Here’s today’s roundup of science, nature and environment news from the Bay Area and beyond.

Shifting Sands: San Francisco Begins Huge Erosion-Control ProjectShifting Sands: San Francisco Begins Huge Erosion-Control Project Ocean Beach has too much sand on one end, too little on the other Portions of San Francisco’s historic Great Highway are closed for a massive sand-moving project, part of an effort to slow erosion along the stretch of Pacific coastline known as Ocean Beach.

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California environmental law faces changesA proposal to loosen California’s landmark environmental protection law is expected to be introduced at the Capitol as soon as Thursday, giving the public and lawmakers only about a week to debate and consider the controversial legislation’s fate.

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Study: Urban Water Use Will Outpace Efficiency GainsStudy: Urban Water Use Will Outpace Efficiency Gains But returning to “Hollywood” showers will just make things worse You installed a low-flow toilet. You take fast showers. Your yard is water-wise and drought-tolerant. And even if everyone in California were just like you, which they’re not – yet – the state would still see a significant bump in urban water demand by the end of the century.

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Early warnings on BioWatchWASHINGTON – Scientists who helped pioneer BioWatch, the government’s system for detecting a biological attack on the U.S., knew from the start that it was prone to false alarms, records show. Between 2003, when the nationwide network of air samplers was first deployed, and 2006, officials at the federally funded Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory filed five patent applications aimed at improving BioWatch’s reliability.

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Researchers identify gene that improves rice yields in poor soilHONG KONG (Reuters) – A gene that raises rice yields by enhancing root growth and nutrient absorption in low quality soils has been identified in a species of rice in India and successfully introduced into other rice varieties, researchers reported on Thursday.

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Author

Jenny Oh

Jenny is a long-time contributor to Bay Area Bites, KQED's popular food blog. She formerly worked as an Interactive Producer for the Science & Environment unit. Jenny graduated with honors from New York University’s Tisch School of the Arts Film and Television program and has worked for WNET/PBS, The Learning Channel, Sundance Channel, HBO and the University of California.

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