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Peter Gleick – The Future of Water

This is a recording of the keynote speech from the “Resources Roundtable 2013: The Future of Urban Water,” an event hosted by the Berkeley Energy & Resources Collaborative.

Peter Gleick is the President and Co-founder of the Pacific Institute, based in Oakland, CA. His speech was titled “An Audacious Vision for Water in the City of the Future.”

He also periodically writes a column on water issues for the San Francisco Chronicle.

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Snippets – City Infrastructure

Today, stories about developing and improving cities and their infrastructure.

The City of Chicago announced the Chicago Infrastructure Trust, which will leverage private investment for retrofits pending City Council approval. For the first project, they will be doing an energy efficiency retrofit of municipal buildings (via Greentech Media).

Bay Area cities begin to adjust to life after redevelopment agencies shut their doors on Feburary 1st. A blog post by SPUR walks through the impact of these changes in San Francisco, Oakland, and San Jose.

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Oaklavia

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Thousands Play in Oakland’s Streets at the First-Ever ‘Oaklavia’ fromStreetfilms on Vimeo.

On October 2, Oakland will hold an event called Oaklavia, closing a few miles of roads to cars to let people experience car-free city streets. Today’s video is the community reaction to the first time Walk Oakland Bike Oakland organized Oaklavia, last year.

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You can learn more about Oaklavia at its website, oaklavia.org, or at walkoaklandbikeoakland.org.

See you there?

THIS POST IS PART OF OUR FRIDAY VIDEO SERIES.
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 San Francisco and Oakland rank among the top 10 most walkable big cities in the country.  Lawrence Berkeley National Lab is working hard to cut its carbon emissions.  BART and MUNI management are both in transition.

10 American Cities Running Out Of Water?

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Las Vegas, Nevada (Image credit: Wikimedia Commons)

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24/7 Wall St. evaluated a couple recent studies (from Ceres and the NRDC) and also conducted some of its own analysis, focusing on the 30 largest American cities,  to  come up with the following list of 10 large American cities at the greatest risk of running out of water:

10. Orlando, FL

9. Atlanta, GA

8. Tucson, AZ

7. Las Vegas, NV

6. Fort Worth, TX

5. San Francisco Bay Area, CA

4. San Antonio, TX

3. Phoenix, AZ

2. Houston, TX

1. Los Angeles, CA

You can read more about their analysis and reasons for inclusion of each city here.

A note from Anna – I do not know much about 24/7 Wall St. or their track record on this sort of analysis. I think this sort of list is good for raising awareness that it is not just cities in the dry Southwest that are facing future water shortages. However, there are a few items in this article that gave me pause – first is the consistent misspelling of San Francisco as “San Fransisco”, second is the consistent listing of the NRDC (Natural Resources Defense Council) as the “National Resources Defense Council.”

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AC Transit Cuts Take Effect Today

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Significant adjustments to nearly 70 transit lines took effect today. According to the AC Transit website:

Significant changes include:

  • Reducing frequency on 28 lines
  • Starting service later in the morning and/or ending earlier in the evening  on 18 lines
  • Eliminating or operating shorter routes on weekends on four lines
  • Reconfiguring service in some areas, including West Oakland/Emeryville, Lakeshore Ave./Grand Ave. in Oakland, Bay Farm Island in Alameda, and San Leandro
  • Discontinuing service to Orinda BART and along Broadway Terrace in Oakland
  • Adding extensions to two lines to replace limited service in Piedmont, and service between Alameda and the Oakland Airport

All changes are listed in detail on the AC Transit website here.

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Assorted Links

Berkeley, San Francisco, and Oakland have a proportionally higher stock of older housing than many East Coast and Midwestern cities that were founded and developed much earlier — places such as Philadelphia, New York City, Baltimore, Chicago, Hartford, Conn., Savannah, Ga., and Washington, D.C.

Stormwater from areas around the nine-county Bay Area contribute more toxic pollution to San Francisco, San Pablo and Suisun bays than the rivers carrying agricultural runoff from the Valley.

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Update on AC Transit Cuts

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Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

Last night, AC Transit’s board of directors voted unanimously to slash night and weekend bus service in an effort to reduce the projected $40 million budget deficit.

Thirty-nine “minor” weekend routes are on the chopping block, but most major weekend routes will be left intact.

Four of the six all night buses will disappear. The only surviving lines will be the 800 and the 801.

According to Berkeleyside, 9 weekend services will be eliminated in Berkeley – the 1R, 7, 12, 25, 49, 52, 65, 67 and the Transbay F.

Another decision on paratransit services was postponed.

The full set of cuts should be posted on the AC Transit site soon.

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Noelle has previously written about the challenges facing AC Transit – AC Transit Cuts (5/25/10), AC Transit Cuts, Part 2 (6/2/10), and AC Transit Cuts, Part 3 (7/8/2010).

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Assorted Links

Washington, Colorado, Massachusetts, New York, and California are the greenest states, according to a NMI survey of more than 3,000 U.S. consumers in the 25 largest states.

Oakland is recognized as a bike-friendly community by the League of American Bicyclists.

Texas and three other states threaten to sue California over AB 32.

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City Rankings – Energy, Walkability, and Transit

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This Friday’s links highlight a few examples of city rankings…

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The Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) has released a list of 22 American cities named “2010 Smarter Cities” for their investment in green power, energy efficiency measures and conservation – Oakland, San Francisco, Berkeley, and Santa Cruz are the Northern California cities that made the list and have profiles on the NRDC website.

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Walk Score has ranked 2,508 neighborhoods in the largest 40 U.S. cities to help you find walkable neighborhoods – San Francisco is ranked #1!

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The 2006 American Community Survey measured the percentage of commuters who take public transit, as opposed to walking, driving, riding a bicycle, or other ways of getting to work. In the top 50 are the Bay Area cities of San Francisco, Berkeley, Oakland, Richmond, and Concord.

Image Credit: Wikimedia Commons

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