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Oakland Government finally steps in after artist threats

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The s**t is hitting the fan over at The Oakland Cannery since our story about unsafe living conditions broke just last week. KQED published an article this week about the industrial generators creating unsafe living conditions and put pressure on the city. Turns out, the noise made by the press may have inspired the city of Oakland to start doing something about the issue. Hopefully this will stop the multiple industrial diesel generators from powering nearly 100,000 square feet of grow operations in the first floor of The Oakland Cannery which endangers the residents living above.

Tenants stepped in earlier this week and took matters into their own hands by issuing the city a warning. “We are done asking nicely and are now demanding that the generators be shut down within the next 72-hours, or by 5pm this Thursday 3/24/22. If this fails to be addressed, a coalition of residents, neighbors, community activists and leaders are prepared to take further action to ensure our community safety and begin shutting them down ourselves,” says Alistair Monroe, a leader within The Oakland Cannery residents.

The rough plan was for the Cannery residents was to form a blockade with their cars at the entrance of the Cannery, and not allow the gasoline truck to come in and refuel the massive generators powering the cannabis operation.  But now that the city has begun to respond with inspections and fines, and to hold the weed growers accountable for their violations,  the blockade has been called off.

Large generator parked in a loading doc with other construction materials stacked haphazardly next to the building

The industrial generator’s hooked up to the first floor of The Oakland Cannery – generators at another Green Sage site down the street require daily fuel deliveries and burn more than 2,000 gallons of fuel a day.

Due to the tenacity of Alistair and the residents at The Oakland Cannery, it looks like there might be some traction with the city after KQED stepped in and exposed the violations of Green Sage LLC.

KQED picked up the story early this week and went in-depth into the major health risks and caught the attention of city officials. This put pressure on city officials to respond and acknowledge the issue. The article states that Oakland City Council-member Loren Taylor acknowledges that the city needs to move faster when and have better ways of enforcing cannabis operators who are “out of bounds”.

In the article, Council member Taylor said they were “frankly upset that the warehouse owners have been using industrial diesel generators as a permanent power source. Generators are intended to be temporary, while we’re bridging a gap, not to be a long-term fixture in the community polluting and pushing out the chemicals into the air.” Still, residents haven’t been notified of any change in the situation since this statement.

We hope the generators are shut down sooner than later. Since the start of all of this mess (which has been going on for nearly 5 years), several organizations have visited the site due to the unsafe conditions. As of today, Friday 03/25/22, we know of these agencies* who have sent Green Sage violations and visited the site due to the unsafe living conditions:

• Alameda Healthcare Service Agency
• City of Oakland Economic and Workforce Development Department – Permit’s division
• GSI, Environmental Inc. (for an environmental impact statement)
• Alameda County Fire Marshall via Oakland Fire Prevention Bureau
• PGE Officials

Additionally, the residents have notified these city, state and county officials & organizations surrounding the unsafe issue with the diesel trucks:

  • Senator Nancy Skinner
  • Congresswoman Barbara Lee
  • Mayor Libby Schaaf
  • Oakland Council Members
  • Oakland City Administrator’s
  • Bay Area Air Quality Management
  • Oakland Air District
  • GSI Environment
  • Communities For A Better Environment
  • Alameda Sustainability and Resilience
  • EPA Report A Violation
  • California Air Resources Board
  • Alameda Climate mitigation
  • West Oakland Environmental Indicators Project
  • California Environmental Justice Alliance

I’ve reached out again to Green Sage for comment as we did last week. While I don’t expect they will reply given this has an ongoing legal issue associate with it, we do hope that they do so that we can all hear their P.O.V. in this ongoing issue.

The Oakland Cannery with air conditioning units on the first floor

Air conditioning units from cannabis companies positioned to blow upward towards the residential units




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Katy Atchison

Katy Atchison

Katy is a professional smiling machine raised in The Bay Area since the age of 3. While other kids were attending summer camp & soccer practice, she was raised selling wares at craft shows with her working artist parents and spent vacations in a small 1920s Montana log cabin. This has all given her a unique perspective on the ever-changing texture of San Francisco and the Greater Bay Area. Currently a blend of all that is The Bay Area - she's a web designer at a tech-company, artist and DIY teacher.

1 Comment

  1. Cadence
    March 31, 2022 at 3:02 pm — Reply

    The city of Oakland should be doing what it can to protect people’s safety. The city is as much to blame for Ghost ship fire for allowing housing issues to spiral out of control.

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