Tahoe Project is an independent, non-profit journalism venture that supports solution-oriented learning, critical-thinking and productive dialogue about local, regional and global issues relevant to Lake Tahoe. The Tahoe Project seeks to engage minds in productive dialogue and collaborative problem solving and to empower parties to negotiate toward actionable outcomes by promoting critical thinking and knowledge-based discussion. We are driven by the conviction that answers to Tahoes most challenging problems exist in the ideas and energy of the worldwide community of people who care about this unique place. In the tradition of journalism in the public service Tahoe Project aims to underscore and stimulate positive change in a non-partisan, non-ideological framework. We are committed to high standards of journalistic impartiality, accuracy, fairness and transparency. Tahoe Project does not lobby, nor ally with politicians or advocacy groups. We examine issues over time as they unfold. We host dialogue about the environment, governance, the economy and community. We translate scientific information for practical consumption.
Interview with physician Jonathan Finnoff, Director of Barton Health Sports Medicine20/07/2012 Duration: 09min
Physician Jonathan Finnoff is the Director of Sports Medicine at Barton Health,serving Lake Tahoe and the Carson Valley. Dr. Finnoff directed sports medicine programs at the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota for five years prior to coming to Tahoe. Now he is developing the sports medicine program at Tahoe. This involves working with a multidisciplinary team of doctors and nurses in teaching, expanding the clinical repertoire and conducting research. Dr. Finnoff and his team recently hosted a sports medicine board review course in South Lake Tahoe.
Interview with Tony Lashbrook, Town of Truckee, Town Manager19/07/2012 Duration: 08min
Tony Lashbrook is Manager of the Town of Truckee. He was the first department head hired by the Town when it incorporated in 1993. Truckee was on a wave of economic expansion based on its ability to accommodate second home construction when the present housing crisis and economic downturn hit. The Town of Truckee looked to California redevelopment programs as a way to move into a new era of progress in the Town when the state withdrew support for that program. In this interview hear Lashbrook’s perspective on the modern era’s boom and bust as manifest in Truckee.
Interview with Chuck Scharer, Edgewood Companies CEO (2)18/07/2012 Duration: 17min
The proposed Edgewood Lodge project would make Edgewood Tahoe a destination resort. Edgewood Companies has overseen the demolition of old tourist accommodation units and now will replace those units by building a lodge on the Edgewood site that features 194 units. In conjunction with the lodge project, Edgewood proposes to integrate several environmental improvement upgrades to the land the company owns. “We value being good land stewards. We feel a strong responsibility to the environment. So when we put together the lodge project we felt it important to focus not only on the economic elements but the environmental attributes. So we have developed a project that includes environmental benefits that go far beyond the mitigation that would be required for the project itself. Today we capture about 350,000 to 400,000 pounds of sediment. We keep it from going into the lake. With the lodge proposal we propose to take the number of pounds of sediment captured per year to 500,000 pounds,” says Scharer.
Interview with Chuck Scharer, Edgewood Companies CEO17/07/2012 Duration: 09min
In this interview Chuck Scharer, CEO of Edgewood Companies, talks about Tahoe as a marketplace in transition and gives insight into how Edgewood Companies aspires to be a catalyst for change in the Tahoe Region. “This marketplace needs to evolve into that recreation marketplace that we can be and that we should be,“ says Scharer. “We need to focus on our natural resources. Edgewood companies is in a unique position to be able to deliver the lake and recreation to our customers,” he says.
Interview with Cindy Gustafson, Tahoe Fund Board Chair06/07/2012 Duration: 12min
Cindy Gustafson has been instrumental in establishing the Tahoe Fund where she is the volunteer Chair of the Board of Directors. In her capacity as General Manager of Tahoe City Public Utility District, she and her staff serve Tahoe’s west shore with water provision, sewer collection, and park and recreation services. In the thirty years she has been at Lake Tahoe, Gustafson has been a leader in securing funding for, and administering, capital projects including bike trails, sidewalks, water and sewer system upgrades, public parks and environmental restoration projects.
Cindy Gustafson, Tahoe Fund Board Chair06/07/2012 Duration: 09min
Welcome to part 2 in the interview with Cindy Gustafson, Chair of the Tahoe Fund Board, in which she says “We need to find ways for people to be here in the Tahoe Basin while making [their presence] less impactful to the environment.”
Midges: Barbara Hayford Interview (2)25/06/2012 Duration: 08min
Lake Tahoe’s nutrient composition seems to be changing. Invasive species such as weeds and clams and nutrients added to the lake such as nitrogen and phosphorus can change the floor of the lake which in turn affects the animals that can live there. Before they become flies that occupy beaches on a lakeshore, midges live on the lake floor and look like small worms. Different midge species can survive in different nutrient conditions on a lake floor. The species of midges able to survive on the floor of Lake Tahoe are changing. Listen to the interview with midge expert Barbara Hayford for insight into this observed change and what it may indicate about the state of the lake.
Midges: Barbara Hayford Interview (1)25/06/2012 Duration: 06min
Dr. Barbara Hayford is an expert on midges—those very small, two-winged flies that sometimes hover around one’s head at the water’s edge. Her expertise has taken her from Wayne State College in Nebraska all the way to Mongolia’s Lake Hovsgol, to Crater Lake in Oregon, and now, Lake Tahoe. The composition of midge species in a lake can indicate the state the lake is in, for example, whether a lake has a lot of nutrients or a little.
Marion Whitmann, Asian Clam Expert (Part 2)18/06/2012 Duration: 11min
Welcome to part 2 in the interview with Marion Whitmann in which she talks about the collaboration involved in Asian Clam research at Lake Tahoe. Between 2008 and 2011 the Asian clam population in Lake Tahoe increased and their range expanded. As these clams continue to grow they could have more impact in the future.
Marion Whitmann, Asian Clam Expert (Part 1)18/06/2012 Duration: 10min
Dr. Marion Whitmann is an expert in Asian Clams which are an invasive species in Lake Tahoe. These clams don’t have any natural predators in Tahoe and as a result have taken over significant swaths of the lake floor where they cause damage to the ecological system and can sometimes cause economic damage by spurring algae blooms and other effects damaging to Tahoe’s water and beaches.
Lars Anderson, Aquatic Weed Specialist (Part 2)15/06/2012 Duration: 11min
Welcome to part 2 in the interview with Lars Anderson, plant physiologist and aquatic weed specialist. In this conversation Anderson shares insight into how aquatic weeds got to Tahoe in the first place and how everyone can help prevent the spread of aquatic invasive weeds.
Lars Anderson, Aquatic Weed Specialist (Part 1)15/06/2012 Duration: 11min
It was in 1996 when Lars Anderson first came to Tahoe to evaluate the aquatic weed problem that was growing in the Tahoe Keys. What he saw was the beginning of a problem that has expanded to areas around the lake. Anderson is a plant physiologist whose specialty is aquatic weeds. He has recently retired from a multi-decade career with the United States Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service. His home base has been at the University of California at Davis where he has led efforts throughout California to slow or halt the spread and negative impacts of aquatic invasive weeds. In his retirement Anderson has continued to be involved with efforts to stop the spread of aquatic invasive weeds within Lake Tahoe.
Conversation with Todd Ferrara, California Natural Resources Agency10/06/2012 Duration: 09min
As Deputy Secretary for External Affairs at the California Natural Resources Agency Todd Ferrara is frequently involved in Tahoe—applying his agency’s creative approaches and solutions based on science, collaboration and respect, to problem-solving in the Tahoe Basin. In this interview Ferrara gives insight into the Resource Agency’s partnership with the Nevada Department of Environmental Protection in supporting the process of updating the Tahoe Regional Plan.
Conversation with Nicole Beck and Jason Drew about Tahoe Water Quality (1 of 2)06/06/2012 Duration: 12min
This is a conversation with two scientists who have worked in the field toward improving Lake Tahoe water quality for over a decade. Dr. Nicole Beck is Principal and founder of 2ND NATURE an ecosystem science and design firm based in Santa Cruz, California. Beck has applied her academic credentials in physical and chemical sciences in the field where she has worked on environmental water quality issues since 1993. Jason Drew is an Associate Scientist at Nichols Consulting Engineers. In this interview Beck and Drew share insight into how policies have evolved in Tahoe to better-focus effort on the pollutants causing Tahoe’s decline.
Conversation with Nicole Beck and Jason Drew about Tahoe Water Quality (2 of 2)06/06/2012 Duration: 11min
Welcome to part 2 in the conversation with scientists Nicole Beck and Jason Drew who work in the field and at the drawing table on water quality solutions for Tahoe. In this segment Beck and Drew emphasize how maintenance and operations of existing water quality tools and infrastructure is critical to advancing toward water quality goals. They also share insight into the challenges inherent in securing funding for operations and maintenance.