Tag archives: climate crisis

Independent Commissions to Solve Climate Crisis and More?
By Robert Bernstein   |   July 26, 2022

Our system of government was deliberately set up to make change and action very difficult. Unfortunately, reality does not care about our inability to govern. Notably, the Climate Crisis marches on, with action urgently needed to avert unprecedented disaster on a global scale. The President, House of Representatives, and Senate are rarely in alignment. And, […]

Plastic Pollution Coalition
By Steven Libowitz   |   June 14, 2022

In one of the funnier moments in the famous 1967 film The Graduate, a friend of Ben’s parents takes him aside to deliver some advice about his future: “I just have one word for you: Plastics.” Back then, of course, plastics was becoming a burgeoning field, as the material seemed to be an incredible scientific […]

Metamorphosis for the Environment
By Laura Capps   |   May 24, 2022

It would be nearly impossible to list the many unique features of Santa Barbara County that differentiate us from other places across the country. In contrast to all the incredible positive attributes, I recently learned of one startling distinction that may surprise you: our county is one of the fastest-warming places in the nation. According […]

More Sunlight for Santa Barbara County Board of Education
By Montecito Journal   |   May 24, 2022

U.S. Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis introduced the phrase “Sunlight is the Best Disinfectant,” in the early 20th century. He also penned the term in his book, “Other People’s Money.” The Fair Political Practices Commission (FPPC) regulates campaign financing, conflicts of interest, lobbying, and government ethics. Form 700 – Statement of Economic Interest, is one […]

Economic Failures Created the Climate Crisis, but Economic Policy Can Fix It
By Robert Taylor   |   May 10, 2022

As a new resident of Montecito, I’m learning about issues and concerns in our community through reading the weekly Montecito Journal. Since the climate crisis is my major concern, I particularly appreciate articles by columnists Rinaldo Brutoco, Tom Farr, and Robert Bernstein, as well as frequent reports of news and opinions from local environmental groups. […]

Giving Thanks
By Montecito Journal   |   November 30, 2021

This past year has been really tough (COVID-19, inflation, supply chain problems, etc.). However, when things get tough, it is exactly when we need to give thanks. Our Founding Fathers and great leaders understood that giving thanks and expressing gratitude matters in the face of adversity. It gives us hope, emotionally. Giving thanks for what […]

Climate Crisis as Market Failure?
By Robert Bernstein   |   November 16, 2021

As I write this, countries from around the world are convening in Glasgow for COP26 to solve the climate crisis. It is 26 because for 26 years these meetings have been going on and the threat keeps getting worse. I first began talking about the climate crisis in 1981 when it was called Global Warming […]

What Will it Take to Act on the Climate Crisis?
By Robert Bernstein   |   August 31, 2021

Lions and tigers and bears, oh, my! As expressed so well by Dorothy in The Wizard of Oz, these are the things we evolved to fear. Unfortunately, in the modern world, these are not the things that really matter. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) just released its latest report emphasizing the urgency of […]

What is a Personal Choice?
By Robert Bernstein   |   August 12, 2021

The 1960s TV show Get Smart often offered deep insights cloaked in humor. In the episode, “Do I Hear a Vaults?” the Chief gets locked in a bank vault with agent Larrabee. There is only enough air to last 24 hours and it is on a time lock that won’t open until the end of […]

Debt or Investment?
By Robert Bernstein   |   May 13, 2021

Republicans have railed against deficit spending for decades. But, every Republican president since 1981 has increased the Federal deficit. Only the Democratic presidents Clinton and Obama have lowered it. When the Democrats are in office, the Republicans oppose any plans to increase government spending, claiming that we can’t afford it. Even though they have no […]

Community Environmental Council
By Steven Libowitz   |   April 15, 2021

With Earth Day 2021 rolling around just a week after the publication date of this issue of the Montecito Journal, you’d think the big three-day festival would be all anybody at the Community Environmental Council (CEC) would want to talk about. After all, it was a nascent CEC that organized Santa Barbara’s first Earth Day […]

She’s Our Hero
By Richard Mineards   |   April 8, 2021

Annie Leonard, executive director of Greenpeace USA, is the recipient of the Santa Barbara’s Community Environmental Council’s 2021 Environmental Hero Award. “Her work exemplifies what it means to build the broad, boots-on-the-ground base of activism that we need to go all in together on the climate crisis,” says the CEC executive director Sigrid Wright, who […]

‘Mother Earth is Having a Fit’
By Rinaldo Brutoco   |   September 3, 2020

House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was interviewed last Wednesday on CBS by Stephen Colbert and she made this provocative observation: “Mother Earth is having a fit.” It was her way of saying that the climate crisis is real, and it’s here now. Let’s put some substance to that claim. We were all mesmerized as Hurricane Laura […]

“Plastics, Benjamin”: A Letter to the Class of 2020
By Rinaldo Brutoco   |   June 4, 2020

Mike Nichols’ 1967 iconic and classic film, for which he received the Best Director Award among four other Academy Awards, was The Graduate. The film is a masterful exploration of the malaise of college graduation at a time of great social turmoil. A promotional poster captured the tension brilliantly: “This is Benjamin. He’s a little […]

Sewer Spending Spigot
By Montecito Journal   |   October 3, 2019

Bob Hazard has again “hit the nail…” with his “What’s Up in the Sewer System” expose (Guest Editorial MJ # 25/38). How can we ascertain who appointed “those three” Sanitary Board members and change the system to all five elected in the future? No one in Santa Barbara media is performing investigative journalism like Mr. […]

Our Biggest Challenge
By Peter Brill   |   October 1, 2019

Q. One of the biggest challenges I face as a member of the Santa Barbara community is what to do about climate change. Can you help? – Greg in Goleta A. Thank you for your question, Greg. I went to John Steed for an answer. He is the President of the Board of the Community […]

The Wonders of CO2
By Ray Winn   |   November 23, 2017

What I wrote a couple issues ago deserves another go-round, so here goes: There are about 1,100 terawatts (TW) combined from internal earth, solar, and adding in some from charged particle heating from the sun captured by the magnetosphere of the earth. Man uses about 14 terawatts of energy. About one third of this is […]