tv KQED Newsroom PBS December 13, 2013 8:00pm-8:31pm PST
next on kqed newsroom, the latest plan for two massive tunnels to take water from the delta makes waves up and down the state. as he's named top archbishop, a state of the catholic church. another school shooting this week. can hackathon reduce gun violence? >> we're trying to get products that affect things such as trauma, isolation, the prevention of violence in you.
. good evening, and welcome to the kqed newsroom. as 2013 comes to a close, california may have seen one of the driest years on record. wildfires flared across the state, yet managing the state's water supply has long created controversy, environmentalis environmentalists, firefighters and voters against each other. the irrigation water is home to much of the state and also home to wetlands and wildlife. the state's proposal backed by governor brown would build two massive tunnels to move water from the north to the state's more populist south. the state said it would also save the delta's endangered
species. but critics have called it a water valve and vowed to block it. paul rogers, san jose news, environmental writer. the draft plan was released this week. what are some of the key points and what has the reaction been like? >> well, the plan is pretty intimidating to a lot of people who are just casual news observers. it's 34,000 pages. >> wow. >> you can't even get your mind around that. but it really boils down to a couple basic facts in california. two-thirds of all the water, the rain and the notice, falls in the north. two-thirds of the people live in the south. for the last 75 years, we have basically figured out how do you move water from north to south? we have built the world aed greatest system of dams, canals and pumps, doing so, we've allowed agriculture to bloom. california is one of the top ag states in the country. the silicon valley has bloomed
but we've also killed a lot of the salmon, wiped out a lot of the endangered species. we now take water from the delta, from cities all over the state and we divert it to san jose, all over los angeles and to the farms. this plan sis an attempt to say how do we make that water more reliable and do it in a way he saves fish? you do it by building a tunnel and basically pump the water out from a different place. instead of from giant pumps near the south part of the delta, which grind up and kill a lot of fish, they would take it for the north in sacramento. that's the basic idea. >> what has the reaction been like? lauren, how have environmentalalists, for example, been responding? >> you might imagine this is a really controversial plan. there are people all over the state, different constituencies, with different takes on the whole thing. the question about the environment is what's going to happen to these endangered fish
species? they've really taken a nosedive in the last few decades, and people are saying we need a way to bring them back. so wildlife agencies, federal and state, will have to look at this plan and say, well, what is this going to do? is it going to hurt these fish or help them? they have to give a plan before it would ever get built. another question, is it going to take more water out of the ecosystem or less water out of the ecosystem? if it takes more, a lot of environmentalalists are saying, you know what, that's not going to help these endangered fish. so that's a key question going forward. >> people think it's people that are sucking up all the water and needing all this water, but that's not really true. >> it's a great question. the old sort of song in california is southern california is taking all our water to water lawns in california. in fact, farms in california use 80% of the water. >> 80%. >> 80.
we have 30 million people, and 10% of all the water goes to those 38 million people. another 10% goes to the businesses, 80% goes to the farms. >> is that water used efficiently? >> the farmers say yes. a lot of the environmental groups say no. basically there are plenty of places in california where the farmers have been conserving and using water efficiently. there is also a lot of places where they haven't put in drip irrigation. they have line canals to stop the water from evaporating, and they haven't managed their water very well. they're overpumping, and basically environmentalalists are saying, what you should do is make more local sources of water. more conservation, more recycled water, recycle to irrigate golf courses and things like that. but this has shaped up to be quite a battle. we had a peripheral canal when
romo was governor before, and it failed because california overwhelmingly voted no. >> i think what's happening now is people are really talking about climate change. we have the snow pack here in california. that's where the water comes from. and with climate change, we may not see the kind of snow pack we're used to. i think it's kind of an interesting element to the conversation now as opposed to the '80s, which is where is our water supply now and will it be available? >> it sounds almost wonky, but because it serves so many people, that's why people should care. it directly affects people's lives. >> it's hard to understand how this one little place plays such a pivotal role in the state. i like to think of it as a train system. there are lines all over the state, but it's really what happens in this part of the state that matters. and so many people get their water from this state, including the bay area. >> what happens with our current system? >> right now the question about endangered species isn't just
environmentalal i aists who lik little fish and want to save them. basically you cannot kill endangered species. so if these pumps are grinding up salmon and smelt and other fish and we're taking too much fresh water and ruining the habitat, federal agencies have ruled you can't pump too much water. so it's incumbent on the farms and the cities to think of a way not to kill all these fish, because in the end, the endangered species act isn't going away. if there isn't a plan, it will probably result in less water being pumped out of the delta. the fish may not recover. the other question is, is there a way to use the water more efficiently? the other question is, this is $20 billion. how do you pay for it? right now it's in the planning stages. jerry brown hopes to break ground in 2015, but none of the water is in hand. water districts in the central valley and the bay area would
raise rates to pay two-thirds of it, and the rest would come from a state water bond and the federal government. kind of like high-speed rail, they have none of it, basically, in hand. >> another boondoggle. >> i didn't call it a boondoggle. >> okay, i did. i'm guilty of that. when you said 25 billion, opponents are saying it may be more like 50 billion, the environmentalists and they're already threatening lawsuits. is it going to be tied up in the court for years and years and years, or will it ever get solved? >> will it be more expensive, will there be lawsuits? it might be a pretty safe bet to take. because the water districts will be paying the 17 billion to actually build the tunnels, the construction costs, they're going to want assurances. they want a certain amount of water and know that water is going to be delivered. then you have the wildlife agencies and environmentalist groups saying, you can't keep
taking what you've been taking. so if they say there's no way we're going to put up this money if we get less water, and the whole thing may fall apart at that point. >> governor brown is pushing this very hard. his father, pat brown, when he was governor started the state water project. do you feel like jerry brown now feels like this is his mantle to carry, to carry the legacy forward? >> i think there are three reasons why he's pushing so hard. the first is he saw his father build big things, the state university, state water project, highways. and second is a lot of people say california can't do big things anymore, and he wants to prove them wrong. third, just in the political calculation, unions want this just like they want the high-speed rail. there are thousands and thousands and thousands of jobs that would go for decades, and they're pushing hard for it. they funded his campaign, they funded prop 30, the tax he put on the ballot a couple years ago, and in politics they say dance with who brung it. >> so what happens now? a public hearing period? >> public comment for the next four months. the state will look at all of
those. they'll do another draft which may be released in a year, and then all the permits start and all the other big questions, so it's a really long road from here. >> any'v environmentalist will certainly sue and probably put it on a state ballot to try to block it as well, and you're going to hear the echoes of 1982, north versus south, in that state ballot. the question is do the people who want this have a lot of money, and they'll try to get this through. >> we'll see what happens. i have a feeling we'll hear more about it in 2014 well after the holidays. thank you, lauren, and paul rogers. coming up later in the program, how hackers can help reduce gun violence. but first, big news this week as catholics around the world cheered the selection of pope francis as time magazine's person of the year. in words and deeds, the new pope is signalling a distinct change in tone for the church, stressing modesty and concern for the poor while rejecting emphasis on social issues like abortion and gay rights.
so how is the new tone playing out with local church hierarchy? tonight we hear from local archbishop san deleone. he was chosen by the pope last year to lead the san franciscan archdiocese. scott schaefer sat down with him earlier. archbishop corleone, welcome. >> thank you. >> pope francis has pushed the rewind button and gotten a lot of people's attention, focusing on poverty. what has surprised you the most about pope francis? >> as i reflect on it, i think it's the power of his personality. his real personality comes through the media and that's why i think people feel a real connection to him. he certainly is very close to the people in his style and the things he does to reach out to them. but even beyond that, he has
this power as his personality that people feel connected. what you see in the media is what he's really like in person. >> he's warm. >> yes. >> yeah. there's been a lot of discussion about whether he is simply setting a different tone or if there's something bigger going on. i'm wondering, what do you think? some have even said what he's already done in these first few months has been revolutionary. what's your take? >> in a sense i would say it's been revolutionary because people are taking a different look at the catholic church and they're kind of rethinking things through. i think he will have -- >> what do you mean by that? >> that maybe there's more to look at than they had originally thought. maybe they had an impression of what the church is like and what it stands for, and they see something different in pope francis that -- it's not really different, but he's bringing out certain aspects of what we're all about that people maybe never realized before, and it's not just because his teaching is very effective, but it's who he
is. he really lives it in his life, like you said, rejecting so many of the trappings of the office and living so much a simple life. >> one of the things the pope has said is that some church officials have become obsessed or they're too obsessed with divisive social issues: abortion, contraception, gay rights. do you agree with that? >> i think he's cautioning us to become too obsessed with them and focused in on only one issue. these are really big issues. they are issues we need to talk about. he himself talks about them. but when he says heubr doesn't t ideolog pastors and ideolog bishops, what i understand him to say is, yeah, we're convinced of the truth we have to share, we think it's going to benefit. but we don't approach a situation by trying to impose this on people without any kind of a human relationship. we don't -- the main thing, the first thing, is to encounter the person, to know the person, have
a relationship above. we have something we want to share, but it has to come out of a relationship, not out of an idealogy. i think that's what he's calling us to do. how do we best interact with the world? we have a treasure we believe is worth sharing with people, but how would we do that? it's not in an idealogical way, but it's in a human way, to love the person. >> you know, there was concern when you got here that because of your past with your support for proposition 8 that perhaps you would be out of step with your flock. this is the most liberal part or one of the most liberal parts of the country. i'm wondering, what have you done to sort of reach out, especially, say, to the gay community which had particular concerns when you were named archbishop? >> i think when we don't interact with each other, we can make decisions or get images based on stereotypes, and that happens on both sides. people on my side of the marriage debate, they can see
mean things that are happening to people that are standing up for marriage, and they can paint with a broad stroke. but when we interact, we understand that a lot of times, you know, people have suffered because they have this orientation. they've been disowned by their families, they've been harmed, and they want to come to a place that will accept them for who they are and affirm them, and it tenderizes us. that's how we can have a human relationship. we're not going to change each other's minds, but we can live together in a human way because we love each other as brothers and sisters, even though we have this sharp divide. >> immigration reform now seems kind of stalled in the house of representatives. why is it important in particular to your flock, to catholics, that this get done? >> this particular issue is one that's very close to the heart for catholics, though, because -- well, just about all of us are immigrants in this country, but that experience is much more recent with catholics. just about all of us are either from those who emigrated from
southern or eastern europe 100 years ago or those who recently emigrated from latin america or asia. so it's an experience very close to us. we know people caught in the situation. there's also the sense, a spiritual sense, in that our church has always been multicultural from the very beginning for 2,000 years. so we understand living together with different cultures and how we can live together and enrich each other. and there's even a deeper spiritual sense that it would say immigration is sort of a metaphor for who we understand ourselves to be spiritually. we as believers are not at home here. we're on a pilgrimage. we're immigrants trying to emigrate to our homeland of heaven. there are deep spiritual reasons but also practical reasons of justice and things that are
close to us. >> i know you're a big sports fan. this is the last season for candlestick park. >> i know. >> the 49ers are going away, but there is talk of having a last event with the pope, pope francis. have you heard anything about the pope being invited to come to san francisco? >> someone mentioned that to me recently high up in the 49ers organization. >> really, so it's a possibility? >> that's the only thing i heard of. it certainly would be very exciting. i did meet him briefly when i was in rome the end of june and reminded him he's the only archdiocese that bears the name st. francis. >> so maybe it will happen. archbishop, merry christmas and happy new year. >> thank you very much. and now an unusual approach to preventing gun violence. on the eve of the one-year anniversary of the newtown massacre, yet another shooting at a school in colorado made headlines. programmers and entrepreneurs will gather in san francisco this weekend to discuss high-tech solutions to reducing
violence in schools. the event is organized by a group called high ground hackers, and joining me now is co-founder james grogan. welcome to the program. >> thank you, julie. >> as i mentioned, another shooting, this time in colorado, where a student targeting a teacher injured two other students before committing suicide. in fact, this is just a day before the newtown massacre one-year anniversary. there's been at least one school shooting roughly every two weeks in this country since newtown. what's your reaction to that epidemic of violence and how can your group address that? >> that's what gave us the motivation to start high ground hackers with my co-founder one year ago tomorrow. it was actually the school shootings in sandy hook and the outrage of that atrocity. so looking towards high tech, we look for the scenarios and the situations where prior to a violent occurrence happening, we can look at bringing help to the
individuals, or when a violent situation is actually occurring, we look to better aid those people who are involved, such as the police, such as students, such as teachers. >> can you give us some specific examples? are you targeting police, but also mental health workers, students? how can an app help a mental health worker, for example? >> let's break that down. we have an application developed a month ago by a group called concern, and that is an application being used or will be used in communities and by students where they can reach out to trained medical professionals when they're experiencing a mental health situation. we have another application where they actually have a community that is observing or they're in class and they're tracking their own moods. and those moods are being recorded. they have a network of friends that are associated or related to that individual. and the application will send out an sms message to their friend saying, hey, you know what? james is feeling pretty down right now. maybe he's suffering from depression that's already been
logged. and friends are reaching out to maybe an isolated individual and saying, hey, do you want to go out and play a game of basketball? breaking cycles like that, helping people with their own mental health issues, connecting mental health professionals to situations where they can actually help. that's really what we're all about. >> that's interesting you bring up the whole point about breaking the isolation, because many times high tech has been blamed for creating isolation, that young people are more in tune with their iphones and their devices and their on-line social networks instead of actually talking to each other. but you don't seem to think there is a contradiction or a problem here. >> it is counterintuitive, but the trend is to be more connected to your network, to your friends through these apps or ipad or iphone or smartphones. so knowing that's a reality, how do we use that to work with a situation? you've already got a network of friends that connect you with an individual. let's reach out to those friends
to contact that person individually to help them in a situation. >> and your group started just in march. you already had two hack-a-thons. did any apps come out of that that are in use now, and is there evidence that they actually work? >> there is an app used by an association called cure violence. that was one of the top 50 ngos in the world. it was started by dr. gary swedken.ctzx they send interrupters into violent situations into areas of, say, chicago, or areas of violence to break up a cycle of violence. our application developed in the first hack-a-thon is used to make those interrupters more efficient, get them out to places where violence is potentially occurring in a more timely fashion. the next phase of that application is now to do the same thing but for medical response. we're trying to help people to interrupt and stop violence, but if violence has occurred, we need to get medical assistance there asap.
so the app is going to do double duty in a sense. >> how did the group start? you apparently got big backing from ron conway, a prominent angel investor in the bay area and silicon valley. he's invested in companies such as google and twitter. how did all that come about? >> it all came about when ron conaway started the committee for reduction of gun violence. that's when michael and i actually met. a number of programs have spun out from that organization. michael and i literally, in san francisco fashion, went to a coffee shop and said, you know what? the complexity and variety of different challenges that are out there in american society today, it really need a number of different applications that can target specific situations. it's perfect for a hack-a-thon. the challenge is these situations are completely esoteric, so we needed to pull in experts to bond a team that develops it. that's what we do when we meet with the high ground hackers. so we get faculty members,
people who are expert in situations, and they come in very tight loops and within 36 hours put together a very effective application. >> and you have another hack-a-thon coming up. when and where will that happen and who are you expecting? >> we've got such a draw of speakers. 22 speakers are going to be there tomorrow at the tulio headquarters, and we're going to be talking about everything from gaming, changing behavior in neurology and human science. and after those speakers have actually spoken, we'll be recording all that, and at the new year, they'll be bonding with experts, they'll have videos coming out and will be hacking in applications based on the program. >> thank you for joining us on what has been a sad day with the colorado shooting, but it's been an illuminating discussion, and i wish you the best of luck with your project. >> thank you, julie. one final note with all of
this. this weekend a hacker with african-american use is also taking place. that's happening in oakland. it's called brothers' code. we're joined now for a discussion about some of the stories coming up. and with school shootings once again in the snnews this week, have a gun-related action coming up in the south bay. >> sunnyvale overwhelmingly by 68% passed gun laws, requiring that guns be locked up in the home, requiring gun store owners to log their sales for several years, and also we're eliminating the size of magazine rounds to 10 or less. and on tuesday the nra is going to be filing a lawsuit in federal court basically saying it violates the second amendment. they've been sued already in state court by a gun store owner, but this is a
continuation of that, really, attack on that measure c. >> and, in fact, san francisco was also sued in federal court last month. >> it was, on a very similar law, yeah. >> the plaintiff in the earlier sunnyvale lawsuit is a gun store owner. who will be the plaintiff in this suit coming up next week? >> originally this suit was going to be filed a couple weeks ago, and they were trying to line up a sunnyvale police officer to be the plaintiff. because what they say is that this law does not have an exemption for law enforcement officers. and so they could become criminals if they have magazines with 10 or more rounds in their home for their personal use, not for on the job. so they're looking for that kind of plaintiff. i think they have now found one, and san francisco, the nra did the same thing. they found a retired police officer from the sfpd to file its lawsuit. that's really the tack they're taking attacking the law. >> sunnyvale is a small city. do they have money to defend itself in a suit like this? >> that's a good question, it
doe does, it really adds up. a law firm has come up to give them pro bono defense, so it's not coming out of a fund. >> we also have a fuel pool coming out? what is that? >> 35 to 40%, californians say unions do more harm than good in california. that's bad news for organized labor, partly due to, i think, the bart strike has had a real negative impact in the bay area. in fact, a majority of people in the bay area think that transit strikes should be banned altogether. these are just a snapshot in time. it could change, but with issues like pension reform possibly coming up on the ballot next year, this is certainly something that labor unions and democrats as well as republicans are going to be keeping a close eye on. >> it's certainly a tough issue for democrats because they rely on labor unions for campaign donations and labor unions are counting on them to protect their pensions and protect their
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