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KQED’s award-winning team of science reporters explores climate change, water, energy, toxics, biomedicine, digital health, astronomy and other topics that shape our lives in the San Francisco Bay Area. As a trusted news source, KQED Science tackles tough questions facing humanity in our time with thoughtful and engaging storytelling.
 
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A nation-leading workplace safety rule specifically designed to combat the risks of an airborne virus should have been protecting hundreds of thousands of California workers from COVID-19. The Aerosol Transmissible Diseases standard took effect 12 years ago — and it anticipated a pandemic. But one year into the pandemic, workers say enforcement is …
 
It’s been almost a year since the first stay-at-home order, time enough for Richard Levitt to line up what he misses and doesn’t miss. After nearly a year working at home and living in relative seclusion I’ve discovered something interesting. There are lots of things I do not miss. More than anything, I do not miss traffic. On a recent Friday aroun…
 
California school districts will receive $2 billion to open public schools through second grade by April 1st. That’s according to an agreement reached by Governor Newsom and Democratic legislators on Monday. The thorny issue of school re-openings has plagued the state for nearly a year, with school boards, teachers unions, and parents at odds over …
 
Mina Kim is no stranger to KQED listeners. An award-winning reporter and anchor, she took over Forum’s daily 10 AM hour in July after hosting on Fridays for many years. But did you know that she’s from Newfoundland, taught first grade in New Jersey, trained doctors and surgeons to be leaders, and was an avid runner before chasing after three kids? …
 
With 60 votes required to override a filibuster, even the Democrats’ narrow Senate majority doesn’t guarantee that President Biden’s legislation will pass. The modern filibuster, where senators delay or block a bill just by signaling their intent to filibuster, is enough to kill a bill. The Senate rules have been tweaked over the past decade, but t…
 
An investigation is underway after an SUV carrying more than two dozen people, some of whom were citizens of Mexico, collided with a big rig Tuesday in a rural area about ten miles from the US-Mexico border. 13 people died in the crash. Guest: Faith Pinho, Reporter, LA Times The volunteers in Southern California are helping seniors and other eligib…
 
Isabella Montano Ponce was struggling with depression but it was the inability to talk about it that slowed her recovery. Sometimes my parents call me “crazy” for not controlling my emotions. When it comes to my mental health, I brush it off. It is a very uncomfortable topic in my household. In fact, we rarely speak about it at all. But I can’t rea…
 
In a historic change, California’s youth prisons will stop taking in new offenders in July. In 2023, all state juvenile detention facilities will close and responsibility for youth offenders will shift to counties. The state’s youth lockups have long been plagued by scandals and allegations of mistreatment. The move to smaller, local facilities is …
 
Homeland Security Secretary Alejandro Mayorkas said Monday that the Biden Administration will seek to reunite hundreds of migrant children with their families -- either in the United States or in their country of origin -- who were separated under Trump-era zero tolerance policies. The pledge comes as officials undertake a massive overhaul of the n…
 
Governor Gavin Newsom and legislative leaders have reached an agreement that could restart in-person learning for the state's youngest students. The hope is to reopen by April 1. Reporter: Guy Marzorati, KQED District Attorney George Gascon won last year promising to upend the tough on crime policies of his predecessor. But prosecutors both in and …
 
Academic learning may be taking a hit, but Bryan Gillette thinks his children are learning important skills in the pandemic. Children’s education has taken a serious turn this past year and most will say for the worse. And for the first few months of this pandemic, I would have agreed as my son’s teacher was MIA and he demonstrated emotional outbur…
 
Writer and cultural critic Rebecca Carroll grew up in an idyllic New England town where no one wanted to talk about race or even see it. She's Black. Her parents were white. Adopted as a baby, Carroll never met another Black person in real life until she was 6. Her new memoir, “Surviving the White Gaze”, recounts episodes from her childhood and ado…
 
The New York Times Opinion’s weekly podcast “The Argument” -- a place for “Strongly-held opinions. Open-minded debates. Only occasional yelling” -- has a new host in politics journalist Jane Coaston. Coaston, who previously reported for Vox and has covered conservatism and the American right for years, writes “things on the program might get awkwar…
 
Lawmakers Reach Deal on Reopening Schools Under the deal, schools that reopen by the end of March stand to get a cut of money earmarked by the state legislature. The deal would not mandate students and staff to get vaccinated before returning to the classroom, nor does it require districts to get approval from teachers unions before returning. Cali…
 
Anxiety is nothing new to Susie Meserve, but the pandemic has turned up the volume and unveiled new outlets for worry. I’ve always had anxiety. As a child, I washed my hands until they bled. I was obsessed with safety, double checking the door lock, convincing myself I’d contracted some horrible disease. When COVID appeared, many people experienced…
 
Many found having a pet to be a lifesaver during the pandemic. As pet adoptions skyrocketed, dogs, cats and other pets became hard to find. One animal adoption agency recorded a 900% increase in requests to foster a dog in the early days of the pandemic. And on the other end of the spectrum, the American Humane Society estimates that up to 10 milli…
 
During a time of stress and great suffering -- such as a global pandemic -- experiencing joy may seem impossible, and even naive or callous. Experts argue, however, that joy is essential even during hard times, even when it feels like the world is on fire or in the face of longstanding problems such as systemic racism. For many people, the pandemic…
 
Millions of people marched to support the Black Lives Matter Movement following the killing of George Floyd in Minneapolis. With that came a call to support Black-owned businesses, which saw an initial surge of new customers, but many are now struggling to stay afloat. Guest: Hank Jenkins, Owner of Plant Provocateur in Los Angeles Governor Newsom s…
 
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