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Roundtable: Senate Healthcare Bill, Algae As Fuel, Getting To Zero Traffic Deaths

Healthcare Bill, Algae As Fuel, Zero Traffic Deaths


Andrew Bowen, metro reporter, KPBS News

Kenny Goldberg, health reporter, KPBS News

David Wagner, science and technology reporter, KPBS News



The Story

Senate Republicans on Thursday revealed their bill to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. While President Trump said he hoped for a plan with "heart," the Senate bill appears quite similar to the one passed by the House in May, which Trump described as "mean, mean, mean." It could leave more than 20 million Americans without coverage, while providing tax breaks to the wealthiest citizens.

The Democrats are vowing for a fierce fight, as some Republicans waver in their support.

The Conversation

—If passed, what would this law mean for California?

—Is Obamacare imploding?

—Could a single-payer system work in California?


The Story

This week, a San Diego company took a significant step toward making algae a viable alternative to fossil fuels. Synthetic Genomics developed an engineered strain that contains more fat than its wild cousin.

But it could be a little early to pop the champagne. Industry experts say large scale production of the fuel-rich plant, and its use as an alternative to gasoline, is still many years in the future.

The Conversation

—What are the next steps for the algae industry?

—What role does ExxonMobil play in its development?

—How far off are we from putting algae in our gas tanks?


The Story

It has been more than a century since Americans first fell in love with the automobile. And car crashes, many of them fatal, are the price we have been willing to pay for the convenience and freedom cars afford.

In San Diego, you are more likely to be killed by a car than by a gun. But the city is looking to reduce the number of traffic deaths through a program called Vision Zero, which aims to get to zero traffic deaths by 2025. The first project under this program redesigns a particularly deadly section of University Avenue in City Heights.

The Conversation

—The first project under Vision Zero redesigns half a mile of street. Is this enough?

—How have other cities implemented Vision Zero, and have they had success?

—Is zero traffic deaths an achievable goal?

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