Baykeeper's E-Newsletter for December 2012

San Francisco Baykeeper E-News
Monthly Update for December 2012
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Pollution Investigators Brave Stormy Weather

samplingWhen big rainstorms hit the Bay Area in late November, Baykeeper staff members and Volunteer Pollution Investigators braved the weather to find San Francisco Bay industrial polluters.

We went out in the rain to collect samples of storm water runoff from industrial facilities across the Bay Area. Baykeeper tests the samples for pollutants to determine whether certain industrial facilities are allowing rainwater contaminated with toxic substances to wash into San Francisco Bay.

Thanks to all the volunteers who have donated their time and spent rainy hours helping us collect evidence of Bay pollution. With your help, we're building more cases for legal action that will reduce toxic contamination in San Francisco Bay.

Read more about Baykeeper's recent rainy-season sampling push.

Baykeeper Sues Over Excessive Sand Mining in the Bay

miningExcessive sand mining in San Francisco Bay has contributed to erosion of Ocean Beach—yet state regulators just approved even more sand mining. This decision could disrupt the Bay's ecosystem, threaten the Great Highway, cause a major city sewer line to rupture, and wash away sensitive habitat for shorebirds.

Baykeeper has filed suit to stop this increase in the amount of sand mining allowed in the Bay, which was approved on the basis of flawed science and inadequate environmental review.

Baykeeper is working to assure that regulators use better science before finalizing the increase. We're urging them to insist on sustainable rates of sand mining that will better protect the Bay and local beaches.

Read more about Baykeeper's lawsuit to stop excessive sand mining in the Bay.

Baykeeper Urges Clampdown on Polluting Auto Shredder

SchnitzerBaykeeper is working to stop Schnitzer Steel, a metal and vehicle recycler on the Oakland Estuary, from allowing airborne toxic dust to blow into San Francisco Bay.

Schnitzer Steel Oakland shreds tens of thousands of tons of scrap metal every year. Airborne dust from automobile shredders has been shown to contain mercury, arsenic, and other dangerous pollutants.

Regulators recently issued a draft cleanup order requiring Schnitzer to keep its toxic dust from blowing onto nearby businesses, but didn't mention protecting the Bay from this pollution. Baykeeper is advocating for a stronger cleanup order that requires Schnitzer to contain all of its toxic airborne dust—not just what blows onto nearby properties.

Read more about Baykeeper's advocacy to stop Schnitzer's toxic contamination of the Bay.

Charity Navigator Awards Baykeeper Our 2nd Four-Star Rating

CharityNavigatorCharity Navigator, the nation's leading evaluator of nonprofit organizations' financial performance, has awarded San Francisco Baykeeper a top 4-star rating for the second year in a row.

Charity Navigator examined Baykeeper's program growth, fundraising efficiency, and financial transparency to determine its rating of the organization as among the most fiscally responsible.

"Baykeeper is honored to receive a second consecutive top rating from Charity Navigator," said Deb Self, Baykeeper Executive Director. "I'm proud to be recognized for our dedication to providing a sound investment in a healthy San Francisco Bay."

Read more about Baykeeper earning our second top rating from Charity Navigator.

Volunteer in the Baykeeper Office This Week

Can you help Baykeeper with our mailings this week? We're looking for volunteers in our downtown San Francisco office from 2-5 pm on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. Even an hour of your time will help! Our office is located near the Powell Street BART and Muni stops at Market and 4th Street.

If you'd like to lend a hand, please contact Tracy Corbin, Membership Coordinator, by sending an email or calling 415-856-0444 x 112. Many thanks!

Have a Bay-Friendly Holiday Season

FOGA holiday Bay tip from Baykeeper: When preparing rich holiday foods, don't wash cooking fats and oils down the drain.

When fats, oil, and grease get washed down the drain during cleanup of pots, pans, and fryers, they harden and clump together, especially in cold weather. Fats stick to the inside of sewer lines and build up, causing clogs and overflows. When sewage overflows into streets, it gets washed into storm drains, where it flows directly into local creeks and the Bay.

To help protect San Francisco Bay, place used fat in a milk carton or other compostable container and wipe down greasy pans with a paper towel before washing. Dispose of the container or towel in your compost bin or garbage. Take large amounts of fat to a used cooking oil recycling facility. Click here for a list of Bay Area used cooking oil collection sites.

Read more about making your holiday celebration Bay-friendly.

Make your year-end gift to Baykeeper Today

GiftBaykeeper achieved major progress toward a cleaner San Francisco Bay in 2012. We turned the tide on sewage pollution in the Bay, and won cleanup at industrial facilities that were contaminating the Bay's waters. Thank you for being a part of these victories!

Please help us keep fighting for a cleaner and healthier San Francisco Bay in 2013. With your help, we will accelerate our campaign to clean up one of the Bay's most serious pollution problems, toxic industrial runoff.

Please make your year-end gift to Baykeeper today, and help us stand up for a healthy, thriving San Francisco Bay.

Make your year-end gift to Baykeeper today.

Pollution Investigators Brave Stormy Weather