Blog & News

Solar + Storage for Public Buildings Program

SSMC’s December 2022 Happy Hour featured Peter Levitt from Peninsula Clean Energy (PCE) highlighting PCE’s new Solar + Storage for Public Buildings Program. The program is designed to help public agencies and school districts install solar photovoltaic energy and solar+battery backup systems on public facilities. Program objectives include: reducing customer energy costs; insulating against rising PG&E rates; helping public agencies achieve their sustainability goals, and  helping Peninsula Clean Energy meet its goal of creating 20 MW of new power sources in the county by 2025.  The program was created as part of Peninsula Clean Energy’s larger mission to reduce greenhouse [...]

Solar + Storage for Public Buildings Program2022-12-21T11:58:49-05:00

SSMC Releases 2022 Indicators Report on Building Electrification

San Mateo County’s transition from natural gas to electricity to power buildings is the focus of the 26th annual Indicators Report, which Sustainable San Mateo County (SSMC) unveiled on November 10 at Genentech in South San Francisco. To access the Indicators Report, a 4-page brochure and a video of the Indicators Report Launch event, go to Building electrification is one of the most effective ways to address climate change, said SSMC Program Manager Sarah Cassanego, who created the report with help from dozens of volunteers. She noted that 17 of the 20 cities in the county have limited natural [...]

SSMC Releases 2022 Indicators Report on Building Electrification2022-12-12T14:25:50-05:00

Electrify Everything! Join SSMC’s Green Electrification Photo and Short Video Contest

Electrify Everything! NEW DEADLINE: 09/30! Join SSMC’s Green Electrification Photo and Short Video Contest Submit your best green infrastructure photo(s) and short video(s) (30-90 sec. long) by 11:59PM PST on September 30th. No professional experience required. Your entry could win a great prize and will help raise awareness of the multiple benefits of electrifying our transportation and building sectors – including your own home! Sponsored by Peninsula Clean Energy       Ready to get started? It’s as easy as 1-2-3! Collect videos and photos of electrification in action Post and Tag @sustainablesmc and @pencleanenergy on Instagram and Facebook (if [...]

Electrify Everything! Join SSMC’s Green Electrification Photo and Short Video Contest2022-09-15T14:07:36-05:00

Connecting Art to Social Action

Art is a universally appreciated mode of expression and communication that can move a wide range of people. July’s Virtual Happy Hour explored how art can raise awareness, trigger empathy and motivate people to take action with the help of two professional artists: Joshua Harrison and Anthony Bianconi. Both Artists shared their recent projects and how they address environmental and broader systemic sustainability issues in the Bay Area.  Anthony Bianconi presented his project, Last of Lions, a thought-provoking statue of a mountain lion built in the context of Redwood City’s natural history. In Redwood City, mountain lions are starting to [...]

Connecting Art to Social Action2022-08-12T10:07:46-05:00

Making Public Transit in the Bay Area Sustainable

With the arrival of Caltrain’s new electric trains this year and the full electrification of Caltrain’s San Francisco Corridor on the horizon, our June 2022 Happy Hour focused on looking at the Bay Area’s public transit systems to see how they can be optimized for a more sustainable future. Three transit experts shared different approaches that public, private and nonprofit organizations have taken to make the region’s public transit more convenient, equitable and sustainable. Casey Fromson, Chief Communications Officer for the San Mateo County Transportation Authority, Caltrain and SamTrans, highlighted Caltrain’s 2040 Service Vision and how it is incorporating sustainable [...]

Making Public Transit in the Bay Area Sustainable2022-06-18T13:47:15-05:00

High Voltage, Low Impact Buildings: Building Electrification Efforts in San Mateo County

The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) report released earlier this month warned that to stay within 1.5 °C of climate change, greenhouse gas emissions must peak by 2025 or earlier before declining. The report gave the effort to decarbonize buildings through electrification more urgency, but scientists have long known the risks of using natural gas indoors. Electrified buildings can draw power from renewable sources, but natural gas remains many buildings’ primary energy source in San Mateo County, despite its large greenhouse gas footprint and associated hazards. Three expert speakers shared their knowledge about building electrification during our April 2022 [...]

High Voltage, Low Impact Buildings: Building Electrification Efforts in San Mateo County2022-06-18T13:32:37-05:00

Time to Turn off the Faucet: Drought Implications in San Mateo County

As the growing multiyear drought in California continues to make headlines, we were happy to invite two water experts to speak at our March Happy Hour. Tom Francis, the Bay Area Water Supply and Conservation Agency’s (BAWSCA) Water Resource Manager gave an update on the status of the drought in San Mateo County, while Kan Parthiban, Sustainability Director of LYNGSO Garden Materials, Inc. spoke about how healthy soil can support water conservation. Francis warned that San Mateo County will have to make wise choices to conserve water in the near future. The county and surrounding region currently fall within the [...]

Time to Turn off the Faucet: Drought Implications in San Mateo County2022-03-31T13:37:09-05:00

Climate and Environment Forum

Several candidates running for the Congressional seat currently held by Jackie Speier participated in a forum on environmental and sustainability issues on April 6. They are competing in the Primary Election taking place June 7; the two top vote-getter will advance to the General Election in November. Congresswoman Speier will be stepping down at the end of 2022. Sustainable San Mateo County was one of the co-sponsors of the Climate and Environment Forum, which was hosted by the Citizens' Climate Lobby. Click here to watch the candidates debate sustainability issues Event Sponsors:

Climate and Environment Forum2022-04-21T14:01:02-05:00

Turning Organic Waste into Gold

During February’s Happy Hour we unpacked the state’s new composting law (SB1383) with the help of three local experts in the field: Joe La Mariana, Executive Director of Rethink Waste, Monica Devincenzi from Republic Services and Gordon Tong, representing San Mateo County's Office of Sustainability. Monica started off the evening by sharing some historical context on waste management. She explained that each county is supposed to have at least one active landfill within its borders with a minimum of 15 years of waste capacity. San Mateo County has one active landfill site, Ox Mountain in Half Moon Bay, which is [...]

Turning Organic Waste into Gold2022-03-08T14:17:35-05:00
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