I had no idea that crime rates in California varied so much by county until I saw this grpahic in a primer on criminal justice issues released today by the LAO. Read the whole thing here.
Posted by dweintraub at 10:17 AM
The New York Times today has a cautionary tale for those who want to wean us from fossil fuels: look at what happened with palm oil. An excerpt:
Spurred by government subsidies, energy companies became so enthusiastic that they designed generators that ran exclusively on the oil, which in theory would be cleaner than fossil fuels like coal because it is derived from plants.
But last year, when scientists studied practices at palm plantations in Indonesia and Malaysia, this green fairy tale began to look more like an environmental nightmare.
Rising demand for palm oil in Europe brought about the clearing of huge tracts of Southeast Asian rainforest and the overuse of chemical fertilizer there.
Worse still, the scientists said, space for the expanding palm plantations was often created by draining and burning peatland, which sent huge amounts of carbon emissions into the atmosphere.
Read the whole thing here.
Posted by dweintraub at 7:04 AM
The Census Bureau this morning published new numbers showing how the states rank in government spending and revenues. The latest numbers are from 2005. The latest rankings are from 2004. In that year, California was 10th in spending per capita on state and local government. You can find the information here.
The PPIC, meanwbile, is rolling out a report today based on that and similar data, showing where California puts its spending priorities compared to other states. You can find that one here.
Posted by dweintraub at 6:41 AM