Opinion

Energy storage can keep the lights on, cut carbon emissions

Electrical power lines in the California desert. (Photo: Anton Foltin, via Shutterstock)

Most of us won’t forget those rolling blackouts that took place across California in early 2000.  I remember them well, since I was the one who had to manage the power grid and turn off the lights more than a dozen times. Since then, energy engineers and operators like myself have made a life’s work out of keeping the lights on as California works to reduce carbon emissions and add more renewable energy into the power grid to meet California’s clean energy goal

Opinion

For many workers, ‘gig economy’ has a dark side

A delivery person -- an independent contractor? -- on the job. (Photo: Davide Bonaldo, via Shutterstock)

The expanding gig economy in California is often praised for giving workers flexibility and independence. Be your own boss, set your own schedule, companies tout, and these companies would like us to think that drivers, cleaners and personal shoppers actually prefer the gig economy to traditional employment. The rosy spin ignores the reality for California’s low-wage workers.

Opinion

Wanted: A comprehensive data system for education

Illustration depicting the examination of complex data. (Image: alphaspirit, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: It is easy to point to recent public investments that demonstrate the state’s commitment to improving educational and economic opportunity for Californians. But attempt to assess the outcomes of those efforts, and you will come up woefully short.

Opinion

Grocery, beverage taxes hurt working families

An assortment of soft-drink brands at a Cypress, Calif., market. (Photo: David Tonelson, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: While health and wellness must be a top priority for communities across the US, taxing the poor is not the way to do it. Taxes such as these place a considerably larger share of the economic burden on working families, poor communities and small business owners.

Opinion

E-receipt mandate cold prove costly — and harmful

A man pays digitally at a restaurant using a smart phone. (Photo: Brain2Hands, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: The demand for clean, cost-effective alternative fuel vehicles, trucks and buses continues to rise. The installation of thousands of alternative fuel pumps and charging stations up and down the state, supported by state grants and dedicated funding, has helped to make this possible. However, a bill making its way through the State Legislature threatens to unravel these advancements and slow the adoption of clean vehicle fleets.

Opinion

Nursing shortage grows — and state isn’t helping any

Nurses in the corridor of a busy hospital. (Photo: SpotMatik Ltd, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: There’s a severe shortage of registered nurses in California, and it’s getting worse. Experts predict the state could be short nearly 200,000 nurses by 2030, with rural areas among the most vulnerable to the deficit.

Opinion

Community college students need better financial aid

Students sharing knowledge in a college study hall. (Photo: Rawpixel.com

OPINION: California Community colleges do an outstanding job offering degree attainment and education opportunities that lead to rewarding careers for the 2.1 million students who attend. But far too many of those students cannot cover enrollment fees and basic living expenses, putting them at risk. The current financial aid formula does not fully address the needs of students working to meet their academic goals, and in many cases, working full-time to support themselves and their families.

Opinion

Should California’s privacy law be modified?

Illustration of a privacy law text in a courtroom. (Image: hafakot, via Shutterstock)

OPINION: The California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), which takes effect next January, was intended to protect the privacy of personal consumer information by limiting the sale of information between organizations that use data to reach customers, and it provided consumers with certain rights. To achieve these consumer-focused goals, the CCPA imposes significant requirements and burdens on businesses.

Opinion

Renewable gas really is too good to be true

A station providing renewable natural gas in Southern California. (Photo: Southern California Gas Co.)

As California ramps up efforts to improve air quality and reduce greenhouse gas emissions statewide, one polluting industry, in particular, is fighting to maintain relevance.

In the face of local governments, state regulators, health professionals, and environmental groups calling for clean energy homes and buildings that can be powered with renewable electricity instead

Opinion

Good child care: Listen to parents, kids, providers

An illustration of children at play. (Image: Nowik Sylwia, via Shutterstock)

They say it takes a village to raise a child, and that may be true. But this much we know for certain: for working families in today’s economy, it takes, if not a village, at least a solid team. The backbone of that team is parents, children and caregivers. Parents must work to afford housing, food and other necessities. Children require a safe, nurturing place to be when mom and dad are at their jobs.

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