California’s stormwater system is a toxic mess.

Voice of San Diego reporter Ry Rivard joined the podcast this week to discuss his three-part investigative series on stormwater pollution and the flawed system that polices it.

Rivard talked about the history behind stormwater regulations and the thousands or more industrial businesses across the state that don’t comply with the rules.

Businesses that do follow the law open themselves up to lawsuits from environmental lawyers who’ve taken it upon themselves to police the system since the state doesn’t have the resources.

The current system is largely viewed as unfair, and there’s a debate about what to do about it.

“There’s a bunch of different things we could decide to do,” Rivard said. “We could decide to give the government all the resources it needs to actually enforce the law so that private environmental groups don’t have to, or we could figure out a different way to clean up water, or we could loosen the regulations, or we could make the decision that any business that pollutes should be immediately shut down.”


Support Independent Journalism Today

Environmental lawyer Wayne Rosenbaum also called in and said something needs to be done to fix the system.

“I think regulators would agree that it leaves a bad taste in everybody’s mouth,” Rosenbaum said. “I think this is an issue the state water board and the regional water boards have to address.”

Podcast hosts Scott Lewis and Andrew Keatts also offer their analysis of this op-ed by County Supervisor Ron Roberts, who addressed VOSD’s reports on the San Diego Association of Governments’ seriously botched income projections. Roberts addresses many of the questions brought up by our stories, including whether SANDAG knew the revenue forecast for Measure A, last year’s proposal for another sales tax hike to pay for a bevy of transportation projects, was likely way off, too.

Lewis and Keatts also parse the latest attempts to keep the Chargers in San Diego, which includes San Diego State University stepping in and offering to help raise $100 million for a new stadium.

Hero of the Week

There’s been a sea change at SeaWorld San Diego. The company quit breeding orcas and will hold its last ever orca entertainment show this weekend. The show will be replaced by an “Orca Encounter” exhibit that’s promised to be more educational.

Goat of the Week

Rep. Duncan Hunter used campaign funds to fly his pet rabbit around. That’s bad.

Subscribe to the VOSD Podcast on iTunes or get the RSS feed here. Download it here.

    This article relates to: Must Reads, Science/Environment, Voice of San Diego Podcast, VOSD Podcast Network, Water

    Written by Kinsee Morlan

    Kinsee Morlan is the Engagement Editor at Voice of San Diego and author of the Culture Report. Contact her directly at kinsee.morlan@voiceofsandiego.org. Follow her on Facebook or Twitter. Subscribe to her podcast.

    0 comments