Pacific Swell | Southern California environment news and trends

Morning greens: Subway, sand, and solar news

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What will the Subway to the Sea look like? Well, it doesn’t go to the sea in Metro’s recommendation for the Westside Subway Extension (PDF). The recommended route would extend the Purple Line down Wilshire to the VA. Metro’s The Source blog has a summary of the recommendation’s decisions along with their rationales.

Metro also revealed its recommendation for the Regional Connector (PDF), which would hook up the various transit lines in downtown Los Angeles. That recommendation calls for three stations — eliminating a fourth station considered at 5th/Flower. Again, Metro’s The Source has an overview of the highlights.

In response to Metro’s recommendations, Streetsblog LA points out the Metro’s recommendations were made before the public commenting period on the projects ended. Metro’s still officially taking comments for both projects until Oct. 18.

Venice Beach will get $1.6M sand buffer, the Los Angeles County Board of Supervisors decided yesterday. Sand will be moved to eroded portions of the beach to protect inland structures.

The Solar industry’s gaining power, reports LA Times. Several studies — timed to coincide with the Solar Power International convention’s happening at the L.A. Convention Center this week — shine light on the bright future of the solar industry.

In national news: The White House lifted the moratorium on offshore drilling, reports NPR. LA Times’ coverage reports that, as you may have expected, environmentalists are unhappy the moratorium’s been lifted while oil companies and their allies are unhappy about the tougher regulations. NY Times’ Andrew Revkin opines: “Why isn’t expanded offshore drilling predicated on real movement toward a tougher federal gas tax, at least one that is revenue neutral — something that even some ardent conservatives support?”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention are prepping for climate change — by giving out grants “to evaluate and mitigate health impacts from everything from hotter summers to an anticipated increase in waterborne illness resulting from flooding as glaciers melt and raise sea levels,” reports NY Times’ Green blog.

Lastly and cutely: Ever been to teeny tiny Schader Park in Santa Monica? Julia Frey at enthuses about the “wee green space”: “what it lacks in size it makes up for in charm, shady benches and lovely trees.” What’s your favorite pocket park?