs of the condition, which is most often expressed through unusual or unpredictable behaviors and difficulty with verbal communications. (Thanks to his mom, Jill, for sharing this photo.)

The CATS program at SSU offers several direct benefits to parents—trained child care, informational seminars, a directory of resources—but another asset is their opportunities to simply talk with one another, and learn from each other’s experiences. This father, who asked not to be identified, credits another mom with guiding his family into the complex world of specialized services for kids with autism.

With or  without huge medical bills, the demands of caring for a child with autism often require one parent to give up a job or career. And as these children grow older, their aging parents must also reconsider their own plans for retirement, a situation that now confronts Beth Farrar.

The following links offer additional information about autism:

The Autism Society of America

Autism Speaks

The Centers for Disease Control

The National Institute of Neurological  Disorders and Stroke

Autism.Answers.com 

 

 

 

May 14
2010

Energy Bills & Climate Protection

Posted by Bruce Robinson in waste , transportation , speaker , Sonoma County , resources , politics , policy , nonprofit orgs , Green , government , go green , events , environment , economy , Congress , climate change , carbon , California , alternative energy , activism

Bruce Robinson

There’s a legislative brawl brewing over national energy policy and climate change. The 6th annual Climate Protection Everybody Profits Conference in Sebastopol laid out a preview of where those battle lines are being drawn.

Since 2005, every local government in Sonoma County has signed on to a goal of reducing greenhouse gas emissions to 25% below 1990 levels by 2015. But progress toward that goal has been elusive. And while a comprehensive local plan to move this county in that direction has been developed, Ann Hancock (left) , Executive Director of the Climate Protection Campaign, points out that local actions alone will not be effective.

The graph below breaks down where those local emissions are coming from. As solar photovoltaic systems and other measures bring down the shares attributable to residential and commercial energy use, the relative proportion of transportation emissions has increased.

The CLEAR (Carbon Limits and Energy for American Renewal )Act was introduced jointly by Senators Maria Cantwell (D-WA) and Susan Collins (R-ME) in 2009, an indication of early bipartisan backing for the “cap and dividend” measure. Peter Barnes, Senior Fellow at the Tomales Bay Institute in Point Reyes Station sees multiple reasons why that approach could find further support from Republicans in Congress.

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