Cold water cracks aging water pipes in downtown Sacramento

Two downtown office buildings were closed and hundreds of workers were sent home Wednesday because a nearly 100-year-old water main cracked in the cold weather.

It was at least the 15th broken water main that the city Department of Utilities has responded to in downtown Sacramento in the past week, department spokeswoman Jessica Hess said.

Stretches of cold like the one the city has experienced over the past week put a strain on aging pipes in the downtown and midtown areas, Hess said.

“It’s pretty typical that we have a week or so where we’ve got an increased number of main breaks,” she said.

“It’s just the age of the pipes combined with the type of material and the cold that led to this.”

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Comment: So much for “global warming,” just as the state government begins imposing AB 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006. The state government is more out of touch than usual.


Susan M. Trager: AB32 Empowers State Regulators


As we head down the stretch to the November 2 election, Proposition 23 has become the top initiative people are talking about. The debate mainly focuses on whether it would create or kill jobs.

Prop. 23 affects AB32, the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, which cuts greenhouse gas emissions in the state by 25 percent by 2020. If Prop. 23 passes, AB32 would be suspended until state unemployment, currently 12.3 percent, drops to 5.5 percent or lower for a year.

Proponents cite studies, such as one by the state Legislative Analyst, showing that AB32 would put too many new burdens on business, thus killing jobs. Those backing AB32 insist that it is encouraging companies to create “green” jobs, giving California an edge in a vital new field.

A better way to look it AB32 is to see it as a type of industrial policy. According to the Concise Encyclopedia of Economics, industrial policy gives “government officials additional authority, as well as the necessary fiscal and regulatory powers, to directly alter national industrial structures.”

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ENERGY: Agencies seek to contain water and energy costs together

Under the lash of rising costs —- which consumers will ultimately pay —- some of the biggest names in the state’s electricity and water industries met Thursday at the Los Angeles headquarters of the Metropolitan Water District, Southern California’s main water wholesaler, to share information about conservation and technology.

They were brought together by the Water Research Foundation, which helps local water utilities get a handle on issues such as climate change that would be hard to study separately. Those presenting included Southern California Edison, the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, and Metropolitan.

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AB 32 driving energy costs higher

By Susan M. Trager

May 3 saw 807,946 signatures submitted to the California Secretary of State to qualify for the November ballot the California Jobs Initiative. If approved by voters, it would suspend AB32, the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006, until unemployment in California dropped from its current high level, 12.6 percent in March, to 5.5 percent or lower for four consecutive quarters. AB32 supposedly would reduce global warming caused by greenhouse gases.

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Schwarzenegger fights to protect AB 32 legacy