Edition 2 April 2022
Welcome to the April 2022 edition of Pacifica Voice
- FOR CONSIDERATION
- EARTH MONTH
- THE COMMUNITY SHARES
Calendar of Events
|TH 3/31/22 7 PM||Mission Blue Butterfly Talk, Pacific Beach Coalition (see flyer)|
|FRI 4/1/22 7-8:30 PM||Let’s Talk Peace, Sharp Park Library, Pacifica Peace People (see post)|
|SAT 4/2/22 2 PM||Food Preservation, see Pacifica Library calendar|
|SUN 4/10/22||Discover Pacifica Day, Pacifica Historic Society (see article)|
|MON 4/11/22 11-12:30 PM||Composting, see Pacifica Library calendar|
|7 PM||City Council|
|TH 4/14/22 4-5:30 PM||Gardening for bees and butterflies, see Pacifica Library calendar|
|TU 4/19/22||Queer voices, see Pacifica Library calendar|
|WED 4/20/22 6:30-7:30 PM||Atlas of Disappearing Places, see Pacifica Library calendar|
|TH 4/21/22 4-5PM||Spring into nature, see Pacifica Library calendar|
|FRI 4/22/22 10A-12N||Working Together to End Homelessness, (see flyer)|
|SAT 4/23/22||Earth Day of Action, Linda Mar State Beach, Pacific Beach Coalition (see flyer)|
|MON 4/25/22 7PM||City Council, Heritage Tree Ordinance|
|Double Gold Day, Pacificans Care (see article)|
|SUN 5/1/22||Mother’s Day tea, Pacifica Historic Society (see article)|
|TH 5/12/22 4:30 PM||HIP Housing 50th anniversary celebration, Fox Theater, Redwood City (see flier)|
Photos have been contributed by Leo Leon and Mark Hubbell
Pacifica Voice is eager to receive articles on issues important to our community. Please send them to firstname.lastname@example.org for consideration.
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Pacifica Beach Coalition Invitations – Lynn Adams
The Pacific Beach Coalition invites everyone to get outside to help the earth and ocean in honor of Earth Day in April. From planting sunflowers or pollinator plants, pulling invasive weeds from our neighborhoods and open spaces, to picking up litter, cutting back on the use of plastic, walking/biking/hiking, or even drying your clothes outside on a clothesline, we can all make a difference! And Mother Earth and our inspiring Ocean can use all of the help they can get!
Please join the Pacific Beach Coalition in learning about and honoring Mission Blue Butterflies this year.
A virtual talk on March 31st with Hannah Ormshaw, San Mateo County Parks Assistant Director and Mission Blue expert will kick Earth Month off.
And on April 23rd everyone is invited to join an organized beach, street or openspace cleanup or habitat restoration from 9-11am for the PBC Annual EARTH DAY OF ACTION followed by a small celebration at Linda Mar State Beach with speakers, guests and honorees that will be live streamed via PCT.
Groups are welcome to register in advance to cleanup or restore their “Happy Places.” PBC will support you with supplies, litter removal, and gifts for your volunteers.
Happy Earth Month everyone! Thank you for all you do to protect the earth and ocean! Together, we really do make a difference!
Conversation on “Atlas of Disappearing Places” – Christina Conklin
With a foreword by Lawrence Susskind
A beautiful and engaging guide to global warming’s impacts around the world: Review from the New Press
“The direction in which our planet is headed isn’t a good one, and most of us don’t know how to change it. The bad news is that we will experience great loss. The good news is that we already have what we need to build a better future.” —from the introduction
Our planet is in peril. Seas are rising, oceans are acidifying, ice is melting, coasts are flooding, species are dying, and communities are faltering. Despite these dire circumstances, most of us don’t have a clear sense of how the interconnected crises in our ocean are affecting the climate system, food webs, coastal cities, and biodiversity, and which solutions can help us co-create a better future.
Through a rich combination of place-based storytelling, clear explanations of climate science and policy, and beautifully rendered maps that use a unique ink-on-dried-seaweed technique, The Atlas of Disappearing Places depicts twenty locations across the globe, from Shanghai and Antarctica to Houston and the Cook Islands. The authors describe four climate change impacts—changing chemistry, warming waters, strengthening storms, and rising seas—using the metaphor of the ocean as a body to draw parallels between natural systems and human systems.
Each chapter paints a portrait of an existential threat in a particular place, detailing what will be lost if we do not take bold action now. Weaving together contemporary stories and speculative “future histories” for each place, this work considers both the serious consequences if we continue to pursue business as usual, and what we can do—from government policies to grassroots activism—to write a different, more hopeful story.
A beautiful work of art and an indispensable resource to learn more about the devastating consequences of the climate crisis—as well as possibilities for individual and collective action—The Atlas of Disappearing Places will engage and inspire readers on the most pressing issue of our time.
How you can help fight climate change with your home and garden and with advocacy – Christine Boles
Christine Boles is a local architect and a candidate for City Council for Pacifica in District 2
We all know Pacifica is already affected greatly by changing climate, from our rising seas, eroding coastal bluffs, and with more extreme weather events increasing our risks of fire, flooding and landslides every year. Remember the atmospheric river of 10/24/21, the orange skies of 9/9/20 and the August 2020 CZU fire on the San Mateo County coast with an identical foggy coastal microclimate, or the winter of 2015 when approximately 40 feet of bluff was lost in just one crazy El Nino night?
Pacifica has a Climate Action Plan that was adopted in 2014, and we were supposed to be measuring our emissions yearly through implementation reports to see if we met the reduction targets established in the plan. I searched online records and it seems that the last time the council reviewed our emissions was in 2017, a whole council term ago…
As the City Council considers whether to spend time and resources updating the Climate Action Plan and/or preparing new Reach Codes as part of their goal setting for 2022-23, please let them know that these are important and time critical efforts that must be undertaken.
At the same time, my husband Bob and I, both architects, wanted to inspire Pacificans by sharing some opportunities to learn more about how each of us can actually build or remodel to reduce energy and fossil fuel use in beautiful and cost-effective ways, and how we can also garden in more sustainably.
We always intended for our new home to be a research and education hub for the community. As Earth Month approaches, and now that COVID seems under control, we’d like to invite you to come visit and learn more about our all-electric Net Zero Energy home and award-winning, water-wise garden. We’ll answer questions like how much energy do our solar panels produce on a foggy day, how well does an electric induction stove work compared to gas, what does a heat pump heater look like and how is it so magically energy efficient, how do you collect and reuse water, and what native plants do honeybees prefer?
For more information, and to sign up to reserve a spot, see the links below.
Earth Day: Investing in Change – Mark Hubbell
As children living on the edge of Greater Chicagoland, we swam in the nearby stream carrying untreated sewerage from towns upriver; rode our bikes through the DDT fog clouds following the mosquito abatement trucks; flung asbestos treated siding shingles from the abandoned house next door; roasted marshmallows over tire fires; slid down the coal shoots to hide from the old folks, because we didn’t know any better.
In ’68, our high school science teacher chartered a sightseeing tour boat to take our class on an all day field trip out from the Chicago River and down Lake Michigan to the row of giant steel mills along the Gary Indiana shoreline. Huge pipelines spewed out multicolored steaming goo from the forges into the lake, while the tall chimneys billowed thick smoke that burnt our lungs. The experience of that day was unforgettable.
In ’69, an oil spill off the southern coast of California covered over 400 square miles of shoreline with oily residue, killing thousands of fish and birds. This lead not only to the first Earth Day in 1970, but also to the founding of the Environmental Protection Agency in that same year. I remember involvement in the first Earth Day as recognition of the importance of activism and an ultra-conservative President Nixon’s signature on the legislation founding the EPA as acknowledgement of government’s role in maintaining a healthy and safe environment.
In ’73, four of us rode the California Zephyr out of Chicago to San Francisco, then hitched rides down the coast to find water warm enough for a first time plunge into the Pacific Ocean. It was in Isla Vista, unknowingly to us in the center of the Earth Day oil spill three years earlier, where we ran down the beach and dived into the water, swimming until we realized that we were covered in tar. Baptized! It was the moment of commitment to environmental activism.
Activism: while the story behind the founding of Earth Day is truly inspiring — what started with one US Senator, Gaylord Nelson, a Democrat, and one US Congressman, Pete McCloskey, a Republican, has grown into a movement of one billion people and growing in over 190 countries. Forces for good activated by the Earth Day movement from the 1969 Santa Barbara oil spill, in particular the EPA, have effectively eliminated those hazards listed from my childhood recollections – untreated sewerage, DDT, asbestos, coal dust, and tire fires. Disappointingly, the probability and extent of oil spills had continued to rise.
Today, global warming as a direct cause of fossil fuel emissions has become the primary existential threat. Public demand for continued reliance has led to a structure of subsidies for Big Oil at the rate of $11 million dollars a minute – several trillions of dollars annually, according to the International Monetary Fund. This is unsustainable for a multitude of reasons.
We need a change to a new economy based on a new energy — stewardship, not profits. Stewardship of the environment has sustained humans on this planet for tens of thousands of years. We all need to make that investment not only on one day of the year, but every day we can. Not only with monetary donations, even more effectively with ongoing actions — ‘do’ing! Find a cause to stay involved. There is so much to accomplish: every day should be Earth Day!
“What I hear, I forget. What I see, I remember. What I do, I understand.” Xunzi (340 – 245 BC)
An ethical approach to our natural world – Paul Totah Tree City Pacifica
When I taught nature literature years ago, I came to know and love Aldo Leopold’s A Sand County Almanac and especially “The Land Ethic,” an essay that was both ground-breaking and ground-healing. Each year, I reread that essay, and each year, my love and respect for it grew.
Leopold, who was born on Jan. 11, 1887, in Iowa, studied forestry at Yale before working for the U.S. Forest Service in Arizona and New Mexico. Part of his job there involved killing predators, but he grew to hate that practice after shooting a wolf and seeing “a fierce green fire dying in her eyes.” That became the catalyst that helped him develop an ecocentric outlook on the world.
He later moved to Wisconsin, where he served as an associate director for the U.S. Forest Products Laboratory in Madison. There, he bought a farm in Sand County and wrote about the area surrounding his home. He died in 1948 of a heart attack while helping a neighbor battle a wildfire. His book, A Sand County Almanac, was published posthumously the following year.
Leopold’s work has inspired naturalists, ecologists and so many others since then. Consider this summary from The Aldo Leopold Foundation’s website: “Ethics direct all members of a community to treat one another with respect for the mutual benefit of all. A land ethic expands the definition of ‘community’ to include not only humans, but all of the other parts of the Earth, as well: soils, waters, plants, and animals, or what Leopold called ‘the land. In Leopold’s vision of a land ethic, the relationships between people and land are intertwined: Care for people cannot be separated from care for the land. A land ethic is a moral code of conduct that grows out of these interconnected caring relationships.”
If you read the Pacifica Tribune or pay attention to the controversies in our city, you’ll be struck that many of them have one thing in common — our relationship with the land around us. (When Leopold uses the term “land,” he includes soil, water, plants and animals in the embrace of that word.) We worry about people building too many homes and reshaping the land in ways that redefine our landscape. We read stories about sea level rise and the threats to homes and businesses. We debate what sorts of restrictions to place upon our freedoms regarding trimming or removing our heritage trees. We look at our open space as something under siege, as an opportunity for leisure, as central to our health or as an opportunity for growth. Some of us, sadly, think of land only as property — something we own primarily or only for our use and profit.
The question of how we treat the land around us is more important than at any other time in human history. A recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, according to the New York Times, notes that “the dangers of climate change are mounting so rapidly that they could soon overwhelm the ability of both nature and humanity to adapt, creating a harrowing future in which floods, fires and famine displace millions, species disappear and the planet is irreversibly damaged.”
Leopold dealt with this sort of catastrophe in microcosm. Consider this passage from Leopold’s essay: “The farmer who clears the woods off a 75 percent slope, turns his cows into the clearing, and dumps its rainfall, rocks, and soil into the community creek, is still (if otherwise decent) a respected member of society. If he puts lime on his fields and plants his crops on contour, he is still entitled to all the privileges and emoluments of his Soil Conservation District. The District is a beautiful piece of social machinery, but it is coughing along on two cylinders because we have been too timid, and too anxious for quick success, to tell the farmer the true magnitude of his obligations. Obligations have no meaning without conscience, and the problem we face is the extension of the social conscience from people to land.”
That farmer, in other words, is destroying his land and hurting the ecosystem with no limits (for Leopold, ethics means limits) and no sense of how his land is part of a biotic community. Our ethical obligation to the land around us, Leopold argues, whether we own the land or not, requires us to consider what limits we should practice as we consider reshaping it for our own ends. The same, of course, holds true now regarding our use of fossil fuels as we fill our atmosphere with greenhouse gases, degrading life for everyone and everything in our biotic community.
Consider another passage from the essay: “A land ethic of course cannot prevent the alteration, management, and use of [our] ‘resources,’ but it does affirm their right to continued existence, and, at least in spots, their continued existence in a natural state. In short, a land ethic changes the role of Homo sapiens from conqueror of the land-community to plain member and citizen of it. It implies respect for his fellow-members, and also respect for the community as such.”
After I asked my students to read and discuss “The Land Ethic,” I gave them the task of forming their own land ethic, one that I hoped they would put into practice long after the class ended. I asked them these questions: How should we live on the earth? What principles guide this practice? What are the basis of these principles? The members of Tree City Pacifica encourage you to read this foundational essay. We hope it helps you see the natural world around us in different ways and inspires you to form your own land ethic not just for this Earth Day but for all the days to come.
Earth month library events – Pacifica libraries
Earth Day Events – Paula Teixeira, Pacifica Public Libraries
April 2nd Food Preservation to Prevent Food Waste 2:00pm In this workshop, the UCCE Master Food Preservers of San Francisco and San Mateo Counties will help you make the most of that fruit and veg you were worried you wouldn’t get around to eating
April 11th Composting with Fresh Approach 11:00-12:30 Get an in-depth view of where food waste comes from, what is compost, the benefits of composting, the different types of composting, and how you can be a part of the solution!
April 14th Gardening for Bees and Butterflies 4:00-5:30pm Join us for a fast-paced class that covers everything you need to know about attracting pollinators to your yard, be it large or small. Join Cindy Burgdorf, Master Gardener for 14 years.
April 19th Queer Voices: A Panel on Intersectionality and the Environment Not on website YET
April 20th Atlas of Disappearing Places Earth Day Talk With Christina Conklin – Author Talk 6:30-7:30pm In The Atlas of Disappearing Places, sustainability expert Marina Psaros and artist Christina Conklin blend place-based storytelling with clear explanations of science and policy to create a portrait of the impacts of climate change on communities
April 21st Spring Into Nature 4-5pm Join the County of San Mateo Parks and the North Fair Oaks Library for a special, outdoor Storytime and seedling program!
Summary of “Code Red” seminar series – Nancy Tierney
Webinar series summary: Code Red for Humanity, Climate Action 101, Building Community for Electrification
A group of local environmental activists, in response to the August 2021 6th Assessment Report of Climate Change from the Intergovernmental Panel (IPCC), launched a webinar series to explore the findings of the report and to identify how people can respond. The first webinar 1/14/22, “Code Red for Humanity: What Municipalities Can Do,” provided a packed two-hour program that drew over 550 participants from the Bay Area and beyond.
The webinar focused on strategies to decarbonize buildings and transportation – which together account for approximately 90% of greenhouse gas emissions from Bay Area cities. Panelists included:
- Dr. Paul Edwards – Director of the Program of Science, Technology & Society at Stanford University and a lead author on the latest IPCC 6th Assessment Report;
- Dr. Saul Griffith – engineer, inventor, climate solutions expert, MacArthur Genius Award recipient, founder of Rewiring America, and author of Electrify: An Optimist’s Playbook for Our Clean Energy Future;
- Veronika Vostinak – Sustainability Analyst for the City of Half Moon Bay and author of a first-in-the-nation policy that sunsets the delivery of natural gas (a greenhouse gas 84 times more potent than CO2) in the City by 2045;
- Dr. Luis Aguirre-Torres – Director of Sustainability for the City of Ithaca, NY and leading an ambitious plan to decarbonize all 6000 buildings in the city by 2030;
- Senator Josh Becker – California State Senator representing District 13 and author/sponsor of numerous legislative bills addressing climate change, a member of the CA Delegation to COP26 in Glasgow in November, and Vice Chair of the California Joint Legislative Committee on Climate Change.
The second session, 2/4/22, focused on steps to take at the local level. This included understanding Climate Actions Plans and gaining advocacy skills. Right about that time, the IPCC released its report, “Impacts, Adaptation and Vulnerability”, remindinged us of the urgency of the climate crisis, and providinged opportunities for significant equitable action.
The topic of the 3/18/22 webinar, “Building Community for Electrification”, covered was Reach Codes – local building codes that reach beyond state minimum requirements—and ways to move off of fossil fuels. Sean Armstrong, Managing Principal of Redwood Energy on Home Electrification, and Diane Bailey, Executive Director of Menlo Spark both presented. Approximately 80 participants broke into groups and shared experiences. Stories ranged from individual efforts to electrify homes and install electric vehicle (EV) chargers to larger projects to electrify condominiums and places of worship. Some California cities are updating Reach Codes and intend to exceed the state’s requirements for energy efficiency in building design and construction. Financial support to decarbonize communities seems crucial.
Together, the webinars stressed the need for education, regulation, and public engagement. While large-scale change in energy infrastructure is crucial to addressing the climate crisis, individuals can play an effective role.
The webinars are a collaboration between Acterra and the Sierra Club. Acterra is a 50-year-old nonprofit based in the San Francisco Bay Area focused on education and solutions for climate change. The Climate Action Leadership Team is a subcommittee of the Sierra Club Loma Prieta Chapter Conservation Committee.
Bay Area Commuter Agencies Merge
Commute.org has collaborated with five other transportation agencies across the Bay Area to create one large, connected commuter platform to expand carpool services and rewards. Like Commute.org does for San Mateo County, these agencies help support commuters in Solano County, Napa County, Sonoma County, Marin County, and the other Bay Area counties.
- San Mateo County – Commute.org, STAR
- Marin County – Transportation Authority of Marin, Marin Commutes
- Sonoma County – Sonoma County Transportation Authority, Go Sonoma
- Solano County – Solano Transportation Authority, Solano Mobility
- Napa County – Napa Valley Transportation Authority, V-Commute
- Bay Area – Metropolitan Transportation Commission, Merge
Work Together to End Homelessness – County of San Mateo
2022 is Our Year of Ending Homelessness Together in San Mateo County.
Ending homelessness is the highest priority for the County of San Mateo and
the Board of Supervisors, but we can’t do this alone.
It will take everyone – cities, businesses, the faith community, non-profit
organizations, service organizations and individual community members – to
accomplish this goal.
Please watch the attached video invitation from County Manager Mike Callagy
to join our first event, a virtual convening on April 22, 2022 from 10:00 am to
12:00 noon where we will learn, discuss, and commit to ending homelessness.
Registration and website information coming soon.
We look forward to seeing you on April 22nd and at future Year of Ending
Homelessness Together events.
50TH Anniversary Celebration – HIP Housing
Join us as we celebrate 50 years! Tickets to our “Cheers to 50 Years!” event are on sale now!
Individual theatre row seats @ $125 each
Reserved tables with 10 seats and no sponsorship benefits @ $3,500 each
We still have event sponsorships available! View our Event Sponsorship Packet here.
Join us in-person on May 12th at Redwood City’s majestic Fox Theatre for an intimate fireside chat with special guest speaker, LeVar Burton, and for tributes to HIP Housing founder, Lois Almen Everett, and long-time agency supporter, Congresswoman Jackie Speier.
We’ll also have great client stories, exciting auction items, and tasty libations, so stay tuned!
THE COMMUNITY SHARES
Quarterly meeting summary – Pacifica Historical Society
PACIFICA, Calif. – The importance of strong community journalism to Pacifica is the topic of the Pacifica Historical Society’s Quarterly Meeting on Sunday, March 27.
The panel discussion will be the first in-person Quarterly Meeting of the PHS in more than two years.
It will feature current Pacifica Tribune editor Clay Lambert, former longtime sports editor Horace Hinshaw, former Tribune editor/reporter Renee Batti and Laura Del Rosso, a Terra Nova graduate who started her journalism career at the Tribune.
The meeting coincides with the PHS’s release of printed copies of the Pacifica Tribune from the 1960s onward that the PHS is offering at the Pacifica Coastside Museum. Starting this month, museum visitors are invited to leaf through the Tribune pages, clip articles of interest or take entire issues home.
For years, the PHS has stored two complete sets of hard copies of Tribunes from the 1960s onward. In addition, PHS saves extra copies for its archives. With the digitization of the Tribune and its introduction online at newspapers.com, the PHS decided to offer the “extras” to the public.
The PHS also is unveiling a museum exhibit that includes Tribune headlines that trace Pacifica’s history for 40 years and the actual newsroom desk of Bill Drake, the Tribune’s award-winning editor and publisher from 1959 through 1989.
The March 27 event will take place at the Pacifica Coastside Museum, 1850 Francisco Blvd., at 4 p.m. and is open to PHS members and nonmembers. Masks are encouraged. Admission is free and donations are accepted. The meeting will also be available on Zoom.The PHS is planning more events in the coming weeks, including a Discover Pacifica day for families to learn about Pacifica historical sites on Sunday, April 10 and a Mother’s Day tea party on Sunday, May 1 at the museum. See pacificahistory.org.
Let’s talk racism – Pacifica Peace People
Celebrate 40 years of service – Pacificans Care
During 2022 Pacificans Care, Pacifica’s community foundation, will celebrate 40 years of making a difference for Pacificans in need through our support of Pacifica’s four core social service agencies: Pacifica Resource Center, Pacifica Senior Services, Pacifica Child Care, and Pacifica Youth Service Bureau.
Community support has helped Pacificans Care us help the agencies provide essential, safety-net, community-based social services to build an improved quality of life for the entire Pacifica community. The need for social services has increased over the past three years due to the COVID-19 crisis and Pacifica’s core social service agencies have responded to the challenge.
Thanks to the generous support of the Pacifica community Pacificans Care has given over $1,142,000 back to the community through direct support of our core agencies since 1982.
Here’s an update of upcoming Pacificans Care events:
If you enjoy wine, this is the event for you!
Pacificans Care Double Gold Day will feature over 75 wines awarded a Gold or Double Gold medal from the
San Francisco International Wine Competition.
All proceeds will benefit Pacificans in need.
Tickets go on sale April 1st and
with a limited supply, will sell out quickly.
Mark your calendars for the Pacificans Care 40th Anniversary Celebration, Saturday, September 10, 2022, from 11 am – 2 pm at Frontierland Park.
Come join us for a day of gratitude and festivities celebrating our 40 years of support to Pacifica’s core social service agencies and to give thanks to all the people who have supported them and Pacificans Care since 1982.
Calling al Canines! Your dog can be included in the 2023 DOG DAYS OF PACIFICA Rockaway Ricky Calendar. Enter your pet by June 30, 2022, by registering and uploading a photo of your dog at RockawayRicky.org. $25 per entry. Remax/Lommori/ Stahl Group sponsors the annual contest.
The Rockaway Ricky Memorial Fund, a program of Pacificans Care, provides much-needed help with emergency financial assistance supporting pets for Pacifica seniors, families in need, and the unhoused. To date, there have been over $20,000 raised to help our pets in need. To help feed a pet or pay a vet bill or end of life expenses, you can also donate at RockawayRicky.org.