California – Analysis and Comment

Telehealth gives patients at home access to doctors miles away, a huge benefit when resources are limited and travel is dangerous. Jae Young Ju/ iStock / Getty Images Plus via Getty Images

Coronavirus: Telemedicine is great when you want to stay distant from your doctor, but older laws are standing in the way

The use and support for telehealth has never been higher in the US. Hospitals and patients are flocking to adopt the technology but regulatory roadblocks remain.
Voting machine operator David Schaefer, right, helps voter Kaitron Gordon with her ballot on Tennessee’s Super Tuesday primary in Nashville after deadly overnight tornadoes delayed the start of voting. AP/Mark Humphrey

Super Tuesday results show how Latino voters, moderate Democrats and Trump supporters are shaping the election

As the race for the Democratic nomination narrows to Joe Biden and Bernie Sanders, what does it all mean for November? We asked three scholars to closely analyze the Super Tuesday results.
Sonoma County, California hired this herd of sheep from Sweetgrass Grazing to reduce invasive plants and flammable fuels and make room for native plants on protected land. Sonoma Open Space

Young California ranchers are finding new ways to raise livestock and improve the land

A new generation of ranchers is exploring sustainable ways to raise cattle, sheep and goats in California. Some are grazing herds on fire-prone lands, reducing wildfire risks and improving soils.
The Maria Fire billows above Santa Paula, California on Oct. 31. AP/Noah Berger

California is living America’s dystopian future

'California is America fast-forward,' writes one scholar. Does that mean that the dystopian infernos that have consumed parts of the state are simply a picture of what awaits the rest of America?
Fires that affect populated areas raise different safety and public health issues than wildfires. AP Photo/Marcio Jose Sanchez

Why we need to treat wildfire as a public health issue in California

Two fire researchers argue that recent fires in Northern and Southern California show why health and social equity need to be part of fire preparedness.
The white “bathtub ring” around Arizona’s Lake Mead (shown on May 31, 2018), which indicates falling water levels, is about 140 feet high. AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin

Western states buy time with a 7-year Colorado River drought plan, but face a hotter, drier future

Western states adopted a 7-year plan in May 2019 to manage low water levels in the Colorado River. Now they need to look farther ahead and accept that there will be less water far into the future.
Biometrics like retinal scans is a new frontier in the privacy wars. Reuters/Mike Blake

Congress is considering privacy legislation – be afraid

States like California have been at the forefront of privacy innovation in recent decades. A possible federal law could bring their experimentation to a halt, harming consumers.
A school of juvenile bocaccio in the midwaters of Platform Gilda, Santa Barbara Channel, Calif. Scott Gietler

Retired oil rigs off the California coast could find new lives as artificial reefs

Californians love their coast and strongly oppose offshore drilling. Will they support converting old oil rigs to artificial reefs – a policy that benefits both marine life and oil companies?
A U.S. Forest Service employee using a drop torch during a planned burn in Arizona’s Coconino National Forest. USFS/Ian Horvath

Planned burns can reduce wildfire risks, but expanding use of ‘good fire’ isn’t easy

Decades of wildfire suppression have allowed flammable fuels to pile up in US forests. Scientists and managers say careful use of planned fires can reduce risks of large, out-of-control burns.