Articles by Michael R. Blood

Associated Press

Managers Made Errors in Handling California Dam Crisis

Late in the afternoon of Feb. 12, Sheriff Kory Honea was at the emergency operations center for the tallest dam in America when he overheard someone say something that stopped him in his tracks: “This is not good.” Over six …

Building of $7B Legal Pot Economy Underway in California

The future of California’s legal marijuana industry is being shaped in a warren of cubicles tucked inside a retired basketball arena, where a garden of paper cannabis leaves sprouts on file cabinets and a burlap sack advertising “USA Home Grown” …

Deadly California Fire Has Artists, Officials Clashing over Safety of Venues

The party is over at Purple 33. About a week after 36 people died in a fire at an underground music party in Oakland, inspectors acting on a complaint discovered a makeshift nightclub and unpermitted living quarters concealed in a …

Major Fault Near California Reactors Links to Second Crack

The Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant and earthquake faults have been uneasy neighbors for decades. Even before the twin reactors produced a single watt of electricity, the plant had to be retrofitted after a submerged fault was discovered 3 miles …

California Wants Half Its Power from Renewable Energy by 2030

Gov. Jerry Brown dramatically increased California’s climate-change goals, committing the state to use renewable energy for half its electricity and make existing buildings twice as energy-efficient in just 15 years. Brown tried for an even stronger measure that also would …

Sweeping Upgrades For Quakes Proposed by Los Angeles Mayor

Mayor Eric Garcetti has proposed spending billions of dollars to better protect Los Angeles against a devastating earthquake by strengthening thousands of vulnerable older buildings and fortifying the city’s water and communications systems. The sweeping plan left unclear what the …

California No-Bid Health Contracts Draws Probe

California’s health insurance exchange is facing calls for a state investigation of its contracting practices, while a state senator urged the agency to account for deals that steered millions of dollars to a firm whose employees have long-standing ties to …

Boxer Wants Probe On Troubled California Nuclear Plant

U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer wants the Justice Department to investigate if California utility executives deceived federal regulators about an equipment swap at the San Onofre nuclear power plant that eventually led to a radiation leak, The Associated Press has learned. …

U.S. Slaps Japanese Company on California Nuclear Power Plant Work

A Japanese company that manufactured the troubled steam generators at a key nuclear power plant in southern California might be looking for fixes with the wrong test equipment, U.S. federal regulators have disclosed. A Nuclear Regulatory Commission report found that …

Troubled Calif. Nuke Plant Aims To Restart Reactor

The operator of California’s troubled San Onofre nuclear power plant on Thursday proposed to restart one of the facility’s twin reactors after concluding it could be run safely despite damage to scores of tubes that carry radioactive water. A plan …