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Essential California: The fight over solar power

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Gov. Gavin Newsom's administration could soon make it harder for many families to go solar. ‌ ?

Gov. Gavin Newsom's administration could soon make it harder for many families to go solar. ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ ‌ [Los Angeles Times] [Essential California Newsletter] PRESENTED BY LightEn Network* November 3, 2021 [View in browser]( [Click to view images]( panels in Rosamond, Calif. (Gary Coronado / Los Angeles Times) Good morning, and welcome to the Essential California [newsletter](. It’s Wednesday, Nov. 3. I’m Justin Ray. Gov. Gavin Newsom [unexpectedly canceled plans last week]( to lead a California delegation to the[United Nations Climate Change Conference]( in Scotland. You might be wondering why the governor of a state would attend a conference of national leaders. But the thing is, California has heavy influence. It has by far the largest economy of any state. If California were a sovereign nation, [it would rank as the world’s fifth largest economy](. Newsom’s unexpected withdrawal is not the only move damaging his sustainability credibility. His administration could soon make it harder for many families to go solar. What’s at stake [The Times’ Sammy Roth is out with a new report]( explains how state officials have been laying the groundwork to slash a key solar incentive program called net energy metering, with a decision expected this year. Net energy metering has helped make California a solar powerhouse, with more than 1.3 million systems installed. The program works by crediting solar-powered homes and businesses for the electricity they export to the utility grid. At the heart of the issue is a disagreement about the merits of rooftop solar power. One unexpected aspect of the story is that the issue isn’t simply pitting fossil fuel folks against climate activists. “The debate has raised thorny questions about economic and racial justice and gotten tangled up in the third-rail politics of organized labor,” Roth writes. [Roth explains the details of the program]( like who can and can’t participate, what it means for utility companies, and why accusations of bad faith have run rampant. *FYI: Sammy Roth writes a newsletter for people who care about the environment and climate across California [called “Boiling Point.”]( It is free. Additional reading: - In a finding that scientists believed was still decades away from becoming reality, [California researchers say that climate change is now the overwhelming cause of conditions driving extreme wildfire behavior in the western United States](. The study released this week said that global warming was essentially two-thirds to 88% responsible for the atmospheric conditions fueling increasingly destructive wildfires. And that’s a conservative estimate, said study author Rong Fu, a climate researcher at UCLA. And now, here’s what’s happening across California: Note: Some of the sites we link to may limit the number of stories you can access without subscribing. “There is dumb. There is dumber. And then there is whatever is happening at UC Santa Barbara in the planning and design of a new student dorm — which takes dumb and multiplies it by a factor of willful ignorance squared,” Carolina A. Miranda writes in an essay that pulls no punches. The school has embarked on the development of a massive dormitory that will “stuff more than 4,500 students into an 11-story warehouse-size building in which the overwhelming majority of the units — about 94% — do not have access to natural light or fresh air.” [Los Angeles Times]( [Rendering showing exterior of Munger Hall at University of California Santa Barbara.] Rendering showing exterior of Munger Hall at University of California Santa Barbara. (UCSB) ADVERTISEMENT BY LightEn Network Ready to transform your life and connect with the authentic you? Set in a private estate in Mallorca, Spain. The Zulma Reyo School of Consciousness offers students the opportunity of connecting with their most authentic version of themselves. The purpose of the School is to give students the tools and appreciation of self-transformation so they can connect with a much greater wisdom. The school’s philosophy is built around a simple but transformatory idea: that by rebuilding ourselves we can find the power to rebuild our world, transforming our responses to create a more successful & dynamic approach to the way we live & work. The course is fully funded for students who are successful in their application and to apply/enquire, download the prospectus from [www.zrsoc.com]( End of advertisement L.A. STORIES A top LAFD official accessed confidential complaint files while he was under investigation. Since May, the top administrative commander of the Los Angeles Fire Department, Chief Deputy Fred Mathis, has been under investigation for allegedly being impaired by alcohol or drugs while overseeing the agency’s operations center during the Palisades fire. But as the inquiry continued, Mathis was still able to access the LAFD’s confidential complaint system that contains sensitive information about the allegations against him, including the names of witnesses in the case, The Times has learned. Department critics say that could have exposed the witnesses to possible retaliation. After The Times inquired about the matter, the LAFD confirmed that Mathis had logged into the system while under investigation. [Los Angeles Times]( Our daily news podcast If you’re a fan of this newsletter, you’ll probably love our new daily podcast, “The Times,” hosted by columnist Gustavo Arellano, along with reporters from across our newsroom. Every weekday, it takes you beyond the headlines. Subscribe [on Apple Podcasts]( and follow [on Spotify](. POLITICS AND GOVERNMENT As Trump bashing comes up short, a lawmaker offers ideas for wooing the Latino vote. Rep. Tony Cárdenas thinks Democrats have a Latino problem: The party applies a one-size-fits-all strategy. Latinos have become one of the nation’s fastest-growing voter groups; allegiances formed today will likely endure for many elections to come. What’s a politician to do? Democrats need to speak assorted “cultural languages”: messaging that impacts Latinos of different backgrounds. [Los Angeles Times]( Could Los Angeles lose a Black congressional seat? Rep. Karen Bass’ congressional district has some of the most historically important African American communities in the western United States. But many factors — including the state’s impending loss of a congressional seat due to the census, and Bass’ decision not to seek reelection to Congress as she mounts a run for mayor — are prompting fears that the district will no longer be represented by an African American as congressional boundaries are redrawn this year. These concerns were heightened when a state panel released preliminary maps last week that placed Democratic Reps. Bass and Maxine Waters— the only other elected Black member of Congress from Los Angeles — in the same district, in effect eliminating a minority-led congressional seat. [Los Angeles Times]( CRIME AND COURTS Craigslist vacation rentals have scammers. A woman in Dillon Beach, located in Marin County, once had a couple show up to her door who wanted to stay at a vacation rental they found on Craigslist. The only problem is, the listing was fake, leaving the couple without a place to stay and without the money they paid for lodging. While not all rentals are shams, it should be noted that more than 5 million people have lost money in a rental scam, according to a 2019 study from the Better Business Bureau. Additionally, 43% of those looking for rental properties and vacation rentals saw a fake listing. [SF Gate]( Support our journalism [Subscribe to the Los Angeles Times.]( ADVERTISEMENT HEALTH AND THE ENVIRONMENT Breastfeeding and vaxxed: Parents delay weaning children to pass on COVID-19 antibodies. Mireya Gonzalez has continued to breastfeed her son and daughter, 3 and 7 years old respectively. “She’s old enough to know what antibodies are,” Gonzalez said. “We call them little warriors in the milk and she’s willingly drinking it.” Lactating parents in CA who are vaccinated have kept nursing beyond the 6-months-to-1-year recommendation. Does breastmilk immunize babies? We looked into the research and asked experts. [Los Angeles Times]( [Mireya Tecpaxohitl Gonzalez, 32, carries her son as her daughter, a first-grader, does math homework.] Mireya Tecpaxohitl Gonzalez, 32, carries her son as her daughter, a first-grader, does math homework. (Mel Melcon/Los Angeles Times) Colors of California. In a nearly half-hour video, former Sacramento news anchor Marianne McClary explores California’s many different colors. See everything from “the mustards of winter to the sunflowers of summer, and the yellow, orange, and red leaves of autumn that paint the Sierra Nevada a special kind of gold,” PBS writes. [PBS]( California lost about 27,800 child-care workers between February and April 2020 — or roughly a third of that workforce — according to data from the federal Bureau of Labor Statistics. From then through September 2021, about 19,600 returned. Still, the workforce is about 10% smaller than it was pre-pandemic. But even before COVID-19, there wasn’t enough child care available in California to meet families’ needs. [CalMatters]( CALIFORNIA CULTURE Jennifer Tilly on the role of Tiffany Valentine in “Chucky,” a sequel to the seven films in the franchise. Tilly, who lives in Los Angeles, is returning to the character of Tiffany Valentine, the psychotic, babydoll-voiced ex-girlfriend of Chucky. For a while, Tilly, 63, had been getting offers for parts she just wasn’t interested in (she considers herself “semi-retired”). But when her best friend and “Child’s Play” creator Don Mancini called and said he was making a TV series based on the horror-comedy franchise, she couldn’t help but be intrigued. She talked to us about her acting roles, and her second career as a professional poker player. [Los Angeles Times]( Two major social media platforms want to increase office space. Facebook and the parent company of TikTok are seeking major Bay Area office expansions, San Francisco’s largest office landlord told the San Francisco Chronicle. “Facebook is looking for 700,000 additional square feet. And ByteDance is searching for approximately 250,000 to 300,000 square feet” in Silicon Valley, said Owen Thomas, CEO of Boston Properties, which owns Salesforce Tower and Embarcadero Center. If deals are reached, they would be among the largest in the Bay Area since the pandemic began. [San Francisco Chronicle]( Free online games Get our free daily crossword puzzle, sudoku, word search and arcade games in our new game center at [latimes.com/games](. Something extra: [The NPR podcast Hidden Brain released an episode]( about ways we shape human behavior. We tend to think in terms of fuel — adding things that encourage a certain outcome. For businesses, that might be making a product more alluring to attract customers. For organizations, that might be having a pizza day if goals are met. What we don’t think of is removing barriers to action, which can be even more successful. I encourage you to listen. The episode has a lot of information for managers, employees and anyone looking to convince someone of a particular point of view. CALIFORNIA ALMANAC Los Angeles: 76 San Diego: 70 San Francisco: [Meet Coach!]( 67 San Jose: 74 Fresno: 74 Sacramento: 70 AND FINALLY Today’s California memory is from Susan Hirsch: In the 1940s there was a riding stable on Jefferson near Sepulveda. We played a game on horseback in the deserted hills. My father was “sheriff,” we kids were “outlaws.” The outlaws galloped off, the sheriff in pursuit. Before returning, we’d dismount to cool down our horses. One time, a horse took off before one of the kids got completely on. He had one foot in a stirrup and grabbed the other side of the saddle. The more we chased, the faster his horse galloped. We arrived looking like the sheriff had captured two outlaws alive and one dead. If you have a memory or story about the Golden State, [share it with us](. (Please keep your story to 100 words.) Please let us know what we can do to make this newsletter more useful to you. Send comments to essentialcalifornia@latimes.com. ADVERTISEMENT Thank you for reading the Los Angeles Times Essential California newsletter. Invite your friends, relatives, coworkers to sign up [here](. Not a subscriber? Get unlimited digital access to latimes.com. [Subscribe here](. [Los Angeles Times] Copyright © 2021, Los Angeles Times 2300 E. Imperial Highway, El Segundo, California, 90245 1-800-LA-TIMES | [latimes.com]( *Advertisers have no control over editorial decisions or content. If you're interested in placing an ad or classified, get in touch [here](. We'd love your feedback on this newsletter. Please send your thoughts and suggestions [here](mailto:newsletters@latimes.com). You received this email because you signed up for newsletters from The Los Angeles Times. [Manage marketing email preferences]( · [Manage newsletter subscriptions or unsubscribe]( · [Terms of service]( · [Privacy policy]( · [Do Not Sell My Personal Information]( · [CA Notice of Collection]( FOLLOW US [Divider](#) [Facebook]( [2-tw.png]( [Instagram]( [YouTube](

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