Agency of the U.S. Federal Government
Growth Energy says the Environmental Protection Agency took action on Renewable Volume Obligations by not actually taking any action. Emily Skor is the CEO of Growth Energy. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Racial covenants shaped San Diego housing for decades. Our partners at inewsource bring us the story of one Chinese-American family that managed to purchase a home in 1947 despite racial restrictions. Meanwhile, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency was in Mexico this week discussing how the two countries will stop the cross-border sewage flows that are increasingly polluting south bay beaches. Plus, Comic-Con returns for in-person events with Comic-Con Special Edition this weekend.
It doesn’t seem at this moment like a holiday week, with so many items happening at public meetings before Thanksgiving. But, I’m grateful you are listening to this installment of Charlottesville Community Engagement, and I’m hopeful that you’ll share it with others. Most people read the newsletter, but the secret is that each one is produced for audio, as my professional career in journalism began in radio. More than a quarter-century later, I’m glad to be bringing you information as often as I can and this is what I have for November 22, 2021. Let’s begin today with a Patreon-fueled shout-out! WTJU is hosting Classical Listening Parties, a series of four free, casual events on Tuesdays in November. These four events are led by Chelsea Holt, pianist, teacher, and one of WTJU’s newest and youngest classical announcers. She’ll guide you through all the eras of classical music and tomorrow night at 7 p.m.: the Romantic period. For a list of the others, visit wtju.net to learn more and sign up! On today’s show:Albemarle’s Planning Commission gets an update on the county’s capital improvement budget for the next fiscal yearA hedge fund sets its sights on the Daily Progress and its parent company The EPA seeks to reestablish jurisdiction in the Waters of the United StatesAnd the University of Virginia seeks a tuition increase for undergraduatesPandemic updateAs the week begins, the seven-day average for new COVID cases is at 1,644 new cases a day and the percent positivity is at 5.9 percent. The Blue Ridge Health District reports another 29 new cases today and a percent positivity of 5.5 percent. Three more fatalities have been reported since Friday for a total of 311 since the pandemic began. Fatal fireA fire in an apartment in the 1200 block of Carlton Avenue in the Belmont neighborhood on Sunday has killed one person, according to a release from the Charlottesville Fire Department. Crews began fighting the fire soon after arriving and then looked for anyone trapped. One adult was rescued but died soon after being taken to an unidentified hospital. Fire marshals are investigating the cause. This is the third fatality from a fire this year. Newspaper consolidation continuesThe Charlottesville Daily Progress and most other daily newspapers in Virginia might soon have a new owner. Alden Global Capital has announced in a letter that it will pay $24 a share for Lee Enterprises, thirty percent over the Friday’s closing stock price. “We believe that as a private company and part of our successful nationwide platforms, Lee would be in a stronger position to maximize its resources and realize strategic value that enhances its operations and supports its employees in their important work serving local communities,” reads the letter. Alden Global Capital is a New York based hedge fund that owns the Tribune Publishing Company and Media NewsGroup. Among their newspapers are the Chicago Tribune, the Denver Post, the Mercury News, and the New York Daily News. The company already owns six percent of Lee Enterprises. “Scale is critical for newspapers to ensure necessary staffing and in order to thrive in this challenging environment where print advertising continues to decline and back office operations and legacy public company functions remain bloated, thus depriving newsrooms of resources that are best used serving readers with relevant, trustworthy, and engaging content,” the letter continues. Lee Enterprises completed the purchase of the Daily Progress from BHMedia in March 2020. BHMedia is a subsidiary of Berkshire Hathaway, which purchased the Progress from Media General in May 2012. Media General purchased the paper from Thomas Worrell Jr. in 1995 as part of a $230 million deal. The Progress was first published on September 14, 1892. Other Virginia papers owned by Lee Enterprises include the Richmond Times-Dispatch, the Lynchburg News Advance, and the Roanoke Times. Learn more about the potential takeover from Rick Edmonds on Poytner.org or at Virginia Business. The real question is - who gets the Daily Progress March? In April 2005, the Charlottesville Municipal Band unveiled a tune written by Nellysford composer Paul T. Richards. Check out my news story from that time!Crozet school redistrictingAn Albemarle committee appointed to study scenarios to alleviate overpopulation of elementary schools in the western part of the county has unveiled their recommendation. After meeting four times and holding two public comment sessions, the Crozet-Brownsville Redistricting Committee has suggested a total of 219 students be moved from Brownsville to Crozet Elementary at the beginning of the 2022-2023 school year. By then, Albemarle should have completed a $21.25 million addition to that school which includes 16 new classrooms. (committee website)Water quality rulesTwo federal agencies that regulate land use as it relates to water quality have announced plans to reinstate a more robust definition of what constitutes the “waters of the United States.” Both the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers use that phrase as a basis for enforcement of the Clean Water Act of 1972 which among other things regulates industrial discharges into “navigable waters.” A rule change made in the previous presidential administration reduced the geographic scope of the definition, potentially limiting the jurisdiction of the EPA and the Army Corp’s reach. The Southern Environmental Law Center and other conservation groups sued to overturn the rule. “The prior administration stripped protections under the Clean Water Act from countless streams, lakes and wetlands, leaving thousands of stream miles, many public recreational lakes, and millions of acres of wetlands without protections that have been in place for decades through every other administration and putting our communities and water supplies at risk,” reads a statement issued last week.The SELC argues that preserving wetlands can help preserve the ability of communities to reduce flooding and deal with extreme weather events. To learn more, visit the EPA’s Waters of the United States website. UVA tuitionThe Cavalier Daily reports that tuition at the University of Virginia could increase between 3.5 percent and 4.9 percent in the each of the next two academic years. That’s according to two representatives from the UVA Finance office who spoke to Student Council last week. Public comment will be taken at a forum on December 2 followed by a vote by the Board of Visitors at their meeting a week later. Tuition was frozen for the current academic year. For a sense of scale, the current tuition for most undergraduate student in the College of Arts and Sciences is $14,188 for a Virginia resident and $48,036 for an out-of-state resident. Third-year students pay slightly higher. First-year engineering students from Virginia pay $22,566 for a year’s tuition, with non-Virginians paying $56,730. These figures don’t include fees. Take a look at the UVA website to learn more about how much students are charged for their education. To learn more about the proposed increase, read Eileen Powell’s article in the Cavalier Daily. You’re reading Charlottesville Community Engagement. Let’s have two more Patreon-fueled shout-outs. The first comes a long-time supporter who wants you to know:"Today is a great day to spread good cheer: reach out to an old friend, compliment a stranger, or pause for a moment of gratitude to savor a delight."The second comes from a more recent supporter who wants you to go out and read a local news story written by a local journalist. Whether it be the Daily Progress, Charlottesville Tomorrow, C-Ville Weekly, NBC29, CBS19, WINA, or some other place I’ve not mentioned - the community depends on a network of people writing about the community. Go learn about this place today!Albemarle Planning Commission’s capital budget briefingTomorrow afternoon at 2 p.m., an advisory committee appointed to help Albemarle County shape its capital improvement program budget for the next fiscal year will hold its first meeting. Last week, the seven-member Planning Commission got an overview including a reminder that last year was very different. (watch the meeting)“Last year when we were putting together the FY22 budget, there was no [capital improvement program],” said Andy Bowman, the chief of budget in the Finance and Budget office. “The county was in the middle of the pandemic and there was a tremendous amount of uncertainty and really at that time it was decided instead of focusing on a long-range picture, to focus on the impacts of the pandemic and what might be able to be unpaused from a number of projects that were paused at the start of the pandemic.”Bowman said the economy has rebounded much better than initially anticipated with outlooks becoming more favorable with each passing month. As the FY23 budget approaches, Bowman said the county is not immune to inflationary pressure, with bids for some capital projects coming in higher than budgeted. The process starts with a review of what’s currently in the works.“We have a capital program currently underway, before we even start anything from 2023 to 2027, of around $147 million for about 65 projects,” Bowman said. “Of that $147 million, $91 million has been appropriated in the last eleven months now, from what was unpaused in January which included the expansion at Crozet Elementary.” Bowman noted that over the course of the next five years, the county will adopt a new Comprehensive Plan and the Board of Supervisors will update their strategic plan. Both documents as well as the School Board’s strategic plan will guide future decisions on capital spending. Bowman said the focus this cycle will be on the immediate year to give flexibility on future needs. The CIP advisory committee consists of Supervisors Bea LaPisto-Kirtley and Donna Price, School Board members Kate Acuff and Jonno Alcaro, and former Planning Commissioners Bruce Dotson.and Cal Morris. “They’re charged to do a few things,” Bowman said. “First they will review and evaluate a proposal that is recommended by staff as a starting point and then the CIP committee will sort of make a recommendation and modify that starting point.” Bowman said there will be additional revenue from the cigarette tax and potential revenue from a tax on plastic bags. The county also refinanced its debt earlier this year.“Given the current market we were able to issue a large amount of [borrowed proceeds] at low interest rates and that will create some capacity that didn’t exist in the prior plan prior to the pandemic,” Bowman said Bowman said staff is also reviewing through the details of the American Rescue Plan Act to see how that funds can be used to leverage local dollars capital spending. In August, Supervisors used $4.5 million in federal COVID-relief funds for broadband expansion. One of the biggest items in the capital improvement program is the need for school maintenance and expansion. Rosalyn Schmitt is the chief operating officer of Albemarle County Public Schools. She briefed the Planning Commission on the school’s strategic plan.“Getting the right resources to educators and students for their teaching and learning is key to our success,” Schmitt said The school system has a Long-Range Planning Advisory Committee and their most recent recommendations were published on September 9, 2021. The eleven projects have a cumulative cost estimate of $196 million, with most of the projects containing either word “renovations” or “capacity.”“Adequate capacity continues to be a need for the school division,” Schmitt said. “This is supported by the ten-year enrollment projections and reinforced by both the recently completed development and student yield analysis, and a thirty-year population forecast.” One item is $40 million for another elementary school in the northern feeder pattern and another would be to purchase land for the western feeder pattern. “As these schools all reach a saturation point where expansion is no longer practical, we recommend a strategy for land acquisition and the construction of new facilities,” Schmitt said. “I think for the first time in a long time you’ll see several new schools on this list.” There’s also a recommendation to improve air quality within schools. There is a possibility that federal ARPA funding could be used for that purpose. “That is a comprehensive program around mechanical improvements that there is some opportunity to have some matching funds from ARPA funding that we are pursuing,” Schmitt said. Luis Carrazana is the associate architect of the University of Virginia and a non-voting member of the Albemarle Planning Commission. He noted that the recent adoption of the Crozet Master Plan update called for capital infrastructure, as did the relatively recent update of the Pantops Master Plan and adoption of the Rio Small Area Plan. “And so I’m wondering how we’re looking at those approved master plans with the CIP and putting the same rigor as we seem to be doing with the School Board,” Carrazana said. Planning Director Charles Rapp said implementation of many projects in the master plans are dependent on lining up ideas with funding opportunities.“A lot of those infrastructure related improvements, we identify them in these master plans or small area plans or corridor studies and that’s often the first phase of identifying a project,” Rapp said. The next day, Bowman gave a similar presentation to the Board of Supervisors. This one has more specifics about the developing budget. (watch the presentation)Supervisors were reminded that there is a significant “positive variance” from the FY21 budget of more than $13 million that can be used for one-time money.“We are proposing, not really for discussion today but this will come back on December 15, to invest some of the one-time fiscal year 21 funding into the economic development fund,” Bowman said. At their December 15 meeting, the Board will also be asked for direction on whether to explore tax relief programs. They’ll also be given a review of what additional revenue sources could be pursued in Richmond.The Board of Supervisors will have a work session on December 1 related to the way the FY23 budget will be developed. Another change this year is the December release of Albemarle’s property assessments for 2022. That will be presented to the Board of Supervisors on December 15, a month earlier than usual. See also: Albemarle may close FY21 with $13.2M in one-time money, November 9, 2021Unsolicited fact of the dayFinally today, sometimes there are pieces of information I come across during my reporting, or facts that people tell me that don’t quite make their way into a news story. These facts are not entirely random, but they may seem that way.First up, the commercial portions of the Stonefield development have paid a total of $841,955 in connection fees to the Albemarle County Service Authority for water and sewer between 2012 and 2020. That’s according to information provided to me by Gary O’Connell, the director of the ACSA. That figure does not include residential connections. Before anyone can connect to water and sewer in Albemarle, they have to pay a hefty connection fee. For instance, for one commercial unit on Bond Street to connect in 2021, they had to pay $14,280 for water and $13,505 for sewer. Both of these fees include a portion paid to the Rivanna Water and Sewer Authority to cover the cost of capital projects to expand capacity. Special announcement of a continuing promo with Ting! Are you interested in fast internet? Visit this site and enter your address to see if you can get service through Ting. If you decide to proceed to make the switch, you’ll get:Free installationSecond month of Ting service for freeA $75 gift card to the Downtown MallAdditionally, Ting will match your Substack subscription to support Town Crier Productions, the company that produces this newsletter and other community offerings. So, your $5 a month subscription yields $5 for TCP. Your $50 a year subscription yields $50 for TCP! The same goes for a $200 a year subscription! All goes to cover the costs of getting this newsletter out as often as possible. Learn more here! This is a public episode. Get access to private episodes at communityengagement.substack.com/subscribe
Greg Peterson – Machinery Pete – gives us his Pick of the Week, and previews some upcoming auctions including the auctions.machinerypete.com online auction which closes tomorrow. Geoff Cooper, president and CEO of the Renewable Fuels Association, joins us to discuss the Environmental Protection Agency's decision to delay the refinery compliance deadline. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
This week on Public Health Out Loud, co-hosts Dr. Jim McDonald and Dr. Philip Chan talk about the health effects of PFAS (per-and polyfluoroalkyl substances), a group of chemicals that have been used since the 1940s to make products water-, grease-, and stain-resistant. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, PFAS can be found in the blood of people and animals all over the world. And scientific studies have shown that exposure to some PFAS in the environment may be linked to harmful health effects, like increased cholesterol levels or developmental and growth delays in children. Our guest expert this week is Dr. Joseph Braun. He's an environmental epidemiologist and a professor at the Brown University School of Public Health. Why are PFAS called “forever chemicals?” What can people do to reduce their risk of exposure to harmful chemicals? Download this week's episode to find out.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently released its much-anticipated plan, nearly a year in the making, to address per- and poly-fluoroalkyl substances in the environment. Building on a Law360 of the same name, Steven Humphreys, Fabio Dworschak, Lauren Shah, and Maria Pimienta discuss the EPA's PFAS Strategic Roadmap, which provides a detailed framework of actions the agency commits to taking over the next three years to confront PFAS contamination across the country. See the Law360 article here (subscription required): https://www.law360.com/articles/1435724/epa-plan-changes-pfas-outlook-for-companies-regulators For additional information, see our PFAS and Emerging Contaminants https://www.kelleydrye.com/Our-Practices/Hot-Topics/PFAS-and-Emerging-Contaminants Contacts: Steven Humphreys Special Counsel email@example.com (973) 503-5936 Lauren Shah Senior Associate firstname.lastname@example.org (713) 355-5002 Fabio Dworschak Associate email@example.com (713) 355-5032 Maria Pimienta Associate firstname.lastname@example.org (713) 355-5053 Also subscribe to our Kelley Green Law blog to keep up with chemical law, emerging contaminants, and regulatory news and insights: https://www.kelleygreenlawblog.com/
Let’s start today with two more Patreon-fueled shout-outs. The first comes a long-time supporter who wants you to know:"Today is a great day to spread good cheer: reach out to an old friend, compliment a stranger, or pause for a moment of gratitude to savor a delight."The second comes from a more recent supporter who wants you to go out and read a local news story written by a local journalist. Whether it be the Daily Progress, Charlottesville Tomorrow, C-Ville Weekly, NBC29, CBS19, WINA, or some other place I’ve not mentioned - the community depends on a network of people writing about the community. Go learn about this place today!On today’s show:Charlottesville City Council adopts a Comprehensive Plan and Future Land Use Map after a long public process and long public hearing President Biden signs an infrastructure bill Two area breweries have announced a merger The Places29-Hydraulic group gets the latest on 490 units planned for Old Ivy Road After nearly five years of review, Charlottesville City Council has adopted a Comprehensive Plan and a Future Land Use Map intended to increase the number of housing units within city limits. Council’s vote came after a long public hearing that came after a work session held in the early afternoon where Council also discussed economic development and population trends. The public hearing ended at 10:44 p.m. and Council then discussed the matter for another hour before voting to adopt. Up next will be the rewrite of the zoning code to eliminate legislative barriers to new residential density. I’ll have more on the adoption of the plan and what is in it in an upcoming edition of the newsletter. Take a look at the adopted Comprehensive Plan and the Future Land Use Map here. Two breweries in the area have announced a merger via Facebook post. Champion Brewing Company and Reason Beer will join operations in a partnership that will see Hunter Smith remain as the company’s CEO. One of Reason’s founders, Jeff Railenau, will become the Chief Financial Officer. Josh Skinner of Champion will become the Head Brewer and Reason’s Mark Fulton will become Director of Brewing Operations. Champion will relocate its production operations from a facility in the Woolen Mills on Broadway Street to Reason’s headquarters at Seminole Place on U.S. 29. “We’re excited to announce this partnership with our good friends and esteemed beer minds across town that will bring together two skilled and like-minded teams to streamline operations under one roof,” reads a statement on Champion’s Facebook page.President Joe Biden has signed the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which will likely change the landscape for the way all kinds of projects in Virginia and the Charlottesville area are funded. “This law makes the most significant investment in roads and bridges in the past 70 years,” Biden said. “It makes the most significant investment in passenger rail in the past 50 years. And in public transit ever.” The bill provides direct funding to specific areas across the entire country. (details from the White House)$55 billion to expand access to clean drinking water, eliminating lead pipes and cleaning up PFAS chemicals $21 billion in funding to remediate Superfund sites in rural and urban communities$66 billion for public transit, including vehicle replacement from fossil-fuel burning to zero emissions vehicles$5 billion specifically to purchase clean school buses$17 billion to modernize ports and update machinery to reduce congestion and emissions$25 billion for airports including efforts to drive electrification and a transition to other low-carbon technologiesOver $50 billion in investments to protect against drought, heat waves, wildfires and floodsThe legislation passed the U.S. Senate on a 69-30 vote and the U.S. House on a 221 to 201 vote. Take a look at the full bill here. “The bill I’m about to sign into law is proof that despite the cynics, Democrats and Republicans can come together to deliver results,” Biden said. There’s also funding to increase internet access.“This law is going to make high-speed Internet affordable and everywhere, everywhere in America,” Biden said “Urban, suburban, rural, and great jobs laying down those broadband lines.” Environmental groups in Virginia are celebrating the signing of the infrastructure bill, which will provide an additional $238 million for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency for the Chesapeake Bay Program according to a statement from the Choose Clean Water Coalition.“These additional funds will help reduce pollution in the Bay and its waterways, especially as we approach the 2025 deadline to have all pollution reduction practices in place as part of the Bay's restoration effort,” said Coalition Director Kristin Reilly. Reilly refers to something called the Chesapeake Bay TMDL, a framework to reduce pollution across all of the watersheds that feed into the Bay, including the Rapidan, Rivanna, and James Rivers. Investments have been made over the years, including millions to upgrade the Moores Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant to reduce the amount of nitrogen and phosphorus that makes it to the Bay, creating dead zones with no oxygen. The bill has also been celebrated by the Virginia Transit Association, who sent out a release pointing out that the bill contains $102 billion nationwide in funding for passenger and freight rail, or a 592 percent increase over usual funding levels. That could include $1.4 billion for Virginia. “Transit will receive about $1.3 billion in formula funding over the next five years, a 34 percent increase over normal funding levels,” said Danny Plaugher, the Deputy Director of the Virginia Transit Association and the Executive Director of Virginians for HighSpeed Rail. “The Charlottesville area will receive about an extra million a year over that period. Virginia will also be competitive on several expanded transit and rail grant programs which could invest billions into our transportation network."All of Virginia’s Democratic Representatives in Congress voted for the bill, whereas all of Virginia’s Republican Representatives voted against it. But Biden said there was support from industry. “This law was supported by business groups — the U.S. Chamber of Commerce; the National Association of Manufacturers; the Business Roundtable, representing 200 of the largest corporations in America and other top businesses,” Biden said.Local governments are watching closely to see what the bill may mean for their bottom line. “Albemarle County will closely monitor avenues for local governments to apply for funding to advance our strategic infrastructure needs as guidance becomes available from the federal and state governments,” said Emily Kilroy, director of Communications and Public Engagement for Albemarle. You’re listening to Charlottesville Community Engagement. Time for another Patreon-fueled shout-out! Charlottesville 350 is the local chapter of a national organization that seeks to reduce dependence on fossil fuels. Charlottesville 350 uses online campaigns, grassroots organizing, and mass public actions to oppose new coal, oil and gas projects, and build 100% clean energy solutions that work for all. To learn more about their most active campaigns, including a petition drive to the Richmond Federal Reserve Bank, visit their Facebook page at facebook.com/cville350A proposed rezoning requested by Greystar Development for about 36 acres of land off of Old Ivy Road will be slightly smaller than the 525 units requested in the first application, but it will still be fairly substantial. “Our current plan is to have about 490 units,” said Valerie Long, an attorney with Williams Mullen. “We’re still under 20 dwelling units per acre so well within the range that’s permitted. The Places29-Hydraulic Community Advisory Committee got a first look at the Old Ivy Residences project, which is currently not scheduled for a public hearing before the Planning Commission. (watch the meeting)The land is split between five parcels, with three of them already zoned for 15 units per acre. “R-15 residential zoning allows for basically any type of residential development whether its single family detached, single-family attached, or multifamily apartments,” said county planner Cameron Langille. One parcel allows for ten units per acre, and the other is currently zoned for one unit per acre. The application is to make them all R-15. A previous rezoning approved by the Board of Supervisors in 1985 has a condition that states that the Old Ivy Road corridor needs to have been upgraded to a certain performance level before development can begin. “The applicant is asking for us to evaluate that and make a recommendation as to whether corridor has been improved to that extent,” Langille said. The board also approved a rezoning in 1996 for one of the parcels that restricts certain uses. Langille said the applicant wants the Board to drop that condition. There’s also a request to disturb slopes which involves changing their classification from preserved to managed. The county’s Comprehensive Plan designated three of the parcels as urban density residential, which allows anywhere between 6 units and 36 units per acre. Land along the U.S. 250 Bypass is designated as parks space and currently is the home of a section of the Rivanna Trail. Greystar officials said that would continue. Staff has conducted one review and the developer is working through the various questions from staff. John Clarkson is a managing director with Greystar Development, a national developer with projects all across the United States of America. “There are opportunities in University towns that lack housing opportunities, very important housing opportunities to provide that level of affordability to make those communities sustainable over the long term,” Clarkson said. Dan Nickerson, a development senior associate with Greystar, is a graduate of the nearby Darden School.“The number one thing we love about this site is the natural landscape and we’ve done the best job we could and we think we’ve done a really good job preserving the landscape while enabling the density that the Comp Plan allows,” Nickerson said. Old Ivy Road is a two-lane road that has a one-way underpass near its eastern intersection with Ivy Road without a sidewalk or bike lane. The western intersection as well as a two-lane bridge over the bypass are also constraints. Long acknowledged that traffic congestion is an issue.“Obviously those issues are existing, have been growing and increasing over the past few decades, but Greystar is committed to continue looking at those challenges and collaborating with [the Virginia Department of Transportation] and the county planning staff as appropriate to work toward identifying solutions,” Long said. Long said Greystar would be willing to pay a “proportional amount” for some of those solutions. VDOT’s Six-Year Improvement program includes funds for a $3 million replacement of the bridge over U.S. 250, but the description currently states it will be built with no additional capacity. Preliminary engineering is underway now with construction scheduled for Fiscal Year 2024. Long said county officials have been able to at least carve out some improvements for the project.“They were able to include in that project design that there will be a pedestrian lane on the new bridge,” Long said. Members of the CAC and the public had the opportunity to ask questions and make comments. Sally Thomas served four terms on the Board of Supervisors and lives next door in the University Village apartment building. “We don’t oppose having neighbors and we are delighted that they are neighbors that care about the environment,” Thomas said. “We also do have a lovely old stand of trees, some over 100 years old, and we want to try to preserve and protect those.” Thomas said University Village wants to make sure there are pathways that safe and attractive and avoid the trees. Kathleen Jump of Huntington Village complex said she likes to walk, but said this section of Albemarle is landlocked with many obstacles for pedestrians. “The eastern bridge is a concern and the pedestrians at that end of Old Ivy Road put their lives in their hands when they cross under that bridge,” Jump said.Kevin McDermott is a chief of planning in Albemarle who specializes in transportation. “We have been evaluating both ends of Old Ivy Road as Valerie mentioned also, very recently, to try to see if there are options for improving them,” McDermott said. “Nothing has jumped out as an easy solution right now. Trying to expand that underpass is going to be extremely expensive.” McDermott said VDOT is working with a consultant to look at both ends of the road to come up with solutions, possibly to inform a Smart Scale application for next year. Taylor Ahlgren just moved into Huntington Village. He wants the development to do as much as it can to discourage vehicular travel. Here’s what he would like to see.“Supporting future residents to stay away from using a car and using alternative means of transportation,” Ahlgren said. The project currently does not have a public meeting scheduled with the Planning Commission. Stay tuned. Also nearby is the Ivy Garden complex, which the University of Virginia will be redeveloped as a mixed-use community. The UVA Buildings and Grounds Committee got a briefing on that project in June. Special announcement of a continuing promo with Ting! Are you interested in fast internet? Visit this site and enter your address to see if you can get service through Ting. If you decide to proceed to make the switch, you’ll get:Free installationSecond month of Ting service for freeA $75 gift card to the Downtown MallAdditionally, Ting will match your Substack subscription to support Town Crier Productions, the company that produces this newsletter and other community offerings. So, your $5 a month subscription yields $5 for TCP. Your $50 a year subscription yields $50 for TCP? The same goes for a $200 a year subscription! All goes to cover the costs of getting this newsletter out as often as possible. Learn more here! This is a public episode. Get access to private episodes at communityengagement.substack.com/subscribe
WTJU is hosting Classical Listening Parties, a series of four free, casual events on Tuesdays in November. These four events are led by Chelsea Holt, pianist, teacher, and one of WTJU’s newest and youngest classical announcers. She’ll guide you through all the eras of classical music and tomorrow night at 7 p.m.: Classical. For a list of the others, visit wtju.net to learn more and sign up! On today’s show:The Village of Rivanna CAC gets an update on what middle missing housing is A recap of what’s been dropped off at solid waste centers operated by one of the Rivanna authorities Work takes places this work to help remediate an industrial waste site in CrozetLet’s begin the week with a status report on the pandemic. The Virginia Department of Health reports a seven-day average of 1,305 cases a day with 871 reported this morning. The percent positivity is at 5.4 percent, slightly up from 5.3 on Friday. There are 32 new cases in the Blue Ridge Health District and the percent positivity is at 4.7 percent. There have been five new deaths reported in the District since Friday.Belmont Bridge updateThe first major traffic shift of the Belmont Bridge is underway. All vehicular traffic will be routed to the southbound portion of the bridge, according to a project update sent out by the city of Charlottesville. New temporary traffic signals have been installed to control the new alignment. Construction got underway this year after many years of planning. To learn more, visit the city’s website.General Assembly 2022The two major parties have nominated their leaders for the next session of the House of Delegates. Republicans have nominated Delegate Todd Gilbert (R-15) as Speaker of the House and Delegate Terry Kilgore (R-1) as House Majority Leader. Republicans picked up five seats in the November 2 election to have a 52 to 48 edge when the General Assembly convenes on January 12. (press release)Current Speaker Eileen Filler-Corn (D-41) has been nominated as House Minority Leader. Delegate Charniele Herring (D-46) will serve as Chair of the Democratic Caucus. (press release)Remediating AcmeCrews are working in Crozet this month at the site of the former Acme Visible Records. The company built storage and retrieval equipment for documents from 1954 until approximately 2001. During that time, they directed wastewater into a lagoon that contained multiple pollutants. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued a permit in September 2020 to the Wilson Jones Company to mitigate the harm based on a 2019 status report from the Virginia Department of Environmental quality. All of the buildings have been removed. (permit) (basis)Representatives of the company performing the mitigation sent an update the Crozet Community Association announcing that groundwater samples will be taken between November 10 and November 19. There are also plans this week to dig two wells to inject new chemicals into hazardous areas. “The wells will be installed to facilitate the completion of a pilot study for the injection of chemical oxidants which will treat the chlorinated solvent impacts in groundwater at the facility,” reads the report from a public relations company working with the Wilson Jones Company. As part of the permit, the land can never be used for residential purposes, schools, playgrounds, or daycare. Solid waste drop-off reportThe Rivanna Solid Waste Authority’s Board of Directors meets for the final time of 2021 tomorrow. The packet contains data about activity at the Ivy Materials Utilization Center and McIntire Recycling Center, both of which process all manner of recycling and solid waste. As of late September, 42 containers of paint cans have been shipped out of the facility. “Each container holds about 4,200 one-gallon paint cans,” reads an operations report. “Therefore, we have shipped about 176,400 paint cans since the program began in August 2016.”Leftover latex paint is re-processed back into commercial paint and oil-based paints are converted into fuel. Both September and October were busy months for the compostable food waste collection at the McIntire center, with over 8 tons being dropped off in each month. Commercial customers pay $178 a ton for disposal and residents are not charged. Over six hundred people participated in a Household Hazardous Waste Day held over two days in late September. Albemarle residents dropped off 22,640 pounds of furniture and mattresses on October 2, and Charlottesville residents disposed of 3,380 pounds. On October 9 the Ivy MUC accepted appliances and Albemarle residents parted with 6,800 pounds and 160 freon units. Charlottesville residents dropped off 1,400 pounds and 30 freon units. On October 16, unwanted tires had their turn and nearly 49 tons were processed for recycling. The RSWA continues to work through a permit modification with the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality to up the tonnage allowed at the Ivy MUC from 300 tons a day to 450 tons a day. You’re listening to Charlottesville Community Engagement. Interested in learning more about the Ancestral Monacan Homelands in Albemarle and Charlottesville along the Seminole Trail on which our 21st century communities have been built Interested in learning how to document the history, present, and future? Tomorrow the Albemarle Charlottesville Historical Society will hold a two-part event in-person at Northside Library beginning at 5 p.m. First, UVA Professor of Anthropology Jeffrey Hantman will discuss his work, which includes which includes archaeology and history of the Monacan people, now with a new emphasis on how the Monacans were targeted by the eugenics movement. That will be followed at 6 p.m. with a workshop on cvillepedia, a collaborative encyclopedia. There will be a tutorial and I’ll be on hand to demonstrate how I use the site to keep the community informed. Professor Hantman’s talk will also be available through Zoom. Visit jmrl.org to learn more and to register for both programs. Missing MiddleFinally today, on Thursday, the 5th and Avon Community Advisory Committee will discuss an 85-unit rezoning that developers say will provide “missing middle housing” in the form of triplexes, duplexes, and multifamily units. But what is missing middle? Tori Kanellopoulos is a senior planner with the county. “Missing middle housing is housing that is between single-family detached housing and larger apartments and is intended to be compatible and scale and form with existing single-family attached,” Kanellopoulos said. Kannellopoulos said these units tend be smaller and are more affordable because the cost of land is spread across multiple units. “This is a concept that has gained a lot of attention recently though many of these housing types have existed for decades or longer and actually used to be permitted through many localities,” Kannellopoulos said. “Now localities are relegalizing these units by updating their zoning ordinances.” In July, Albemarle Supervisors adopted the Housing Albemarle plan, which seeks to encourage the development of more units with the hope that greater inventory will help with affordability. Renters and morgage-holders who pay more than 30 percent of their income on housing costs are considered distressed. That’s in part because Albemarle is an affluent community with a high median income. “Median home values in the county are about $138,000 higher than the U.S. median and about $83,000 higher than the Virginia median,” Kannellopoulos said. “Forty-two percent of renter households and 18 percent of homeowner households in the county are cost-burdened, meaning they are paying more than 30 percent of their gross income toward housing.”The situation is perhaps worse when other factors are taken into consideration such as the cost of transportation, child care, health, and food. To encourage creation of more of these housing types, planners created the Middle Density Residential land use category and debuted this in the Crozet master plan, over the opposition of some on the Crozet Community Advisory Committee. “The category recommends a density of 6-12 units per acre with up to 18 units per acre by meeting middle density housing types or affordability criteria beyond baseline housing requirements,” Kannellopoulos said. Most members of the Village of Rivanna Community Advisory Committee were opposed to the rezoning of Breezy Hill for 80 units on about 76 acres due to it being technically above one unit per acre. VORCAC Chair Dennis Odinov expressed skepticism that allowing more density would translate to more affordable prices. “These things have good intentions but in reality a lot of times they just over a period of time they just don’t work,” Odinov said. “That’s my concern. I’m no oracle and I may be wrong but that’s my experience and what I’ve seen. I’ve lived a lot of different places.” Odinov wanted to hear more about why many in Crozet were opposed to the concept. Details about how this might be implemented can be seen in the appendix of the Crozet Master Plan. Take a look beginning on page 72 of the .PDFSpecial announcement of a continuing promo with Ting! Are you interested in fast internet? Visit this site and enter your address to see if you can get service through Ting. If you decide to proceed to make the switch, you’ll get:Free installationSecond month of Ting service for freeA $75 gift card to the Downtown MallAdditionally, Ting will match your Substack subscription to support Town Crier Productions, the company that produces this newsletter and other community offerings. So, your $5 a month subscription yields $5 for TCP. Your $50 a year subscription yields $50 for TCP? The same goes for a $200 a year subscription! All goes to cover the costs of getting this newsletter out as often as possible. Learn more here! This is a public episode. Get access to private episodes at communityengagement.substack.com/subscribe
Kaiser Permanente has reached a tentative deal with thousands of healthcare workers in Northern and Southern California, who were prepared to go on strike on Monday. They are still negotiating with a group of engineers, who have been off the job for two months. Reporter: Jackie Fortier, KPCC President Biden will sign his administration's $1.2 trillion infrastructure package into law on Monday. California will get tens of billions of dollars in new federal spending, but will it come quick enough to fix roads, bridges and other transit issues facing the state? Guest: David Kim, Secretary of California's State Transportation Agency While much of the focus has been on the massive backlog at the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach, residents in nearby communities are also expressing major concerns about pollution from those cargo ships. But a new queuing system being launched this week at the ports could help improve air quality and safety. Reporter: Keith Mizuguchi, The California Report The San Joaquin Valley ranks worst in the nation when it comes to particulate air pollution, and environmental organizations say the Environmental Protection Agency is failing to do something about it. The groups have filed a lawsuit hoping to force the EPA to act. Reporter: Soreath Hok, Valley Public Radio Some 6,000 lecturers across the University of California system are planning to strike this week. The union representing lecturers has been in negotiations for more than two years and says the UC is refusing to negotiate issues like paid family leave and reimbursement for remote teaching expenses. Reporter: Annelise Finney, KQED The public comment period will close Monday on proposed new regulations requiring passenger sportfishing and whale watching boats to upgrade to cleaner engines. California's charter boat operators say the proposed new rules will jeopardize their livelihoods. Reporter: Greta Mart, KRCB
This week Michelle and Matt explore how the Environmental Protection Agency isn't really protecting the environment, easy ways to ruin marble countertops, and bribing Florida's food scene. Matt's curious about Russian sodas while Michelle explains the intricacies of baleen whales. Creamy Curried Parsnip Soup recipe is also mentioned in this ep. Brave New Meal is now available wherever books are sold.
How much of the change in water quality that's happening in some Vermont — and New England — lakes is the result of industry, and how much is because of a changing climate? A group of scientists and the Environmental Protection Agency hope some very old and very small cells just might let them look back in time to find out.
Let’s begin with a Patreon-fueled shout-out. Colder temperatures are creeping in, and now is the perfect time to think about keeping your family warm through the holidays. Make sure you are getting the most out of your home with help from your local energy nonprofit, LEAP. LEAP wants you and yours to keep comfortable all year round, and offers FREE home weatherization to income- and age-qualifying residents. If you’re age 60 or older, or have an annual household income of less than $74,950, you may qualify for a free energy assessment and home energy improvements such as insulation and air sealing. Sign up today to lower your energy bills, increase comfort, and reduce energy waste at home!On today’s show:One of Charlottesville’s former police chiefs wants to sue the city for wrongful terminationAlbemarle Board of Supervisors formally begins Comprehensive Plan review Albemarle may also have a potential budget surplus of over $13 million ProPublica takes a look at the links between industrial air pollution and cancer The Virginia Festival of the Book will return to an in-person event next March Former Charlottesville Police Chief RaShall Brackney has filed a complaint with the United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission alleging she was wrongfully terminated by former City Manager Chip Boyles. Boyles resigned on October 12 citing personal and professional abuse in the aftermath of the firing. Brackney and her lawyer Charles Tucker held a press conference this morning to announce the complaint as well as a demand for millions in damages. Tucker appeared to make the claim that Brackney is still the chief.“She’s not here today to talk about an abrupt termination,” Tucker said. “She’s here today to talk about a wrongful attempt at termination.” Tucker alleged collusion to remove Brackney by Council, top police officials, and former manager Boyles. Complaints to the EEOC are private and information is only available to be released the individual who files the complain as well as the subject of the complaint. A spokesman for the EEOC told me today he could neither confirm or deny the existence of the complaint. He noted that an EEOC complaint is the first step toward filing a lawsuit. Learn more about this process on the EEOC’s website. The agency’s authority comes from Title VII of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. There’s also a FAQ worth reviewing. Tucker is employed by the Cochran Firm, a national law firm founded by the late Johnnie Cochran. Cochran was part of the legal team that successfully defended former football player O.J. Simpson on double murder charges in October 1995. Special thanks to Dori Zook of WINA for providing the audio. Take a look at coverage on NBC29 for more information. One of Charlottesville’s most popular events will return to some in-person events next spring. The Virginia Festival of the Book was canceled in 2020 and was held virtually in 2021, but will return with a hybrid event from March 16 through March 20. The Festival has also been holding online programs year-round as part of its Shelf Life series. Headlining speakers for the 28th festival will not be announced until January. Review previous programs on the VABook website at vabook.org. Industrial investigationAn investigation by ProPublica has identified the Radford area in the New River Valley as one of the places in Virginia where residents are more likely to contract cancer due to air pollution. That’s due to the presence of the U.S. Army Radford Ammunition Plant.“This facility alone is estimated to increase the excess cancer risk for people living within five miles by an average of 1 in 4,100,” reads their summary of the Radford area. ProPublica’s interactive map also shows pollution hotspots in Richmond and Petersburg. Their work is based on analysis of five-years of data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Learn more in a story on NBC29 that’s part of a collaboration between Gray Communications and ProPublica. You’re reading Charlottesville Community Engagement and it’s time for two more Patreon-fueled shout-outs. The first comes a long-time supporter who wants you to know:"Today is a great day to spread good cheer: reach out to an old friend, compliment a stranger, or pause for a moment of gratitude to savor a delight."The second comes from a more recent supporter who wants you to go out and read a local news story written by a local journalist. Whether it be the Daily Progress, Charlottesville Tomorrow, C-Ville Weekly, NBC29, CBS19, WINA, or some other place I’ve not mentioned - the community depends on a network of people writing about the community. Go learn about this place today!Albemarle Comprehensive Plan processTwo stories from Albemarle today. First, Albemarle County has formally begun the process of updating its Comprehensive Plan. The Board of Supervisors adopted a resolution on November 3 that kicks off a multiphase process and public engagement plan for the first round. But let’s get a reminder on what this is from planner Tori Kanellopoulos. “The Comprehensive Plan is a guiding document for the county and is a twenty year plan which includes housing, transportation, land use, economic development, natural and historic resources,” Kannellopoulos said. The plan influences everything from the Capital Improvement program to decisions on land use such as rezoning. Supervisors last adopted a plan six years ago.“Since the current Comprehensive Plan was adopted in 2015, there have been a variety of new policies and plans adopted by the Board including the Climate Action Plan, an updated housing policy, Project ENABLE and an updated Strategic Plan,” Kannellopoulos said. “Additionally the Office of Equity and Inclusion was created and the Board adopted the new organizational value of community.”Since 2015, Kanellopoulos said 4,000 new dwelling units have been built and the population is expected to continue growing. With that comes increased demand for urban services to be delivered by the local government. The first phase will take a look at the county’s growth management policy, which has been embedded in the Comprehensive Plan for decades. That will include a capacity analysis for the county’s ability to provide new housing, as well as the needs of economic development. “Phase 2 will identify the main topics of the Comprehensive Plan, evaluate existing conditions for each, and provide updated frameworks using the lens of equity and climate action,” Kannellopoulos said. “Phase 3 will identify recommended action steps to implement the plan and metrics to track progress. And Phase 4 will finalize the document for adoption.” At the same time, Supervisors have asked for some changes to the zoning ordinance to happen concurrently with the Comprehensive Plan review. The winter holidays are approaching so there will not be a public kickoff for this process until January. Between now and then, a working group of community members and other stakeholders will be assembled to oversee the process. Supervisor Ann Mallek said the process to update the Crozet Master Plan at times was more difficult due to the lack of institutional memory and history about how that area has been a designated growth area. “There was a real challenge to help people to get enough background to be able to understand what they were being asked,” Mallek said. “And I think getting that knowledge base will prevent a lot of frustration that happens when people are asked to respond to a survey about which they’re given no information. And they just get mad.” Mallek also wants more public meetings in places that aren’t government buildings. Supervisor Ned Gallaway said he wants to make sure that the public knows the review is underway.“It can be frustrating I would imagine for everybody involved where community members maybe come late to the game,” Gallaway said. “We do our best effort to put things out there that this is going to be worked on and the ways to participate are there. And then if they are missed, we get ‘Well, where is this coming from?’ at the 11th hour. Whatever we need to do [public relations] wide to engage the community, we’ll have to do.”The Albemarle Planning Commission will have a work session on the Comprehensive Plan review at its meeting on November 16. This is a reminder that I created Town Crier Productions specifically to cover this kind of topic. I have never and will never take any payment from Albemarle County for this service, nor will I take any direct payment for any other level of government. This program is supported by contributions from listeners and readers, and the goal there is to keep this reporting independent and to be transparent when you do hear shout-outs and the like. Closing out FY21 Our second story from the November 3, 2021 Albemarle Board of Supervisors meeting comes from a fiscal update that came from a briefing from County Executive Jeffrey Richardson on the closing of Fiscal Year 21, which ran from July 1, 2020 to this past June 30. Like all localities, Albemarle was affected by the pandemic.“The last 20 months have been unlike any in my professional working career and I probably speak for staff when I say our challenges and the kinds of issues and problems we face are unlike any that we have faced in our career,” Richardson said. The pandemic began officially in Virginia on March 12, 2020 with the declaration of a state of emergency. That happened just as Albemarle was finalizing the budget for fiscal year 2021. A decision was made to rewrite the budget to pause some spending while more was known about underlying economic conditions. Richardson said staff initially assumed the worst case scenario. “We artificially lowered our budget base so we had to go in and we had to make drastic cuts for fiscal year 21,” Richardson said. Richardson said the economic outlook did not turn out to be as severe and he detailed the reasons why in his presentation. There has also been federal funding in the form of the CARES Act of 2020 and the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021. Here’s one example from Albemarle budget chief Andy Bowman. “The county was able to reimburse a significant portion of its public safety expenditures which created a one-time savings in the middle of fiscal year 2021 which the Board of Supervisors used to establish a local pandemic reserve,” Bowman said. Now the time has come to begin preparing for the budget for FY23, which will be adopted by the Board next May. That comes as the fiscal year 2021 budget is audited which will reveal whether there are additional funds leftover that be reprogrammed to achieve the county’s strategic goals. This is known as “one-time” funds. In FY21, revenues were up 5.3 percent over budget and county spending was down 4.9 percent. “Unaudited, we expect there to be $13.2 million in one-time funding that can be available to be reprogrammed as the county is heading into the season again of financial planning,” Bowman said. Richardson told the Board that the local economy is strong, and there are many ways this funding could be used to make further investments in economic development.“You met recently with your [Economic Development Authority] and I think that we need to consider more and I think now is the time to do more to set ourselves up for the future to help business expansion and to be a catalyst in this community to continue to strengthen our economic foundation,” Richardson said. Richardson also suggested the Board consider a mid-year salary increase for county personnel could also be an option. The Board will have a work session on “workforce stabilization” on December 1. Other suggestions from staff will continue to come to the Board in weeks to come. The next immediate step is a meeting of the Audit Committee on November 19. (meeting info)A major change this upcoming year is that real estate reassessments for calendar year 2022 will be sent out a month earlier than usual due to issues with the post office and potential for delays caused by mail. This is a public episode. Get access to private episodes at communityengagement.substack.com/subscribe
The Environmental Protection Agency, has decided to spend more than $630 million to expand the existing international sewage plant at the border, build a new sewage plant nearby and add other sewage infrastructure near the border. Plus: climate change at home, hiring more teachers for kids with special needs and more of the local news you need.
The battle against cattle fever ticks continues, but it may be time for a new approach. A federal advisory committee is preparing to hold a public meeting on how to help the Environmental Protection Agency make its policies work better for agriculture. As temperatures begin dropping across Texas, feeding hay is on the increase. We'll have those stories and more on this episode of Texas Ag Today.
According to the Donora, Pennsylvania Historical Society and Smog Museum's web site: “As the week of October 24, 1948 began, the nearly 14,000 people of Donora paid little attention to the dense heavy fog covering the town. The cool to cold autumn nights combined with warm water from the Monongahela river and smoke from the local steel mill, namely the Zinc Works blast furnace and open hearth, as well as thousands of coal furnaces in local homes, would typically limit visibility until afternoon. As the week wore on, residents began to realize this fog was anything but typical. By Thursday, October 28, streetlights were on during mid-day and people walking the streets were struggling to find their way. Soon, many elderly people began to complain of breathing difficulty, thousands were ill, and houseplants began to shrivel. Then, on October 30 1948, people began to die. Donora physicians worked around the clock, treating victims as best they could against a mysterious pathogen. The Donora Board of Health set up an emergency aid station and temporary morgue in the basement of the Community Center. Volunteer firemen felt their way door to door, administering oxygen and attempting to get people help. Management at the mill refused to believe or admit that the waste they were emitting caused the problem; after all, it was the same thing they had been doing for over thirty years. In less than three days, thousands of people were impacted, hundreds of people fell sick, twenty-six people were dead, along with dozens of animals. Who knows how many more followed in the weeks, months and years to come that are not counted among the twenty-six. On October 31, rains finally dispersed the killer fog, but left the nation in shock. The dead and sick were not only from Donora but also from the neighboring communities of Webster and Sunnyside that were down wind and across the river. The Federal, State and Local governments, along with numerous universities and scientists, investigated. Sulfur dioxide emissions from U.S. Steel's Donora Zinc Works and its American Steel & Wire plant were frequent occurrences in Donora. What made the 1948 event more severe was a temperature inversion, in which a mass of warm, stagnant air was trapped in the valley. The pollutants in the air mixed with fog to form a thick, yellowish, acrid smog that inhibited the normal process where the sun would burn off the fog. This smog hung over Donora for five days. The sulfuric acid, nitrogen dioxide, fluorine and other poisonous gases that usually dispersed into the atmosphere were caught in the inversion and continued to accumulate until rain ended the weather pattern.. The best way to sum up the event is a quote by W. Michael McCabe "Before there was an Environmental Protection Agency, before there was an Earth Day before Rachel Carson wrote Silent Spring, there was Donora." Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
In today’s first subscriber supported public service announcement, one person wants you to know about another community litter cleanup event in Albemarle, this time on October 30 in the southern part of the county. The latest Love Albemarle event will take place between 8:30 a.m. and 11:30 a.m. at sites in Esmont, Keene, Scottsville, and North Garden. Around fifty people showed up for a similar event in Esmont this past spring, and organizers want to double that amount. Organizer Ed Brooks is seeking to get children involved, so if you’re a parent or guardian and want to spend the morning cleaning up road-side litter, register now!On this installment of the program:More campaign finance numbers in advance of Election Day A preview of a film on Stan Brock, the founder of the Remote Access Medical CorpsThe Chickahominy River has elevated levels of forever chemicals known as PFASAnd a quick look at the wonderful world of wastewater can help track the scope of the PFAS problem Virginia flags will be at half-mast for the next 30 days to mourn the passing of former Governor Linwood Holton. Holton was elected in 1969 as the first Republican governor of the 20th Century, though he would later endorse Democratic candidates for statewide office. Holton was born in Big Stone Gap in 1923 and died at his home in Kilmarnock yesterday. (Wikipedia) While in office, Holton and his wife sent their children to public schools. Governor Ralph Northam noted that in a statement yesterday. “If you want to know what American strength looks like, look at the famous photographs of Governor Holton—smiling, as he walked his children to Richmond’s public schools during the tensest moments of desegregation,” Northam said. “He faced down Virginia’s demons and enabled this Commonwealth to look ahead.”In the most recent letter, we took a look at campaign finance for local candidates in Albemarle County, Charlottesville, and Nelson County. Election day is just a few days away. Today let’s look at House of Delegates races. Albemarle County currently has four different districts within it boundaries. Let’s start with the 25th House District, which stretches from Albemarle into Augusta and Rockingham Counties. Democrat Jennifer Kitchen is challenging incumbent Republican Chris Runion. Kitchen began the October reporting period with $108,930 on hand, raised an additional $29,673, and spent $37,189. Runion began October with $77,655, raised an additional $37,837, spent $39,320 in cash, and recorded $16,314 in in-kind donated expenses. The 57th District includes all of Charlottesville and some of Albemarle. Incumbent Democrat Sally Hudson began October with $29,158 on hand, raised $24,469, spent $7,482 in cash, and recorded $2,499 in in-kind expenses. Hudson’s Republican challenger, Philip Hamilton, began the month with $2,917 in the bank. He raised $495 and spend $1,468. The 58th District consists of eastern Albemarle, all of Greene County, and parts of Fluvanna and Rockingham counties. Incumbent Republican Rob Bell began October with $354,466 in the bank and raised $89,293 in the first three weeks of the month. Bell’s campaign spent $164,137 during the period and recorded $21,435 in expenses. Bell’s challenger is Democrat Sara Ratcliffe. Ratcliffe began October with $14,035 in the bank and raised $48,668 in the period. She spent $28,618 in cash and marked $24,928 in in-kind expenses. Southern Albemarle is within the 59th District, which also includes portions of Appomattox, Buckingham, Nelson, and Campbell counties. Republican Matt Fariss is the incumbent and he began the month with $29,671 in the bank. His campaign raised $18,285 in the period and spent $38,201 in the first three weeks. Farris had $9,755 in the bank on October 21.His Democratic challenger Ben Moses began the month with $84,215 and raised an additional $102,505. Moses spent $76,789 in cash and recorded $61,231 in in-kind expenses. Moses has raised $603,138.01 during the campaign. (report)Independent Louis Scicli began October with $207, raised no money, and spent no money. Special thanks to the Virginia Public Access Project for their work in making this information accessible. Before the passage of the Clean Water Act in 1972, it would be commonplace for factories to discharge pollutants into rivers and streams without any consideration of the effect of the natural world. Nearly fifty years later, there is a system of permits and regulations in place to improve water quality. The Rivanna Water and Sewer Authority is working with certain industries in the community to pre-treat industrial waste before effluent is released into the ecosystem. Patricia Defibaugh is the laboratory manager for the RWSA.“The purpose of this program is to protect the sewer system and wastewater treatment plants through limits on industrial waste discharges,” Defibaugh said. “This is a requirement of the [U.S. Environmental Protection Agency] and the Virginia Department of Environmental Quality.” This is part of the Virginia Pollutant Discharge Elimination System and an annual report is due to the DEQ by the end of every January. The goal is to remove as many fats, oils, greases as well as metals, nutrients, and acidity as possible by working with industries who create those waste products. “The ones we’re concerned with are the significant industrial user, and that’s either a categorial user which is metal finishing, or semiconductor manufacturers,” Defibaugh said. “Or non-categorical which discharge more than 25,000 gallons per day or had a potential to adversely affect our treatment processes.”The types of businesses of concern include restaurants, breweries, wineries, dentists, and dry cleaners. None of the breweries connected to urban water exceed the 25,000 gallon threshold. Gary O’Connell, executive director of the Albemarle County Service Authority, said there is a program that seeks to remove cooking oil from the wastewater process. “There’s an active [fats, oil, and grease] program that goes on,” O’Connell said. “I know in our case it’s about 260 grease traps that we inspect.On the more industrial level, the RWSA has three companies that are in the pretreatment program. These are Virginia Diodes, Mikro, and Northrup Grumman. For more information on this topic, visit Henrico County’s Industrial Pretreatment Program. PFAS concernsFifty years after the Clean Water Act, there are concerns about other pollutants that are not easily seen. In 2020, the Virginia General Assembly passed legislation requiring the Virginia Department of Health to study the level of polyfluorinated substances in drinking water (PFAS). These are chemical byproducts of the processes used to make non-stick cooking utensils, fire-fighting foam, food packaging, and other uses They are known as “forever chemicals” because they do not break down. The health effects are being studied. (CDC fact-sheet on PFAS). The industrial pretreatment work will be used to help identify the scope of the problem. “DEQ is going to be sending out a survey to Rivanna’s significant industrial users to confirm their use and manufacture of PFAS compounds,” Defibaugh said. Yesterday, the DEQ announced that elevated levels of PFAS have been found in the Chickahominy River. They found out from a report from the Newport News Waterworks (NNWW) and now the DEQ will work with the VDH to further study the issue. “NNWW is continuing to monitor source waters in coordination with state agencies and has assured residents that the water it provides to its customers is safe to drink and has consistently shown PFAS levels well below the lifetime health advisory from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA),” reads the press release. Last week, the EPA announced a national strategy will be undertaken to confront the PFAS problem. “EPA’s Roadmap is centered on three guiding strategies: Increase investments in research, leverage authorities to take action now to restrict PFAS chemicals from being released into the environment, and accelerate the cleanup of PFAS contamination,” reads a press release from that initiative. Next up, a quick Patreon-fueled shout-out!Fall is here, and with it, more moderate temperatures. While your HVAC takes a break, now is the perfect time to prepare for the cooler months. Your local energy nonprofit, LEAP, wants you and yours to keep comfortable all year round! LEAP offers FREE home weatherization to income- and age-qualifying residents, so, if you’re age 60 or older, or have an annual household income of less than $74,950, you may qualify for a free energy assessment and home energy improvements such as insulation and air sealing. Sign up today to lower your energy bills, increase comfort, and reduce energy waste at home!The 34th Annual Virginia Film Festival is underway today and runs through Sunday, Halloween. In all there are dozens of films being screened in Downtown Charlottesville and at other various locations. Some of the films provide glimpses into topics of things that may not be working. One of those is Medicine Man: The Stan Brock Story, a documentary about one person's attempt to bring healthcare to various places across the United States of America where regular care is hard to come by. Brock is a British-born adventurer who founded Remote Area Medical, a nonprofit that holds pop-up free clinics in remote places across the world. Earlier this week I spoke with Paul Michael Angell, the director of the documentary which screens this Sunday at 1:30 p.m. at the Violet Crown. Take a listen to the podcast version to hear the interview. Or, take a look at the video interview on YouTube. Do sign up for the podcast on Spotify, Apple Music, Audible, Amazon, or however you get your podcasts! This is a public episode. Get access to private episodes at communityengagement.substack.com/subscribe
A large coalition of agriculture groups wrote to the Environmental Protection Agency asking it to postpone revocation of chlorpyrifos until it can consider their formal objections to the rule. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
The Environmental Protection Agency lays out a roadmap to address PFAS, an advocacy group sues to obtain texts from the Wisconsin DNR board chairman, and the high number of COVID-19 ICU patients adds stress to short-staffed hospitals.
Tesla's long reign as the leader in electric vehicle driving range is officially over.The Environmental Protection Agency this week certified that a new sedan from startup EV maker Lucid Motors can travel 520 miles per charge.It's the first time that the agency determined that an all-battery vehicle has eclipsed the 500-mile range mark, and it bests the top offering from Tesla by more than 100 miles, the New York Times reports.The rating applies to the Lucid Air Dream Edition Range, the much-hyped startup's debut vehicle and the top-of-the-line version of its Air electric sedan. The newly certified vehicle is slated for deliveries beginning later this year to customers who paid a sticker price of $170,000 before federal or state electric vehicle incentives.Lucid plans to eventually roll out more economical versions of the Air, including a base model that will be below $70,000 when a federal tax credit is factored in. The company says the base model's range would roughly match the range on the previous record-holder, the Tesla Model S Long Range.
In Texas, between 2000 and 2016, petrochemical refineries released more than 400 million pounds of pollution into the air. However, in all that time, the Environmental Protection Agency never once consulted the most affected people. The Coolest Show Host Rev Yearwood dives into this issue with two experts from the Coalition for Environment, Equity & Resilience (CEER). Iris Gonzalez is the coalition director at CEER, and Carol Smith serves as its climate ambassador. Land in the Black community continues to be haggled away by politicians and business people who don't live in these communities but look to profit through petrochemicals production. Petrochemicals contribute to air contamination, water pollution, and land deterioration, while greenhouse gases released also contribute to global climate change. Several studies have shown an increased amount of people with cancer living near these facilities. Support CEER: https://ceerhouston.org/ The Coolest Show – brought to you by Hip Hop Caucus Think 100% PODCASTS – drops new episodes every Monday on environmental justice and how we solve the climate crisis. Listen and subscribe here or at TheCoolestShow.com! Follow @Think100Climate and @RevYearwood on Instagram, Twitter, and Instagram.
Show #1247 If you get any value from this podcast please consider supporting my work on Patreon. Plus all Patreon supporters get their own unique ad-free podcast feed. Good morning, good afternoon and good evening wherever you are in the world, welcome to EV News Daily for Sunday 17th October. It's Martyn Lee here and I go through every EV story so you don't have to. Thank you to MYEV.com for helping make this show, they've built the first marketplace specifically for Electric Vehicles. It's a totally free marketplace that simplifies the buying and selling process, and help you learn about EVs along the way too. TESLA'S MUSK DIALS INTO VOLKSWAGEN EXECUTIVE CONFERENCE "Tesla (TSLA.O) boss Elon Musk has addressed 200 Volkswagen (VOWG_p.DE) executives via a video call after an invitation from the German carmaker's CEO Herbert Diess, who wants to galvanise VW's top brass for a faster pivot to electric vehicles." reports Reuters: "The comments on Thursday by Musk to a VW managers gathering in Alpbach, Austria, confirmed by Diess via Twitter on Saturday after a report in Handelsblatt daily, included praise of VW for being an "icon" and Tesla's greatest challenger, Handelsblatt said. The paper said that when asked by Diess why Tesla was more nimble than its rivals, Musk said it came down to his management style and that he is an engineer, first of all, and has an eye for supply chains, logistics and production." Diess said on Linkedin: ""Happy to hear that even our strongest competitor thinks that we will succeed (in) the transition if we drive the transformation with full power" Read more: https://www.reuters.com/business/autos-transportation/teslas-musk-dials-into-volkswagen-executive-conference-2021-10-16/ ELON MUSK GETS ALMOST $13 BILLION RICHER IN ONE WEEK AS TESLA STOCK HITS 8-MONTH HIGH "The boom times made Musk richer than Jeff Bezos in late September and pushed his net worth past $200 billion for the first time. He's having fun with the competition. After telling Forbes he would send Bezos a silver medal upon his ascent to the top spot, he followed through on that promise on Monday by replying to one of Bezos' tweets with a silver medal emoji." writes Forbes: "Although Musk widened the gap this week, Bezos still got $5.6 billion richer on Friday with Amazon stock rising 3.3%. Since stepping down as CEO of Amazon in July, Bezos has spent more time in the public eye promoting his commercial spaceflight company Blue Origin" https://www.forbes.com/sites/hanktucker/2021/10/16/elon-musk-gets-almost-13-billion-richer-in-one-week-as-tesla-stock-hits-8-month-high/ KIA AND HYUNDAI SALES RISE IN SEPTEMBER "Kia reports global car sales of 223,593 (down 14.1% year-over-year) in September, although the all-electric sales are booming. The company reports 2,654 Kia EV6 sales in South Korea, which is 7.4% of the total volume (35,801). We noted that an additional 90 units were delivered in Europe, which means 2,744 total for the month of September." reports InsideEVs: "An interesting thing is that the Kia's older electric models - the Soul EV and Niro EV - also do pretty well. The manufacturer reports 975 Soul EV and 7,451 Niro EV sold outside South Korea (we don't have number for Kia's home market), which is 8,426 total (up 27% year-over-year). 80% of that falls on Europe. It means that the BEV sales already exceeds 11,000 (or 5% of the total volume) in a single month." As as for their sister company: "Hyundai reports a big 24% decrease of its global car sales (wholesale, on the manufacturer level) in September - to 279,307. Fortunately, the plug-in segment expands. The ompany's sales of plug-in cars amounted to 16,400 (up 27% year-over-year), which is a record 5.9% share of the total volume." according to InsideEVs: "So far this year, Hyundai reports sales of over 110,000 plug-in car sales (up 35% year-over-year), which represents 3.8% of the total volume. The Hyundai Ioniq 5 continues its expansion at a rate of over 7,000 units a month (the 5-month average), followed by still quite good results for the Hyundai Kona Electric (over 4,100 in September)." Read more: https://insideevs.com/news/541051/kia-ev6-sales-september-2021/ Read more: https://insideevs.com/news/540619/hyundai-plugin-car-sales-september2021 CHINA LAGS IN IMPORTANT ELECTRIC CAR TECHNOLOGY DESPITE RARE EARTHS ADVANTAGE "Chinese electric carmakers are still lagging behind their foreign rivals in permanent magnet (PM) motor innovation despite the fact that China is the world's dominant supplier of the rare earth metals required for making them, a top Chinese British scientist said in an interview." according to the South China Morning Post: "The comments suggest a key weakness in China's industrial development as Beijing pushes to transform advantages in resources, market size and academic research into technological leadership. Zhu, a fellow at the Royal Academy of Engineering in the UK, is known for his work in electrical machines and permanent magnets, which won him the 2021 IEEE Nikola Tesla Award." Read more: https://www.scmp.com/tech/tech-trends/article/3152477/china-lags-important-electric-car-technology-despite-rare-earths EUROPE WILL LEAD ELECTRIC VEHICLE REVOLUTION "Tesla may be an American company, but it looks like the USA as a market will not be leading EVs into the mainstream. At least, that is, according to Prabhakar Patil, who was CEO of LG Chem Power, Inc from 2010 to 2015, as well as spending five years working on Ford's hybrid technologies. The former battery company head has estimated that 50% of cars sold in Europe could be EVs by as soon as 2025, when globally the figure will probably be more like 20%." says Forbes: "Many European countries are setting strict deadlines for the phasing out of sales of new fossil fuel cars and hybrids, such as the UK, as well as enforcing stringent emission standards for key cities. This is providing yet another incentive for residents to go electric. In the USA, in contrast, there is a struggle between the governing bodies of states that want similarly tough deadlines and incumbent economic interests. When Californian Governor Gavin Newsom announced there would be a ban on gasoline-powered cars by 2035, even the Environmental Protection Agency weighed in to say it could be illegal. There has been much discussion of how the magic $100 per kWh price boundary for batteries will enable battery-electric vehicles to become cheaper than internal combustion engine ones. Bloomberg NEF predicted 2027 as the likely year for the changeover." That's an article by James Morris from Whichev. Read more: https://www.forbes.com/sites/jamesmorris/2021/10/16/europe-will-lead-electric-vehicle-revolution-not-usa-says-ex-lg-chem-ceo/ TESLA'S MOST BASIC MODEL 3 VARIANT WON'T BE DELIVERED UNTIL AUGUST '22 "Tesla's most basic variant of the affordable Model 3 sedan is sold out nearly a year in advance. The Model 3 Standard Range+ is as basic as you can get with Tesla's vehicles. It is the most affordable car available from Tesla, starting at $41,990. When ordering the sedan with its standard Aero wheels, orders are now advised that the soonest delivery dates are set for August 2022." reports Joey at Teslarati: "Tesla's online Design Studio, the portion of the automaker's website that allows potential owners to design their vehicles, now shows an estimated delivery for the Model 3 Standard Range+ with Aero wheels for August. Other more expensive car variations are available for delivery as soon as November, but the cheapest combination of the vehicle won't be available until Q3 2022." https://www.teslarati.com/tesla-model-3-standard-range-plus-august-2022-deliveries/ TESLA ROLLS OUT SAFETY SCORE-BASED INSURANCE PRODUCT IN TEXAS "Tesla is now selling insurance to customers in Texas, two years after first launching the offering in its now-former home state of California. But the version in Texas is different. The company says it will evaluate driving behavior in real-time using the “Safety Score” feature that it recently launched to screen drivers who want to join the beta test of the company's “Full Self-Driving” beta software." according to The Verge: "That means drivers might wind up paying less — or more — per month based on how many forward collision warnings they rack up, how hard they brake, how “aggressively” they turn, how much distance they leave to the car in front, and whether they keep their hands on the wheel when using Autopilot. Tesla used some driving behavior metrics to develop premiums in California, but they were not real-time and relied more on statistical evaluations. The offering in Texas represents a big break from how other insurance companies arrive at their quoted premiums. Even ones that rely on data from telematics dongles plugged into a car still consider other factors like age." https://www.theverge.com/2021/10/15/22728411/tesla-insurance-texas-safety-score-premiums-california NOT EVEN A PANDEMIC CAN STOP SOLAR'S EPIC GROWTH "Despite the pandemic, the United States built more utility-scale solar power plants in 2020 than any other year, with Texas leading the way. All those new solar plants added up to 9.6 gigawatts of renewable energy added to the U.S. power grid, bringing the nation's total solar capacity to 48 gigawatts. That's enough to allow further retirements in the nation's coal fleet, which had 223 gigawatts of capacity in 2020." says Grist.org: "Before 2017, California was putting up the lion's share of solar projects. But in recent years Texas has become the leader. In 2020, the state installed enough solar panels to generate 2.5 gigawatts of electricity under full sun, while Florida and California each built 1.6 gigawatts of utility-scale solar. Fewer projects are going up in California because panels are flooding the grid with electricity when the sun is shining." https://grist.org/energy/2020-record-year-for-solar-energy/?utm_source=pocket_mylist BMW BATTERIES POWER COLDPLAY WORLD TOUR "BMW has just found a way to make its recyclable i3 EV batteries do good outside of the automotive industry: BMW batteries are going on tour with Coldplay. The Music Of The Spheres World Tour will be powered by 40 recyclable i3 batteries, which promises to drastically cut down on emissions, and will feature a kinetic dance floor that will recharge said batteries by the fans themselves. That rocks." says CarBuzz: "The 40 batteries going on tour will provide enough power to run live shows, and will be supported by solar installations, hydro-treated vegetable oil generators, power bikes, and coolest of all, a kinetic dance floor, which will turn Coldplay fans' moves into energy." https://carbuzz.com/news/bmw-batteries-power-coldplay-world-tour?utm_source=pocket_mylist MAKE ELECTRIC VEHICLES LIGHTER TO GET MORE BENEFITS https://www.treehugger.com/study-make-electric-vehicles-lighter-for-more-benefits-5205834 NEW QUESTION OF THE WEEK WITH EMOBILITYNORWAY.COM When buying a used electric car, how do you feel about servicing? Do you want the previous person to have been back to a dealer every year? Do you care? Some manufacturers like Tesla don't even have a service schedule so how do you feel about buying a used EV and it's service history, or lack of. Email me your thoughts and I'll read them out on Sunday – email@example.com It would mean a lot if you could take 2mins to leave a quick review on whichever platform you download the podcast. And if you have an Amazon Echo, download our Alexa Skill, search for EV News Daily and add it as a flash briefing. Come and say hi on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter just search EV News Daily, have a wonderful day, I'll catch you tomorrow and remember…there's no such thing as a self-charging hybrid. PREMIUM PARTNERS PHIL ROBERTS / ELECTRIC FUTURE BRAD CROSBY PORSCHE OF THE VILLAGE CINCINNATI AUDI CINCINNATI EAST VOLVO CARS CINCINNATI EAST NATIONAL CAR CHARGING ON THE US MAINLAND AND ALOHA CHARGE IN HAWAII DEREK REILLY FROM THE EV REVIEW IRELAND YOUTUBE CHANNEL RICHARD AT RSEV.CO.UK – FOR BUYING AND SELLING EVS IN THE UK EMOBILITYNORWAY.COM/
Welcome to the 353rd episode of the COVID Calls, a daily discussion of the COVID-19 pandemic with a diverse collection of disaster experts. My name is Esther Chernak, and I am your guest host on this session of COVID Calls. I teach at the Drexel University Dornsife School of Public Health, where I oversee the Center for Public Health Readiness and Communication. I am an infectious disease physician who has worked in both academia and in public health departments, and I am delighted to be hosting today's session, which will focus on crisis and risk communication during this COVID pandemic. Dr. Vincent Covello, director of the Center for Risk Communication, is one of the world's leading experts and practitioners on risk, high stress, and crisis communications. He is the author of more than 150 articles in scientific journals and the author/editor of more than 20 books. Dr. Covello is a consultant, writer, speaker, and teacher. He is a frequent keynote speaker and has conducted communication skills training for thousands. Dr. Covello has served as a risk, high concern, and crisis communications adviser to numerous public and private sectors organizations including over 400 of the 500 Fortune 500 companies, and with over 200 government agencies, including the World Health Organization, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Department of Defense, and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. His work has been applied nationally and globally to a wide range of topics, including radiological incidents, disease outbreaks, industrial accidents, water contamination, air pollution, food safety, climate change, physician-patient communications, and organizational change. Most recently, he has worked closely with the 50 U.S. State Health Directors on their responses to questions from the media and the public on COVID-19. Tom Hipper is the Associate Director of the Center for Public Health Readiness and Communication (CPHRC) at the Drexel University Dornsife School of Public Health, where he recently managed a CDC-funded grant project designed to address the disaster information needs of children with special health care needs. Mr. Hipper has also managed several projects related to communications during public health emergencies, including the creation of a library of social media messages for use by emergency response and public health spokespersons in different hazard scenarios. He is Assistant Teaching Faculty at Drexel University, where he teaches courses in crisis and risk communication. Mr. Hipper is also a Fellow of the Center for Risk Communication where he works closely on many risk communication projects and trainings with the Center's Director, Dr. Vincent Covello.
Everybody talks about using data to inform decision making about meeting the mandates of the Foundations for Evidence-Based Policymaking Act, a.k.a. the Evidence Act, but fewer actually do it. Katherine Dawes is one of those outstanding exceptions. She's the acting evaluation officer at the EPA and as of last week, a recipient of the Data Coalition's 2021 Annual Datum Awards. She joined Federal Drive with Tom Temin to talk more about her role.
Stand Up is a daily podcast. I book,host,edit, post and promote new episodes with brilliant guests every day. Please subscribe now for as little as 5$ and gain access to a community of over 800 awesome, curious, kind, funny, brilliant, generous souls Check out StandUpwithPete.com to learn more On Today's show I recap the last 24 hours in news for the first 30 minutes or so. at 36 mins in I start my latest talk with Dr Arthur Caplan is currently the Drs. William F and Virginia Connolly Mitty Professor and founding head of the Division of Medical Ethics at NYU School of Medicine in New York City. Prior to coming to NYU School of Medicine, Dr. Caplan was the Sidney D. Caplan Professor of Bioethics at the University of Pennsylvania Perelman School of Medicine in Philadelphia, where he created the Center for Bioethics and the Department of Medical Ethics. Caplan has also taught at the University of Minnesota, where he founded the Center for Biomedical Ethics, the University of Pittsburgh, and Columbia University. He received his PhD from Columbia University Follow Dr Caplan on Twitter and let him know you heard him here! 1:07 Judith Enck founded Beyond Plastics in 2019 to end plastic pollution through education, advocacy, and institutional change. Passionate about protecting public health and the environment, she teaches classes on plastic pollution as a Senior Fellow and visiting faculty member at Bennington College, and was recently a Visiting Scholar at the Elisabeth Haub School of Law at Pace University. Judith has held top influential positions in state and federal government. Appointed by President Obama, she served as the Regional Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, overseeing environmental protections in NY, NJ, eight Indian Nations, Puerto Rico and the US Virgin Islands – in addition to managing a staff of 800 and a $700M budget. Previously, Judith served as Deputy Secretary for the Environment in the New York Governor's Office, and Policy Advisor to the New York State Attorney General. She was Senior Environmental Associate with the New York Public Interest Research Group, served as Executive Director for Environmental Advocates of New York and the Non-Profit Resource Center, and is a past President of Hudson River Sloop Clearwater. Judith appears on a weekly public affairs radio show on a local NPR affiliate, the Roundtable on WAMC in Albany, NY. Judith lives in upstate New York with her husband, where they built their passive solar home with their own hands and with lots of support from friends and family. She designed her town's rural recycling program. She is a proud parent and enjoys reading and following the news in her spare time. Check out all things Jon Carroll Follow and Support Pete Coe Pete on YouTube Pete on Twitter Pete On Instagram Pete Personal FB page Stand Up with Pete FB page
If you've bought a major appliance in the last few decades, it's probably come along with a sticker from the EPA's Energy Star program rating its energy efficiency. But you might not know the EPA is also in the business of scoring and certifying the efficiency of huge data centers. The agency has just released the latest version of its certification standards for data centers. For more about how the program works, Federal Drive with Tom Temin and Federal News Network's Jared Serbu talked to Ryan Fogle. He's the data center product manager for Energy Star.
As more and more attention gets paid to the environmental hazards of PFAS and PFOS chemicals – especially in drinking water, Congress is considering several different approaches to remediate the problem. One of them that's already passed the House would use the Environmental Protection Agency's existing Superfund program to regulate the contaminants and order cleanups. And while the approach might seem fairly straightforward, our next guest argues it's more likely to lead to years of litigation than actual environmental cleanup. Philip Comella leads the Environment and Energy Practice Group at the law firm Freeborn and Peters. He wrote an article a few weeks back arguing that Superfund is the wrong tool for the job, he joined the Federal Drive to discuss
The Environmental Protection Agency has finalized a new rule that would cut hydrofluorocarbons--chemicals that are worse for climate change than carbon dioxide--by 85% over the next 15 years. The Washington Post's Dino Grandoni talks with Boyd about how this change will affect our planet, your home and office, and if businesses can adapt. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
This Week's Guests: Governor - Christine Todd Whitman Comedian - Boris Khaykin The World's Famous comedy Cellar presents "Live From America Podcast" with Noam Dworman and Hatem Gabr. The top experts and thinkers of the world and the best comics in the Nation get together weekly with our hosts to discuss different topics each week, News, Culture, Politics, comedy & and more with an equal parts of knowledge and comedy! Governor Christine Todd Whitman was the first (and so far only!) woman governor of New Jersey and served as Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency under President George W. Bush. She now sits on the boards of a number of important initiatives such as the American Security Project, the Climate Action Project, the National Institute for Civil Discourse, the Presidential Climate Action Project, and the Citizens United Democracy Center. Follow Live From America YouTube www.youtube.com/channel/UCS2fqgw61yK1J6iKNxV0LmA Twitter twitter.com/AmericasPodcast www.LiveFromAmericaPodcast.com LiveFromAmerica@ComedyCellar.com Follow Hatem Twitter twitter.com/HatemNYC Instagram www.instagram.com/hatemnyc/ Follow Noam Twitter twitter.com/noamdworman?lang #ChristineWhitman #GovernorWhitmanInterview #TheFutureOfTheRepublicanParty
039: It's time for an 80s classic on this week's Large Popcorn when filmmaker Aaron Roetcisoender guests the show. Join as we head into the world of ghosts and the Environmental Protection Agency with GHOSTBUSTERS. Does the film still hold up or is it childhood nostalgia? Find out on this week's podcast - just don't cross the streams!Reel Round-UpOctober movie release datesTimestamps00:00:00 - show start00:02:29 - Reel Round-Up00:24:29 - Topic of the ShowSocialsCristian on Twitter: @isoCristianKeep up with all the films we watch on every show at my letterboxd profileDial-in to the show via SpeakPipe!Criterion Challenge 2021Aaron on Twitter: @AaronRoots427Aaron on YoutubeSecret Horse Productions on YouTube
Blood-red sunsets in the Midwest are striking but ominous illustrations of new data: Parts of the Midwest are being exposed to more wildfire smoke from the West Coast and Canada compared to more than a decade ago. Experts say the impact of the smoke on health in the region is a concern.Meteorological patterns — weather, air currents, fronts — sweep wildfire smoke hundreds of miles across the country. Nowhere in the Midwest is this increased exposure to wildfire smoke more pronounced than in western Nebraska. Take the case of Scottsbluff, a city of about 15,000 in Nebraska's panhandle. From 2016 to 2020, Scottsbluff experienced a 45% increase in days on which wildfire smoke was in the atmosphere. That's compared to an earlier period that was analyzed, from 2009 to 2013.A year ago in Scottsbluff the concentration of particulate matter — tiny pieces of debris suspended in the air — exceeded the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) standards. That was a result of smoke sweeping into western Nebraska from wildfires in Canada.Western and central Kansas also saw meaningful increases in smoke days, according to a data analysis conducted by NPR California Newsroom and the Stanford University Environmental Change and Human Outcomes Lab.“Although we see variability from year to year, the trend appears to be increasing impacts of smoke across Kansas over the last several years,” said Matt Lara, a spokesman with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment in an email.Lara said the effect from smoke may be mostly in the upper atmosphere, causing hazy skies and dramatic sunset. He added that sometimes, such as late July and early August this year, federal air standards for daily particulate matter are exceeded. “Some of these impacts may not be surface based but upper atmosphere and cause hazy skies and dramatic sunsets but others, such as late July and early August this year did cause air monitoring sites to exceed the federal air quality standards for daily particulate matter.”‘Expect this to get worse'Health and meteorology experts say the growing presence of wildfire smoke in parts of Kansas and Nebraska could pose health risks to those who breathe it in. That concern is compounded, given the likelihood that vast and intense fires from California and surrounding areas will persist.“All the science -- and there's a lot of science on this -- suggests if we don't change our game on this, people should expect this to get worse,” said Burke, who helped NPR's California Newsroom assemble its smoke data. “It's going to be worse in the West, but it's certainly going to get worse in the Midwest as well as more people are exposed to smoke from fires in the West.”The analysis relied on satellite images captured every few hours by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) that showed plumes of smoke billowing into the atmosphere from western wildfires. Those images were then plotted over nearly every zip code across the continental United States to show the areas where the wildfire smoke reaches.Smoky skies, clear effectsIn California and more broadly along the West Coast, the growing frequency and intensity of wildfire pose clear air quality and health risks.The NPR California Newsroom analysis examined data from state health facilities and found there were 30,000 more hospitalizations from cardiac and respiratory conditions in 2018, which was a record year for fires at the time.Shawn Jacobs, the warning coordination meteorologist at the North Platte National Weather Service office, said that the climate in central and western Nebraska may play a role in how smoke is distributed in the region. The state's climate becomes more aird west of Kearney, Nebraska, and the lack of moisture allows for greater temperature swings. More fluctuation means more movement, preventing the smoke from settling, Jacobs said. These trends are being noticed by western Nebraskans.“So much so that there are times when people have called us and asked, ‘Is there a fire nearby?' because we're seeing this smoke,” Jacobs said.Colleen Reid, an assistant professor of geography at the University of Colorado who studies the impacts of wildfire smoke, said the health effects are clear when there are high concentrations of smoke in the air.That risk arises from tiny particles that are so small they can pass into the bloodstream from the lungs when people breathe.The particulate matter can lead to asthma, cardiovascular problems and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease.The health risks are less clear the further the smoke travels.“In terms of the Midwest where you're getting the smoke transmitted long distances, there needs to be more research to understand whether the long-range transport changes the way it affects health,” Reid said.Where skies are clearerThe presence of smoke is relatively muted in areas like eastern Kansas and Nebraska, as well as Iowa and Missouri. Wide swaths of northwest Missouri had modest increases in exposure to smoke, but many areas of the state had decreases in smoke days during the two periods analyzed by the NPR California Newsroom and Stanford.The presence of wildfire smoke does not often exceed EPA standards for air quality in the Midwest, and it has never been enough to result in a violation of the Clean Air Act. Even so, EPA officials keep an eye on wildfire smoke migrating from the west to the Midwest.“It is something that is on our radar; it's a concern,” said Lance Avey, an air and radiation division meteorologist for the EPA's Region 7, which covers Kansas, Nebraska, Iowa and Missouri.Doug Norsby, air quality planner with the Mid-America Regional Council, said that while the occurrence of poor air quality days in the Kansas City region from wildfire smoke are infrequent, the presence of particulate matter from smoke is an issue that has captured the organization's attention.“I would say it's a flashing warning light on our mental dashboard,” said Norsby.The EPA is currently evaluating particulate matter from wildfire smoke and other sources to determine whether it should change its air quality standards. That review happens every five years.Why wildfires?Experts said two main causes have triggered the increase in wildfires along the West Coast, Canada and the Rockies. One is the tendency to extinguish small fires that, if allowed to burn, would clear acres of leaf litter and dead wood. Without those smaller fires, dry leaves and wood ignites and leads to the more intense and out-of-control fires that have plagued California and other western states in recent years.“The Smokey The Bear campaign has been really successful,” said Marshall Burke, associate professor in Stanford University's Department of Earth System Science. “What do we do when a fire starts? We put them out.”Burke said California should carry out prescribed burns — also known as controlled burns — on more than 1 million acres of land in California each year. “We're not doing anything close to that,” Burke said.Reduced rainfall and rising temperatures from climate change also make for stronger wildfires.Those blood-red sunsets are a telltale sign of smoke in the air.Eric James, a scientist with NOAA's global systems laboratory, said large fires that pump smoke into the upper atmosphere enter the jet stream and can travel across the continental United States.“We see this most years, this long-range transport of smoke,” James said “It has gotten more intense in the last few years from what we've seen.”The Midwest has the occasional wildfire, as well as controlled burns in places like the Flint Hills in Kansas. But James said most of the wildfire smoke in the Midwest is attributed to western blazes.“I think the majority of the impact is from these large forest fires in the Pacific coastal states, Colorado and the intermountain west,” James said.
The Environmental Protection Agency says it will seek farmers input when rewriting clean water rules. Plant diseases are getting extra attention from High Plains wheat researchers. The Texas sheep industry is at a crossroads. September is a transition month for Texas gardeners. We'll have those stories and more on this episode of Texas Ag Today.
A new report from Reuters claims the Environmental Protection Agency will propose cuts to blending requirements under the Renewable Fuel Standard. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
Today on the show Hugo Garcia, City Council candidate for the city of Burien, joins Crystal to discuss the planning for growth and justice in a rapidly changing city, how to create more housing and ensure residents are able to afford to live in a city, and the vital importance of parks and public spaces. Fun fact from today's episode: Burien has more than 350 acres of parks. As always, a full text transcript of the show is available below and at officialhacksandwonks.com. Find the host, Crystal Fincher on Twitter at @finchfrii and find today's guest, Hugo Garcia, at @hugo4burien. More info is available at officialhacksandwonks.com. Resources “Latino candidates triumph after Burien's nasty campaign” by Lilly Fowler from Crosscut: https://crosscut.com/2017/11/burien-election-city-council-pedro-olguin-jimmy-matta-racism “Inequality by design: How redlining continues to shape our economy” by Amy Scott from Marketplace: https://www.marketplace.org/2020/04/16/inequality-by-design-how-redlining-continues-to-shape-our-economy/ “How Planning and Zoning Contribute to Inequitable Development, Neighborhood Health, and Environmental Justice” by Wilson et.al in Environmental Justice: http://www.ced.berkeley.edu/downloads/pubs/faculty/hutson_2008_environ-health.pdf “In Washington state, housing is the question and the answer” by Shaun Scott for Crosscut: https://crosscut.com/opinion/2020/11/washington-state-housing-question-and-answer “What is sweat equity?” from Habitat for Humanity: https://www.habitat.org/stories/what-is-sweat-equity “Can Beacon Hill win the fight for quieter skies and a healthier neighborhood?” by Manola Secaira from Crosscut: https://crosscut.com/2019/06/can-beacon-hill-win-fight-quieter-skies-and-healthier-neighborhood “Parks and Health” from the Centers for Disease Control: https://www.cdc.gov/healthyplaces/parks_trails/#health “Near Roadway Air Pollution and Health: Frequently Asked Questions” from the Environmental Protection Agency: https://www.epa.gov/sites/default/files/2015-11/documents/420f14044_0.pdf Transcript
Show #1214 If you get any value from this podcast please consider supporting my work on Patreon. Plus all Patreon supporters get their own unique ad-free podcast feed. Good morning, good afternoon and good evening wherever you are in the world, welcome to EV News Daily for Friday 17th September. It's Martyn Lee here and I go through every EV story so you don't have to. Thank you to MYEV.com for helping make this show, they've built the first marketplace specifically for Electric Vehicles. It's a totally free marketplace that simplifies the buying and selling process, and help you learn about EVs along the way too. ID.4 AWD PRO AND PRO S PRICE & RANGE CONFIRMED "Although this version of the ID.4 is marketed under the GTX subbrand in Europe, the U.S. model gets a subtler moniker here but has the same upgraded powertrain. With the 2021 ID.4 AWD Pro and Pro S now ready for sale, Volkswagen has announced the EPA estimates for range and efficiency, along with pricing for the newest member of the ID family." "The Volkswagen ID.4 AWD Pro and Pro S models add an extra motor on the front axle, increasing power by 94 horsepower to 295 and boosting torque by 110 pound-feet to 339. These powertrain upgrades drop the range by around ten miles according to the EPA, with the AWD Pro going 249 miles on a charge while the Pro S can manage 240 miles." "The 2021 ID.4 AWD Pro will start at $44,870 and the the AWD Pro S will cost $49,370, increases of $3680 over the rear-wheel-drive models." https://www.caranddriver.com/news/a37608536/vw-id4-awd-details VOLVO CARS GEARS UP FOR $20 BLN IPO "China's Geely Holding (GEELY.UL) is in advanced discussions with banks to list its Volvo Cars unit in the coming weeks, three sources told Reuters, in what is expected to be one of Europe's biggest initial public offerings (IPOs) this year." "Volvo Cars is aiming for a valuation of about $20 billion in the planned Stockholm listing, the sources said, with one saying the launch was pencilled in for the end of September." "Geely, which bought Volvo from Ford Motor(F.N) more than a decade ago in the biggest acquisition by a Chinese firm of a foreign car maker, sought to float shares in the Swedish firm in 2018 but then pulled the deal. A $20 billion valuation for Volvo would be equivalent to six to seven times its earnings, a level some analysts say is high although it would put it in line with rivals Daimler (DAIGn.DE) and BMW (BMWG.DE). Tesla's valuation is more than 70 times." "Rivian, which rolled its first electric pickup truck off the production line this week, will seek a valuation of about $70 billion to $80 billion when it goes public at the end of this year, sources have told Reuters." https://www.reuters.com/business/autos-transportation/volvo-cars-gears-up-20-bln-ipo-coming-weeks-sources-say-2021-09-15/ INSTAVOLT TARGETS INSTALLING 10,000 EV CHARGERS BY 2030 "EV charging provider InstaVolt has published a pledge to install 10,000 electric vehicle chargers across the UK by 2030. However, the company has some way to go but points to some powerful partnerships." "So far, InstaVolt has a thousand chargers either active or in development and yet set ambitious intermediate targets. Speaking of the commitment, InstaVolt CEO Adrian Keen said the company was on track to deliver or exceed its earlier pledge of 5,000 rapid chargers by 2025" "InstaVolt points to important partnerships in recent months, including deals with McDonald's and Costa Coffee where it began rolling out new 120-kW charging stations. This is a notch up in an engagement going back to June 2020. At the time, McDonald's had more than 1,300 branches in Great Britain." "InstaVolt relies on BYD technology for the new charging units that deliver up to 125 kW. The charging stations have one CCS and one CHAdeMO connector on each unit allowing two cars to be charged at once." https://www.electrive.com/2021/09/15/uk-instavolt-targets-installing-10000-ev-chargers-by-2030/ CHINA'S XPENG OFFICIALLY LAUNCHES THE MORE AFFORDABLE P5 FASTBACK "Chinese electric vehicle startup XPeng unveiled its latest vehicle on Wednesday named the P5. The fully electric P5 fastback will compete with models like the Tesla Model 3. The P5 is also the world's first production vehicle equipped with automotive-grade lidar technology to support safe autonomous driving." "The more affordable P5 is immediately available for order in China with six different configurations available. The retail price ranges from RMB 157,900 to RMB 223,900 (US$24,484 to $34,717). The P5 comes with either a 55.9 kWh, 66.2 kWh or 71.4 kWh battery option." "The P5 expands XPeng's autonomous driving feature called "Navigation Guided Pilot" (NGP). The feature originally worked on highways but now its being updated to work on secondary roads for point to point navigation. The city version of NGP will allow for high-precision navigation that's specifically tailored to China's challenging city road conditions. NGP will also be upgraded to "NGP-L", which integrates with lidar for even safer automated driving on China's highways and expressways." https://www.futurecar.com/4871/Chinas-XPeng-Officially-launches-the-More-Affordable-P5-Fastback-the-Worlds-First-Production-Vehicle-Equipped-with-Lidar OLA'S 70 MPH ELECTRIC SCOOTERS SELLING TWO EVERY SECOND Ola's S1 and S1 Pro electric scooters are off to a massive start after the first day of sales, with CEO Bhavish Aggarwal claiming that the company is selling two electric scooters every second." "The company boasted 80,000 sales in the first 12 hours. To put that into perspective, that's a daily sales rate that matches the quarterly sales rate of electric scooter industry leader NIU." "The Ola S1 and S1 Pro are powered by an 8.5 kW electric motor. The base-level S1 has a top speed of 90 km/h (56 mph) while the S1 Pro can reach higher speeds of up to 115 km/h (71 mph)." https://electrek.co/2021/09/15/olas-70-mph-electric-scooters-selling-like-hotcakes-two-every-second/ WORLD'S FIRST BATTERY-ELECTRIC FREIGHT TRAIN UNVEILED "The world's first battery-electric freight train was unveiled at an event in Pittsburgh on Friday, amid a fresh attempt by some US lawmakers to slash carbon emissions from rail transport in order to address the climate crisis." "Wabtec, the Pittsburgh-based rail freight company, showed off its locomotive at Carnegie Mellon University as part of a new venture between the two organizations to develop zero emissions technology to help move the 1.7bn tons of goods that are shipped on American railroads each year." "Housed in a traditional locomotive body, the new battery system drives the axles of the train and uses the kinetic energy of the train's braking to partially recharge the battery, . The newest version will be a 7-megawatt battery locomotive" https://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2021/sep/16/battery-electric-freight-train-wabtec-rail-transport-emissions NJ ELECTRIC VEHICLE INCENTIVES OUT OF CASH, GOING ON HOLD AGAIN New Jersey's incentive program providing up to $5,000 toward the order, purchase or lease of an electric vehicle is running out of money again and will be suspended as of 9 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 15.The Charge Up New Jersey program began last year, then went on hold for more than six months after the funds were fully allocated. It restarted on July 6 – but is already going back on hold ahead of schedule just 10 weeks later.The program has provided an estimated $30 million a year in incentives toward nearly 9,000 EVs over two years, The incentives amount to $25 per mile of a vehicle's all-electric range, as rated by the Environmental Protection Agency. Cars with a manufacturer's suggested retail price under $45,000 can receive up to $5,000 in incentives.Vehicles with an MSRP between $45,000 and $55,000 can receive up to $2,000. https://www.utilitydive.com/news/house-committee-to-mark-up-150b-clean-electricity-performance-program-toda/606422/ GRAVITY IS LAUNCHING AN INDOOR CHARGING HUB IN NYC WITH PLANS TO SCALE Electric vehicle fleet and infrastructure startup Gravity thinks it has cracked the code for urban EV charging infrastructure. The company, which was founded in February this year, announced its construction project to convert an indoor parking garage in the middle of Manhattan into a public EV fast charging hub. When the 29-space garage on 42nd Street, which Gravity is leasing from real estate firm Related Companies, opens within a few weeks, it will be the island's first dedicated EV charging space Finding a place to park your car in New York City is a nightmare in and of itself. Finding a park and a charge for your EV is like finding a unicorn, and probably an expensive unicorn at that. Most of NYC's EV charge points are behind the literal paywalls of parking garages, where you might find one or two Blink or EV Connect chargers nestled into a sea of ICE vehicle parking spaces. With Gravity's hub, parking is free while cars are being charged. The only cost is that of electricity. Gravity's first site will accommodate about 22 fast chargers, three intermediate chargers and a few slow chargers. All of the fast chargers are up to 180 kW, which means that even when two vehicles are plugged into one installation, each plug can do 90 kW of energy. Many of the parking spots will be taken up by Gravity's fleet of Tesla Model Y Yellow Cabs, which will charge overnight. https://techcrunch.com/2021/09/15/gravity-is-launching-an-indoor-charging-hub-in-nyc-with-plans-to-scale/ QUESTION OF THE WEEK WITH EMOBILITYNORWAY.COM Taking a break this week – back on Sunday 19th! Email me your thoughts and I'll read them out on Sunday – firstname.lastname@example.org It would mean a lot if you could take 2mins to leave a quick review on whichever platform you download the podcast. And if you have an Amazon Echo, download our Alexa Skill, search for EV News Daily and add it as a flash briefing. Come and say hi on Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter just search EV News Daily, have a wonderful day, I'll catch you tomorrow and remember…there's no such thing as a self-charging hybrid. PREMIUM PARTNERS PHIL ROBERTS / ELECTRIC FUTURE BRAD CROSBY PORSCHE OF THE VILLAGE CINCINNATI AUDI CINCINNATI EAST VOLVO CARS CINCINNATI EAST NATIONAL CAR CHARGING ON THE US MAINLAND AND ALOHA CHARGE IN HAWAII DEREK REILLY FROM THE EV REVIEW IRELAND YOUTUBE CHANNEL RICHARD AT RSEV.CO.UK – FOR BUYING AND SELLING EVS IN THE UK EMOBILITYNORWAY.COM
This week I sat down with Dr. Richard E. Engler, B&C's and The Acta Group's (our consulting affiliate) Director of Chemistry, to discuss the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) continuing struggle to regulate certain persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic (PBT) chemicals, especially those found in finished products, what EPA refers to as “articles.” The Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA) has always applied to the products, or articles, that contain chemical substances of interest to EPA under TSCA. While EPA previously used that authority somewhat sparingly, the 2016 Amendments to TSCA have jump-started a new wave of regulations that expressly apply to articles. EPA is required under TSCA to regulate certain PBTs, and EPA issued a final rule earlier this year that inspired chaos in the business community, especially in the electronics sector and its complicated supply chain. Rich and I discuss these PBT rules and help explain what may well be the new normal with regard to the regulation of finished products under TSCA. ALL MATERIALS IN THIS PODCAST ARE PROVIDED SOLELY FOR INFORMATIONAL AND ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES. THE MATERIALS ARE NOT INTENDED TO CONSTITUTE LEGAL ADVICE OR THE PROVISION OF LEGAL SERVICES. ALL LEGAL QUESTIONS SHOULD BE ANSWERED DIRECTLY BY A LICENSED ATTORNEY PRACTICING IN THE APPLICABLE AREA OF LAW. ©2021 Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. All Rights Reserved
In today’s first Patreon-fueled shout-out is for the Plant Northern Piedmont Natives Campaign, an initiative that wants you to grow native plants in yards, farms, public spaces and gardens in the northern Piedmont. Native plants provide habitat, food sources for wildlife, ecosystem resiliency in the face of climate change, and clean water. Start at the Plant Northern Piedmont Natives Facebook page and tell them Lonnie Murray sent you! In today’s show: Several odds and ends from the Charlottesville Planning Commission meeting The Virginia Film Festival will return to movie screens in Charlottesville this OctoberYour input is requested on thoughts and concerns about future natural disastersWe begin today again with today’s COVID numbers. Today the Virginia Department of Health reports another 4,066 cases today. The number of COVID deaths since the beginning of the pandemic in Virginia is now at 12,170. Since September 1, there have been 309 reported, with 52 reported today. That does not mean all of those fatalities happened within a 24-hour period, as that number is tallied as death certificates are reported to the VDH. When natural disasters strike, governments across the region often cooperate with each other to lend a hand in the emergency response and recovery efforts. Before they strike, there is a federally-mandated document intended to provide direction on how to prepare to lessen their impacts.“The purpose of the Regional Natural Hazard Mitigation Plan is to prepare for natural disasters before they occur, thus reducing loss of life, property damage, and disruption of commerce,” reads the current plan, which was put together by the Thomas Jefferson Planning District Commission.The last plan was adopted in 2018 and it is time to put together the next one as required by the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the Virginia Department of Emergency Management. The TJPDC wants your input in the form of a survey which is now open. Participants are asked if they’ve ever experienced a natural disaster and if so, what the specific impact was. You’ll also be asked what hazards you are concerned about, ranging from dam failure to winter weather. (take the survey) The Virginia Film Festival will return to in-person events this October when the long-running series returns for action. Last year the event pivoted to drive-in and virtual screenings, but will return to the Violet Crown, the Culbreth Theatre, and the Paramount Theater. “The Festival will also continue its very popular Drive-In Movies series at the beautiful Morven Farm in Eastern Albemarle County.” said festival director Jody Kielbasa in a release. “As always, the Festival will work to create the safest environment possible for its audiences, requiring masks at all indoor venues.”The festival will run from October 27 to October 31, and the full program will be announced on September 28. Tickets will go on sale on September 30. A major highlight this year will be the screening of an episode of Dopesick, an upcoming series on Hulu about the nation’s opioid epidemic. The series is based on the work of former Roanoke Times journalist Beth Macy and the event at the Paramount will be presented in partnership with the Virginia Festival of the Book. For more information, visit virginiafilmfestival.org.Albemarle Supervisor Ann Mallek is one of 16 elected officials from around the United States to be appointed to an advisory panel of the Environmental Protection Agency. EPA Administrator Michael S. Regan made appointments to the Local Government Advisory Committee and its Small Community Advisory Subcommittee, and Mallek will serve on the latter. “From tackling climate change to advancing environmental justice, we need local partners at the table to address our most pressing environmental challenges,” Regan said in an August 25 press release. Kwasi Fraser, the Mayor of Purcellville in Loudoun County, is the only other Virginian appointed to either of the two groups. Speaking of appointments, last week Governor Ralph Northam appointed several Charlottesville residents to the Virginia Board of Workforce Development. They are:Rich Allevi, Vice President of Development, Sun Tribe SolarJohn Bahouth Jr., Executive Vice President, Apex Clean EnergyTierney T. Fairchild, Co-Founder and Executive Director, Resilience EducationAntonio Rice, President and Chief Executive Officer, Jobs for Virginia GraduatesThe Virginia Board of Workforce Development will meet next week for a special briefing. The board’s executive is Jane Dittmar, a former member of the Albemarle Board of Supervisors. You’re reading Charlottesville Community Engagement. Time for two quick Patreon-shout-outs. One person wants you to know "We keep each other safe. Get vaccinated, wear a mask, wash your hands, and keep your distance."And in another one, one brand new Patreon supporter wants you to go out and read a local news story written by a local journalist. Whether it be the Daily Progress, Charlottesville Tomorrow, C-Ville Weekly, NBC29, CBS19, the community depends on a network of people writing about the community. Go learn about this place today!For the rest of the show today, highlights from last night’s City Planning Commission meeting. I want to state up front that this newsletter does not feature the meeting’s main event, which was a public hearing for 240 Stribling in the Fry’s Spring neighborhood. That conversation that focused on a novel method of funding infrastructure improvements to support additional vehicular and human-powered traffic. I’m going to focus on that in an upcoming newsletter, but I want to get one concept on your mind. Let’s get some legal guidance from City Attorney Lisa Robertson about that mythical beast known as a “proffer.” For large developments that require a rezoning or a special use permit, you may also see the applicant offer cash or specific improvements as a required condition if their desired land use change is accepted. “Proffers are really to deal with impacts generated by the development itself and to provide cash for infrastructure that’s more directly sort of connected to or necessitated by the development,” Robertson said during the Commission’s pre-meeting. “In this situation as evidenced by the fact that the Stribling Avenue need for sidewalks has already been documented for a number of years in the city’s master plans and [Capital Improvement Program].”Southern Development is the applicant behind 240 Stribling had wanted to make its willingness to fund some of the infrastructure improvements in a proffer, but Robertson asked to pursue the matter in a different way because proffers are not two-way agreements. What happened with that? We’ll come back to that tomorrow. Highlights from the meetingAt the top of the actual meeting, the Commission elected Lyle Solla-Yates to serve as the body’s Chair. Solla-Yates was appointed to the seven-person body in March 2018 and succeeds Hosea Mitchell, who will remain on the commission. “Thank you very much Chair Mitchell for your two years of excellent service and for this honor and attempting to follow you,” Solla-Yates said. “Remarkable opportunity.”Next, Commissioners gave various reports on the various committees they are on. This is a good way to find out quickly a lot of things that are going on. Commissioner Mitchell said he and Commissioner Jody Lahendro with city Parks and Recreation officials reviewing a major problem in McIntire Park.“The drainage in McIntire Park is also creating a violation of the Department of Environmental Quality, their standards,” Mitchell said. “That is going to be a top priority and that’s going to be about $350,000 that we will be asking Council to approve but this is a must-do. We are in violation if we don’t fix that.” Mitchell said repairs to bring the outdoor Onesty Pool back next summer will cost about $400,000. There’s a lot of erosion and standing water at Oakwood Cemetery that will cost about $52,000.“And the last must-do thing is a comprehensive master plan,” Mitchell said. “We haven’t had anything like that in a number of years and our future is going to be relentless for Parks and Rec if we don’t do that and that’s going to be about $150,000.”Mitchell said the Smith Aquatic and Fitness Center is not expected to open now until late fall. Smith has been plagued with air quality problems since it opened in 2010. The facility shut down for several weeks in 2015 to install new exhaust pipes and has been closed since the spring of 2020 for at least $2.25 million in repairs. At least, that’s what Council approved as a capital improvement program budget line item in the Fiscal Year 2021 budget. In any case, Mitchell also announced that Todd Brown will be leaving his position as director of the city parks and recreation department to take a position in Fredericksburg. Bill Palmer, the University of Virginia’s liaison on the Charlottesville Planning Commission, reminded the Commission that UVA is working on an update of its Grounds Framework Plan. Palmer did not have much specific information but the closed-door Land Use and Environmental Planning Committee got a briefing at their meeting on July 23. “The Plan will be underway from Summer 2021 to Fall 2022 and includes a robust engagement process with the University and regional community,” reads a presentation made to LUEPC. The Grounds Framework Plan is intended to guide planning and development over the next 20 years with an emphasis on sustainability, resiliency, and equity. Some guidance in the presentation is to “capitalize on the potential of existing and new facilities” and “holistically consider Grounds as an integrated campus of mixed-use buildings and green spaces.”The firm Urban Strategies has been hired to conduct the work, which will build on smaller plans developed in the past several years ranging from the 2015 Brandon Avenue Master Plan to the 2019 Emmet Ivy Task Force report. UVa is also undertaking an affordable housing initiative to build up to 1,500 units on land that either UVA or its real estate foundation controls. The community also got a first look at Jim Freas, the new director of the City’s Department of Neighborhood Development Services. “Today is my second day so still finding my feet and learning my way around the building,” Freas said on Tuesday. Freas comes to the position from a similar one in Natick, Massachusetts. Natick consists of over 16 square miles in Middlesex County and has a population of 37,000 according to the U.S. Census. Thank you again for reading today. Want one of those shout-outs? Consider becoming a Patreon supporter. For $25 a month, you get four shout-outs spread across the various programs. That price will increase in the near future. Questions? Drop me a line! This is a public episode. Get access to private episodes at communityengagement.substack.com/subscribe
Health scientist, social justice activist, and founder of Black Millennials for Flint, Michelle Mabson is a dedicated and mission-driven leader. She joined the Earthjustice healthy communities team shortly after leaving the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency where she saw firsthand how policy threatened essential health protections for communities, especially low-income and communities of color. As a Staff Scientist at Earthjustice, Michelle gets to hold polluters and the government accountable and works to ensure that communities are protected from pollution and toxic chemicals. As an activist, Michelle serves as the co-founder and chief advocacy officer for Black Millennials 4 Flint, the nation's first and only grassroots nonprofit environmental justice and civil rights organization fighting to eradicate harm from lead exposure across the country. Founded in the wake of the Flint Water Crisis, BM4F works to empower people to take action and advocate against the lead crisis plaguing many Black and Brown communities. McKenna, Kate and Sean are surprised by how much they didn't know about the ripple effects of the Flint Crisis. HEALTH: IT'S PERSONAL SHOWNOTES: https://www.thehippodcast.com/environmental-series-michelle-mabson HEALTH: IT'S PERSONAL INSTAGRAM: https://www.instagram.com/thehippodcast/ HEALTH: IT'S PERSONAL FACEBOOK COMMUNITY: https://www.facebook.com/groups/healthitspersonal LOVE the work we are doing? Join our Patreon family, for additional content, recipes, and connection: https://www.patreon.com/thehippodcast OR Buy us a cup of tea. https://ko-fi.com/healthitspersonal --- This episode is sponsored by · Anchor: The easiest way to make a podcast. https://anchor.fm/app
Avi Garbow joins us this week on The Lookfar Podcast: Voices from the Wild. Avi serves as the environmental advocate for Patagonia, Inc., whose corporate ethos and activism center on protecting the climate and conserving public lands while building ambitious environmental standards into its supply chains and customer outreach. Before joining Patagonia, Avi served in the Obama Administration, as General Counsel at the Environmental Protection Agency. More recently, Avi took a temporary leave from his post at Patagonia to serve as an advisor to the Biden Administration and EPA Administrator Michael Regan. Avi talks with Scott about the differences between the public and the private sector when seeking to advance the frontiers of environmental protection, delving into law, policy, politics, and corporate citizenship and sustainability. Available on all major podcast platforms. Just search “Lookfar” and you'll find it!
We're proud to be headquartered in Newark, New Jersey and work closely with groups that seek to improve the state of New Jersey. So, for this episode, we figured why not give our home state a shoutout! Jose Lozano is the President and CEO of Choose New Jersey, a non-profit economic development organization dedicated to providing resources to businesses interested in making New Jersey their home. Over the past ten years, Choose New Jersey has helped hundreds of companies secure thousands of jobs for New Jersians and amassed $6.2 Billion in capital investments. Prior to joining Choose New Jersey, Jose was the Vice President of Corporate Services for Hackensack Meridian Health, Executive Director for then Governor-elect Phil Murphy's transition team, and even served as the Deputy Chief of Staff for the Environmental Protection Agency under the Obama Administration. At the core of the workforce is people and jobs go to where the people are. Jose sits in a unique position where he is able to see the unique needs of both the people of New Jersey looking for high quality jobs and companies that need talented people to fill those open jobs. As companies around the world still struggle to get back to fully staffed operations, it's more important than ever for managers to understand the needs of their workers and what their company means to the local communities they set roots in...so with that, let's bring it in!
On this episode of Now & Then, “Climate Control,” Heather and Joanne discuss the climate crisis and moments of political conflict over the environment throughout American history. They talk about the impact of climate on colonists, the 19th-century origins of the National Park Service, the causes and effects of the Dust Bowl, and the post-World War II emergence of the environmental movement — from Rachel Carson, to nuclear fall-out fears, to the formation of the Environmental Protection Agency. What solutions might these past controversies offer the United States today? Can we reach political consensus on addressing climate change? And who is ultimately responsible for protecting the earth? Join CAFE Insider to listen to “Backstage,” where Heather and Joanne chat each week about the anecdotes and ideas that formed the episode. And for a limited time, use the code HISTORY for 50% off the annual membership price. Head to www.cafe.com/history Join us each Tuesday for new episodes of Now & Then, and keep an eye out for live events with Heather and Joanne and the rest of the CAFE Team. For references & supplemental materials, head to: cafe.com/now-and-then/climate-control Learn more about your ad choices. Visit podcastchoices.com/adchoices
This week, I sat down with Daniel Rosenberg, Director, Federal Toxics Policy, Healthy People & Thriving Communities Program, at the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). Daniel's distinguished legal career has placed him at the forefront of the evolving law and policy of domestic chemical regulation. Daniel and I discuss new Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) implementation of the 2016 amendments to TSCA under Lautenberg, several recent regulatory initiatives involving persistent, bioaccumulative, and toxic (PBT) chemicals and per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), and much more. An engaging and formidable advocate, Daniel's views are always forcefully spoken and clearly articulated. ALL MATERIALS IN THIS PODCAST ARE PROVIDED SOLELY FOR INFORMATIONAL AND ENTERTAINMENT PURPOSES. THE MATERIALS ARE NOT INTENDED TO CONSTITUTE LEGAL ADVICE OR THE PROVISION OF LEGAL SERVICES. ALL LEGAL QUESTIONS SHOULD BE ANSWERED DIRECTLY BY A LICENSED ATTORNEY PRACTICING IN THE APPLICABLE AREA OF LAW. ©2021 Bergeson & Campbell, P.C. All Rights Reserved
Former Utah Gov. Mike Leavitt has been called as the new president of the world-renowned Tabernacle Choir at Temple Square. He will apply experience gained during decades of civil service to guide the Tabernacle Choir into a more global future. Elected to three terms as governor of Utah, he served twice in the Cabinet of President George W. Bush — first as Environmental Protection Agency administrator, and later as the secretary of health and human services. This episode of the Church News podcast features President Leavitt talking about his new role, the strengths of his wife, Jacalyn — who will serve with him, and what the coming months look like for the choir amid the continuing COVID-19 pandemic. The Church News Podcast is a weekly podcast that invites listeners to make a journey of connection with members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints across the globe. Host Sarah Jane Weaver, reporter and editor for The Church News for a quarter-century, shares a unique view of the stories, events, and most important people who form this international faith. With each episode, listeners are asked to embark on a journey to learn from one another and ponder, “What do I know now?” because of the experience. Produced by KellieAnn Halvorsen. See omnystudio.com/listener for privacy information.
On Monday, the Food and Drug Administration granted full approval to the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for Americans 16 and older. With the first COVID-19 vaccine graduating from emergency use authorization, more companies may join the growing cohort that requires worker vaccinations, but the labor shortage may deter some employers from adopting such mandates. Later in today’s show: what General Motors’ recall of the Chevy Bolt means for the electric vehicle industry; Liverpool, England, contends with the revocation of its World Heritage designation; and a look at how the Environmental Protection Agency measures methane emissions.
On Monday, the Food and Drug Administration granted full approval to the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine for Americans 16 and older. With the first COVID-19 vaccine graduating from emergency use authorization, more companies may join the growing cohort that requires worker vaccinations, but the labor shortage may deter some employers from adopting such mandates. Later in today’s show: what General Motors’ recall of the Chevy Bolt means for the electric vehicle industry; Liverpool, England, contends with the revocation of its World Heritage designation; and a look at how the Environmental Protection Agency measures methane emissions.
SHR # 2751:: How Antibiotics in Early Life Affect Brain Development plus Wireless Radiation Exposure for Children is Set Too High - Guest: Dr. Martin Blaser, MD - Dr. Uloma Uche Ph.D. - Antibiotic exposure early in life could alter human brain development in areas responsible for cognitive and emotional functions, according to a Rutgers researcher. The laboratory study, published in the journal iScience, suggests that penicillin changes the microbiome - the trillions of beneficial microorganisms that live in and on our bodies - as well as gene expression, which allows cells to respond to its changing environment, in key areas of the developing brain. The findings suggest reducing widespread antibiotic use or using alternatives when possible to prevent neurodevelopment problems. PLUS A peer-reviewed study by the Environmental Working Group recommends stringent health-based exposure standards for both children and adults for radiofrequency radiation emitted from wireless devices. EWG's children's guideline is the first of its kind and fills a gap left by federal regulators. The study, published in the journal Environmental Health, relies on the methodology developed by the Environmental Protection Agency to assess human health risks arising from toxic chemical exposures. EWG scientists have applied the same methods to radiofrequency radiation from wireless devices, including cellphones and tablets.
Leaked audio reveals how chemicals hazardous to human health and the environment are fast-tracked and approved at the Environmental Protection Agency. This week on Intercepted, investigative journalist Sharon Lerner reports on how the chemical industry pressures the EPA to approve chemicals and pesticides that are dangerous to public health. Lerner speaks with whistleblowers from the agency, scientists who say their research has been manipulated by EPA managers to downplay the dangers of chemicals, including extreme cases that fall under the category of "hair on fire." Lerner also discusses how the agency has approved chemicals and pesticides — at the behest of companies — without proper research into their toxicity, or worse, even though scientists point to the chemicals' dangers. But this is not new; it follows the long, historical trajectory of the EPA, including the “revolving door” between the agency and the chemical industry. See acast.com/privacy for privacy and opt-out information.
Billions Of Sea Creatures, Lost To Heat Waves A couple weeks ago, the Pacific Northwest saw record-breaking temperatures. News coverage captured countless people suffering, and dying, during triple-digit heat the region had never seen before. Portland and Seattle reached their highest temperatures ever recorded. Canada set a new record for the highest temperature ever seen in the country with a measurement of 118 degrees Fahrenheit in British Columbia. However, there are still more victims of the climate crisis tragedy in the Pacific Northwest: coastal wildlife. Experts estimate that over the course of that one scorching weekend, over a billion sea creatures died. Starfish, mussels, oysters, clams, barnacles, sea snails—all of these animals and more virtually baked to death on the beach as they sat, helpless, in the intense heat during low tide. Chris Harley, a marine biologist at the University of British Columbia, witnessed this die-off firsthand. He joins Ira to talk about what this loss means for the future of life along the coast. EPA Whistleblowers Allege ‘Atmosphere Of Fear' Earlier this month, four whistleblowers from the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) chemical safety office went public with allegations of intimidation and downplayed chemical risks, stating: “The Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention is broken… The entire New Chemicals program operates under an atmosphere of fear—scientists are afraid of retaliation for trying to implement TSCA the way Congress intended, and they fear that their actions (or inactions) at the direction of management are resulting in harm to human health and the environment.” John Dankosky spoke with two of the whistleblowers, along with Sharon Lerner, an investigative reporter who originally broke this story for The Intercept. As EPA staff, they were not authorized to speak with the press, but chose to participate in this interview as private citizens regarding a matter of public concern. We contacted the EPA and received the following statement: “This Administration is committed to investigating alleged violations of scientific integrity. It is critical that all EPA decisions are informed by rigorous scientific information and standards. As one of his first acts as Administrator, Administrator Regan issued a memorandum outlining concrete steps to reinforce the agency's commitment to science. EPA takes seriously all allegations of violations of scientific integrity. EPA's scientific integrity official and scientific integrity team members will thoroughly investigate any allegation of violation of EPA's scientific integrity policy that they receive and work to safeguard EPA science. Additionally, EPA is currently reviewing agency policies, processes, and practices to ensure that the best available science and data inform Agency decisions. EPA is committed to fostering a culture of evaluation and continuous learning that promotes an open exchange of differing scientific and policy positions. Additionally, retaliation against EPA employees for reporting violations alleged to have occurred will not be tolerated in this administration. EPA leadership are reviewing these complaints, and any appropriate action will be taken.” How The Humpback Says Hello A humpback whale makes two kinds of noises. The first are songs, long, elaborate, patterned and rhythmic vocalizations made by mature males, with some connection to the mating ritual. Within any given pod, every male sings the same song, but the songs themselves are different in pods around the world. The second kind are calls, short sounds made by every whale, that seem much more consistent across populations and over time. Of around 50 documented kinds of calls, scientists have settled on the meaning of one for sure: the sound the whales make when feeding on one specific kind of fish. In the decades since scientists first began to investigate the calls and songs of humpback whales, the exact function of these noises has been a tough mystery to crack. Humpbacks' watery habitat makes researching them difficult and expensive, and the whales themselves live on slow time scales that make leaps in understanding a process that can take decades. Now, the new documentary Fathom tells the story of two researchers working to further understand what humpback whales are saying, and why they say it. Cornell University researcher Michelle Fournet investigated a call—the ‘whup' call—that seems to be a greeting, and found when she played the sound underwater, the whales responded back to her. And University of St. Andrews scientist Ellen Garland scoured recordings of South Pacific humpbacks to find out how pods will suddenly adopt new songs despite little contact with other populations. Ira talks to Garland and Fournet about their work, the complexity of whale communication, and how understanding it better could help save them from human threats.