Noteworthy News

‘Insane’ California Air Topped World Health Standard by 60 Times
California’s air exceeded world health standards by 60 times last week, and conditions on Monday continued to top safe thresholds with the deadliest blaze ever in the state is about 65 percent contained.
How Extreme Weather Is Shrinking the Planet
Thirty years ago, this magazine published “The End of Nature,” a long article about what we then called the greenhouse effect. I was in my twenties when I wrote it, and out on an intellectual limb: climate science was still young.
Twice? PG&E alerts state regulators of second power line failure near Camp Fire mystery ‘second start’
A senior PG&E official alerted state regulators late Friday that one of the utility’s distribution lines suffered a power outage about 15 minutes after the deadly Camp Fire roared to life on the morning of Nov. 8.
How Apple and other manufacturers attack your right to repair their products
For 10 years, John Bumstead has had a small but profitable business buying old Apple laptops in bulk, refurbishing them by hand, and selling them to wholesalers or via Amazon.com for about $150.
California fires bring upheaval to utilities as they face massive liabilities
The worst fires in recorded California history promise to reshape the state’s utilities as Pacific Gas & Electric and Southern California Edison face billions of dollars in potential liabilities and growing calls to overhaul their systems to better prevent wildfires.
Northern California fire brings worst air quality in the world to residents hundreds of miles away
Smoke from the Camp fire — California’s deadliest wildfire in recorded history — has poured into communities hundreds of miles away, filling the sky with dangerous particles, grayish hues and a bitter odor. The smoke has also dropped temperatures as much as 10 degrees because the haze is blotting out the sun.
How Elon Musk might make $920 million in Tesla debt go away
A big pile of debt comes due at Tesla on March 1 — $920 million worth. But starting in two weeks, the company has a chance to make it disappear.
State audit blames bullet train mismanagement for delays and price hikes
A stinging state audit of the California bullet train project released Thursday found that flawed decision-making, organizational faults and poor contract management led to multibillion-dollar cost overruns and delays in construction.
Climate contrarian uncovers scientific error, upends major ocean warming study
Researchers with UC San Diego’s Scripps Institution of Oceanography and Princeton University have walked back scientific findings published last month that showed oceans have been heating up dramatically faster than previously thought as a result of climate change.
PG&E could face financial trouble if utility is found responsible for California’s worst wildfire
In a grim sign for the Northern California utility giant, Pacific Gas & Electric Co. said Wednesday that if it is deemed responsible for the fire that destroyed much of Paradise, the liability would exceed its insurance coverage.