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Erica Reder is a native San Franciscan. In addition to covering the environment beat at SF Public Press, she reports for Bay Nature Magazine and KPFA Radio. She holds a B.A. in history from Yale University. This story was originally published at sfpublicpress.org.


Sharp Park Debate Hastens Citywide Biodiversity Policy

June 15, 2011 by Erica Reder

The ongoing debate over protected species at San Francisco's Sharp Park golf course in Pacifica seems to have accelerated a long-simmering effort to enact a citywide biodiversity policy. But with enactment two years away, Sharp Park's fate may be decided before the new rules take effect.

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Urban Agriculture Takes Center Stage in West Contra Costa County

June 06, 2011 by Erica Reder

Organic and sustainable aren't terms often associated with Richmond, home to a Chevron refinery and a General Chemical plant. But those were two of the most frequently heard words on Saturday, at the first-ever West Contra Costa County Urban Agriculture Summit in North Richmond. Despite pouring rain, nearly 100 people gathered at Sunnyside Organic Seedlings to exchange ideas about bringing new models of food-growing to the area.

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Thank a Trail on National Trails Day

June 01, 2011 by Erica Reder

With over 200,000 miles of hiking trails to choose from, Americans have plenty of reason to celebrate National Trails Day on Saturday, June 4. Help maintain these amazing resources by participating in the 19th annual edition of this American Hiking Society-sponsored event. Here in the Bay Area, opportunities abound to get your hands dirty in honor of your favorite hiking trail. We've got highlights!

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The View from Albany Beach

May 18, 2011 by Erica Reder

Convenient isolation draws people to Albany Beach, and many bring their dogs for off-leash exercise. Officially, dogs aren't allowed on the beach at all, but this has been a popular off-leash area for years. Now an impending restoration project may set dog owners and habitat at odds.

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High Time For Harbor Seal Pupping

April 22, 2011 by Erica Reder

Unlike sea lions and elephant seals, harbor seals shun attention. A harbor seal may flee at the slightest disturbance, and mothers have been known to abandon pups when harassed. Late April is peak pupping time, so watch out when you are kayaking on the Bay or walking certain beaches.

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Solano Land Trust Aims to Buy 1500 Acres

April 19, 2011 by Erica Reder

The Bay Area may gain 1,500 acres of protected open space this year thanks to a pending acquisition by the Solano Land Trust of Rockville Trails Estates, northwest of Fairfield. The former ranch boasts rich biodiversity and impressive vistas that could become a public asset, if the trust can raise the funds by August 31.

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Earth Day Around the Bay, 2011

April 05, 2011 by Erica Reder

Looking for ways to celebrate Earth Day? No matter which side of the Bay you're on, there are great events with wildlife watching, cool eco stuff, and even hands-dirty habitat restoration. Don't miss it!

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A Happy Return for Bird’s Beak

April 01, 2011 by Erica Reder

It’s always nice to see plants and wildlife return to a restored site. But it’s especially nice when a plant that’s both rare and finicky shows up in a spot miles away from the nearest remaining population. That’s what happened when Point Reyes bird’s beak appeared at LaRiviere Marsh near Newark.

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Oakland Zoo Expansion Debate Continues

March 28, 2011 by Erica Reder

The Oakland Zoo sits at the edge of Interstate 580, occupying the western corner of Knowland Park. At 45 acres, the zoo makes up less than one tenth of the park's overall area. But a plan to double that ratio has been in place since 1998, when the Oakland City Council approved a proposed expansion. Now, though ground has yet to be broken on the work itself, the project has retaken center stage thanks to a controversy over recent amendments.

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Toothy Charisma and More at SF Ocean Film Festival

March 04, 2011 by Erica Reder

A film festival about the ocean doesn't have to look far for charisma: certain toothy creatures and wave-riding daredevils will easily draw audiences. But the San Francisco Ocean Film Festival, now in its eighth year, aspires to do more than just fill seats. Be inspired and learn what you can do to help -- March 9-13.

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Green Film Festival Coming to San Francisco

February 23, 2011 by Erica Reder

Washington, D.C., has one. Seoul has one. Bristol, Tokyo, and Turin have one. And now, finally, the Bay Area has one. The first annual San Francisco Green Film Festival will take place from March 3-6, joining a growing number of environmentally focused film festivals throughout the world.

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Good News for Steelhead from SFPUC

February 10, 2011 by Erica Reder

Things are looking up for the steelhead trout of Alameda Creek. A revised plan to replace the Calaveras Dam includes several features that will benefit the federally threatened fish. The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) approved the project on January 27, 2011, ending years of discussion with conservation groups and federal agencies.

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Next Frontier for Restoration: Your Backyard

December 16, 2010 by Erica Reder

Environmental action often hinges on what not to do at home: don't leave lights on, don't bring home plastic bags, don't use pesticides. But what about actively creating a wildlife habitat right outside your backdoor? San Franciscans will soon have help doing just that, from the nonprofit Nature in the City, which will offer backyard habitat services.

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San Jose a Trailblazer on Banning Single-Use Bags

December 06, 2010 by Erica Reder

Two weeks ago, Los Angeles supervisors voted to ban retailers from distributing single-use plastic bags in unincorporated parts of the county. Then on November 29, the governor argued for a statewide ban of plastic bags at a Sacramento press conference. Now San Jose becomes the nation's largest city to ban plastic bags.

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West Oakland Group Wins Major Grant for New Urban Farm and Park

November 19, 2010 by Erica Reder

Last year, City Slicker Farms grew and distributed almost 7,000 pounds of pay-what-you-can produce in West Oakland. That number may double in coming years, thanks to a $4 million grant the nonprofit won last week. City Slicker Farms will use the money purchase and develop a 1.4-acre neighborhood farm and park.

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Give a Hand for the Salmon

November 08, 2010 by Erica Reder

The arrival of the rains each fall kicks off spawning season for coho salmon. The rains also mark the end of this season's work on the Redwood Creek Restoration Project. On November 14, you can help welcome the salmon back to an improved watershed, and kick in a little on the restoration too!

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