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June 1, 2000


Arcata weighs power options

Salmon funds proposed

Science students clean up

Listening to women's needs

Arts! Arcata debuts June 9

Calling all leaders

Arcata weighs power options

The search for environmental sustainability is sometimes a matter of choosing the lesser of two evils.

The Arcata City Council faced such a dilemma recently over the city's power provider. Arcata is a member of the Association of Bay Area Governments, which in turn purchases energy from a company named Calpine. Calpine has plans to develop a geothermal power plant on the Medicine Lake Highlands, an environmentally sensitive Native American sacred site. In addition, although the geothermal power plant produces no carbon dioxide or nuclear waste, its byproducts include arsenic.

"I wouldn't say geothermal is bad, but I don't think any power should be called `green' power," said Arcata Mayor Connie Stewart.

The council decided May 17 to request that ABAG disassociate itself from Calpine. Stewart said the council decided to withdraw from ABAG if no other solution could be found.

"There are a lot of alternative providers out there," she said.

Salmon funds proposed

Calling salmon "a key environmental and economic resource for our North Coast," Sen. Wesley Chesbro announced last week the approval in the Assembly of a bill authorizing $9 million in federal funds for coastal salmon and steelhead restoration projects.

The bill provides $2.7 million for local projects that fit within guidelines for the Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Program. The remaining funds will be allocated by September.

Groups like the Petrolia-based Mattole Restoration Council (See Journal story, March 2) are already at work on proposals.

"It will be an open competitive grant process," said Gary Peterson, the council's fisheries biologist. "The money should hit the ground where it's most needed."

Senate approval is likely since the bill passed the Assembly unanimously. Funds will become available once the bill is signed by the governor.

Science students clean up

Local science whiz kids hit an academic grand slam at the California State Science Fair in Los Angeles May 22 and 23, earning 11 major awards including the Science Fair Project of the Year.

Jacoby Creek sixth-grader Thomas Moulia won the top award for constructing and programming a digital eye capable of recognizing and remembering simple objects. The project also netted the first prize in the electricity and electronics category -- and $125.

Of the 23 students from Humboldt County at the fair, nine went home with awards -- and all except Moulia were female.

"I'm certainly thrilled by that," said Cheryl Ingham, science fair coordinator for the Humboldt County Office of Education. "For many years, girls did not feel that it was socially OK to be smart in math and science."

Projects covering a variety of topics -- from airplane wings to breast cancer -- were recognized for their excellence.

Listening to women's needs

When you're trying to help somebody, sometimes the important skill to have is the ability to listen.

Six Rivers Planned Parenthood is hosting a listening session on women's reproductive health June 6. Organizers say they anticipate hearing about the need for increased accessibility and problems with transportation, especially in rural areas.

"It is hard for people to get into population centers for services," said Debbe Hartridge, director of information and education for Planned Parenthood.

If access is identified as a need, Planned Parenthood could send nurses into those areas to provide some services.

The session, from 1-3:30 p.m. in the Lakeview Room at the College of the Redwoods, is co-hosted by the Women's Foundation, a San Francisco-based organization that secures funding for organizations working toward improving women's place in society.

Arts! Arcata debuts June 9

North Coast art lovers will find more opportunities to get out and enjoy art with the advent of Arts! Arcata beginning June 9.

Arcata Main Street is coordinating the new monthly event, an arts walk and open house in the downtown and Northtown area. The Arcata event will be held from 6 to 9 p.m. on the second Friday of each month. The inaugural event was held May 12.

While Arcata Main Street initiated the event and will be involved in its development and promotion, Arts! Arcata is a cooperative effort and includes technical support from the Humboldt Arts Council, start-up funds from Mad River Community Hospital and sponsorship by Jacoby Storehouse.

Participating Arcata businesses include Arcata Exchange, Belle Starr, the Garden Gate, Harbinger Gallery, Jambalaya, Lola, Muddy Waters, Natural Selection, North Soles, Northtown Gallery, Plaza Design, Plaza Grill, the Pottery Farm, Redwood Yogurt, Rookery Books, Sacred Grounds, Studio 3 Salon and Wildberries Marketplace.

Fashioned after Eureka's Arts Alive! and events like it around the country, Arts! Arcata hopes to leave itself room to try different ideas and grow in new directions, organizers say.

Calling all leaders

The Cascadia Leadership Center announced last week that it is accepting applications for participants in its leadership training program.

The program's first session ever was completed May 13 after five months of workshops and activities. The training attempts to bring out leadership traits and foster cooperation among participants.

Program applicants should be "involved in community improvement efforts" and "have the potential to grow as leaders," said program director Julie Fulkerson.

Participants are encouraged to apply as teams of two or three. Call 442-2993, ext. 313, for details and applications.


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