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Institute Online Update for April 2003

Forces West Oakland Polluter to Close

from community organizations has forced the
largest fixed source of toxic air pollution
in West Oakland to shut its doors. The Red
Star Yeast factory, long a source of complaints
by residents, was under increasing scrutiny
from local and state officials since it was
highlighted in the Pacific Institute’s “Neighborhood
Knowledge for Change”
report. Despite
the innocuous nature of its product, the factory
dumps about 30,000 pounds of carcinogenic
pollution into the air each year and was unable
to control its noxious odors. Residents are
now focusing on other threats to the community’s
health while pushing for the site to be converted
into a smart growth “transit village”
that will bring badly needed jobs and housing
to the area.

about the Red
Star shutdown
is online.

Kyoto Wrap Up: Minister’s Disappoint, NGOs Network

final ministerial statement of the 3rd World
Water Forum was a deep disappointment for
many involved in the Water Forum. Many criticized
the ministers for refusing to acknowledge
the human right to water, address the threats
posed by water privatization or make any serious
moves away from big, centralized projects.
But despite the disappointing ministerial
statement, NGOs, activists, and researchers
made excellent progress towards raising awareness
about the importance of the global water crisis
and the many progressive strategies available
to tackle it.

a full list of Pacific Institute presentations
made at the 3rd World Water Forum, see our
Staff Updates below. Read our Kyoto
media releases

Pacific Institute Calls for National Water Commission

Pacific Institute called publicly in March
for the creation of a National Water Commission
for the 21st Century to direct an aggressive
new effort to protect our national water resources
and to advise the country on how best to participate
in addressing the global water crisis. The
benefits of such an effort will include a
stronger national economy, improved international
security, and more sustainable water use around
the world.

information on our proposal
is available online.


Staff Updates

3rd World Water Forum Update

H. Gleick made a compelling case for the human right
to water at the Opening Plenary Session on Sanitation,
Water Supply and Water Pollution. Dr. Gleick also
made presentations on coping with climate change,
water and conflict, and basic human needs for water.

Palaniappan presented the Pacific Institute’s new
study, “Principles and Practices in the New
Economy of Water,” (available for public release
shortly) at a session on Global Water Liberalization
Scenarios. Ms. Palaniappan also made a presentation
on the human right to water and helped draft the
NGO statement.

H. Wolff, though he did not attend, coauthored a
paper on the value of water, which was presented
at the CEO Roundtable.

L. Cain participated in a panel discussion of media
misconceptions regarding water issues.

Diesel Reduction Project
| West Oakland residents
and the Pacific Institute interviewed and selected
a contractor for the West Oakland Diesel Study.
Residents of West Oakland helped determine study
objectives, methods, and a contractor to complete
the study. The West Oakland Diesel Study will answer
key questions posed by West Oakland residents, characterize
the extent of diesel pollution in West Oakland,
and identify options to reduce diesel pollution
in the community.

Climate Change and Wildlife
| William C.G. Burns
lectured at Bates College in Lewiston, Maine on
the impacts of climate change on cetaceans. Dr.
Burns was recently appointed the Chair of the Environmental
Law Section of the American Branch of the International
Law Association and has taken a position as a professor
in the Department of Environmental Studies, University
of Redlands, Redlands, California.


Global and Regional Water Issues

Earthday Network is highlighting water issues this
Earth Day. To learn more visit their web

Global Water Crisis

Peter H. Gleick is giving the Landis Lecture at
Lafayette College in Pennsylvania on global water
problems and solutions.

Water in the 21st Century

Peter H. Gleick is speaking at the Thompson Forum
at the University of Nebraska on water issues in
the 21st century. More information is available

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2003 Pacific Institute for Studies in Development,
Environment, and Security