Posts Tagged ‘hetch hetchy’

These “Rain Gardens” on Fell Street are Now Complete – Will They Make You Like the SFPUC More?

Tuesday, April 7th, 2015

IDK, maybe they will.

P1200736 copy

Of course, this design is the “beautiful” version. (What would an ugly rain garden look like, one wonders.)

And look, the “natural” weeds have already been carefully planted. Is our PUC going to water these weeds, you know, during the months and months when we don’t get any rain at all, to keep them green and “beautiful?” We’ll see.

(BTW, if you label the PUC the PUC, at least a few employees / contractors / interns / somebody who has access to the PUC’s email system just might hector you about instead calling the PUC “SF Water,” or SF Water Power Sewer. Let’s hope our SFPUC isn’t paying its employees $114 an hour on the side to email about how “confused” I am with my belief that the SFPUC can, at least sometimes, be rightfully be called the SFPUC.)

But, Gentle Reader, the well-paid PUC outreach people say that you can take a “tour” of these rain gutters if you want. Email at ssip@sfwater.org

Here They Are, Our Brand-New “Beautiful. Functional. Rain Gardens” on Fell – Like Parklets, But for Weeds, Not People

Wednesday, April 1st, 2015

[UPDATE: Our PUC writes in tell about how I’m confusing them with the CAPUC, the same way, one supposes that Mssrs. Matier and Ross got “confused” when calling them the PUC here. But take their tour if you want – see Comments.]

Remember the revival of “Victory Gardens?” I do. It peaked in 2009. But the new thang in urban gardening is upon us.

As seen on Fell, looking inbound:

P1200381 copy

(Oh, and the microfences already indicate that no bike parking is allowed. So what’s the PUC going to do? Ticket your ride? Cut off your lock and impound your bike?)

On Fell, looking outbound:

P1200378 copy

And look, clobblestones!

P1200382 copy

Are these real cobblestones? One can’t tell. Should they be? One doesn’t know.

P1200383 copy

All right, that was the windup, and now here’s the pitch, from the SFPUC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of PG&E:

7J7C4714 copy

Are these realtor-backed parklets “beautiful?” I don’t think so. Will they “improve safety?” I don’t see how. And actually, spending tax and fee payer money on “streetscape” “beauty” instead of safety is the opposite of  “improving safety,” PUC. Oh, and PUC, if you ever want to talk about how best to “manage” California’s water resources for the benefit of all Californians, look me up, cause you’re doing it wrong…

All the deets:

Oak Street and Fell Street Pedestrian and Bike Safety Project

Picture of Bulbout Area

Learn More About the Project

Check out SFMTA’s project website to learn more!

Improving Traffic Safety and Enhancing Stormwater Collection

The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) is teaming up with the San Francisco Municipal Transportation Agency (SFMTA) on the Oak Street and Fell Street Pedestrian and Bike Safety Project to integrate stormwater management with their traffic calming project.

In response to strong public feedback for more greenery and planting for the project, we’ve added rain gardens to the bulbouts along Oak and Fell Streets. A rain garden is a stormwater management technique which infiltrates stormwater into the soil, diverting water from going into the sewer. This addition to the project will benefit community members; not only will the project make residents and travelers safer, the rain gardens will add beauty and character to the intersections. Our partnership with the SFMTA will extend the improvements already underway. While the addition of green infrastructure will not result in any additional parking losses beyond what was approved by the SFMTA Board of Directors in May 2012, four of the bulbouts will be larger than initially proposed. Originally scheduled for construction in late 2013, the project is slated to begin construction in early summer 2014.

Contact:

For construction inquiries, please contact:

Dadisi Najib – SFDPW
Email: Dadisi.Najib@sfdpw.org

Luis Montoya – SFMTA
Email: luis.montoya@sfmta.com

Ari Frink – SFPUC
Email: afrink@sfwater.org

For more project information, visit SFMTA’s site here.

Haunting Graffiti in the GGP Panhandle – Hey, How Many Gallons of Pure HETCH HETCHY Water Has SFGov EVER Recycled? Ever?

Wednesday, March 4th, 2015

This* is arresting:

7J7C3514 copy

It’s at the famed half-million-dollar Honorable Gavin Christopher Newsom Toilet Building** in the Golden Gate Park Panhandle. (Learn about the building itself from SF Weekly’s Joe Eskenazi here – “Class For Your Ass.”)

Anyway, yes, our drinking water comes from the Yosemite area [Please see Comments for this correction], from a thousand li away. So, you’re oll korrect on that score, artiste de graffiti.

But IMO, the arrow points in the wrong direction. ‘Cause the Ladies Room doorway you can see there has toilets filled with the very same drinking water.

So yeah, SFPUC, the chairs you sit on up there above Civic Center are sustainable or whatever, and that, somehow, helped your new building become Platinum Leed certified or whatever, but what about your actual operations, man? Oh, you inherited a big chunk of flooded Yosemite and that’s the way you like it and you’ll fight to maintain your Way Of Life for as long as possible and that’s part of the reason why the “World Capital of Innovation” can’t worry about recycling any water at all? OK fine. Hey, SFGov, how about the water you spray on the street from the street sweepers? Oh, that’s drinking water so pure that you don’t need to filter it as well, huh? OK fine.

*Does the jogger have a white shirt with golden (red) hair or a blue shirt with black hair? Well, actually, my camera chose to give her white shirt a blue tinge, which I hastily fixed with one click. Anyway, when you do this kind of thing, everything in the background in direct sunlight goes to heck, but that’s white balance for you. In mitigation, the colors you see on the right side should be pretty much spot-on.

**IDK, that could be its name, who knows. Willie Brown will go to his grave having failed at having SFO and/or long long 3rd Street named after him, after decades of effort. (I think he eventually got an airport terminal or something.) But Gavin has a long road ahead of him afore the NAAWP or some other org will become the front organization for naming anything of significance after GCN.

Absurd: Nestle Pure Life Bottled Water Delivery Driver Blocks Southbound Fillmore by Double Parking 3x in 2 Blocks

Thursday, January 15th, 2015

What’s this? It takes just one truck double parking in our defunct “Jazz District” to back up Fillmore Street all the way across Geary?

7J7C9142 copy

Yep.

7J7C9149 copy

Dude stopped at least three times to deliver huge water bottles on both sides of the street, like he had all the time in the world

7J7C9147 copy

And he seemed to double park closer to the middle of the street than the right side.

Anyway, I tended to bidness and then came back up Fillmore northbound and Dude was still there on Fillmore, except this time he nosed in a bit. Here’s your reverse angle:

7J7C9150 copy

Don’t we get water from Hetch Hetchy? So why do we need Nestle to deliver these huge bottles as if we had the worst water in the world?

7J7C9153 copy

Nestle charges extra for San Francisco deliveries and this impossible delivery situation is part of the reason why.

IMO, this job, which is unecessary in the first place, is too big for one person to do without cutting corners…

Question: How Many Gallons of Water has the City of San Francisco Recycled Since 1850? The Answer Will Amaze You!

Monday, August 11th, 2014

Or not. I mean, why would I ask if the answer were anything but zero?

Here’s your super-pure, “better than Evian” Hetch Hetchy drinking water at work right here:

In other news, your SFPUC is working on a plan to downgrade the quality of your water on purpose, because, because…

In still yet other news, the SFPUC is better than you because it paid your money to buy a LEED certification for its new building on Golden Gate from the LEED people – this is so that the SFPUC can be shining exemplar for us all to follow.

“I would not call it less pure at all. I would call it very high quality water,” says SFPUC Assistant General Manager of Water

Thursday, June 12th, 2014

This has got to be the SFGov PR blunder of the year 2014:

I would not call it less pure at all. I would call it very high quality water,” says SFPUC Assistant General Manager of Water in a press conference in response to @sfexaminer story pic.twitter.com/dDme0raWw7

I don’t see how you’re going to able to top that.

A Modest Proposal for Steve Ritchie of the SFPUC: Let’s Start Paying Ten Percent of His Salary with Monopoly Money

Monday, April 28th, 2014

From Jessica Kwong of the San Francisco Examiner:

SFPUC Assistant General Manager of Water Steve Ritchie in a press conference in response to @sfexaminer story pic.twitter.com/dDme0raWw7

 “‘I would not call it less pure at all. I would call it very high quality water,’ says SFPUC Assistant General Manager of Water”

And oh, here we go:

“Blending contaminated SF groundwater with Hetch Hetchy supply makes it safe to drink, experts say” by Chris Roberts

You see how that works? The groundwater sources that the SFPUC wants to provide to us don’t pass muster with the Feds as drinking water. So they want to cut it with Hetch Hetchy water and then, and only then, will it meet standards.

Our drinking water will become less pure, right? I mean, that’s the whole plan, that’s the what the SFPUC has decided to do to save money, for better or worse.

Comes now, SFPUC Assistant General Manager of Water Steve Ritchie to state: I would not call it less pure at all.”

All right, well, the reason why SFGov can’t pay Steve Ritchie his inflated, six-figure salary with Monopoly money is because it doesn’t pass muster with the Feds as lawful currency. But what if we cut it with real money, so Steve Ritchie ends up with his salary being paid with 90% real money and 10% fake money?

I wouldn’t call that a pay cut at all. I would call that a “very high-quality” salary, one well above whatever our Federal government requires for the minimum wage.

What say you to that, Steve Ritchie?

Incredibly, Official San Francisco Celebrates the Destruction of Hetch Hetchy Valley – 100 Years of Raker Act

Thursday, December 19th, 2013

Here’s the real story.

And here’s today’s feel-good press release from SFGov:

“The Pen That Changed the Bay Area Forever

Bay Area Leaders Celebrate the Centennial of the Raker Act with a New City Hall Exhibit

SAN FRANCISCO, CA – Today, Bay Area leaders joined the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) to celebrate the centennial of the signing of the Raker Act into law at a ceremony at San Francisco City Hall.  The ceremony concluded with the unveiling of a new City Hall exhibit featuring the pen that President Woodrow Wilson used to sign the legislation 100 years ago today.

“The Raker Act enabled the construction of the Hetch Hetchy Regional Water System and Hetch Hetchy Power System,” said SFPUC General Manager Harlan Kelly. “Once President Wilson signed the act into law, the San Francisco Bay Area began to construct a public water system that now serves 2.6 million people across four Bay Area counties. It also allowed for construction of a public power system that provides clean hydroelectric energy for San Francisco city services like public buses, schools, firehouses, and more.”

The Raker Act provided the rights of way to construct water and power facilities over federal land in Yosemite National Park and Stanislaus National Forest. Named after its chief sponsor John E. Raker, Congressman from Manteca, the bill granted the rights to build O’Shaughnessy Dam in the Hetch Hetchy Valley, and construct water-collection and power-generating facilities stretching from the Sierras to the San Francisco Bay Area.

“The communities and businesses in the Bay Area were able to develop and thrive because of access to high quality water,” said Nicole Sandkulla, Chief Executive Officer of the Bay Area Water Supply and Conservation Agency (BAWSCA). “A true engineering marvel, this system supports the health and economic vitality of nearly 7% of California’s population.”

Despite, countless earthquakes, fires and other natural disasters, each day, 2.6 million people in the Bay Area turn on the tap and quench their thirst with Hetch Hetchy Water – some of the most pristine, cleanest water found anywhere in the world. While this water is delivered to its customers, the system also generates on average 1.7 billion kilowatts hours of clean, greenhouse gas-free electricity for San Francisco and its electricity customers. With no carbon footprint from its electricity supply, the SFPUC is considered one of the cleanest electric utilities anywhere.

The City Hall exhibit features a redwood plaque with a silver facsimile of the letter President Wilson wrote which explained his reasoning for signing the Raker Act. Mounted on the plaque is the actual pen the President used to sign the bill into law.

The plaque was originally presented to former San Francisco Mayor James Rolph, Jr. at the dedication of O’Shaughnessy Dam in 1923. Governor Rolph passed this heirloom on to his son, James Rolph III. Rolph was close friends with SFPUC Commissioner Oliver M. Rousseau, and because of this friendship he gave the plaque to Commissioner Rousseau. In 1970 Commissioner Rousseau officially presented the plaque to our commission as the logical and permanent home for such an historic piece. Until a few years ago, the location of the pen was lost to all.  Curators have now refurbished the piece in time for its public debut in City Hall.

Passage of the Raker Act met with a great deal of opposition at the time, having more to do with protecting states and local water rights. Its most well-known opponent was John Muir, environmentalist and founder of the Sierra Club. The merits of the Act are still debated by some today.

“Love or hate the Raker Act, it is undeniable that its passage was truly historic for the San Francisco Bay Area,” concluded General Manager Kelly. “The Hetch Hetchy Regional Water and Power Systems  have reliably served the region well for nearly 100 years.”

The Mistakes of San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee – Chapter One: Calling the Hetch Hetchy Valley Restoration Concept “Insane”

Friday, October 26th, 2012

Here it is, in the national media, in the Washington Post’s blog site, for tout le monde to see:

San Francisco’s Spectacular Hypocrisy

That bit from Amy Crawford has this nice quote about Proposition F (2012) from error-prone San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee:

“As insane as this is, it is, in fact, insane,” sputtered the usually mild-mannered Mayor Ed Lee when the initiative was announced.

Now, was it a mistake for San Francisco’s so-called Consensus Mayor to label Prop F (and, indirectly, the supporters of Prop F) as insane?

Yes. It’s not what he meant to say, it’s not what he actually thinks.

Now it certainly would be inconvenient for San Francisco to lose control of Hetch Hetchy, no argument there.

But IRL, it’s not “insane” to think that maybe, just maybe, it’d be a good idea to restore Hetchy Hetchy at some far off point in the future.

The Valley, the “counterpoint” to Yosemite, before San Francisco improperly grabbed it:

And I can see those waterfalls

And I can see those waterfalls

Click to become as “insane” as the half of San Francisco voters what are going to say “Yes” to Prop F (2012) come November.

Interim San Francisco Mayor Ed Lee’s Corrupt “City Family” Lines Up Against Prop F – Restoring Hetch Hetchy is a Bad Idea?

Friday, October 19th, 2012

Is the idea of restoring Hetch Hetchy (you know, at some point) “insane?” No, not at all.

But it sure would be inconvenient, I’ll grant you that.

Anyway, here’s the latest:

“City Contractors & City Bureaucracy Team-Up Against Prop F – Pay-to-play politics used to oppose the Yosemite Restoration Campaign

SAN FRANCISCO, Oct. 18, 2012 — San Francisco city contractors and the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) have ganged up to defeat Proposition F, the Water Conservation & Yosemite Restoration Initiative, the most recently released campaign finance reports disclosed.  According to the reports(1), 47% of funding for the ‘No on F’ campaign has come from companies currently doing business with San Francisco; companies with past contracts with the City, and labor unions representing contracted workers with the City. In addition, the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission has spent an undisclosed amount of money entertaining San Francisco community leaders at the Hetch Hetchy reservoir, as well as more than $197,000 in federal funds promoting the “Hetch Hetchy Brand” to San Francisco voters.

“These public records demonstrate that San Francisco City Hall and its employees have arm-twisted city contractors to extract hundreds of thousands of dollars to oppose reform. It’s typical ‘pay-to-play’ politics to defend the status quo and fight water conservation,” said Mike Marshall, Campaign Director for the Yosemite Restoration Campaign. “It’s made that much worse by the improper use of rate-payer and federal funds by the staff of the SFPUC in the run-up to, and during, the campaign.”

Proposition F is the “Water Conservation & Yosemite Restoration Initiative.”  It requires the City to develop a two-part plan to build San Francisco’s local water resources and reverse the damage done to the environment by the current water system over the last 100 years.  The plan would need to be approved by voters in 2016 in order to be implemented.

ABOUT THE YOSEMITE RESTORATION CAMPAIGN: The mission of the Yosemite Restoration Campaign is to reform San Francisco’s 19th century water system to allow for the restoration of Hetch HetchyValley and the Tuolumne River in Yosemite National Park. It is a non-profit, 501(c)(4) organization. www.YosemiteRestoration.org

‘No on F’ Campaign Finance Fact Sheet

According to campaign finance reports filed on Friday, October 5 the ‘No on F’ campaign received:

–  $131,122 from companies currently doing business with the City and County of San Francisco.

–  $69,729 from companies with past contracts with the City and County of San Francisco.

 —  $43,500 from labor unions representing individuals working on projects for the City and County of San Francisco.

According to public record requests the SFPUC staff has spent:

–  $197,000 in federal EPA funds promoting the Hetch Hetchy water brand. The funds were intended to encourage San Francisco residents to call 311 to report water quality problems. (2)

    —  An undisclosed amount of money organizing eight junkets to Yosemite National Park for local Democratic Club leaders, ‘No on F'” funders, neighborhood association leaders and gay rights activists.  Despite multiple Sunshine Ordinance requests, SFPUC staff have ignored requests asking for a detailed financial accounting of staff time spent organizing these political junkets.

–  An undisclosed amount of staff costs collaborating with ‘No on F’ attorneys to lobby the Ballot Simplification Committee.

(1)  http://nf4.netfile.com/pub2/Default.aspx?aid=sfo&AspxAutoDetectCookieSupport=1

(2)  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fvug-SeFiek&playnext=1&list=PL1CCB2CBC9D71ECB3&feature=results_main

SOURCE  Yosemite Restoration Campaign

Yosemite Restoration Campaign

Web Site: http://www.YosemiteRestoration.org