Critics See Environmental Threats in State Rule Changes That Speed Housing

Kevin Stark, San Francisco Public Press — Nov 8 2017 - 8:00am

Some environmental advocates say long-standing state rules governing soil pollution, traffic congestion and flood control will be weakened by legislation pushed by Democratic lawmakers from San Francisco and signed by Gov. Jerry Brown that will  “streamline” land-use regulations to speed housing construction.

California’s Push for Affordable Housing Could Weaken Environmental Law

Kevin Stark, San Francisco Public Press — Jul 25 2017 - 3:11pm

The Legislature’s efforts to ease the housing-affordability crisis could chip away at longstanding protections in the state’s landmark environmental law. Two such bills were introduced by San Francisco lawmakers.

By Weakening Law, Developers Shift Sea Rise Burden to Cities

Kevin Stark, San Francisco Public Press — Apr 19 2017 - 7:27am

Two years ago, the California Supreme Court overturned decades of land-use law by upholding lower court rulings that cities could no longer require developers to take into account the effects of climate change on their projects. That decision has unsettled public officials and planners, and critics say it will allow real estate interests to saddle taxpayers with a gigantic bill to defend against rising seas.

Timeline: Lawyers for Developers Share Tactics to Blunt CEQA

Kevin Stark, San Francisco Public Press — Apr 19 2017 - 7:26am

Invoking recent court decisions, developers are pushing back on the ability of Bay Area cities to use the California Environmental Quality Act to regulate waterfront development and protect residents from rising sea levels

Major S.F. Bayfront Developments Advance Despite Sea Rise Warnings

Kevin Stark, Winifred Bird and Michael Stoll, San Francisco Public Press — Jul 29 2015 - 1:39pm

Builders plan to invest more than $21 billion in offices and homes in flood-prone areas, where waters could climb 8 feet above today’s high tide by the end of this century. Land-use records reveal that the building boom, fueled by a white-hot tech economy, is moving too fast for regulators to keep pace. (Cover story from the summer 2015 print edition)

Mission Bay Pioneers: Working and Living in a New Waterfront Neighborhood

Tanya Dzekon, Caroline Cakebread and Sophie Murguia, San Francisco Public Press — Jul 29 2015 - 1:31pm

As cranes and bulldozers continue their work to build Mission Bay, residents and workers say they love the new waterfront area. Few say they have any knowledge of, nor are they much concerned about, the long­-term flooding risk.

Four Ways to Guard Against Sea Level Rise

Winifred Bird, San Francisco Public Press — Jul 29 2015 - 1:30pm

Water brings both life and risk to the shoreline, so seaside residents have long built barriers, canals and other protections to guard against storms and floods. Now sea level rise is adding an extra challenge.

Bay Area Governments Study Sea Level Rise, but Few Set Limits on Development

Emily Dugdale, San Francisco Public Press — Jul 29 2015 - 1:29pm

The San Francisco Public Press surveyed 13 Bay Area cities and counties where building projects are planned in waterfront areas vulnerable to sea level rise. While most are studying the issue, few have passed new regulations to limit growth or require developers to flood­proof their properties.

With Dozens of Local and Regional Governments, Baywide Planning Is Hard

Winifred Bird, San Francisco Public Press — Jul 29 2015 - 1:28pm

Regional coordination will be essential if Bay Area cities and counties are to minimize flooding as the sea rises. A few initiatives have launched, but none yet has the legal authority or resources to align all 41 governments that border San Francisco Bay.

Experts Weigh In on Sea Level Rise

San Francisco Public Press — Jul 29 2015 - 1:27pm

Experts weigh in on the local effects of sea level rise. Hear from an oceanographer, an academic, a climate scientist, a policy professional and an environmental planner.

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