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tv   ABC7 News Getting Answers  ABC  April 22, 2021 3:00pm-3:30pm PDT

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building a better bay area, moving forward, finding on . >> welcome to our daily program, getting answers. we asked experts your questions every day 3:00 to get answers for you in real time to today is earth day. we will introduce you to a bay area biotech company that's turning fungus into fashion. and stella mccartney, paris jackson, and adidas are already on board. for my kitchen creativity, easy ways to cut your use of wrap, and still keep your food fresh. but first, a broader look at our most pressing environmental problems and solutions. joining us now, founder of the environmental advocacy nonprofit, nexgen america, former democratic presidential
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candidate and current chair of governor newsom's business and jobs recovery task force, tom steyer. tom, good to see you again. >> kristin, great to be with you today, on earth day. >> abdullah, how have you been, good? >> antacid. today is a really great day for america and for california. >> yes, today president biden committed to cutting u.s. emissions at least 50% below 2005 levels, by the year 20 so in nine years, does that goal, in your opinion, go too far, not far enough, or just right? >> i think that goal is appropriate. it's ambitious, it has to be ambitious, because it's a necessity for us as a country, and as a globe to respond to this crisis. also, it sets out an opportunity for americans society to really achieve, for american business, to innovate, to come up with new ideas, new products that you were describing in your introduction, that are going to push us forward and create jobs and also solve our big climate
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crisis. >> all right,'s over those that are wondering, why is it so pressing? why is it that the urgency is upon us now? >> well, in california, we all saw last summer, record fires, that were a result of extremely high heat, coupled with very dry forests. around the world, we are seeing the rise of the oceans at a level that scientists absolutely did not predict, two years ago, five years ago, or 10 years ago. so we are releasing two timelines, kristin. one is the need for american business, american government, to disrupt the way we generate and use energy, to a cleaner way. and the other is the timeline from the natural world, which says, if you don't do that, the natural world is going to disrupt your world, and a very unpleasant way. we've got to win this race with
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the natural world and as americans, we gotta do it together. >> you started to get into it, but i'm going to ask for more details on how you think president biden's goals can be met, right? what changes need to be made? in terms of things we will see in our daily lives, is it electric cars, is it heating our homes differently? is it our factories are completely coal free? talk about the things we might see or need to see happen. >> there are five sectors that people focus on, kristin, which are electricity generation, transportation, manufacturing, the built environment, which is basically heating and air conditioning, and regenerative agriculture. but in the first 10 years, the most important thing we can do is clean up the way we generate electricity. and with the government, what they will have to do, is set out the rules for that, to spend money building the framework for that, rebuilding the grid, and then set up incentives for the private sector to innovate, and really create the new companies on the new products. that's what california has always been about, is that innovation that private sector
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creativity that lets us move forward as a society. >> do you think the political will is there behind whatever federal policies we might be put out by the biden administration in the next few months? >> well, let me answer that in two ways, kristen. first of all, there are democratic majorities , slim democratic majorities, in both houses of congress and of course, the biden administration and the democratic ministration. so these things can be and will be passed. but more than that, 70% americans want this move to a clean energy economy. that include the majority of republican voters. so i think there is absolutely political will in this country that recognizes a, there is a necessity, and b, there is a huge opportunity to create good paying jobs around thththththth for working people.
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>> i'm glad you brought up jobs, because that is a concern, right? how do we preserve jobs and also keep energy crisis down for americans, while we are making these transitions, taking these big steps. in your own president a campaign, you talked about how these goals can actually work in tandem. so kind of give our viewers an idea, a picture of how that could work in tandem. >> well, i want to dispel a myth that somehow we are going to have a healthy, growing economy, or a safe planet to live on. over the last 10 years, the cost of wind and solar has gone down by 90%. within three years, it's going to be cheaper, upfront, to buy an electric car, then to buy a car powered by an internal combustion engine. so we are going to be able to create more jobs, right now. there's three times more people employed in a clean energy parts of this economy than in the fossil fuel parts of this economy. so we are going to continue to create new jobs through this, and when you thing about the future, kristen, and when you thing about investing building companies and creating jobs and putting people to work, you've
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got to be looking forward. you cannot invest looking in their rearview mirror. you have to invest to create the future that's good for the people of california, good for the people of the united states, and good for the planet. >> even if that's a lot of jobs are good paying jobs in aggregate, what about the individual? the individual person who has always done something, and they are looking at being phased out? >> look, this is where government has to play a critical role. because you are right, this is a disruptive transition. it's a real change, and it's absolutely critical that government, not just talk about taking care of those people, whose jobs are gradually going to go away, but make sure that in fact, they are at the front of the line to get the new jobs. these jobs are going to be all over the country. we have to rebuild the united states of america. that is going to create millions and millions of jobs.
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but we can't do it from the standpoint of, oh, there's millions of jobs being created. we need to make sure that we are taking care of the workers in those industries, specifically, and making sure that they are ready to take the jobs that are available that will definitely be createdbe crd the new products, and in the new business is. >> tom, let's zoom in on california little bit. you and we are moving too slowly here? isn't our goal net zero emissions by the year 2045? >> first of all, to be clear, what the biden administration has said is that we are going to of economy wide, throughout the united states, net zero emissions by 2050. so california is still moving faster than the united states as a whole, as promised by the biden administration. i think, you know, kristen, so much is going to change. we are talking about something that's 25 to 30 years off. i think we should have a goal in our heads, really, we are going to have to start executing immediately the time
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to start moving on this, this is going to be a sprint. there is going to have to be real disruption in this. it's not going to be business as usual. this is going to be a huge societywide effort, pulling together in the government and the private sector. california has always led. and i will be so disappointed if in fact the state, which reflect innovation, somehow takes a backseata backseata bact to investing and creating a future. >> sounds like there's a lot of gold you'd like to accomplish.'s i've got ask you about this, because, we have heard you could potentially jump into the government oil race, one report says you have done some pulling and are looking into offering yourself as a potential fall that candidate should voters choose to recall governor newsome, who i know you totally support, so we are talking fallback. can you confirm that report? >> i have no interest in running. i oppose this recall. i think it's a republican attempt to take down a
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democratic governor. and actually, for the last few months, i have been so excited to work at this nexus, in terms of a just client solution of policy and investment and coalition building. i mean, i have been back here, reconnecting with some of my friends in the private sector, looking at investments in some of these incredible new technologies, really future building, future ensuring technologies. that is something that i been absolutely passionate about. i think it's critical, and something i get a gigantic kick out of. >> all right, tom steyer, founder of nexgen america, thank you so very much for talking to us on this earth day, a topic i know you are super passionate about. thank you so much. we will check in again soon. >> fantastic birthday to us all. >> indeed. all right, making fabric from mushrooms, is that sci-fi? no, it's actually happening. that the catchy headline, but the story is incredible. we will talk to
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welcome back. on this earth day, we are considering the many large and small ways we can help our planet. sunday area companies are working on innovations that sound improbable, but are just incredible. one such biotech company is bolt threads, based in emeryville. their main product, a leather alternative, derived from mushrooms. joining us to share their innovation, founder and ceo of bolt threads, deadwood meyer, thanks for joining us >> thanks for having me today. happy earth day. >> yes indeed. you call your products un- leather. what exactly is that? we say mushrooms kind of out of convenience, but that's not
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exactly at. >> yeah, when you go dig under a mushroom, there is roots under there that kind of has threadlike material. what we do is, we take that and grow it in a controlled environment and make a product. when we are done with it, it looks and feels a lot like leather. you can make all those products you love, but it's not from an animal and it's not from petroleum. and we think that's the way of the future, when you get all these things you wear every day, 70% of the environmental comes from the materials that go into them. >> this may sound like a silly question, but does it smell like mushrooms? >> only if we've done something really wrong. you know, it doesn't smell like cow, doesn't like mushroom. it reminds me a lot of leather. we go through a tannery where they are putting finishes and things on. it evokes that sensory feeling of leather. >> how did that idea come about? >> you know, as a company, we have this idea, a bunch of nerds here from the bay area, who went to ucsf and berkeley.
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and we see a lot of problems in our future, as the world changes from climate change around us. and we thought that nature for 4 billion years of life on earth has evolved. and so we look to nature for lots of materials, for the things you wear on your body every day. and leather is a really big pain point for consumers, whether you have animal streak, whether it's environment will, whether it's human health, with factory farming. and we saw massive demand. consumers and brands for a leather alternative. we put our minds to it and brought it in as the newest material in the port folio. >> speaking of brand, adidas and designer stella mccartney and lulu lemonlulu lemonlulu len signed on. i want to show folks some of the pictures, i think this is from the stella mccartney line of just incredible looking, like super sexy and trendy and fashionable looking leather pants, leather bustiers, right? i think jackets, and really neat stuff. as people look at these, tell
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me what you think a can be used for. canopy made thick or thin? you know, can have different finishes, and colors? talk about that. >> yeah, when you are going to set out to make a platform, an alternative to leather and platter, you have to fill the product. when you think of leather as one thing, it's a really diverse ecosystem of products in their. ranging from, you know, your crocodiles and ostrich, and luxury products come all the way down to something with a pretty benign finish, but cowhide or a piece of pleather. we can so that whole range with the way we design the technology. and we imagine it really living in the things you wear and carry with you every day , in your handbags, wallets, wearing your shoes, or your jacket. all of those areas, as things that are just really clever. and then, you know, the best part about this job, absolute best part? >> what?
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>> we sent something like this off and stella comes back and shows us something amazing that's more beautiful than everything i will ever conceive of in my life. it is fantastic. >> yeah, she is the artist, youh figuring out how to make the stuff. i went to uc berkeley, i'm all about the nerds. this is so cool. to continue being nerdy, i want to ask you like how is the raising of cattle for fashion hurting our planet more if we are already consuming cows anyway for food? >> yeah, no, that's a great question. i look at this as we are a planet tracking 10 billion people on this planet, a vast expansion of middle-class consumers. you know what? it's not terribly shocking to think that 10 billion people can't live the same way 1b only and people lived. we are only heading the upper bounds of what planetary can support with 300 million cattle year. being processed. i just don't think that's going to scale anymore. we need to find alternatives to serve the consumer demand going forward. we are also seeing a lot of pressure from the plant-based meats, it's been a really good
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thing the last couple of years. that is starting to feed into the growth in the meat industry. there's less cows, there is less. >> no pun intendedintendedintend we have viewer question, they are super interested in this un- leather called milo, that's the brand name, right? milo. zion wants to know, to the cost as much as leather? and is the planning tanning process petroleum free? >> that's a great question. like all new technologies, we expect it to start high, we expect products to be price high in the beginning picked up kind of the norm for technology, think about the latest electronic gadget. i will say, from what i've seen, i and pleasantly surprised how affordable this is going to come in. when adidas announced, they haven't announced pricing yet. the other products out there, they are already selling in the line. i think that's really critical if you're going to push a new solution that's going to be affordable to everyone. when we go through tanning, it's actually a very different process than tanning.
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this is a different material. we are able to use green chemistry principles to make it as good as we can today, and we have a continued list of improvements. so we are always pushing better and better versions through. we are actually backed up about three versions on the graduation into manufacturing side. those are all great ideas are clever scientists come up with to make it better for the planet, continually. >> dan, tom barton has a question. you jumping ahead because i was going to add that at the end, which is how can we buy it? i think, is it still in the production process? will it be said that people will be able to buy it? >> very soon. we've got a number of our brand partners, you know, we formed this innovative and fantastic pretty competitive consortium of adidas, lulu lemon, a luxury group that owns balenciaga, gucci, aileron, places like that. and stella mccartney. they are starting to rebuild roddick's now. we expect more to come to market later this year, and then continue to scale.
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that is our big challenge right now, make more of this stuff and bring it to consumers. >> okay. i got a question too about the process of turning the mushroom derivatives into un-leather, is that process itself a burden on the environment? >> you know, anytime you are taking resources from the planet and processing them, you are doing something. there is going to be some amount of waste. we design it from the beginning to minimize. so we think this is going to come out. we are not ready to release yet, but it's going to come out very much ahead of where leather and pleather's in the world. the only thing about this that's really nice, technology. so we've got a bunch of clever scientists, great engineers, and one key part of what we do is always improving. we think we can take this process that we are, leather has been around for a few thousand years, give or take. a little hard to make a lot better. we've got a long ways to make this better, and we already think it's pretty darn good. >> alex gets the last question,
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is it comfortable? if you've got lulu lemon, folks, if you know lulu lemon, it's workout clothes, i've got to think it is. is a flexible, pliable, movable, breathable? >> yeah, soft, subtle, breathable, those are kind of the attributes i think people love a lot about whether. if you are going to make an alternative, that's something you need to do. i don't have anyone who has worn a pair of plastic leather or pleather shoes , that's not a very breathable material. most people notice that. so we really wanted to make something that gave you what we call the aesthetic experience a real leather. and then bring it to you in a way that's better for the planet, and comfortable to use in all the things you love. we spend a lot of time on that. we have a lot of brands that have given us the feedback of, this is amazing, from their designers. >> wow, using technology to reduce fashion footprint on our planet. dan wood meyer, this is incredible, both threads, thank you so much for sharing this with us. we look forward to the products
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in a few months, hopefully. >> wonderful, thank you for having me. >> take care. coming up next, we've heard what's being done on a state level to help the environment. what we just i was being done to help from a
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welcome back. reducing plastic use is one simple way we can help out, not just on earth day, but every day. joining us to talk about this and demonstrate some good ideas is food historian kenna bala, professor at the university of the pacific in stockton, how is it going? happy earth day. earth day. >> happy birthday to you too. >> i see you are in the kitchen, which is great. we wanted to talk to you about that. many of us have made efforts to be more green in the kitchen. i have reusable steel straws. reusable containers for my food. i have, you know, steel coffee mugs instead of paper now. let's talk about plastic wrap. plastic wrap, that's a tough
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one to get ririri >> it is very tough to get rid of. you know, most of us, it's been here for our entire lives, really. it was introduced, or invented in the 30s, then introduced to the public in 1949. so, you know, most people grew up with it, and we ju you have a ball that's open, you just take out some plastic and you put it on top. you know, it's always polyvinyl fighting chloride, a chemical that's obviously not very good for the environment, because it doesn't degrade, so it dumped in big piles. so i was thinking, you know, when i was asked to do this, i started pulling out vessels and things from my cabinets, and i realize, the things that i like having around are usually natural materials. they are not, you don't really need anything high-tech. i pulled some pottery out. i pulled some glass. i pulled some wood, bamboo, palm, you know. i have metal vessels also if you wanted to store soup or something, these are ideal. but i think, in a way, it's
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going back to ways people use to store things. you know, in the past, they would have like a piece of letter they would tie on top of the bowl and cover it up. nowadays, they make this wonderful beeswax lined cloth, and it actually does stick to itself. you can, you know, wrap it around the vessel and put in the fridge, that's perfectly fine. >> okay, show me what i can do, in terms of like keeping, you know, storing fruits and veggies in the fridge, keeping them fresh. >> fruits and veggies, you know when you buy them, i would say don't buy them in plastic. you know, by enough that you are going to use very quickly and i would say, put them into your vegetable been unaware they are going to be, there is more moisture in there, so they will keep pressure. some things, i do think you need plastic for. you know, people always wonder, how do you keep fresh herbs? how do you keep your herbs fresh? i think the plastic bag you get there, you wrap it in some paper towel, put into the
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fridge, and it lasts at least a week, maybe more. than i use that plastic again. and i think, you know, when people gather onions or avocados or tomatoes, you really don't need a bag for that stuff. you just, you know, you are buying a couple, put them in your cart, take them home, put them in the fridge, wash it off if you need to. but those things, i think we really don't think about how much plastic we don't need. vessels for like storage vessels, glasses fine. you know, it's perfectly okay for dried goods. i don't see why you, you know, i keep plastic around, just because there is something that it works so well for, you know? you are going to freeze things in a ziploc bag, that is ideal. you don't want to have that stuck. >> what about biodegradable bags? are they good for food storage, in terms of like keeping them fresh? >> they are. and i think, you know, in all honesty, those things are not even necessary, for most things that you would put in your
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refrigerator. use them within a couple of days, and they will be fine. you know, they are not going to pick up all flavors, wax paper works nicely also if you have leftover sandwich, roll into a piece of wax paper, put in the fridge, use that wax paper again. you know, if you have to use a ziploc bag for something, just wash it out. those can last a long time. they are not as disposable as people i was injured in a car crash. i had no idea how much my case was worth. i called the barnes firm.
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sometimes, this is what it takes. facing down hate. facing down bias. as we step out, bay area, lets step up our march towards social justice and health equity. join aids walk san francisco live at home, streaming on may 16. register today aidswalk.net carbon footprint of using, you know, seing thvessel across the wod. to -- >>wehave to
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much. we are back, thanks so much for joining us on this interactive earth day addition of getting answers. today, we talked with tom steyer about what needs to tonight, for the first time, we hear from one of the jurors in that courtroom for the derek chauvin trial. one of the two alternate jurors describing what it was like to listen to the evidence, to see the video over and over again. making eye contact with the former officer. and who she thought was the pivotal itness in the trial, before chauvin was found guilty. the other major headline tonight. the coronavirus in the u.s. tonight, the cdc acknowledging it is now looking at its mask guidelines. could there be changes? what we've learned on that front. and the future of the johnson & johnson one-shot vaccine here in the u.s. on this earth day, president biden, the summit with world leaders and the president's new pledge to cut carbon emissions in the u.s. in half by 2030.

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