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newsclips -- Newsclips for February 8, 2011.

Posted: 08 Feb 2011 12:37:40
California Air Resources Board News Clips for February 8, 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.



California Air Chief Blasts Auto Trade Group Over Clean Cars.
California Air Resources Board Chairman Mary D. Nichols on Monday
wrote to seven major automobile manufacturers, accusing their
trade group, the Alliance of Automobile Manufacturers, of
misrepresenting the state's efforts to cooperate with federal
officials on rules to curb greenhouse gas emissions from cars and
trucks. She asked the companies to "distance" themselves from the
Washington-based group's efforts to "undermine ... standards that
will provide American consumers with cleaner and more efficient
vehicles." Posted.

Calif. Hits Back At Auto Industry Over Complaints. The head of
California's greenhouse gas regulatory agency lambasted auto
manufacturers today over their support of Republican efforts to
roll back regulations. Mary Nichols, chairwoman of the California
Air Resources Board, sent a letter to the CEOs of BMW, Chrysler,
Ford, General Motors, Mercedes-Benz, Toyota and Volkswagen
arguing that California has worked very closely with the federal
government to regulate vehicular emissions."[W]e are alarmed and
disappointed that your trade association, the Alliance of
Automobile Manufacturers, has misrepresented that cooperative
spirit in recent letters to Congress," she wrote. Posted.

CA Air Official Rebukes Auto Trade Group. In a strongly-worded
letter [PDF] to the CEOs of seven major auto manufacturers,
California Air Resources Board chair Mary Nichols defended
California's efforts to curb greenhouse gas emissions from cars
and trucks and accused the trade group, the Alliance of
Automobile Manufacturers, of misrepresenting California's
cooperation with federal agencies in letters to Congress. At
issue, wrote Nichols, are letters the Alliance sent to
Congressmen Darryl Issa (R-Vista) and Fred Upton (R-MI) in
January, calling "our commitment to a national program into
question." Posted.

California Air Board, Auto Industry Group at Odds on Vehicle
Standards. The chairwoman of the California Air Resources Board
is asking seven automakers to disavow claims made by the Alliance
of Automobile Manufacturers to two congressmen “or risk returning
to the environmental battles of the Bush era.” Mary D. Nichols
sent letters to the heads of General Motors Corp., Chrysler
Group, Ford Motor Co., Toyota Motor Corp., BMW Group, Volkswagen
AG and Mercedes-Benz saying that California air regulators are
“alarmed and disappointed” at communications sent by the
automobile alliance to U.S. Rep. Darrell Issa, R-Calif., and Fred
Upton, R-Mich. Posted.

Calif., Auto Association In Emissions Tiff. Los Angeles -- The
head of California's air quality agency says a trade group
representing automobile manufacturers misrepresents the state's
efforts to curb greenhouse gases. California Air Resources Board
Chairman Mary D. Nichols wrote to seven major automobile
manufacturers Monday, accusing their trade group, the Alliance of
Automobile Manufacturers, of attempting to "undermine ...
standards that will provide American consumers with cleaner and
more efficient vehicles," the Los Angeles Times reported. Posted.


January In America: Surprise, Drier Than Normal; No Surprise,
Cold Too. Washington (AP) — January was colder than normal for
the United States and, in a finding that will surprise many, also
drier than usual. The average temperature for the month, across
the country, was 30 degrees Fahrenheit (1.1 Celsius), which is
0.8 degrees Fahrenheit (0.4 C) colder than usual for the month,
the National Climatic Data Center reported Tuesday. And, despite
several large winter storms, it was also the ninth driest January
on record going back to 1895, the center reported. Rain and
snowfall across the country averaged 1.48 inches (38 millimeters)
for the month, 0.74 inch (19 mm) below normal. Posted.





Search For Wind-Related Grid Problems Finds A Bigger Concern. A
national laboratory report targeted at wind power integration has
found unexpected evidence of the electricity grid's vulnerability
to potential blackouts due to the current operations of
conventional -- not renewable -- generation. The study by
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, issued last month, reports
that frequency levels are dropping further than realized on the
nation's two largest grid systems, particularly at the start of
the day when electricity demand ramps up and when it ramps down
in the evening. Posted.


Sierra Club Wants To Join U.S. Suit In BP Spill. The Sierra Club
asked to join the U.S. lawsuit seeking billions of dollars in
fines and restoration costs from BP over damages from the worst
offshore oil spill in the nation's history. "For too long,
American taxpayers have footed the bill for polluters who destroy
our water and air," Michael Brune, the Sierra Club executive
director, said in a statement Monday. "We can't let that happen
here. The oil industry must learn a lesson from this tragedy."
The United States sued BP and units of four other companies in
December, alleging violations of federal environmental law.


Editorial: Greens Sue Over Green Law. California government's
appointed, unaccountable environmental stewards got a taste of
their own medicine recently when a San Francisco Superior Court
judge tentatively ruled that they failed to follow legally
required environmental procedures in 2008 by adopting a plan to
reduce greenhouse gases and last year when passing cap-and-trade
regulations. The state, and plaintiffs who brought the lawsuit,
have until today to submit further arguments, after which Judge
Ernest Goldsmith will issue a final ruling. Posted.

Cleaning Our Air.  I urge our elected officials to oppose any
"dirty air act" proposals that would roll back the Clean Air
Act's safeguards, allowing corporate polluters to fill our skies
with dangerous toxics.  For four decades, the Environmental
Protection Agency has used the Clean Air Act to protect the
health of millions of Americans including our children, our
seniors, and the most vulnerable among us from dozens of
dangerous air pollutants.  Posted. 

Not To Worry - The Mall Can Absorb The Solar Decathlon.  I
respectfully disagree with the decision of the Interior and
Energy departments to remove the Solar Decathlon from the Mall.
The monument renovations are a good thing, but I disagree with
the premise that the Mall is "overused." The multitude of sports
leagues that play on the Mall - let alone the rallies and
festivals there - help to enable a healthy democracy. Spotty
grass is a sign of engagement, not shame.  Posted. 

CARB Before Horse. States: A court has tentatively reled against
California’s cap-and-trade law because alternatives were not
considered. But then, neither were climate facts or the economic
impact. There’s a delicious irony in the ruling by San Francisco
Superior Court Judge Ernest Goldsmith barring the California Air
Resources Board (CARB) from implementing AB32, the Global Warming
Solutions Act of 2006. Posted.

Global Warming A Hard Sell. Former Vice President Al Gore said on
his website recently that the reason for the particularly harsh
and snowy winter we've been experiencing this season was because
of "man-made global warming" ("Snow job," Comment & Analysis,
Jan. 28). According to Mr. Gore, "scientists have been warning
for at least two decades that global warming could make
snowstorms more severe." So just to recap, whether there's a
week-long heat wave or the exact opposite - a frigid winter - the
cause is always the same: global warming. Posted.

Is Severe Winter Weather Related To Global Warming? You may not
remember exactly what you were doing one year ago, but odds are
good you spent part of the day shoveling, buying an extra pair of
gloves or replenishing your emergency stash of batteries. Odds
are even better that you remember what happened just before and
just after the anniversary we celebrate today. The first of a
pair of major blizzards struck Washington on Feb. 5 and 6. The
reprise landed on Feb. 9 and 10. Our region experienced record
snowfall last winter, topping the charts dating at least as far
back as the late 1800s. Posted.


Keep Courts Out of Climate Policy, G.O.P. Lawmakers Say.  Three
leading Republicans in Congress filed a brief with the Supreme
Court late Monday asking the justices to overturn a lower court
ruling that allowed several states and environmental groups to
sue electric utilities over their global warming emissions. 

Climate Scientist Sues Skeptic for Libel.  A prominent Canadian
climate scientist is suing a leading climate skeptic for libel,
arguing that an article published online in January contained
false and malicious claims.  Andrew Weaver, a climate modeler at
the University of Victoria, filed the lawsuit against Tim Ball, a
former professor of climatology at the University of Winnipeg and
a vocal critic of the science linking man-made emissions to
global warming, over an article published by the Canada Free
Press, a conservative Web site.  Posted. 

Washington Invests in Making Wind Pay. Associated Press Interior
Secretary Ken Salazar, left, and Energy Secretary Steven Chu
scanned a map of potential areas for offshore wind farms in
mid-Atlantic states at a news conference in Norfolk, Va. The
energy from ocean breezes is temptingly near, but the effort will
require a lot of work, the energy and interior secretaries said
Monday in announcing up to $50.5 million in federal spending over
the next five years to try to make offshore wind farms viable.

Federal Offshore Wind Plan: $50.5 Million In Research Funding.
The yachts and gulls might need to make some room off the
mid-Atlantic coast for the offshore wind turbines that the
government is hoping to soon install. Federal agencies are
jumping on the goal that President Obama set in his State of the
Union address last month, aiming to derive 80% of all electricity
generation across the country from clean energy sources by 2035.

Saving Money Vs. Helping The Environment: It's About The Money.
Americans are more inclined to make energy-efficient improvements
when their actions help save money. They are less motivated by
environmental concerns, according to a national poll released
Monday by the Tennessee-based research firm Shelton Group. About
a quarter of Americans polled said that they received a rebate or
other financial incentive for making an energy-efficient
improvement. Most rebates came from a utility or federal tax
incentive. Of those who made improvements, 25% said they would
not have acted without the incentive. Posted.

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