Most of December and January have declared no burn days in the San Joaquin Valley because of concern from wood smoke.
Now, the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution District, which stretches from Stockton to Bakersfield, is offering rebates to homeowners who switch from wood to natural gas.
Anthony Presto of the Pollution Control District, which has strict limitations on wood burning, says gas is the ideal alternative to wood. He says, with gas, residents won't have to worry about whether or not it's a no burn day.
"Natural gas is the cleanest and most efficient way to heat your home," he says.
Wood burning is the chief source of air pollution in the San Joaquin Valley in the winter.
Valley wide it can create as much as 17 tons per day of airborne particles. Presto says this year has been particularly bad because of the dry conditions.
"Rain and wind are what cleans the valley's air, this is so far this season is the worst we've seen," Presto says.
Low-income applicants can receive rebates up to $1,500 for converting to natural gas.
Using this new approach to calculate the snow’s water content also means improved forecasts for farms and cities, and even positive benefits for renewable-energy production. The program soon could go statewide — if it gets funded.
(AP) — Monday's snow survey found a "much rosier" picture than before last week's heavy winter storm, but still less than half the usual snow for this point in the season.
A judge ordered the California Department of Food and Agriculture to stop spraying dozens of pesticides. Some environmental groups count this as a win but a UC Riverside researcher warns the move will hurt efforts to fight a damaging citrus disease.
About 9 in 10 of the produce tested for pesticides at California grocery stores, farmer's markets and other outlets had little or no residue, according to the state Department of Pesticide Regulation's 2016 survey.
Gov. Brown attended the first UN Climate Conference held since President Donald Trump said he will withdraw from the Paris Climate Accord.