Tora Rocha believes in bees. And butterflies, hoverflies, and wasps. Why? Because these insects are the city’s pollinators, and without them, Oakland wouldn’t have the healthy plants that produce food, fibers, spices, and even medicines.
Oakland food-justice advocates have long dreamed of turning local vacant lots into small farms and community gardens. At the end of last year, many hoped that AB 551, a new state law building incentives into urban agriculture practices, would be the push needed to turn Oakland’s blighted land into blood oranges. But those eager for speedy implementation will have to exercise patience.
A concerned citizen has spurred city officials to investigate her complaints that a customs examination station in Alameda is a potential source of hazards ranging from radioactive material to weapons of mass destruction. Oakland said no to similar proposal for a screening facility in West Oakland.