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City Councilman Calls for Big Fixes at Public Utilities Department

City Councilman Scott Sherman wants significant changes at the San Diego Water Department. Sherman’s call for action came Oct. 16, during a city council discussion of an independent audit of the problem-plagued department. That audit, along with reporting by the NBC 7 Responds team, uncovered significant delays in the department’s effort to replace broken water meter boxes and lids. Auditors also discovered that some department employees were working less than four hours of their eight-hour workday.

Metropolitan Water District Looks to Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions, Address Climate Change

The Metropolitan Water District (MWD) Board of Directors has voted to develop a Climate Action Plan with a goal of providing a complete framework of how to reduce the district’s carbon footprint. The plan will include reducing the greenhouse gas emissions (GHG) produced in the delivery of water to Southern California as well as a comprehensive plan to combat climate change. The MWD board also voted to award an $815,000 contract to Rincon Consultants, Inc. to assist in creating the plan, which will be developed over the next 18 months. Rincon Consultants maintains more than a dozen offices in mostly Southern and Central California.

State High Court Rejects Berkeley Group’s Suit to Drain Hetch Hetchy Reservoir

The California Supreme Court rejected a conservation group’s lawsuit Wednesday seeking to drain Yosemite’s Hetch Hetchy Reservoir, a source of water for San Francisco and surrounding Bay Area communities. Restore Hetch Hetchy, a Berkeley group, argued in its suit that the location of the dam and reservoir, which flooded a valley in the park after construction in 1923, violates a provision of the California Constitution requiring reasonable water use. But a state appeals court in Fresno ruled in July that Congress had overridden state laws when it authorized construction of the dam and reservoir.

Map Your Microclimates

Every garden has areas where plants flourish, and other areas where plants struggle. Structures, walls, fences and other plants can affect the amount of sun and shade in a garden. Every garden is completely different, even if it is located in the same general climate zone. There may be hills and hollows in your front yard that collect cold air. Or, if your property is sloped, you may not get frost when your neighbors do. The first step to a new or renovated landscape is walking around your property during the day and observing it closely.  

Fire Danger To Persist Into Midweek In Southern California

While the peak wind speeds are in the past with the season’s first Santa Ana wind event, gusty winds and a heightened fire threat will persist into Wednesday across Southern California. Santa Ana winds are dry, gusty winds that blow towards the shore from inland desert regions, typically across Southern California during the autumn months. While travel disruptions, flight delays and the risk of property damage and power outages will diminish on Wednesday, the dry air and a breeze will continue to cause some problems.

300th Nutria Captured, Creature Now Breeding In Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta

An invasive, rat-like creature shows no sign of slowing down. Biologists with California’s Department of Fish and Wildlife say they’ve now captured the 300th Nutria. They made the discovery Friday in Merced County. “It’s no cause for celebration,” said Peter Tira, Public Information Officer for the California Department Fish and Wildlife. The discovery comes as biologists have now discovered a breeding population for the Nutria in the Sacramento-San Joaquin River Delta. At least 11 young females and males have been found in and around the community of Lathrop.