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California Just Made Climate Change History. How Did it Happen?

, Western states policy manager

The day before yesterday I sat in the gallery of the California Senate and saw something that just a few weeks ago I wasn’t expecting: Senators casting the final vote on an historic set of bills—Senate Bill 32 (Pavley) and Assembly Bill 197 (E. Garcia)—that reaffirm the state’s commitment to addressing climate change through 2030. After the vote was over, my colleagues and I shared hugs, smiles, and tears as the weight of the accomplishment washed over us. It was a great day. Read more >

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Did the Local Food Movement Trickle Down to Local Farmers?

Dawn Thilmany McFadden , UCS

We are quickly approaching the 10th anniversary of the March 2007 Time magazine cover on local food, a milestone indicating that the local food movement became a mainstream phenomenon. Today, there is continued public interest in local and regional food systems. But have these systems actually been able to support the farms and ranches that they depend on? Read more >

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New FDA Ruling Doesn’t Close Industry’s Favorite Food Safety Loophole

, science and policy analyst, Center for Science and Democracy

It doesn’t seem like too much to ask for the public to be able to count on the FDA to ensure that all substances added to foods are proven safe. The FDA disappointed many interested in a safer food system earlier this month when it released its final ruling detailing its authority for the Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) process. Read more >

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Flickr/Uwe Hermann
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Peak Oil, Peak Coal, Peak Deforestation, Peak Emissions…. and Why They’re Not Nearly Enough

, scientific adviser, Climate and Energy

Recent data related to our global emissions of heat-trapping gases suggest that humanity may have reached a turning point, or even several. We may be moving from increasing emissions, to peaking and starting to decline. We could be close to such peaks, or even have passed it, for several of the main sources of greenhouse gases, including coal and deforestation—perhaps even for humanity’s total emissions.

If so, this would be a momentous occasion, reversing centuries of growing global warming pollution. But before we start celebrating, we should realize that peaking is not nearly enough.

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