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newsclips -- Newsclips for May 6, 2011. Posted: 06 May 2011 15:31:09
California Air Resources Board News Clips for May 6, 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 Sen. Boxer Makes Stink To EPA Over Mecca Odor. In a bluntly worded letter to the Environmental Protection Agency, U.S. Sen. Barbara Boxer on Thursday demanded that the government act more urgently to solve the persistent problem of the foul odor in Mecca. “It is imperative that this serious problem be solved immediately,” wrote Boxer, a Democrat who lives in Rancho Mirage, about 25 miles from the smell's epicenter. “The EPA must take prompt action to protect the children and families in this community. Posted. http://www.mydesert.com/article/20110506/NEWS01/105060313/Sen-Boxer-makes-stink-EPA-over-Mecca-odor CLIMATE CHANGE Climate Change Reduced Wheat, Corn Yields, U.S. Researchers Say Climate change reduced wheat and corn yields from 1980 to 2008, U.S. researchers said in a study published in the journal Science. World wheat production was 5.5 percent lower in that span than it would have been without any change in temperatures and rainfall, the researchers said. Corn output fell 3.8 percent compared to a model without a changing climate, the study showed. Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/print/2011-05-06/climate-change-reduced-wheat-corn-yields-u-s-researchers-say.html http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/05/06/us-climate-food-idUSTRE74520720110506 http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/06/science/earth/06warming.html?partner=rss&emc=rss http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/05/06/MNQ41JAS92.DTL&type=printable http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/05/06/4 RGGI Still Alive In N.H., For Now. A Senate committee in New Hampshire voted yesterday against a bill that would pull the state out of the nation's only operating cap-and-trade system. A vote by the full Senate chamber to leave the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, or RGGI, could come next week, however. The state House already passed a bill this year calling for the state to depart from the program, which caps carbon dioxide emissions of utilities in 10 states in the Northeast and mid-Atlantic. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/05/06/8 FUELS Research Aims To Substitute Petroleum Fuels With Bio-Fuels. The California Energy Commission has awarded $2 million to UC San Diego to accelerate research that will demonstrate the feasibility of using a variety of new kinds of biofuels to supplement or replace petroleum-based transportation fuels in the future. The state agency selected the university for the award, which will be used to investigate a wide range of plant-based biofuels, because it is one of the nation's leaders in developing technologies to turn algae into biofuels. Posted. http://www.domain-b.com/technology/20110506_biofuels_research.html California Biofuel Company To Build Plant In Northwestern Ontario. Thunder Bay, Ont. — A California biofuel and energy company is poised to build a new plant in White River, Ont. Rentech’s president is in Sault Ste. Marie today to officially announce the project. Rentech’s White River project is to be fuelled by wood fibre. When it was checking out Marathon’s dormant pulp mill last year, Rentech said it would create more than 250 jobs at a retrofitted mill by producing 2,600 barrels a day of aviation fuel made from wood fibre. Posted. http://fftimes.com/node/242227 VEHICLES With Carpool Perk Ending For Hybrids, Some Owners Are Trading Up. Starting July 1, those yellow carpool stickers cherished by hybrid owners will expire, but by early next year a new generation of super-clean vehicles sporting green and white stickers will be taking their place in the carpool lane. The looming expiration date already has 85,000 hybrid drivers and their jealous commuter counterparts jockeying for position -- as the Department of Motor Vehicles mails out warnings this week that driving solo in the carpool lane will soon mean a $450 fine. Posted. http://www.mercurynews.com/bay-area-news/ci_18004524?source=rss&nclick_check=1 GREEN ENERGY GOP Bill Would Merge EPA, DOE. Senate Republicans are pushing a plan to morph the Energy Department and the EPA into one giant agency. A bill introduced Thursday by Sen. Richard Burr (R-N.C) would combine the DOE and the EPA into a new agency called the Department of Energy and Environment. Burr’s effort has the backing of 15 GOP co-sponsors. Consolidating the agencies could result in more than $3 billion in savings in 2012 alone, according to a statement from Burr’s office. Posted. http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0511/54422.html NW Ind. Power Plant Set For Closure Next Year. Hammond, Ind. (AP) - The owner of a northwestern Indiana electric generating plant plans to shut it down at the end of 2012 after more than 55 years of operation. Officials of Virginia-based Dominion Resources say that stand-alone coal plants such as State Line Energy in Hammond have become less competitive with natural gas power plants as natural gas prices fall and coal prices increase. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/may/06/nw-ind-power-plant-set-for-closure-next-year/ GE Pushes A Clean Energy Policy That Includes Incentives For Natural Gas, Renewables And Nuclear. General Electric Co. believes President Obama's concept of a broad "clean energy" standard that includes incentives for natural gas, nuclear power and renewable energy will work politically and economically. "We thought it was achievable if you took steps to incorporate the broadest number of technologies," said Rob Wallace, GE's Washington-based head of government relations. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/05/06/5 MISCELLANEOUS State Delays Vote On Two-Track High-Speed Rail For Bay Area. The California High-Speed Rail Authority board on Thursday delayed a decision to study a plan to initially run the state's bullet trains on two tracks instead of four between San Francisco and San Jose. The board decided to take up the plan at its next meeting in June. If approved, officials would study the proposal before making a decision in early 2013. Posted. http://www.mercurynews.com/crime-courts/ci_18003418?source=rss OPINION Viewpoints: Energy Projects Should Help Poor Areas Thrive. California once again is at the forefront of national efforts to address the crisis of global warming and achieve a thoughtful transition from fossil fuel to clean and renewable energy sources. By signing a law that requires 33 percent of the energy produced by all of the state's major retail electricity suppliers to come from renewable sources by 2020, Gov. Jerry Brown has positioned the Golden State to lead the nation in reducing greenhouse gases that threaten the future of Mother Earth. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/05/06/v-print/3606078/energy-projects-should-help-poor.html Editorial: Leaders Must Demand An End To The Mecca Stink. Something stinks in Mecca. For months now, children at Saul Martinez Elementary School have been sickened by an odor of unknown origin. More than a dozen students and teachers have been treated by paramedics at the school. A couple have been sent to the hospital. Teachers have complained. Parents have complained. There have been three town hall meetings since the odor became a problem in mid-December, with empathetic public officials and promises to provide answers. Posted. http://www.mydesert.com/article/20110505/OPINION01/105050303 BLOGS Fracture on Fracking. Secretary of Energy Steven Chu has appointed a panel of seven scientific and environmental worthies to study the rapidly growing method of natural gas extraction known as hydraulic fracturing and to make recommendations about how it can be done more cleanly and more safely. The group includes John Deutch, a former Central Intelligence Agency director; Kathleen McGinty, a former top White House environmental adviser; and Daniel Yergin, probably the best-known oil industry analyst in the country. Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/05/06/fracture-on-fracking/ How Clean is Clean? With the demise of climate change legislation last year, attention has shifted to the possibility of a patchwork of other rules that would have the effect of cutting carbon dioxide emissions. On the state level, one popular step is a renewable energy standard for the electricity sector. Generally the renewables standard is expressed as a percentage of the electricity generated by all energy sources, often with sub-quotas for solar power or geothermal energy. Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/05/05/how-clean-is-clean/ Report: Climate Change Hits Home. Even if the world stopped emitting all greenhouse gases today, scientists say, the climate would continue to change, perhaps for centuries, before it stabilized. Since a zero-emissions world is unlikely, to say the least, and considering that global carbon emissions are continuing on their upward trend, finding ways to adapt to what many see as inevitable is getting more and more attention. Posted. http://blogs.kqed.org/climatewatch/2011/05/05/report-climate-change-hits-home/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+kqed%2FClimateWatchBlog+%28KQED%27s+Climate+Watch+Blog%29&utm_content=Google+Reader