Most Litter Hauled from Beaches in 2020 Was Plastic, Foundation Reports

A report on the waste picked up by cleanup crews working along the nation’s beaches and shorelines from the Surfrider Foundation showed almost 90% of the more than 80,000 pounds of trash collected in 2020 was plastic. The foundation, an ocean and beach protection nonprofit, found new ways to structure beach cleanups, like sending volunteers out by themselves instead of in groups, to mitigate the risk of exposure to the coronavirus. » Read more

Several men gather just outside a building at San Quentin prison, with Mt. Tamalpais framed by dramatic clouds in the background. Four prisoners a tSan Quentin have tested positive for COVID-19 and their housing unit is under quarantine.

BREAKING NEWS: San Quentin Suffers New COVID-19 Outbreak

This story is being published in partnership with the Prison Journalism Project.

San Quentin State Prison is experiencing a new COVID-19 outbreak after four incarcerated men in a cell block tested positive, chief medical executive Alison Pachynski said on Saturday. 

Earlier in the week, the prison put the Alpine unit of the South block on quarantine after one incarcerated man tested positive for COVID-19. » Read more

Volunteer Tiffany Williams displays an open box filled with electrical air monitoring equipment.

Air-Pollution Tracking Project Launches in SF Bayview

Environmental activists are about to launch an air-monitoring project to track pollution linked to high rates of asthma and other health conditions in San Francisco’s Bayview-Hunters Point neighborhood.

The first data readouts will likely be publicly available by the end of August, according to the organization running the project. » Read more

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How SF Will Allocate $1 Billion in Homelessness Funding

San Francisco’s Department of Homelessness and Supportive Housing is a relatively new department, but it and its budget have been growing rapidly. The newly approved city budget allocates more than $1.1 billion over two years to the department. That money will be spent on programs including placing people in housing, finding ways to keep people who are in a precarious housing situation in place, opening parking sites for people living in their vehicles, family shelters, temporary shelters and supportive services.  » Read more

Activists rally for a public bank on the steps of San Francisco City Hall in November 2019.

Group of Experts Devising Business Plan for SF Public Bank

The proposal to create a public bank for San Francisco, in order to provide an alternative to big banks for the city’s investing and lending needs, is moving incrementally from concept toward reality. A group of experts in relevant fields, from finance to affordable housing, has been selected to start to devise a business plan for a public bank. » Read more