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Re: “A Guide to Bay Area Badminton Gyms

It's great that there are so many facilities where you can play badminton in the area, I'm from San Jose which has quite a lot of places where you can go to play. My favorite is at Cambell Community Center https://trytopic.com/campbell-community-center

Posted by James Wylie on 06/29/2015 at 12:22 PM

Re: “Turning Water into Wine

Great article Will! As the land use and planning battles continue to ensue within CA counties it is critical that you raise attention to the problem of industry scale and density of vineyards across sensitive habitat. With population projections looking to see built development scale out across the Central Valley and Coasts it will be another factor for residents to consider: densifying or sprawling built community environments or maintaining vineyards, farmscapes, and cattle ranching lands. The problems are complex when you look at costs of living and wages/income disparity with a deeper green understanding of our environment's carrying capacity. We are moving forward where resource grabs (i.e. land, water, etc...) are building exclusive zipcodes and fostering greater inequalities all within how we operate in society. Further, our state has a range of regulatory frameworks with some contradicting the other...it will be interesting to see how water policy advances and enforcement ensues to preserve the "environment" all the while maintaining business growth. Keep up the good investigative writing!

Posted by Tim Galarneau on 06/29/2015 at 10:08 AM

Re: “Superhighways in the Sky

People want benefits without costs. No matter how you do something, all they see is the bad side. Ooh the hell of planes in a highway in the sky. Ooooh the hell of planes dispersed on separate paths. Geez, I want to visit my father in Atlanta.

The FAA does have rules that require best noise reduction practices. The jets have to take off into the wind. However, did you ever notice, for example, that at SFO they take off at first in a steep climb, but then throttle down and turn as they overfly populated areas? There is no perfect path. Do you want planes or do you want to drive to Atlanta?

1 like, 2 dislikes
Posted by Gary Baker on 06/29/2015 at 7:57 AM

Re: “Superhighways in the Sky

NextGen is child abuse. The effects of hazardous noise on childrens learning and development has been well researched by Harvard, WHO and Cornell.

The FAA has utilized NextGen to implement new routes in new areas. It is effectively an extension of the airspace redesign project, but without the environmental studies.

Posted by Brian Will on 06/28/2015 at 12:09 PM

Re: “East Bay Hills Tree Removal Plan Still Sparking Debate

This comment was removed because it violates our policy against anonymous comments. It will be reposted if the commenter chooses to use his or her real name.

0 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Editor on 06/27/2015 at 9:20 PM

Re: “Letters for the week of June 24, 2015

What comes next, preventive detention? If the elected officials think for one minute that predicting where crime will break out, is the next step to identify persons who might commit a crime and put them in jail, rather than risk that they could commit a crime? Any rational person will tell you that prediction is akin to tea leaf reading, ande ouiji boards. Where will all this lead, just go and watch the classic film, Fahrenheit 451, then tell me it can't happen here.

Posted by Franklin Graham on 06/27/2015 at 10:08 AM

Re: “Oakland Mayor Schaaf and Police Seek Unproven 'Predictive Policing' Software

Unqualified, inexperienced people in Oakland city leadership roles are easy targets for the latest pinhead entrepreneur ready to solve urban problems with his or her newest app. The last Mayor (Quan) wasted $250K on a contract with William Bratton. Exactly what did we get from that experiment? Here we go again. You will always be able to buy quick fix "solutions" that don't work. When are we going to get some intelligence and leadership from the top in City Hall? Schaaf claims to be from Oakland, but she grew up in the hills. That is not the same as growing up in the flatlands. She has no hood sense at all. She needs to get off the hill and spend more time talking to the flatland folks to establish relationships and get community input on how policing can be more effective.

2 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Gary Patton on 06/27/2015 at 10:05 AM

Re: “Oakland Mayor Schaaf and Police Seek Unproven 'Predictive Policing' Software

Hopefully she hires more police as well and enacts curfews for minors. Too many young folks roaming the streets at night. If caught, slap a hefty fine on the parents. I do believe many senseless crimes can be prevented by a curfew. Nip it in the bud before it starts, then there is no need for costly software programs. Many police would be freed up to concentrate on more serious crimes.

2 likes, 3 dislikes
Posted by Garry Ovalbach on 06/27/2015 at 12:39 AM

Re: “Oakland's Warriors

Neither the 49ers nor the Warriors understand the world of the nerd. How could they? Nerds still are fodder for athletic bullying; the kids who cower in gym class enduring the disdain and jeers of their athletic superiors.

How can the team owners expect that the nerd world will embrace their jocks? The owners live in cocoons of their own making. Long may they suffer.

Posted by Mike Bradley on 06/26/2015 at 6:10 PM

Re: “Superhighways in the Sky

I agree with the FAA's finding that the new GPS-based air routes have no significant impact on anyone. I also believe that the new Oakland-Bay Bridge is totally sound, that Inca corn snacks are a Native American plot to sterilize white males, and that corporations are superior people.

2 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Mike Bradley on 06/26/2015 at 5:55 PM

Re: “East Bay Hills Tree Removal Plan Still Sparking Debate

Jack, Your link doesn't go to a FEMA report? It goes to something prepared by the cities of Oakland and Berkeley the year after the 1991 Fire. That's ok, it is a good report and I was pleased to see that many of the things recommended in it have been carried out.

I'm not sure you noticed that the quote you give "Do not target particular species such as Blue Gum . . . " was in the section on the urban environment--a recommendation for vegetation management within cities (near homes, schools, stores, etc.) (go look again).

I know this might seem like a minor point but I think the cities were saying not to change their urban tree policies in order to satisfy the needs of large scale wildland policies that were being formed.

In their wildland section, they say "Create and maintain fuel breaks on the wildlands along the urban-wildland interface. Use broad area treatment . . " and set up expert panels to guide the process. I believe this is what we have now with the current FEMA grant.

I enjoyed the link to your website. Great pictures. Thanks.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Marilyn Goldhaber on 06/26/2015 at 5:32 PM

Re: “East Bay Hills Tree Removal Plan Still Sparking Debate

There are numerous key omissions in both this article and the comments so far. I hope objective readers new to this controversy will read the following facts, and learn the truth behind the misleading euphemism of “vegetation management” for what will be: The largest SF Bay Area forest clearcuts in 100 years:

1) the scale of these clearcuts is massive - the biggest SF Bay Area deforestation in 100 years. It has nothing to do with fire danger mitigation because, for starters, all the living trees cut WILL NOT BE REMOVED FROM THE HILLSIDES. They will only be chopped into logs and wood chips and LEFT ON THE GROUND TO BURN in any future fire.

2) Fire science has established that, since ALL species of trees contain large amounts of water (ever try to burn a green log in your fireplace?), they are far LESS flammable than dry grasses and low shrubs. Learn fire science facts in a blistering critique of the deforestation plan by a firefighter who served on the Mayor’s Task Force determining the ACTUAL causes of the 1991 fire routinely, ERRONEOUSLY blamed on eucalyptus (because fear works):http://treespiritproject.com/wp-content/up…

3) There will be NO REPLANTING OF ANY KIND. So the truly “invasive” plants like poison oak, thistle and broom will grow where forest canopies are destroyed, then bake in hot, direct summer/autumn sun to BECOME THEIR OWN FIRE HAZARD (what started the 1991 fire);

4) Despite repeating the lie endlessly, eucalyptus are not more “flammable” than “native” bay laurels which also contain volatile oils in their leaves (hold a bay leaf over a lit stove and see). And bay trees grow closer to the ground, and grasses, than blue gums, so ignite MORE readily in a grass fire. But the Big “flammable" Lie is repeated because FEAR the actual agenda...

5) SPECIES ERADICATION, the destruction of ALL Monterey pines, acacia, and eucalyptus trees, no matter how many, even hundreds of thousands which…

6) IGNORES CLIMATE SCIENCE and carbon sequestration — millions of pounds of carbon is sequestered in 450,000 trees — ignoring deforestation’s affect on local climate. Common sense alone tells the average, unbiased person that when you cut down over 2,000 acres of forest canopy, those areas will heat up from direct sun;

7) a contradiction: A) “We’re not clearcutting, we’re thinning trees” and B) “These are dangerous, flammable, gasoline trees.” If B is true, then why NOT cut them all down? Why only thin such dangerous trees? Why NOT clearcut them?

8) the Feb. 1992 FEMA report released after the fire, in its many recommendations, says: “Do not target particular species such as Blue Gum Eucalyptus or Monterey Pine for eradication or exemption from tree regulation policies, but require regular maintenance to reduce fire hazard.” Read for yourself: http://www.hillsconservationnetwork.org/Ad…

Jack Gescheidt, Founder
The TreeSpirit Project
LEARN MORE: http://treespiritproject.com/sfbayclearcut

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Jack Gescheidt on 06/26/2015 at 3:39 PM

Re: “East Bay Hills Tree Removal Plan Still Sparking Debate

This comment was removed because it violates our policy against anonymous comments. It will be reposted if the commenter chooses to use his or her real name.

Posted by Editor on 06/26/2015 at 3:17 PM

Re: “Oakland's Warriors

I grew up catching the 57C to Warriors games. Been attending since the late 70's. The Warriors are certainly Oakland's team, and I'd love for them to stay. But to describe the fan base as "working class" simply isn't so. Season tix in the lower bowl can be outrageously expensive, and I've watched the demographic composition of the crowd change over the years.

Finally, the Warriors have said they will not honor the debt agreement on the bonds floated to finance the 1996 expansion, and will stick the City and County with the remaining $100MM or so when/if they move.

3 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Bleacher Dave on 06/26/2015 at 2:05 AM

Re: “East Bay Hills Tree Removal Plan Still Sparking Debate

Oh, I just found another good source on the euc situation at Mt Sutro. Its from Bay Nature Magazine, a good source of eco journalism.

https://baynature.org/articles/san-francisco-dying-forest-waits-action/

Posted by Marilyn Goldhaber on 06/25/2015 at 7:02 PM

Re: “East Bay Hills Tree Removal Plan Still Sparking Debate

I don't know who "Save Mount Sutro Forest" is, as there is no About Us page. Just a person called "webmaster" who is not identified (not sure why?).

But, I found another group called the "Sutro Stewards" that might be a better source to dig a little deeper into the euc controversy over there. (One person's passion versus a coalition of people and organizations.) Just saying . . .

In any case, the webmaster quoted Joe Mc Bride as saying: “This response is common in blue gum as a mechanism to reduce transpiration rates in order to survive drought years . . . I am not convinced that the trees will die in large numbers” (regarding the withering eucs in the forest there).

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Marilyn Goldhaber on 06/25/2015 at 6:58 PM

Re: “Austerity's Champion

If Dan Borenstein wants to write opinion columns that nothing is more important than public workers' pensions; and this, by the way, with no context attached in terms of what really happened to public financing,he should do that. But for a major paper to see governing a city through that lens only is to let down the very citizens it claims to inform. Oakland wouldn't be seeing the economic boom that it is if the city had followed Borenstein's approach.
I also find it amusing that the same columnists who make their living attacking others, freak out if anyone so much as questions their point-of-view.

0 likes, 2 dislikes
Posted by Pamela Drake on 06/25/2015 at 5:22 PM

Re: “East Bay Hills Tree Removal Plan Still Sparking Debate

For information on the drought resistance of eucalyptus trees, see:
http://sutroforest.com/2015/06/19/drought-…
Please note comments in this article by Joe McBride, Prof. Emeritus of UCB, a leading expert on eucalyptus.
Also note that CIPC (California Invasive Plant Council) recently revised its assessment of the invasiveness of blue gum eucalyptus from Moderate to Limited, which happens to be the lowest score it could give it.

1 like, 0 dislikes
Posted by Madeline Hovland on 06/25/2015 at 5:08 PM

Re: “Oakland Mayor Schaaf and Police Seek Unproven 'Predictive Policing' Software

Crime is like any other kind of data with a geospatial component -- there is value in looking at trends, clusters, relationships with other data, etc., that can help inform decision making. So, I wouldn't totally discount this type of software. However, the vendor goes too far in marketing any "predictive" techniques. The data is inherently very noisy, suffers from poor sampling (over- and under-reported crimes), and innumerable important factors are almost certainly missing from the model. This makes any short-term predictions quite shaky. Caveat emptor.

3 likes, 1 dislike
Posted by Ian Rees on 06/25/2015 at 5:00 PM

Re: “Oakland's Warriors

and let's not forget that Klay Thompson and Steph Curry each gave a shout out to Oakland and Lake Merritt—Klay pointed to the apartment building across the lake where he lived as a rookie and Steph said he also lived by the lake and used to walk around unnoticed. Harrison Barnes said he still lives in Oakland; most of the Warriors reside in the East Bay.

Maybe the most important comment came from Finals MVP Andre Igoudala, who said it was the fan support for the team at games at Oracle Arena during the 2013 playoffs when he played for Denver that made him want to join the Warriors (that and playing alongside Curry, who he noted at the time was 'more popular than god').

The crowd at the victory celebration was diverse and reflective of the fans at Oracle—Asian, Latino, Black, white, young and old—rabid fans who make superstars like Iguodala want to be here (in Oakland), That will be lost in 'Frisco. The Warriors' ownership really should reconsider the move to The City and stay in The Town.

5 likes, 0 dislikes
Posted by Paul Burton on 06/25/2015 at 4:24 PM

Most Popular Stories

  • East Bay Hills Tree Removal Plan Still Sparking Debate

    A compromise plan that would thin eucalyptus trees rather than clear-cut them is angering environmental and neighborhoods groups, who either say it goes too far or not far enough.
  • Oakland's Warriors

    The massive and wildly successful victory parade and rally last week showed why the Warriors belong in Oakland.
  • Superhighways in the Sky

    The FAA is burdening Bay Area communities and wildlife habitats with aerial freeways for jet planes. And even the National Park Service can't stop the noise.
  • Austerity's Champion

    For years, Dan Borenstein, an influential columnist and editorial page writer for the Oakland Tribune and the Contra Costa Times, has claimed that public employee pensions are strangling local governments. The problem is: He's wrong.
  • Oakland Mayor Schaaf and Police Seek Unproven 'Predictive Policing' Software

    PredPol claims its software can map where future crimes are likely to occur and reduce crime by double digits. But critics, including some law enforcement officials, say there's no evidence that it works.

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