Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Marin Clean Energy's liability numbers

Marin Clean Energy's liability numbers

Marin Clean Energy's greenhouse gas (GHG) emission numbers are out and, once again, they do not track with reality.
For the latest year of available data, MCE increased GHG emissions to the atmosphere 162,569 tons compared to the same energy volume being produced by PG&E for calendar year 2016.
Click on image to enlarge
MCE claimed it would reduce GHGs by 175,000 tons in 2011. It claimed this reduction would continue to 534,000 tons per year by 2020.
Click on image to enlarge
Since MCE’s 2010 business launch through 2016, MCE has increased overall emissions 1.07 billion pounds of GHG.
All this begs the question: If MCE is increasing global warming, what is its financial liability in the wildfires that strike California?

PG&E Currents (2016 emission rate by independent analysis)
MCE Technical Committee, August 30, 2018, agenda item #06, “MCE (2016) Greenhouse Gas Emissions Analysis” (by MCE staff consultant).
California Energy Commission Power Source Disclosure reports, Schedule 1, for the calendar year ending December 31, 2016.

We don't have $15 million to spend for housing in the South Bay

Monday, January 14, 2019

This Is Novato 1955

Should Marinwood CSD have its own Goat Herd?

California town launches ‘Goat Fund Me’ to prevent wildfires

NEVADA CITY — The threat of catastrophic wildfires has driven a California town to launch a “Goat Fund Me” campaign to bring herds of goats to city-owned land to help clear brush.
Nevada City in the Sierra Nevada began the online crowdsourcing campaign last month with the goal of raising $30,000 for the project.

The campaign’s website explains that because it takes time to secure grant funding, the town needs money now to hire goat ranchers because they’re only available this winter.
The ranchers have rented out their herds to other municipalities in California the rest of the year and were expanding their herds to meet demand, city officials said.
“Why not do something — and as soon as we can?” Vice Mayor Reinette Senum told the Los Angeles Times . “If we’re not proactive, if we don’t help ourselves, no one else is going to step up.”

The foothill community is about 47 miles southeast of Paradise, which was decimated by a wildfire in November that killed 86 people and destroyed about 14,000 homes.
City officials said booking a herd costs between $500 to $1,500 an acre. Some 200 goats can munch on an acre of overgrown brush daily.

City Manager Catrina Olson said she, along with residents attending council meetings to talk about the project, are excited about the impending work, an idea “that’s catching on because there’s such high fire danger in our state.”
“It’s an interesting way to run a city campaign,” said Brad Fowler, a local rancher working with the city to rent out goats. “I like how people can choose to spend their money.”

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Marin Voice: Dixie name-change issue ‘a wake-up call for Marin’

Marin Voice: Dixie name-change issue ‘a wake-up call for Marin’

PUBLISHED: January 11, 2019 at 10:00 am | UPDATED: January 12, 2019 at 7:49 am

Each year a service organization to which I belong pays for and passes out hundreds of dictionaries to Marin third-graders. On the walls of many classrooms are pictures of American heroes. Inevitably one sees an image of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

As Marin County grapples with the quandary of a Dixie School District in our midst, I wonder what Marin is willing to do of a concrete nature to honor the memory of the martyred civil rights leader.

One way is to rid ourselves of the name Dixie. School board Trustee Marnie Glickman, the only Dixie board member to publicly support the name change, has gone on record, stating: “We have a moral obligation to teach our children about history. Dixie is a synonym of the Confederacy. It is a reminder of slavery, segregation and lynching.”

In the past few weeks a phalanx of public officials, respected community leaders and organizations have stepped forward to join the movement to change the district’s name. In addition to Congressman Jared Huffman, they include state Sen. Mike McGuire, county schools Superintendent Mary Jane Burke, county Supervisors Kate Sears and Dennis Rodoni, San Rafael Mayor Gary Phillips, Marin Community Foundation President and CEO Thomas Peters, the Marin Human Rights Commission, the Marin Democratic Central Committee, the Marin Green Party and the Marin Interfaith Council. For a complete list of supporters, now over 1,500, visit

Despite the snowballing avalanche of public support, there are still elected officials sitting on the sidelines, some trying to have it both ways. When you walk into Assemblyman Marc Levine’s office, you’ll see prominently displayed a Black Lives Matter placard. Unwilling to take a public stand on this issue, he told me and others who met with him that we should end our discussion by thanking him for meeting with us and that he would let us know he would think about the name-change issue. It’s now been several weeks.

Marin Supervisor Damon Connolly, himself a former Dixie School Board member, wrote a letter to the district board, stating, “We can do better.” Yet when asked directly, his staff wouldn’t say whether he’s for or against the name change. He reminds me of a politician who once said: “Some of my friends are for the issue, some are against. And I’m four-square for my friends.”

Not taking a stand is taking a stand. Quoting Dante: “The hottest place in hell is reserved for those who in times of moral crisis, preserve their neutrality.” I’m certain the newly elected Dixie trustees are weighing that thought. It was pointed out in a recent IJ editorial they sidestepped the issue in their endorsement interviews, which did not go unnoticed.

This issue is a wake-up call for Marin. It holds up a mirror to ourselves. It allows us to see who we really are rather than how we would like to see ourselves. Evidence of the skittishness of the “We Are Dixie” contingent is their unwillingness to attach their names to their website. How proud of their stance can they be?

Marin has deep-seated issues it must address, well beyond a mere symbolic step such as a name change.

Just in the past two weeks the principal of Miller Creek Middle School within the Dixie School District issued a letter to parents concerning “an increase of hate filled speech including racial slurs, imitations of accents, perpetuation of stereotypes, name calling based on physical characteristics and sexual orientation and use of the n-word.” This taking place in a county judged the most inequitable in the state.

Clearly there is much work to be done. On Jan. 15, the day of King’s birthday, 10 names will be submitted to the Dixie Board of Trustees, which is legally bound to act upon them by Feb. 24. Please show your support that evening by attending the meeting at 6 p.m. in the district office, 380 Nova Albion Way in Terra Linda, and honor the memory of Dr. King in the process.  See article HERE

EDITOR's NOTE:  The conversation will be helped for both sides if we stop talking about groups of people as if they are one entity. We all speak for ourselves and no one has right to speak ":on behalf of my community" or "against another community". We are neither collectively good or bad. Although I want the name change for Dixie too, it is time for the "Change the Name" folks to point out specific acts of racism. Are there white supremacist organizations operating in the district? If so, name them and apologize to the rest of us who want a welcoming community for all of us.
It seems that some are more interested in agitating the community than actually having heart to heart discussions and coming up with a better name for the future.

Fable: The Evil Wizard and the Secret Chamber

Había una vez un hechicero que, disfrazado de mendigo iba de casa en casa, llevándose a las muchachas más bonitas que encontraba, y ninguna volvía a ver a sus padres.     
Un día fué a pedir limosna a la casa de un hombre que tenía tres hijas muy hermosas, la mayor de las cuales le dió una gran rebanada de pan.
Al volverse ella, el hechicero la tocó en el brazo y, aun contra su voluntad, la pobre muchacha se sintió obligado a entrar en la cesta que el mendigo llevaba a cuestas; una vez dentro de ésta, el hechicero se la llevó con el a su casa, situada en medio de un espeso bosque. Todo era allí magnífico, y había todo cuanto la muchacha pudiera apetecer.
Pasado algunos días le dijo el hechicero que se veía precisado a emprender un viaje, por lo cual le entregaba las llaves de la casa, añadiendo que la dejaba en libertad para recorrer todas las habitaciones, excepto una, y previniéndola que, si entraba en aquella habitación prohibida, moriría. Al mismo tiempo le dió un huevo y le encargó mucho que no se lo extraviara.
Cuando el hechicero se hubo perdido de vista, empezó la joven a revisar oda la casa, encontrando todas las abitaciones llenas de bellos objetos. Por fín, llegó a la puerta de la cámara prohibida y, después de vacilar por un momento, la curiosidad la venció y entró.
El espectáculo que se le ofreció a l vista la dejó aterrada: vió un sinnúmero de muchachas que habían sido hechas prisioneras, y todas ellas estaban como dormidas. La joven, impresionada por la inmovilidad de aquellos cuerpos, salió corriendo del cuarto, huyendo todo lo más lejos que le fue posible.
En su espanto, dejó caer el huevo que llevaba en la mano, el cual no se rompió, pero cuando lo levantó del suelo, notó que se le había manchado de rojo, y a pesar de lo mucho que lo intentó, no pudo limpiarlo.
Pocas horas después volvió el hechicero, y al momento pidió a la joven las llaves y el huevo que le había dejado. Tan pronto como vió las manchas rojas en el huevo, comprendió que había entrado en el cuarto prohibido y la derribó al suelo, y arrastrándola hasta la cámara secreta, la dejó allí encerrada con las otras.
El hechicero se dirigió de nuevo a la casa en que había pedido el pan, y esta vez se llevó a la hija segunda. También ella se dejó vencer por la curiosidad, y corrió la misma suerta que su hermana.
El brujo entonces, capturó y se llevó a la única hermana que quedaba, pero ésta era muy astuta, de tal manera que, cuando recibió el huevo y las llaves, sin la menor tardanza depositó el huevo con mucho cuidado en una alacena. Cogió luego la llave y se dirigió a la cámara prohibida para averiguar qué había en ella.
Con gran estupor vió ue el suelo se hallaba cubierto de muchachas sumidas en profundo sueño, y que entre ellas estaban sus dos hermanas. Como era más juiciosa que las otras, tuvo mucho cuidado en conservar el huevo bien limpio. Cuando el brujo regresó a casa, corrió la joven a su encuentro, llevando las llaves y el huevo; entonces, viendo él que estaba limpio, exclamó: - Tú serás mi esposa, ya que has sabido resistir la prueba.
Pero el hechicero ya no podía obrar a su antojo, porque su prometida había roto el encanto y hacía lo que quería de él; valiéndose de esto se fué al cuarto prohibido y despertó a las durmientes prisioneras que estaban allí encantadas. Luego dijo al brujo: - Antes de que me case contigo, debes llevar, una cesta llena de oro a mis padres.
Tomó una cesta muy grande y mandó entrar en ella a sus dos hermanas, a las que cubrió con una capa de monedas de oro, para que no se vieran. Hecho esto, dijo al hechicero que cargara con la cesta y que tuviera buen cuidado de no entretenerse por el camino, pues ella le estaría vigilando desde una ventana. El hombre se cargó la cesta a las espaldas y echó a andar, pero era la carga tan pesada, que se caía de fatiga. Sentose, pues, para descansar, pero en el mismo momento oyó una voz que salía de la cesta y le decía: "Te estoy mirando desde mi ventana." Creyendo que era la voz de su futura esposa, se puso en marcha otra vez, haciendo mucho esfuerzo. Cada vez que trataba de descansar ocurría lo mismo, hasta que, por fín llegó a casa de los padres, donde dejó la cesta. Mientras él hacía este camino su prometida cogió una cabeza de cartón y la colocó en una ventana del piso superior, como si fuera alguien que vigilara. Luego dió libertad a todas las víctimas del hechicero y repartió invitaciones para la boda. Finalmente se cubrió el cuerpo con plumas, de modo que pareciese un pájaro raro y nadie pudiese reconocerla. Así salió de la casa. A poco encontró a algunos de los invitados, que le dijeron:
- ¿De dónde vienes, ave, tan hermosa?
- De las Casa en que el brujo se desposa.
- Y ¿qué hace, dí, la linda prometida?
- Después de haberse puesto muy pulida, con el traje nupcial engalanada, a la ventana la dejé asomada.
Cuando volvió el brujo a la casa, miró hacia la ventana, y viendo la cabeza, creyó que era su futura esposa. Entró precipitadamente; más, apenas lo hubo hecho, los parientes y amigos de las tres hermanas, que le aguardaban allí para vengarse del mal que a ellas les había causado, cerraron las puertas y pegaron fuego a la casa.
Este fué el fín que tuvieron el hechicero y su cámara prohibida.
Once there was an evil wizard who, dressed as a beggar, would go from house to house asking for alms and would steal the prettiest girls he could find. None of them could ever return home. One day he knocked on the door of a house where lived a man with three beautiful daughters. The eldest opened the door and gave him a piece of bread.
When she gave it to him he touched her arm and hypnotized her. Then he made her enter the basket that he always carried on his back and took her to his house which was situated in the midst of the woods. Everything there was magnificent, and she had everything she could wish for.
After a few days the wizard told her that he had to go on a journey, that he would leave her the keys to all the house, and that she could enter every room except one. If she should enter that room she would surely die. Also, he gave her an egg and asked her to take good care of it.
As soon as the wizard was out of sight, the girl looked into every room and found beautiful things that delighted her. At last she approached the prohibited chamber and after a moment's indecision, her curiosity won and she entered the room.
What she saw made her tremble. There were hundreds of girls that had been kidnapped and all looked as if they had fallen asleep. The girl, frightened at the sight, went running out of the room as fast as she could.

In her haste she dropped the egg that she carried in her hand, but it did not break. When she picked it up she noticed that the egg had turned red, and although she tried to clean it, the egg stayed red.
After some time the wizard came back. He noticed what had happened to the egg, struck the girl, and dragged her into the prohibited chamber, where he left her with the others.
The wizard then went back to the same house and stole the second sister and the same thing happened to her.
He went back a third time and kidnapped the younger sister, but this sister was very wise. When the wizard gave her the keys and the egg, she took the egg and deposited it in the cupboard. Then she took the keys and went into the prohibited chamber. She was amazed at seeing so many girls lying as if in a profound sleep. Amongst them she recognized her two sisters.
She left the room and closed the door. When she heard the wizard returning, she took the egg and the keys and went to meet him.
"You shall be my wife because you have resisted curiosity," he exclaimed.
As the girl had broken the spell, the wizard had lost his power and she could do with him as she pleased, so she went to the prohibited chamber and awoke all the girls. Then she went to the wizard and told him.
"Before I marry you, you must go and take a basket full of gold to my parents."
She took a great big basket and in it she hid her two sisters covering them with pieces of gold. Then she told the wizard to take the basket but not to stop on the road because she would be watching him from the window. The man took the basket and started walking but soon was worn out by fatigue. He sat down to rest, but immediately heard a voice which said "I am watching you from my window." Thinking it was the voice of his future wife, he got up and walked a while longer. Every time he tried to rest, the same thing happened, until finally he reached the house where his fiancée's parents lived. There he left the basket.
In the meantime, his future wife took a piece of cardboard and made a head which she placed on the window sill of the second floor, making it look as if someone was watching from the window. Then she went and let out the other victims and invited them all to her wedding. Finally, she covered her whole body with feathers, disguising herself as a rare bird so that no one could recognize her, and left the house. Soon she met some of the guests that she had invited to the wedding and they asked her:
"From where do you come beautiful bird?"
"From the house where the wizard is being wedded."
"And please tell, what does the beautiful bride do?"
"After being all dressed up in her beautiful wedding gown she leans out of the window looking down."
When the wizard returned home, the window of the second floor was open, he looked towards it and saw the head there. He thought it was his future wife and he ran excitedly into the house, but upon entering he encountered all the family and sisters of the girl, who dragged him into the chamber, locked the door and set fire to the house.
And this was the end of the wizard and his prohibited chamber.

Friday, January 11, 2019

The Suburbs: Planners, Smart Growth and the Manhattan Illusion

Excellent 6 minute video critique of Smart Growth in Southern California
 "If you really believe that suburbs are going to die, then let them die, and let the market address the situation" says Joel Kotkin, Chapman University professor and urban planning specialist.

But letting the market work is far from ideal for California's regional planners and local politicians, who want almost 70 percent of new housing over the next 25 years to be multi-unit apartment-style dwelliings, despite the facts that more than half of Southern California households reside in a single-family home and that more people are leaving California than are coming in.

"In a great nation like ours, you can't let people do what they want. It has to be coordinated," says Hasan Ikhrata, the executive director of the Southern California Association of Governments (SCAG). Ikhrata's group, which directs planning for the Southern California region via subsidies and contracting with big developers, foresees a future in which Southern California is dense, full of high-rise buildings, and connected by rail, much like New York City.

The problem is, LA isn't New York. No city but New York is New York, and attempts to force high-density, New York-style development onto areas that don't need it can result in terrible unintended consequences.

"Many people see a light rail and think the San Francisco trolley line," says Damien Goodmon, spokesman for the Crenshaw Subway Coalition. He lives in LA's historical black neighborhood Leimert Park and has seen the effects bad planning can have on established communities.

"You can have transit riders and still destroy a community," says Goodmon.

And the ultimate irony of the unending push for high-density planning in sprawling Southern California is that while, yes, Manhattan is denser than LA, if you zoom out a bit, LA-Long Beach-Anaheim is already the densest urban region in the United States. That happened without any sustained, conscious high-density housing development or state-of-the-art rail transit.

"One of the things that happens when you force this kind of high-density development is you destroy the very urban neighborhoods that retain the middle class," says Kotkin. "The neighborhoods have to fight this kind of guerilla-style."
Marin is greenwashing urban growth.