Selling the future

Dear EarthTalk I don't hear much about the environmental impacts of our consumer culture any more, but it seems to me that our “buy, buy, buy” mentality is a major contributor to our overuse of energy and resources. Are any organizations addressing this issue today? M. Oakes, Miami, FL. There is no doubt true that our overly... Read more →


Raw milk more popular, more regulated

PANOCHE VALLEY — On a stretch of California grassland, workers milk 70 Jersey cows and bottle several hundred gallons of milk into quart glass bottles topped with bright yellow caps — without heating the milk to pasteurize it. Claravale Farm, two hours west of Fresno, has been producing milk with minimal interference between the... Read more →


Marine ER releases its 10,000th rescued sea lion

POINT REYES — Two juvenile California sea lions paused for a moment at the edge of the sea, each raising their whiskered faces toward the silvery water before sliding in to freedom. For the Marine Mammal Center crew standing behind the rehabilitated pinnipeds on Thursday, it was a significant day: rescued sea lion No. 10,000, nicknamed... Read more →


Venice food club owner pleads not guilty, bail reduced

LOS ANGELES — A raid on a health food store and its raw dairy products sparked a protest outside a Los Angeles courthouse Thursday where the market's owner was arraigned on charges of selling unlicensed, unpasteurized milk. James Stewart, 64, pleaded not guilty to conspiracy to commit a crime and a dozen other counts. A Superior Court... Read more →


‘Ocean Park Pier’ mural may disappear

MAIN STREET — The ever changing mural on Main Street and Ocean Park Boulevard is a familiar sight to anyone living in Santa Monica. “Ocean Park Pier” began as a portrait of the bustling Santa Monica seaside in the 1920s, but soon other artists added their own flourishes, like the infamous image of a surfing George... Read more →


Osborn leads in campaign contributions

CITYWIDE — The election for newly-drawn state assembly districts may be over a year away, but money is already streaming into candidates’ coffers. Leading the field in what will likely be the 50th district — which includes Santa Monica — is political activist Torie Osborn with $255,830.40 in her war... Read more →


Tour bus company operates without license

DOWNTOWN — City Sights LA, a tour bus company that has been challenging established rival Starline Tours this summer, has been operating in Santa Monica without a license, according to state officials. The California Public Utilities Commission must issue a tour bus company a valid PUC license before operations can legally... Read more →


Fawcett’s son pleads not guilty to heroin, gun charges

LOS ANGELES — The son of the late Farrah Fawcett and Ryan O'Neal has pleaded not guilty to felony heroin possession two days after his arrest during a traffic stop. Redmond O'Neal also entered a not guilty plea to a charge that he is a felon in illegal possession of a handgun. O'Neal was arrested Tuesday after he allegedly failed... Read more →


Trash becomes art

Marina DeBris used to go to the beach to collect stacks of Styrofoam cups and bring them to her local and uninterested convenient store who, according to DeBris, took her offerings with little enthusiasm. Now DeBris frequents the beach to pick up art supplies. “The whole idea of making beach detritus into art started just three years... Read more →


SMC applications up, funding down

SMC — Santa Monica College is on track to break its 2010-11 record for number of applications for enrollment received, despite funding cuts that result in ever-fewer seats for qualified students. The number of applications received thus far for the 2011-12 school year is 4.5 percent higher than at the same time last year, which capped... Read more →


Cops bust alleged vandal targeting restaurants

Crime Watch is a weekly series culled from reports provided by the Santa Monica Police Department. These are arrests only. All parties are innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. Wednesday, July 26, at 8 p.m., Police officers took into custody a man who they believe was responsible for vandalizing more than 20 restaurants over the... Read more →


Grab a ‘green’ bag at the library

Before the single-use bag ban goes into effect Sept. 1, Santa Monica Public Library has already begun the process of going “green.” Library officials announced that starting Monday, Aug. 29, for every book, CD or any other library item checked out each patron will receive a free reusable bag. This offer is available at all Santa... Read more →


Santa Monica Symphony has new leader

The Santa Monica Symphony, a 67-year-old musical orchestra dedicated to providing residents with free concerts year-round, has appointed Tom O’Conner as its first full-time executive director. O’Conner’s experience and vision made him a perfect fit for the position, said Carl Selkin, president of the Santa Monica Symphony... Read more →


Original plate designer cries foul due to news coverage

SM PIER — It’s true: The devil is in the details, and they can cause a whale of a problem. Tuesday morning, Santa Monica city officials participated in one of three press conferences statewide that revealed the new design of the Whale Tail Ecoplates, a specialty California license plate that helps fund ocean clean-ups and... Read more →