Author Archives: Alex Breitler

Alex Breitler

A native of Benicia, he lives in Stockton with his wife, Ann, who forces him to go backpacking in the Sierra Nevada or Trinity Alps at every opportunity. He has been writing mostly about natural resources since 2003, first in Redding and now in Stockton. He has given up on ever finding a giant garter snake, San Joaquin County’s gnarliest-sounding endangered species.

Smoking is a bad Habit

One of Stockton’s newest burger joints appears to have a smoking problem. While the line out the door most evenings suggests folks love The Habit (my wife is one of them), not everyone is as enthusiastic about the cloud of smoke that often wafts from a rooftop vent. At times, the smoke drifts south across [...]

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Stockton East’s giant ‘swimming pool’

‘Stockton East now ‘swimming’ in storage,’ sang the headline in Monday’s Record. Well, kinda. But I probably should have emphasized higher up in that story that the district’s new 10 million-gallon reservoir, which General Manager Scot Moody jokingly referred to as a giant swimming pool, doesn’t come anywhere near solving the region’s future water supply [...]

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Another hyacinth plan hatches

Stockton Mayor Anthony Silva met with the state Division of Boating and Waterways today, and reports that the state is considering using small boats to push the water hyacinth into areas where excavators could pluck the plant out of the water. But Silva emphasized that more spraying is needed to minimize next year’s crop. The [...]

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Zombies, and other wholesome activities

Update: I’m told the REI class is no longer a zombie preparedness class, per se, but will cover the same kinds of urban/wilderness survival issues that might arise during an actual zombie apocalypse. So there. Update II: Added Friends of the Lower Calaveras walk scheduled for Nov. 1. The undead lead off this month’s list [...]

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Legislators: Help us with hyacinth

Legislators from San Joaquin County today asked for federal help combatting the huge water hyacinth problem here. In a letter to California Secretary of Agriculture Karen Ross, the legislators asked her to seek “sustained” funding from the federal government. The request comes after the U.S. Department of Agriculture awarded this region $750,000 earlier this year [...]

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‘At best, a down payment on our water future’

The Pacific Institute issued a lukewarm report this morning about Proposition 1, the water bond on the November ballot. While taking no formal position on the bond, the institute found that the bond “can be, at best, a down payment on our water future,” depending on how the money is spent, and warned that surely [...]

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Water and the economy, neck-and-neck

Some water highlights from the Public Policy Institute of California’s latest poll, released tonight: –So much for “It’s the economy, stupid!” Water and the state’s economy are just about equally important in the eyes of the public, with 30 percent identifying the economy as the most important issue facing California and 28 percent identifying water [...]

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Bill Wells: Hyacinth a ‘disaster,’ possible national security threat

Bill Wells, head of the California Delta Chamber & Visitors Bureau, wrote a letter today to California Resources Secretary John Laird about the worsening water hyacinth situation. Full text below. Dear Secretary Laird, The hyacinth situation in parts of the California Delta has become a disaster.  The navigable part of the Calaveras River is completely filled [...]

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‘Almost somewhere’

Correction: Thursday’s presentation starts at 6:30 p.m., per REI’s website. I’ve updated this post as well. If you’ve ever hiked one inch of the John Muir Trail from Yosemite to Mt. Whitney — or if you’ve dreamed of hiking the whole thing — I highly recommend attending a talk Thursday night at Stockton REI. Suzanne [...]

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That’s California water for ya

San Joaquin County supervisors on Tuesday will declare this to be “California Flood Preparedness Week” and then, several agenda items later, will discuss the ongoing drought. Reminds me of this recent story by my colleague Roger Phillips. At a meeting in September, the Stockton City Council approved almost $50,000 to repair rainwater damage at City Hall; [...]

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    Alex Breitler

    A native of Benicia, he lives in Stockton with his wife, Ann, who forces him to go backpacking in the Sierra Nevada or Trinity Alps at every opportunity. He has been writing mostly about natural resources since 2003, first in Redding and now in ... Read Full
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