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EPA fines Oakland and municipal utility district for sewage discharge violations

Last week, the East Bay Municipal Utility District (EBMUD) and five East Bay communities were fined $389,300 in penalties for violating the Environmental Protection Agency’s 2014 Clean Water Act settlement. Oakland was penalized the most harshly, collecting $226,500 worth of those fines for its failure to both repair its sewage system’s defects and to prevent sewage from overflowing into the San Francisco Bay. The effects of overflooding—not just in private homes and neighborhoods, but also into the bay—are deadly for…

Climate change and land subsidence pose threat for coastal Bay Area

The Bay Area is sinking and climate change is speeding things up, according to a new study published in Science Advances this month. The study was conducted over the span of two years by researchers Manoocher Shirzaei and Roland Burgmann, who used satellite images to evaluate regions of the Bay Area, such as Treasure Island, which are experiencing sea level rise because of the accelerated melting of polar ice. Shirzaei is a former UC Berkeley post-doctoral student, and Burgmann is…

Oakland North’s 2017 year in review — our top stories

2017 brought a new group of student reporters to Oakland North from across the country and the globe. They covered a city in flux: a housing and homelessness crisis that shows no sign of abating, a school district facing millions in budget cuts, a citywide crackdown on warehouse spaces in the wake of the Ghost Ship fire, and local reactions to the new immigration and sanctuary city polices coming out of Washington under the new Donald Trump administration. But they also dug…

Oakland school district tests water at schools for lead

Following the discovery of lead in the water at McClymonds High School in August, water testing has begun throughout the entire Oakland Unified School District. Currently, 13 additional schools in the district have been reported to have lead in their water. At a school board meeting on November 8, Superintendent Kyla Johnson-Trammell read from a statement regarding the status of lead of Oakland schools. “In August 2017, water safety concerns regarding the lead levels of water at McClymonds High School…

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