Robyn Purchia

San Francisco is the first city in the U.S. to extensively regulate flame-retardant chemicals, and the rest of California should quickly follow suit. (Courtesy photo)

California should expand on San Francisco’s flame retardants ban

Many are giving thanks this holiday to the first responders who battled…

San Francisco is the first city in the U.S. to extensively regulate flame-retardant chemicals, and the rest of California should quickly follow suit. (Courtesy photo)
Costanoan Rumsen Ohlone young men dance in honor of the bears at the Big Time Gathering at Rob Hill Campground in the Presidio. (Robyn Purchia/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Recognizing Ohlone culture can heal San Francisco

Zachary Ippoliti told me he died in the Presidio. Every July for…

Costanoan Rumsen Ohlone young men dance in honor of the bears at the Big Time Gathering at Rob Hill Campground in the Presidio. (Robyn Purchia/Special to S.F. Examiner)
The Candy Store in Russian Hill offers a wide selection of bulk Halloween candy, including foil-wrapped chocolates and package-free candy corn and gummy worms. (Robyn Purchia/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Halloween can help San Francisco disrupt wasteful food packaging

For better or worse, The City has sparked some major cultural revolutions.…

The Candy Store in Russian Hill offers a wide selection of bulk Halloween candy, including foil-wrapped chocolates and package-free candy corn and gummy worms. (Robyn Purchia/Special to S.F. Examiner)
A room inside the San Francisco Zen Center, which has operated in The City since 1962. (Mira Laing/Special to S.F. Examiner)

A little Zen for these troubled times

San Franciscans were delighted to see a gigantic heart in the sky…

A room inside the San Francisco Zen Center, which has operated in The City since 1962. (Mira Laing/Special to S.F. Examiner)
Every time a mattress is sold, an $11 fee is charged and deposited into a fund to help local agencies retrieve abandoned mattresses — but San Francisco hasn’t accepted the money. (Courtesy photo)

San Francisco should accept money under the mattress to combat illegal dumping

Earlier this month, the Marina Green was a dump. But residents of…

Every time a mattress is sold, an $11 fee is charged and deposited into a fund to help local agencies retrieve abandoned mattresses — but San Francisco hasn’t accepted the money. (Courtesy photo)
SFMTA directors have argued that electric vehicle technology is not ready, instead authorizing the purchase of hundreds of new trolleys and planning to expand The City’s diesel hybrid fleet. (Jessica Christian/S.F. Examiner)

As other cities lead electric charge, San Francisco expands diesel fleet

With our Bay breezes and environmental ethos, San Francisco typically boasts better…

SFMTA directors have argued that electric vehicle technology is not ready, instead authorizing the purchase of hundreds of new trolleys and planning to expand The City’s diesel hybrid fleet. (Jessica Christian/S.F. Examiner)
A haul of fresh fish are put on ice before they’re weighed on the docks of Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco on July 11, 2017. (Mira Laing/Special to S.F. Examiner)

California’s water wars pit farmers against local fishermen

Business was good when Larry Collins began his career as a fisherman…

A haul of fresh fish are put on ice before they’re weighed on the docks of Fisherman’s Wharf in San Francisco on July 11, 2017. (Mira Laing/Special to S.F. Examiner)
The Chevron refinery fire, as seen from the Albany Bulb on Aug. 6, 2012. (Courtesy Michael Moore/via Flickr)

With lives, livelihoods on the line, SF clings to coal, oil investments

Five years ago, on a clear August evening in Richmond, Calif., Isabella…

The Chevron refinery fire, as seen from the Albany Bulb on Aug. 6, 2012. (Courtesy Michael Moore/via Flickr)
A whale is seen underneath the Golden Gate Bridge with entanglement scars on its tail. (Courtesy Joe Meuleman/Golden Gate Cetacean Research)

Untangling a whale of a problem for environmentalists and fishermen

It’s another lively summer in The City’s waters. For the second straight…

A whale is seen underneath the Golden Gate Bridge with entanglement scars on its tail. (Courtesy Joe Meuleman/Golden Gate Cetacean Research)
Pagan Idol in San Francisco’s Financial District says it saves $900 a month by using paper straws. (Courtesy Pagan Idol/via Instagram)

Saying no to plastic straws doesn’t suck for SF businesses

At the tiki-themed, FiDi bar Pagan Idol straws are a staple. They…

Pagan Idol in San Francisco’s Financial District says it saves $900 a month by using paper straws. (Courtesy Pagan Idol/via Instagram)
A Green Benefit District can help connect neighbors and provide them a collective voice in the noisy chaos of local politics. The districts can also support various projects, including the creation of plazas, parks, parklets and gardens. (Camila Bernal/2013 S.F. Examiner)

In Inner Sunset, Green Benefit District offers greater representation, cleaner environment

In the last year, Dogpatch and northwest Potrero Hill residents saw a…

A Green Benefit District can help connect neighbors and provide them a collective voice in the noisy chaos of local politics. The districts can also support various projects, including the creation of plazas, parks, parklets and gardens. (Camila Bernal/2013 S.F. Examiner)
If San Francisco is serious about getting cars off the road, it must make the sustainable transportation choices more affordable. (Sarahbeth Maney/Special to S.F. Examiner)

Taking the road less traveled by Lyft, Uber and car

Last week, The City finally got a peek at something it’s long…

If San Francisco is serious about getting cars off the road, it must make the sustainable transportation choices more affordable. (Sarahbeth Maney/Special to S.F. Examiner)
If San Francisco is committed to fighting climate change, it must divest city employees’ pensions from fossil fuels. (Courtesy photo)

Fossil fuel divestment would put SF’s money where its mouth is

President Donald Trump’s decision to pull out of the Paris climate deal…

If San Francisco is committed to fighting climate change, it must divest city employees’ pensions from fossil fuels. (Courtesy photo)
Rose Braz, seen here holding a rally in San Francisco to restore Sharp Park, was a strong force for social justice before she died. (Courtesy photo)

Remembering Rose Braz, a beloved thorn in the side of the establishment

The same night that oil companies gained an ally in President Donald…

Rose Braz, seen here holding a rally in San Francisco to restore Sharp Park, was a strong force for social justice before she died. (Courtesy photo)
Despite being directed to sell, the San Francisco Employees’ Retirement System has clung to its coal investments. (Courtesy SFERS)

Retirement Board bets employees’ future on dirty, dying coal industry

The City’s pension fund managers and President Donald Trump have something in…

Despite being directed to sell, the San Francisco Employees’ Retirement System has clung to its coal investments. (Courtesy SFERS)
Thousands of protesters march through San Francisco on Aprill 22 holding signs in the name of science as federal budget cuts threaten scientific research. (Sheila Fitzgerald / Shutterstock.com)

Our planet needs evidence-based policies, not preconceived notions

We can’t blame Donald Trump and his alternative-fact minions for ushering in…

Thousands of protesters march through San Francisco on Aprill 22 holding signs in the name of science as federal budget cuts threaten scientific research. (Sheila Fitzgerald / Shutterstock.com)
To move forward in a more sustainable direction, San Franciscans should learn more about one of the few affordable resources in The City. (Courtesy photo)

Tap that tap: San Francisco should dig its new water supply

More than 80 years ago, San Francisco faucets began pouring water from…

To move forward in a more sustainable direction, San Franciscans should learn more about one of the few affordable resources in The City. (Courtesy photo)
People gather outside the main entrance of the Federal Building on Feb. 8 in San Francisco to protest President Donald Trump’s approval of the Dakota Access Pipeline. (Jessica Christian/S.F. Examiner)

Plug the dirty cash flow to pipelines and polluters

Four years ago, the Board of Supervisors urged the agency in charge…

People gather outside the main entrance of the Federal Building on Feb. 8 in San Francisco to protest President Donald Trump’s approval of the Dakota Access Pipeline. (Jessica Christian/S.F. Examiner)
Linking the environmental movement to Christian tradition might give it wings. (Courtesy photo)

Have faith in religion’s ability to bridge the political divide

Since the George H.W. Bush administration, Mustafa Ali has worked to reduce…

Linking the environmental movement to Christian tradition might give it wings. (Courtesy photo)
Is safe, environmentally sustainable natural gas possible in San Francisco? (Courtesy photo)

Leak-free natural gas may just be a pipe dream

On Oct. 23, 2015, Southern California Gas Company found a massive leak…

Is safe, environmentally sustainable natural gas possible in San Francisco? (Courtesy photo)