water quality

Charles Kennard/Wikimedia Commons

For many homeowners in Marin County having a creek or stream run through their property can provide a beautiful atmosphere. But keeping these waterways clean and healthy can also require a great deal of time and energy.  KRCB’s Tiffany Camhi reports on a program that aims to simplify creek restoration for Marin residents.   

Find out about more upcoming events with the Marin County Resource Conservation District Urban Streams Program here.

Supervisors Back Medicine Disposal Program

Oct 5, 2016

Sonoma County Supervisors this week signaled their intention to apply the concept of Extended Producer Responsibility to pharmaceuticals, through a new ordinance to require the safe collection of extra or unwanted medicines.

While industry resistance persists, there is clear public support for the Extended Producer Responsibility approach advanced by county supervisors. The Water Agency's Susan Keach provided some figures for that, too.

This comes as no surprise to the California Product Stewardship Council's Heidi Sanborn.

A group of Napa County environmentalists are pushing for new limits on hillside vineyards, through ballot measure they hope to qualify for the November election. But the Valley’s wine industry is pushing back.

  Two reservoirs on either side of the Napa Valley represent the main drinking water supply for the city of Napa and other area residents, but their water quality is at risk from vineyards expanding into the hillsides above those lakes, says Mike Hackett, one of the main advocates for the Water, Forest and Oak Woodland Protection Initiative.

Runoff and the Russian River

Jan 28, 2016
Sonoma County Water Agency

  Industry and agriculture both contribute to the degradation of water quality in California’s waterways. But the even greater source of pollutants—some 60 million tons each year--is us. But with an assist from Mother Nature. 

Small Mountain of Trash Cleared from Laguna Channel

Sep 17, 2015
Maggie Hart, Laguna de Santa Rosa Foundation

Representatives from the participating agencies were on hand to celebrate the conclusion of the clean-up project. Pictured from r-l are: Kevin Munroe, Laguna Foundation; James Gore, 4th District Supervisor; Michael Thompson, Sonoma County Water Agency; Karen Fies, Sonoma County Human Services; Matt Martin, Social Advocates for Youth; and David Kuszmar, North Coast Regional Water Quality Control BoardCredit Maggie Hart, Laguna de Santa Rosa FoundationEdit | Remove

EPA to Expand Pesticide Ban

Jul 2, 2015
Chris Jordan-Bloch/Earthjustice

  The Environmental Protection Agency has announced that it plans to ban the commonly-used agricultural pesticide, chlorpyrifos. But, as Suzanne Potter reports, the decision is not quite final yet. 

Filmmaker Probes the Russian River's Health

Jun 15, 2015

  From gravel to grapes, dredging to drought, the many forces that shape the health of the Russian River are examined in a new documentary by a local filmmaker.

Russian River: All Rivers  will get a special  encore screening Tuesday, June 16 at the Rialto Cinemas in Sebastopol at 7 pm. See the trailer below.

Composting’s Cloudy Future in Sonoma County

May 29, 2015
Bruce Robinson, KRCB

  From modest beginnings in the 1990s, commercial composting in Sonoma County has grown into a sizable enterprise, one that has been embraced by both consumers and farmers. But with big changes about to kick in, the future of composting here is uncertain.

  Alan Siegle, co-owner of Sonoma Compost, recalls how they had to persuade county supervisors to launch the operation more than 20 years ago.

Medicine Disposal Requirements Upheld

May 28, 2015

In a decision reaching from Washington to your medicine cabinet, the US Supreme Court has held that local governments can require pharmaceutical companies to take responsibility for the collection and disposal of their excess products.

Heidi Sanborn,  Executive Director of the California Product Stewardship Council, says laws such as the Alameda ordinance, are advancing the concept of “Extended Producer Responsibility,” which is a critical component of overall efforts to reduce consumer waste.

County Landfill Prepapres for Composting Move

Nov 20, 2014
Sonoma Compost

  When composting operations were added to the Sonoma County Landfill, on Meacham Road west of Cotati, the location was going to be temporary. It still is, so the process of redesigning a new, permanent composting facility is now underway—one that’s going to be significantly different from the old one.

The new composting site will at a different location within the existing landfill property. An Environmental Impact Study for it is currently being drafted.

Safe Medicine Disposal

Sep 16, 2013

  Collecting and incinerating old or unwanted prescription medications is a public health benefit on several fronts. The makers of the meds are fighting one northern California County’s ordinance that requires them to help cover those disposal costs—but they’re losing.

For Sonoma County, the drive to collect and dispose of excess medications (see list of locations here)  has been propelled by water quality concerns, explains Susan Keach, an Environmental Compliance Inspector for the Sonoma County Water Agency.