Author Archives: Alex Breitler

Are we hypocrites?

San Joaquin County residents want a cleaner and greener transportation system, one which leads to fewer greenhouse gas emissions and less sprawl, a new survey finds. Eighty-one percent of us think reducing GHG emissions is either “important” or “very important.” That number is 64 percent when it comes to preserving farmland. We also strongly support [...]

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Not exactly ‘whitewater’ rapids

Clark Fork, a major tributary of the Stanislaus River, was not only running high at the peak of last week’s heat wave, but also quite turbid and muddy. It was 90 degrees at 6,000 feet; evidently there was so much flow that the river and its tributaries, including aptly named Disaster Creek, were eroding their [...]

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More confusion than clarity in tunnels EIR

The final version of Gov. Jerry Brown’s twin tunnels plan is better than earlier drafts but still contains “key flaws,” independent scientists say, including an environmental impact report that is so chock full of facts that it doesn’t tell a clear story. The latest draft critique marks the Independent Science Board’s fifth review of various [...]

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Back on the porcupine beat

A woman called this morning. “This may sound strange,” she said, “but are you the person who wrote an article about porcupines?” I immediately knew what was up. Every once in a while someone calls me to report a porcupine sighting. See, I wrote a story in 2012 about how porcupines are increasingly rare in [...]

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Coming soon: Tunnels news

As this piece in the Sacramento Bee reports, things are going to start happening quickly on the Delta tunnels front. Biological opinions describing the project’s possible effects on fish and wildlife may be finished by June 9, according to information presented at a recent Metropolitan Water District of Southern California committee meeting. The opinions are [...]

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Yeah, I’d say the snowmelt is on

Eagle Creek — which dumps into Emerald Bay at Lake Tahoe — was running with such force on Monday that you could probably feel the spray just by watching this little video. On the west shore of Tahoe, nearly all of the snow above about 6,500 feet has melted, but there are little waterfalls everywhere [...]

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Video highlights S.J. County’s flood risks

Lodi resident and videographer Cyndy Green has spent months roaming San Joaquin County in search of compelling flooding and storm imagery. The result of her labor: a 15-minute video she produced for the county Office of Emergency Services. Check it out. There’s some good information here about the region’s complex flood challenges.

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No pivoting on Smith Canal gate

Elected officials showed no signs of backing off the Smith Canal flood gate project on Thursday, despite a bit of added pressure from the community. Three separate times, the San Joaquin Area Flood Control Agency board — made up of members of the Stockton City Council and San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors — voted [...]

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Stockton of the future?

Let’s tour Stockton in the year 2100, should an unlikely but “plausible” 10 to 12 feet of sea level rise occur. Buckle up. (And by the way: You can look up your own neighborhood — heck, even zoom in on your own house — by clicking here and following the directions.)

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Holy CDEC*: New Melones hits 2M acre-feet

New Melones Lake soared past 2 million acre-feet of storage over the past few days, a level that no one thought possible (well, I certainly didn’t) a mere six months ago. The reservoir is now at its highest mark since 2011. And still rising. This afternoon’s heat has pushed inflow above 9,000 cubic feet per [...]

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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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