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newsclips -- Newsclips for February 7, 2011. Posted: 07 Feb 2011 13:01:35
California Air Resources Board News Clips for February 7, 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 Agency Oks Plan To Let Industry Expand In L.A. Region Using Pollution Credits. Environmentalists say the plan will add to the Southland's smog and soot problems and open the way for new gas-fired power plants. Southern California air quality officials adopted a plan Friday to allow industry to expand in the Los Angeles region by tapping into a public fund of free pollution credits. Environmentalists said the plan would add to the region's smog and soot problems and open the way for new gas-fired power plants to be built in an already overloaded air basin. "This vote reverses decades of steady progress we've made to combat chronic air pollution," said Adrian Martinez, an attorney with the Natural Resources Defense Council. Posted. http://articles.latimes.com/print/2011/feb/05/local/la-me-air-pollution-20110205 http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-02-04/s-california-air-board-approves-pollution-program.html http://www.pe.com/localnews/stories/PE_News_Local_D_aircredits05.26ae9fd.html http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/feb/05/new-ozone-standards-on-the-horizon/ http://www.scpr.org/news/2011/02/04/court-orders-more-air-quality-control-southland/ CLIMATE CHANGE Judge Halts California Greenhouse Gas Plan. A California judge put rules on hold implementing the state's greenhouse gas laws including cap and trade rules adopted last year. Superior Court Judge Ernest Goldsmith tentatively ruled Friday that the California Air Resources Board violated the state's environmental law in 2008 and again last year. The board approved adopted rules enforcing the state's emissions law AB32 without doing a full environmental review, he ruled. The board last year adopted cap and trade rules without adequately considering the alternatives. Posted. http://www.bizjournals.com/sacramento/news/2011/02/07/judge-halts-california-greenhouse-gas.html?s=print http://caivn.org/article/2011/02/07/californias-landmark-climate-law-tentatively-voided-san-francisco-judge Judge Delays California Global Warming Law Over Cap-And-Trade Provisions. A San Francisco Superior Court judge has temporarily halted the implementation of California's Global Warming Solutions Act over its "cap-and-trade" regulations. The Global Warming Solutions Act (officially known as Assembly Bill (AB) 32), signed into law by then-Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2006, requires California to cap greenhouse gas emissions in the state at 1990 levels by the year 2020. Posted. http://www.examiner.com/la-county-political-buzz-in-los-angeles/judge-delays-california-global-warming-law-over-cap-and-trade-provisions Western Wolverines Threatened By Climate Change. Wolverines in the continental United States could be wiped out by the end of the century if temperatures continue to rise, according to a new study from a scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research. Springtime snow cover helps protect wolverine dens from predators, and the animal is built to thrive in deep powder. But, Synte Peacock, a NCAR scientist, applied computer models projecting climate change to the wolverine habitat in the northern Rockies. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/02/07/v-print/3383269/western-wolverines-threatened.html NRCS Faces New Challenges Including Climate Change. Denver -- The Dust Bowl and preventing soil erosion were foremost in the minds of the early Natural Resources Conservation Service, formed in 1935 as a New Deal agency. Today NRCS, which falls under the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is using science to help private landowners conserve all natural resources, not just soil, and prepare for challenges including climate change. After all, private farms and ranches will be vital for feeding a world that could by some estimates grow to nearly 9 billion people within a few decades. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/02/05/v-print/3380300/nrcs-faces-new-challenges-including.html http://www.modbee.com/2011/02/05/1544074/nrcs-faces-new-challenges-including.html http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/feb/05/nrcs-faces-new-challenges-including-climate/ http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/02/05/2261252/nrcs-faces-new-challenges-including.html#storylink=misearch Willi Dansgaard, Paleoclimatologist Who Discerned Climate Record In Ice Core, Dies At 88. Los Angeles -- Willi Dansgaard, a Danish paleoclimatologist who was the first to recognize that the Earth's climatic history was stored in the Greenland ice cap, died Jan. 8 in Copenhagen, Denmark, according to the Niels Bohr Institute at the University of Copenhagen. He was 88. His research, together with that of Claude Lorius of France and Hans Oeschger of Switzerland, revolutionized scientific knowledge of how the temperature and composition of the atmosphere have changed over the last 150,000 years, demonstrating a clear link between carbon dioxide and methane concentrations and global temperatures. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/02/06/v-print/3382336/willi-dansgaard-paleoclimatologist.html Don Curlee: Climate Tweaks Affect California's Farming. The effects of reducing greenhouse gases produced in farming are far from clear. Some are expected to have detrimental results. Reductions in greenhouse gas emissions wherever they occur was the goal of Assembly Bill 32, passed by the California Legislature in 2006, as the Global Warming Solutions Act. Experts in several areas are wrestling with the measure's language and its intent. Posted. http://www.visaliatimesdelta.com/article/20110207/BUSINESS/102070304/Don-Curlee-Climate-tweaks-affect-California-s-farming Is Climate Change Causing Millions To Migrate? Two new studies paint contrasting views of whether climate change-induced weather will force millions of people to migrate to safer areas. One says yes, the other no. In an upcoming report, the Asian Development Bank (ABD) warns that the extreme weather of climate change -- floods, droughts and storms -- will prompt mass migration that no international organization is set up to handle. "In the past year alone, extreme weather in Malaysia, Pakistan, the People's Republic of China, the Philippines and Sri Lanka has caused temporary or longer term dislocation of millions," the Manila-based organization said Monday. Posted. http://content.usatoday.com/communities/greenhouse/post/2011/02/climate-change-mass-migration/1 EPA Official Says Cap And Trade Won't Be Part Of Forthcoming CO2 Rules. U.S. EPA air Chief Gina McCarthy sought to ease concerns Friday that upcoming climate regulations affecting existing power plants and refineries would lead to a cap-and-trade system. "Our goal isn't to decide on a number for greenhouse gases that ought to be achieved," she said. "It's not a cap-and-trade program." Instead, the regulations, which are expected to be proposed later this year and finalized in 2012, would be designed to "set a floor" for what best available control technology would be both available and affordable to curb emissions, she said. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/02/07/3 EDF's Take On Ab 32 Scoping Plan Lawsuit. The following information was released by the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF): A Superior Court in San Francisco issued a tentative ruling last week in a lawsuit filed in 2009 by environmental justice (EJ) groups. The groups are asserting that the state's Air Resources Board (CARB) failed to comply with statutory requirements of AB 32 and the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) when it adopted the law's Scoping Plan-the blueprint for cutting pollution to 1990 levels by 2020-in late 2008. Posted. http://www.powergenworldwide.com/index/display/wire-news-display/1353856265.html FUELS Ethanol Blend Goes To The Races. Race cars at the Daytona 500 will be running on a 15 percent ethanol fuel blend this year, and corn farmers are hoping the event will raise the profile of biofuels. The National Corn Growers Association is sponsoring the effort. "For us it's an opportunity to tell our story. We'll be focusing on American farmers," said Rick Tolman, CEO of the association. NASCAR, the sanctioning body for auto racing, has been increasing its efforts to go green, which includes providing more recycling at events and converting one track to solar powerPosted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/02/07/11 GREEN ENERGY Schools' Energy Efficiency Lauded. 14 Turlock campuses get federal Energy Star label. Turlock — Folks throughout the Turlock Unified School District have been working on reducing energy consumption. In addition to helping the environment, the program saves money during these difficult budget times. Last week, the district announced that the federal government had awarded Turlock the "Energy Star" label on 14 of its school sites. To be recognized with an Energy Star label, school sites must rate in the top 25 percent nationwide for energy efficiency. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/02/06/v-print/3383613/schools-energy-efficiency-lauded.html Chesapeake Energy Plans To Sell $5B In Assets. New York -- Chesapeake Energy Corp. says it will sell all of its Fayetteville Shale assets and investments in two companies. Chesapeake says it hopes to bring in more than $5 billion from the sales and will use the proceeds to reduce its debt. Chesapeake Energy says it plans to reduce its debt by 25 percent by 2012. The Fayetteville shale is a natural gas field in central Arkansas, and Chesapeake Energy is the second largest producer of natural gas from the formation. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/02/07/v-print/3383126/chesapeake-energy-plans-to-sell.html Green Jobs Are Not Evergreen Jobs. After receiving at least $43 million in aid from the state of Massachusetts, Evergreen Solar announced last month that it would be closing its manufacturing plant in Devens, Mass., laying off its 800 workers and moving its manufacturing operations to China. Warning: These are the "green jobs" that President Obama has touted as part of his "winning the future" agenda. The problem isn't that Obama wants to direct federal dollars toward research for alternative energy. It is in the national interest to have affordable options when oil sources are depleted. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/02/06/INEI1H56L3.DTL&type=printable Republicans Out Front Of Obama On Regulations. When President Barack Obama asked businesses for advice on creating jobs, he might have anticipated that more than 200 responses would quickly be headed his way courtesy of Rep. Darrell Issa, a Republican who once called him corrupt. A month before Obama reached out to businesses, the new chairman of the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee sent 171 letters to various businesses and their trade associations. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/feb/07/republicans-out-front-of-obama-on-regulations/ http://www.nctimes.com/news/national/article_ef87a445-7446-5e95-9f1a-bb9d62374d5d.html http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/02/07/2262643/republicans-out-front-of-obama.html#storylink=misearch http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/02/07/AR2011020700976.html GOP Eyes Rules That Firms Say Hurt Jobs. House Republicans are scrutinizing a wide array of existing and proposed Obama administration regulations in areas as diverse as the environment and Wall Street, and they are taking guidance from industry groups that say the rules threaten jobs. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/02/07/AR2011020700022.html Green Energy Faces GOP Headwinds On Hill. The Obama administration lavished billions of stimulus dollars on wind-power producers and other renewable-energy interests, but the whirl of the turbines may slow dramatically as budget-cutting Republicans take their seats in the next Congress. Posted. http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2010/dec/5/green-energy-faces-stiff-gop-headwinds-on-hill/ 'Green Bonds' Seen Among Europe's Options For Paying Hefty, $3.93 Trillion Bill For Clean Energy – Study. With time ticking away for Europe to meet its targets for slashing greenhouse gas emissions, banks could end up securing massive amounts of debt to finance the transition to clean energy. Issuing "green bonds" is one mechanism they could use. European governments are staggering under the weight of public debt. That has injected some uncertainty into the European Union's plan to cut emissions 20 percent below 1990 levels by 2020. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/02/07/1 Amid Budget Freeze, White House Wants To Scale Up Funding For Clean Technologies. The White House wants to spend more on education, infrastructure and research even as it freezes the overall budget, administration officials said last week. Austan Goolsbee, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, said these investments -- all of which are relevant to clean energy -- are too essential to cut in a time of fiscal austerity. "I think all sides agree that we've got to cut and be fiscally responsible," he told reporters. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/02/07/2 Philippines Prepares Geothermal For Shift To Cleaner Energy. The Philippines will surpass the United States to become the world's top geothermal power producer by 2014, Philippine Vice President Jejomar Binay predicted yesterday. Binay, in Washington this week meeting with World Bank officials and others, said his country hopes to leapfrog fossil fuels and move directly to clean energy. He called on the World Bank to "rapidly shift away" from lending for fossil fuels and help countries like his tap into their renewable energy potential. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/02/07/4 How Ocean Currents Once Warmed The Arctic. New research could explain why the Arctic was much warmer during a period millions of years go that scientists say most closely resembles Earth's climate today. The climate during the mid-Pliocene Epoch, roughly 3 million years ago, is a good overall match for conditions today with regard to average temperature and the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. But there are some differences that scientists have had trouble explaining. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/02/07/5 VEHICLES Feds And California To Propose New Fuel Rules. The federal government and California say they will coordinate on new proposals to increase vehicle fuel efficiency for future cars and trucks by Sept. 1. The Transportation Department and the Environmental Protection Agency are working on new standards for vehicles that will be built during the 2017-2025 model years. Prior to Monday's announcement, the California Air Resources Board had planned to issue its own proposal for the same time period by March. Posted. http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/wire/chi-ap-us-fuelefficiency,0,3690092,print.story Honda Fit Beats Toyota Prius To Top Japan Sales. TOKYO – 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. Posted. http://news.yahoo.com/s/ap/20110204/ap_on_bi_ge/as_japan_honda/print Volt Arrives For Rental Market. Enterprise Rent-A-Car's executives anticipate electric vehicles to be a growing part of their business, and they have begun to test the market for the new vehicles in the Inland Empire. Enterprise has two Chevrolet Volts available for rent for $69.99 per day at its Mark Christopher Auto Center branch. Posted. http://www.sbsun.com/business/ci_17305900 MISCELLANEOUS Germany Sells Vision For 'Green Toys' To World. The hottest "green" toy in Germany isn't made of organic or recycled materials. That's so 2010. This one has a solar panel and only runs if kids remember to insert bright red "energy stones" that power the rest of the space station. Germany, a pioneer in many renewable energy initiatives, is also at the forefront of creating environment-friendly toys aimed at making kids think about where energy comes from and how much of it they can use, raising awareness through play. Posted. http://www.modbee.com/2011/02/05/1543494/germany-sells-vision-for-green.html http://www.nctimes.com/news/science/article_ed10fffb-2dcc-5e0c-9ba5-06e116a3d8b6.html http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/02/05/AR2011020501010.html SOCIAL SCENE: Green fundraiser no black-tie affair. All Green Electronics Recycling teamed up with the Boys & Girls Club of Oceanside to hold an electronics recycling event Jan. 8 at Oceanside High School. This fundraiser was a little different from the formal events mostly seen on this page, but its dual purpose was every bit as important for the environment and children of Oceanside. Posted. http://www.nctimes.com/lifestyles/relationships-and-special-occasions/article_b9f6bfe5-ecc5-5047-899c-7ed74529e498.html OPINION Clean Air Under Siege. Shortly after he entered the Senate in 2007, John Barrasso told his Wyoming constituents that the country’s biggest need was an energy policy to deal with carbon dioxide, the main greenhouse gas. That was then. In lockstep with other Senate Republicans, he helped kill last year’s energy and climate bill. Now he has introduced a bill that would bar the Environmental Protection Agency and any other part of the federal government from regulating carbon pollution. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/02/06/opinion/06sun1.html?_r=1&scp=2&sq=air%20pollution&st=cse Widening Battle Lines Between 'Clean,' 'Dirty' Energy. The following editorial appeared in the Dallas Morning News on Monday, Jan. 31: During the State of the Union address, President Barack Obama challenged the nation to invest in clean-energy technologies so the U.S. would "out-compete" and "out-innovate" the rest of the world. Indisputably, this country needs less polluting and more efficient energy sources to make the critical transition from fossil fuels to the 21st-century technologies needed to keep the nation economically strong and competitive. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/02/07/v-print/3383279/widening-battle-lines-between.html http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/02/07/2262838/widening-battle-lines-between.html#storylink=misearch Dirtying the Clean Air Act. Republicans are preparing their latest attack on the law. But it's worth remembering all their warnings of economic doom since the 1970 legislation — and just how wrong those predictions have been. Conservatives have been attacking the Clean Air Act since its passage in 1970, continually claiming that federal efforts to fight air pollution would wreak economic ruin. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/editorials/la-ed-epa-20110205,0,2076601,print.story A Federal Role In The Energy Future. George F. Will's Jan. 30 op-ed, "Let Uncle Sam drive," left out important facts as he applied his rigid ideological rejection of public-private partnerships as a way to promote private-sector development. He failed to note basic economics: Any product's first units are expensive to produce; costs fall as the scale of production increases. The tax credit for electric vehicles is intended in part to help automakers reach that higher scale, which is why nearly half of the states have or are considering consumer incentives. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2011/02/05/AR2011020503454.html Eye On The Environment: New Ozone Standards On The Horizon. Last year we had the cleanest air since the Ventura County Air Pollution Control District began keeping records in the 1970s. Of course, we had a cool summer, which reduced ozone (smog) formation. In addition, lower economic activity due to the recession curtailed some emissions. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/feb/05/new-ozone-standards-on-the-horizon/ Climate Change Of Opinion. San Joaquin County backtracked last week after sending state officials written comments strongly questioning the fundamentals of climate change science. In a Jan. 25 letter to the state's new Delta Stewardship Council, the county said it appears the "level of climate science currently available is unreliable and the ability of climate models to actually explain past temperatures is in serious doubt." Climate change was just one of many subjects in the letter, intended to help shape a new plan to govern the river estuary west of Stockton. Posted. http://www.recordnet.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20110206/A_NEWS/102060318&cid=sitesearch McINTOSH: Climate Change For Dummies. As North Americans shiver and shovel through the current mini ice age, members of the nonprofit, nonpartisan world organization Climate Renegades Against Paleomagnetists are upping the rhetoric against climate change deniers. During a recent secret meeting between United Nations officials, scientific academics and climate researchers …Posted. http://www.nctimes.com/news/opinion/columnists/mcintosh/article_9483caef-d97d-5750-99f8-a9f2bcd17998.html Opinion: California Clean Air Standards Help Auto Industry. Auto dealers from across the country are in San Francisco for the National Automobile Dealers Association Convention & Expo to discuss our industry and where it is headed. We share the association's mission to champion policies that benefit its members and the auto industry. However, we disagree with its position that California's landmark greenhouse gas standards for new cars and trucks will harm its members. Posted. http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/wire/chi-ap-us-fuelefficiency,0,3690092,print.story BLOGS Climate Change to Force Mass Migration, Study Warns. That weather-related catastrophes cause a lot of destruction is well known. But the prospect that increasing floods, droughts and storms will prompt many millions of people to migrate to safer areas is still poorly understood and anticipated, according to a forthcoming report from the Asian Development Bank. Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/02/07/climate-change-to-force-mass-migration-study-warns/ Renewable Energy: Labor Coalition's Tactics Draw Heat. Do California construction unions raise concerns about building massive solar plants in the Mojave Desert because they care about wildlife, water shortages and delicate vegetation? Or is it, as some fellow labor unions charge, a way to extort expensive contracts from renewable-energy builders? Posted. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/greenspace/2011/02/solar-energy-labor-unions.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+GreenspaceEnvironmentBlog+%28Greenspace%29 Judge's Ruling Could Force Air Resources Board to Look at Alternatives to Cap and Trade. Here's an irony: After last year's bruising battle to save California's comprehensive anti-global warming law from being suspended by an oil industry-backed initiative, it's a lawsuit by environmental groups that could end up throwing a monkeywrench into the state's plans. Posted. http://blogs.kqed.org/newsfix/2011/02/04/judges-ruling-could-force-air-resources-board-to-look-at-alternatives-to-cap-and-trade/ EJ Groups Say Suit is Not To Undo AB 32. Plaintiffs who won a tentative ruling in a suit over the state's climate law say they're not out to torpedo AB 32. The half-dozen environmental justice advocacy groups sued over state regulators' implementation plan and won a tentative ruling in their favor, from a state court in San Francisco. A lawyer for the Oakland-based Communities for a Better Environment called the ruling "very important and exciting," but the groups insist that they're looking to tweak the regulations under California's Global Warming Solutions Act, not blow it up. Posted. http://blogs.kqed.org/climatewatch/2011/02/04/ej-groups-say-suit-is-not-to-undo-ab-32/ Morning Bell: California Cap and Trade Tripped Up By Pollution Rhetoric. The economic harms of carbon cap-and-trade policies  are so well established that even a state as reliably leftist as California has never been able to pass a plan through their legislature. Instead, environmentalists in the Golden State have relied on the California Air Resources Board (CARB), whose appointed governing board is democratically unaccountable , to develop and impose carbon regulations by bureaucratic fiat. Posted. http://blog.heritage.org/2011/02/07/morning-bell-california-cap-and-trade-tripped-up-by-pollution-rhetoric/print/