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newsclips -- Newsclips for February 4, 2011. Posted: 04 Feb 2011 13:08:41
California Air Resources Board News Clips for February 4, 2011. This is a service of the California Air Resources Board’s Office of Communications. You may need to sign in or register with individual websites to view some of the following news articles. AIR POLLUTION S. Calif. Air Board Approves Pollution Program. Southern California's anti-smog agency overwhelmingly approved a controversial plan that would allow companies to pollute by purchasing emission credits. The South Coast Air Quality Management District voted 10-1 to approve trading credits, the third time they've voted on an issue that has sparked lawsuits in the past. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/02/04/AR2011020403853.html http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/02/04/2259856/s-calif-air-board-approves-pollution.html#storylink=misearch http://www.modbee.com/2011/02/04/1542481/s-calif-air-board-approves-pollution.html http://www.nctimes.com/news/national/article_145acf08-8a3c-5ff3-9ba7-0cd497015801.html http://www.pe.com/ap_news/California/US_Pollution_Credits_553976C.shtml Pharma Giant Merck Faces Trial Over Merced Plant. A company once owned by pharmaceutical giant Merck & Co. exposed residents near its now-shuttered Merced plant to cancer-causing chemicals, then covered up the contamination for years and downplayed its severity, a lawyer said Thursday. Fresno attorney Mick Marderosian made the allegations in opening statements in U.S. District Court in Fresno. Posted. http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/02/03/2259355/merck-faces-trial-over-merced.html#storylink=misearch CLIMATE CHANGE Judge: More Review Needed To Finalize Ab32. San Francisco, ca (AP) -- state air quality regulators must conduct further analysis before fully implementing California’s landmark 2006 climate law, a trial court judge has said. In a tentative ruling last month, san Francisco superior court judge Ernest goldsmith said the California air resources board violated state environmental law by failing to properly study alternatives to plans it has adopted. A final ruling could come Tuesday, when the air board's response is due, and if it's upheld, it could delay implementation of the nation's most aggressive climate change laws. Posted. Http://Www.Sfgate.Com/Cgi-Bin/Article.Cgi?F=/N/A/2011/02/03/State/N182954s50.DTL&Type=Printable http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/02/04/MNOO1HIDT2.DTL&type=green http://www.sacbee.com/2011/02/03/v-print/3376389/judge-more-review-needed-to-finalize.html http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-02-04/judge-more-review-needed-to-finalize-calif-law.html http://www.pe.com/ap_news/California/CA_California_Greenhouse_Gases_553857C.shtml http://www.modbee.com/2011/02/03/1541630/judge-more-review-needed-to-finalize.html http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/feb/03/judge-more-review-needed-to-finalize-ab32/ http://www.nctimes.com/news/state-and-regional/article_c48ff08e-a448-52bc-9501-dcbacb73366a.html http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/02/03/2259151/judge-more-review-needed-to-finalize.html#storylink=misearch http://blogs.kqed.org/newsfix/2011/02/03/court-ruling-could-pose-problems-for-ab-32/ http://www.mymotherlode.com/news/local/1226721/AB-32-Implementation-Stalls.html California Court Decision No Threat To ETS: Lawyers. A California court decision is unlikely to delay the start of the state’s cap-and-trade programme. Late last month, a San Francisco judge tentatively ruled that the California Air Resources Board (Carb) had failed to adequately examine alternative policy options to creating a carbon market when deciding how the state should reduce its GHG emissions. An attorney representing the challengers told Reuters Tuesday that the ruling, if finalised, could potentially delay implementation of the cap-and-trade carbon market due to start next year. Posted. Pointcarbon.com (this article is by subscription only). Thank you. Pacific Northwest Warned Of Climate Change Dangers. Washington state and the province of British Columbia launched a joint effort on Wednesday to warn residents of North America's Pacific Northwest about the danger that climate change poses to coastal communities. Officials say they hope that by increasing public awareness about issues such as rising sea levels they can revive flagging support for fighting global warming in the neighboring U.S. state and Canadian province. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/02/03/us-usa-climate-idUSTRE7119LX20110203 Record Droughts Could Make The Amazon A Source Of Carbon Emissions. A severe drought last year in the Amazon rainforest outpaced a 2005 dry spell thought to be a once-in-a-century event, a new study finds. Researchers from the United Kingdom and Brazil also said the pair of droughts have raised concerns that the forest could be approaching a point where it ceases to be a carbon "sink," absorbing more carbon dioxide from the atmosphere than it produces, and flips to a carbon source. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/02/04/3 DIESEL EMISSIONS Oakland Port Grant To Cut Ships' Dirty Diesel Pollution. Half the ships at dock in California ports must plug into electrical power by 2014. By 2014, half the large container ships that dock at the Port of Oakland must shut down their dirty auxiliary diesel engines and plug in to clean electrical power. And the port's $90 million estimate for meeting that state deadline got a boost this week when the Air Quality Management District awarded a $5 million grant to help bring electrical shore power to three Oakland berths. Posted. http://www.insidebayarea.com/oaklandtribune/localnews/ci_17287930?source=rss http://www.mercurynews.com/breaking-news/ci_17283748 FUELS Group Drops Lawsuit Over Colorado Oil, Gas Rules. The Colorado Oil and Gas Association said Thursday it is withdrawing its lawsuit challenging Colorado oil and gas rules that took effect in 2009. Industry officials had said the rules, aimed at balancing development with protections for human health and the environment, were among the country's most restrictive. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/feb/03/group-drops-lawsuit-over-colorado-oil-gas-rules/ Report Backs Massive Canadian Oil Sands Pipeline. A proposed oil pipeline from Canada to the U.S. Gulf Coast could substantially reduce U.S. dependency on oil from the Middle East and other regions, according to a report commissioned by the Obama administration. The study suggests the 1,900-mile pipeline, coupled with a reduction in overall U.S. oil demand, "could essentially eliminate Middle East crude imports longer term.". Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/feb/04/report-backs-massive-canadian-oil-sands-pipeline/ http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/02/04/2259477/report-backs-massive-canadian.html#storylink=misearch GREEN ENERGY The Root: Trying To Find The Rumored Green Jobs. Proclaiming it "Innovation Week" at the White House, President Obama has ramped up his clean-energy agenda recently. From the Monday launch of a program designed to spark entrepreneurship in high-growth industries, to Thursday's tour of labs at Penn State where researchers are developing more energy-efficient buildings, the president keeps talking the good talk on investing in new technologies to create jobs. Posted. http://www.npr.org/2011/02/04/133491234/the-root-trying-to-find-the-rumored-green-jobs Obama Sharpens Jobs Element Of Energy Pitch. President Barack Obama, turning briefly to his eclipsed domestic agenda, sharpened his sales pitch for clean energy technology Thursday by promising that the payoff would be a wave of jobs ---- the kind good enough to support families and long-term American prosperity. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/feb/03/obama-to-promote-energy-ideas-at-penn-state/ http://www.nctimes.com/news/national/article_6d63a8f9-1c3b-59ce-9ae0-b0f7586233c2.html http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/02/03/2258032/obama-to-promote-energy-ideas.html#storylink=misearch http://www.sbsun.com/elections/ci_17285052 http://www.pressdemocrat.com/article/20110203/WIRE/110209813 Auditor Advises Lawmakers To Rethink Power Surcharge. An electricity surcharge in place on most California utility bills since 1996 to fund research and development has resulted in few payoffs and should be reformed drastically if it is to continue beyond its sunset date next year, according to the state's legislative auditor. The Legislative Analyst's Office in Sacramento examined the fee, which has raised $700 million to date, and determined that the so-called Public Interest Energy Research (PIER) program has lacked focus and often spent funds in areas outside electricity. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2011/02/04/13 California Proposal Presents Four Strategies To Let The Sun Shine In. The solar sector in California stands to receive a potentially significant boost if a four-pronged renewable energy policy and business initiative introduced this week by state legislators is signed into law. Assembly Speaker John A. Perez and Senate President pro Tempore Darrell Steinberg have introduced the Clean Energy Jobs Initiative, which is designed to both accelerate renewable energy deployment in California and aid the budget-beleaguered state in resolving its persistent fiscal crisis. Posted. http://solarindustrymag.com/print.php?plugin:content.7214 VEHICLES Honda Fit beats Toyota Prius to top Japan sales. Honda's Fit subcompact overtook Toyota's Prius gasoline-electric hybrid as Japan's top-selling car in January, its first return to that spot in nearly two years. The figures released Friday by the Japan Automobile Dealers Association show how the end of government subsidies for green cars have hurt sales of the Prius after holding the top spot in Japan for 20 straight months. It remains the world's top-selling hybrid. Posted. http://www.nctimes.com/business/article_0b78878c-1bd9-5f26-ac3c-ae265a1886c4.html http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/02/03/2259390/honda-fit-beats-toyota-prius-to.html#storylink=misearch http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/02/04/AR2011020400463.html MISCELLANEOUS Homes Go Ultra-Green. A Sacramento developer said it plans to roll out a new, ultra-efficient housing development in midtown this fall where energy bills will be as much as 70 percent lower than normal. The 34 houses planned for 25th and R streets will be net-zero energy – meaning they produce more energy than they use. Posted. http://www.modbee.com/2011/02/04/1541833/homes-go-ultra-green.html China's Booming Economy May Produce The Majority Of World Coal Emissions By 2035 – EIA. China's growth kept churning through the 2009 global financial crisis that left the United States and Europe in economic shambles. That kept China's global carbon emissions on a steadily upward trajectory, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. EIA emissions data released last month add weight to a body of evidence suggesting that, in terms of greenhouse gas emissions, slumping Western economies will be no match for growth in China and India. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/02/04/1 OPINION Gavin Newsom Focuses On Building Efficiency. In one of his first starring appearances as lieutenant governor, Gavin Newsom returned to one of his favorite stomping grounds this week - a green business conference. Keynoting a San Francisco confab put on by GreenBiz Group, Newsom, I'm told, was his usual excitable self, spinning off ideas left and right, from wave power and electric vehicles to Asia - especially China - being green's "godsend of opportunity." Besides talking about state-owned property being used for EV charging stations - … Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/02/04/BUVQ1HIDVV.DTL&type=printable Clean Air Act and Climate Change Control Business Efficiency Job Growth Engines. It is a fact the economy of Southern California, the most heavily and longest regulated air pollution control region in the world has one of the strongest export economies in the world. The Clean Air Act and now Climate Change Control are business efficiency improving, waste reducing and life saving job growth engines. The Congressional Budget Office must do a benefit assessment of the four decade history of the Clean Air Act. Posted. http://www.examiner.com/environmental-policy-in-national/clean-air-act-and-climate-change-control-business-efficiency-job-growth-engines Expanding California's Clean Economy. We all know there is one, and only one immediate challenge confronting California – and that is the state budget. As the Governor outlined in his State of the State message, the budget is and remains our top priority. We cannot recover the economic health of our state until we put our fiscal house in order as quickly as possible. But we also must continue taking leadership in our ongoing effort to strengthen California’s economy by supporting emerging industries and creating jobs for Californians. . Posted. http://www.californiaprogressreport.com/site/print/8644 Accommodating Bikes Is Right Thing To Do. The most frustrating thing about the discussion about the "bike path to nowhere" is the city of Bakersfield's refusal to accept bicycling as a viable means of transportation and to adopt a Complete Streets philosophy as required by state legislation. The Complete Streets Act -- which was passed in 2008 and is now required to be a part of any new general plan adopted in the state -- requires that all road users be accommodated, including bicyclists. Therefore, every street improvement, including Rosedale Highway, should be designed to provide safe access to all users. Posted. http://www.bakersfield.com/opinion/letters/x1780156579/Accommodating-bikes-is-right-thing-to-do EPA Rules: Bad Policy, Bad Time. Since late last year, the Environmental Protection Agency has been rolling out new federal climate regulations that would have the same effects as the job-destroying cap-and-trade policy that Congress rejected last year.EPA has seized control over parts of several state air programs, empowering the agency to run them federally. EPA has also signaled that additional burdensome regulations are on the horizon. Posted. http://dyn.politico.com/printstory.cfm?uuid=3EC6C1CC-90A5-49F3-B332-A07D001E963E BLOGS L.A. Air Officials To Vote On Pollution Trading. A nine-year battle between Los Angeles regional air quality officials, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency and California public health groups over the integrity of the area's pollution trading system will be rejoined Friday, as air district officials vote on new rules governing pollution offsets. Environmentalists contend that a proposal by the South Coast Air Quality Management District (AQMD), known as Rule 1315, will lock in a phony accounting system that will count years-old pollution reductions as offsets, thus allowing businesses to build new facilities that pollute. Posted. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/greenspace/2011/02/los-angeles-air-pollution-trading-system.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+GreenspaceEnvironmentBlog+%28Greenspace%29 Government Backs $1 Billion Plan to Make Gasoline from Wood. The Energy Department has offered a Texas company a loan guarantee for a $1 billion project to build four small factories that would turn wood chips into an oil substitute. The loan guarantee, if finalized, would be about four times larger than any previous guarantee for biofuels. Its aim is to spur industrial-scale production of substitutes for gasoline and diesel from renewable sources beyond food crops like corn and sugar, a goal that many companies are chasing but none has yet achieved. Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/02/03/government-backs-1-billion-plan-to-make-gas-from-wood-chips/?pagemode=print Rescuing the Earth’s Weather History. One of the most profound limitations of climate science arises from a simple fact. While humans have existed on this planet in more or less their present form for perhaps a quarter-million years, the historical record covers only a few thousand years, and the record of accurate weather and climate observations is much shorter than that. Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/02/04/rescuing-the-earths-weather-history/ What If: On Uprisings, Oil Kingdoms and the Energy Gap. Gal Luft, an analyst of the intersection of energy and security policy, has posted a troubling portrait of what might unfold in the United States if the turmoil in Egypt spread to Saudi Arabia, along with the limited options to respond, given deep dependence on petroleum. [There's much, much more on the Saudi question.] It’s been clear for a long while that America remains hostage to oil shocks – and has yet to initiate the long-term and sustained effort that’d be required to limit the economic and strategic risks. Posted. http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/02/03/what-if-on-uprisings-oil-kingdoms-and-the-energy-gap/?scp=5&sq=fuels&st=cse The Economy vs. Clean Energy: A False Choice. I represent an alliance of nearly 1,000 small, mainstream companies in California, who employ tens of thousands of people around the state, and who are committed to pursuing clean energy policies that help grow the economy and create jobs. Our network is made up of businesses from all geographic regions of the state and includes owners of print shops, restaurants, construction firms, and landscape companies; CEOs of and investors in solar and renewable companies; leaders of chambers of commerce and business associations; and more. Posted. http://foxandhoundsdaily.com/blog/susan-frank/8572-the-economy-vs-clean-energy-a-false-choice Green Jobs Or Tax Reform? A day of extremes at the state Capitol on Wednesday led to very different budget crisis resolution angles – green jobs or tax reform? From a press conference announcing a green jobs initiative to a panel discussion about how to implement tax reform, the extremes were arresting, and even comical. In one corner was the Democratic team, Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg and Assembly Speaker John Perez, proclaiming their “Green Jobs Initiative,” which amounts to another group of bills that push even more state subsidized “green jobs” and “clean energy” subsidies …Posted. http://foxandhoundsdaily.com/blog/katy-grimes/8583-green-jobs-or-tax-reform