Good chance of rain










Previously tentative forecasts for rain in Los Angeles have firmed up in the last several days. Below, top to bottom, are at-a-glance probability icons from the National Weather Service as of Thursday afternoon for Los Angeles County foothills (top row), basin (middle), and beach (bottom). To check your forecast, click here to be taken to the National Weather Service, then enter your zip code.

Map of plume from Japan

UPDATED POST: A Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization model of radioactive material from the disaster in Japan carried in the New York Times and Los Angeles Times has been removed from this post. Comments relating to the map have been removed. Anyone wishing to comment should go to those papers. This website, whose core mission is conservation, was being overwhelmed (see graphic above). For information about trace radiation in California from the Japan disaster, by all means check your air quality management district. Or check daily radiation levels from this RadNet Service from the US Environmental Protection Agency. No further comments to do with this remaining stub post will be published and earlier comments have been stricken.

March 25: National Public Radio has this excellent story about the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty Organization monitoring, Built for bombs, Sensors now track Japan radiation.

Foothill outdoor watering ban

Customers of Pasadena Water & Power and the eight water agencies that make up the Foothill Municipal Water District are being asked to cease all outdoor water use from March 18 through 28 while the Metropolitan Water District of Southern California does seismic work on its Weymouth Treatment Plant in LaVerne. During the work, Metropolitan will stop all water deliveries to Pasadena and neighboring foothill cities. The Pasadena Garden Club is marking the occasion by asking me to speak at its meeting on March 22nd. At a guess, my message that we should drastically cut outdoor irrigation year-round in an effort to save energy used to convey water, eliminate contaminated sprinkler run-off into the Pacific and relax pressure on the Colorado River and Sacramento-San Joaquin Delta will be about as popular as a bartender prescribing a 12-step program.

Meanwhile, these photos, taken last weekend at the Water Conservation California Friendly

Owsley & him

Poster by Owsley for a 1966 Grateful Dead concert in LA's Harmonica Store. Source: Owsley's website. Click on the poster to be taken to

Back in the day, journalist Charlie Perry lived in a rooming house in Berkeley. That is where his 1982 Rolling Stone story Owsley & Me* opens with the arrival of a new tenant: “… we were fortunate to live in a house where everybody turned on,” he wrote. “Just how fortunate, we realized in January, 1964, when somebody moved out and all sorts of pensioners and bag ladies started answering the room for rent sign. Suddenly it looked as if our mellow scene was doomed, so when this guy in his late twenties checked out the room and started talking drugs within three minutes, we begged him to move in. Forty-five minutes later, when he hadn’t stopped talking about drugs, we weren’t so sure

A message from Jonathan Parfrey

Images: NASA Earth Observatory. Click on the images to be taken to a series of satellite photos of the tsunami and resulting fires.

Green LA Coalition Steering Committee Member Jonathan Parfrey just posted a memorandum to the environmental community about the nuclear disaster in Japan. “Last Friday’s earthquake and tsunami in northeastern Japan was a tragic reminder of the earth’s destructive power,” he wrote. “The death toll is expected to be in the tens of thousands. What is occurring, however, at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant is no natural disaster, but a human-made one …” To keep reading Parfrey’s memorandum, click here. In addition to being on the Steering Committee of the Green LA Coalition, Parfrey is a commissioner of the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power. He has also served with the League of Conservation Voters, as director of Physicians for Social Responsibility-Los Angeles and on

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