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newsclips -- Newsclips for May 16, 2011 Posted: 16 May 2011 13:53:57
California Air Resources Board News Clips for May 16, 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 Noxious Odor Plagues Poor Desert Communities. The source is a Coachella Valley soil-recycling plant on tribal land, regulators say. Operators defend their enterprise, but agencies have cracked down. Reporting from Mecca, Calif.— The burning stench first enveloped Saul Martinez Elementary School in December, sending two teachers to the hospital and forcing a classroom lockdown as firefighters searched the grounds for the source of the noxious odor. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-indian-toxic-waste-20110515,0,3751742.story?track=rss&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+latimes%2Fnews%2Flocal+%28L.A.+Times+-+California+|+Local+News%29&utm_content=Google+Reader State Knew Of Permitless Dump In Mecca, Failed To Act. 'Somebody dropped the ball,' leader of grassroots group says. State regulators say they knew a contaminated soil-recycling plant was operating on tribal lands without the proper state permits, but their own communication problems and budget constraints kept them from taking action. The plant, Western Environmental Inc., has been named by state and federal environmental regulators as the main source of an intense, gas-like odor that has sickened scores of Mecca residents since December. Posted. http://www.mydesert.com/article/20110515/NEWS07/105150312/-Somebody-dropped-ball-permitless-Mecca-dump?odyssey=tab|topnews|text|Frontpage Shell, EPA Near a Deal on Arctic Offshore Drilling Project. U.S. EPA's top air pollution official said today that the agency is close to an agreement with Royal Dutch Shell PLC over an air permit for the oil giant's Arctic drilling project, which has faced years of setbacks. Shell was planning to start drilling exploratory wells this summer until a ruling by EPA's Environmental Appeals Board sent the project's air permit back to federal regulators. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/gwire/2011/05/13/13greenwire-shell-epa-near-a-deal-on-arctic-offshore-drilli-2979.html?scp=6&sq=air%20pollution&st=cse Power Plant Union Asks Congress To Delay EPA Rules. A labor union that is usually a stalwart supporter of the Obama administration is asking Congress to delay U.S. EPA's new rules on toxic air pollution from coal-fired power plants, saying jobs will be lost if utilities don't get more time. The International Brotherhood of Electrical Workers said today that it is backing American Electric Power Co. Inc. (AEP) as it lobbies Congress to give utilities an extra five or six years to clean up or shut down their oldest coal plants. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2011/05/16/1 CLIMATE CHANGE U.K. Manufacturers Say Climate Goals Will Damage Industry, Competitiveness. Britain’s plans to cut greenhouse gas output in half by 2027 risk damaging the country’s competitiveness, crimping growth and curbing investment, a lobby group representing 6,000 companies said. The government’s global warming adviser, the Committee on Climate Change, recommended the U.K. limit emissions to an average of 390 million tons a year from 2022 through 2027, or half the 1990 level. Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/print/2011-05-16/u-k-manufacturers-say-climate-goals-will-damage-industry-competitiveness.html U.K. Government Battered by Criticism Over Climate Change Actions, Divided Over Future Policy. LONDON -- The United Kingdom's coalition government declared its aim to be the greenest government ever when it came to power a year ago. It is either failing dismally, must do more, must do less or must change direction or emphasis, according to a barrage of reports that have suddenly dropped on the doorstep of No. 10 Downing St. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/cwire/2011/05/13/13climatewire-uk-government-battered-by-criticism-over-cli-41056.html?scp=9&sq=climate%20change&st=cse Climate Study Gets Pulled After Charges Of Plagiarism. Evidence of plagiarism and complaints about the peer-review process have led a statistics journal to retract a federally funded study that condemned scientific support for global warming. The study, which appeared in 2008 in the journal Computational Statistics and Data Analysis, was headed by statistician Edward Wegman of George Mason University in Fairfax, Va. Its analysis was an outgrowth of a controversial congressional report that Wegman headed in 2006. Posted. http://www.usatoday.com/weather/climate/globalwarming/2011-05-15-climate-study-plagiarism-Wegman_n.htm Britain Should Scrap Electricity Plans, Curb Utility Dominance. Britain should scrap proposed legislative changes to the electricity market and focus on reducing the power of the six biggest energy companies to spur low-carbon investment, according to a panel of lawmakers. The Energy and Climate Change Committee said the dominance of these companies, including Electricite de France SA and RWE AG, needs to be halted to encourage …Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2011/05/15/bloomberg1376-LL55WT07SXKX01-4562R4JLO3JKUPE3S4QKIS750A.DTL&type=printable http://www.platts.com/RSSFeedDetailedNews/RSSFeed/ElectricPower/8896257 UCSD Offers Roadmap For Coping With Climate Change. Climate change is real. It'll cause significant damage. But aspects of the science of global warming aren't resolved. And many of the political approaches being used to address climate change are naive or ineffective. David Victor, a professor of political science at UC San Diego, delivers this message in unapologetic terms in his new book, "Global Warming Gridlock: Creating More Effective Strategies for Protecting the Planet." Posted. http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/2011/may/15/ucsd-offers-roadmap-coping-climate-change/?sciquest Los Alamitos Class Must Present Both Views Of Global Warming. Los Alamitos – A new high school advanced placement class that addresses global warming has prompted the school board to start requiring teachers to present opposing views in courses that include controversial topics. Los Alamitos Unified School district trustees unanimously agreed to update the policy on controversial issues at the request of board member Jeffrey Barke, who said he is concerned about "global warming dogma" and wants students to be offered a balanced perspective on the topic. Posted. http://www.ocregister.com/news/-300559--.html U.N. Prepares A 10-Year Program To Tackle Climate Change And Clean Up The Environment. United Nations -- The United Nations is attempting to embark on a 10-year moral crusade against resource waste, carbon emissions and environmental damage in general, akin to the one it launched against poverty in 2000. Back then, U.N. officers and a variety of non-governmental organizations invited government representatives to New York to adopt the Millennium Development Goals, targets for cutting poverty and rates of death from malnutrition and unsanitary conditions. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/05/16/3 FUELS Jatropha Blooms Again: SG Biofuels Secures 250K Acres For Hybrids. SG Biofuels announces 250K acres secured for with JMax jatropha. In California, SG Biofuels announced it has signed customers for the deployment of 250,000 acres of Jatropha using its JMax hybrid seeds. According to SG, “the JMax hybrid seeds on average provide double the yield of existing commercial varieties planted in similar conditions, resulting in greater uniformity and vigor while significantly reducing seed handling and deployment costs.” Posted. http://biofuelsdigest.com/bdigest/2011/05/16/jatropha-blooms-again-sg-biofuels-secures-250k-acres-for-hybrids/ VEHICLES Lawmakers Push For Electric Cars While Driving Gas-Guzzlers. Two Michigan Democrats are leading an effort to create charging stations for electric cars in the Capitol complex. Sen. Carl Levin and Rep. Dale E. Kildee have offered plans in the House and Senate that would task the Architect of the Capitol to install electric vehicle recharge stations for lawmakers, congressional staffers and others authorized to park in the Capitol complex. Posted. http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/may/15/lawmakers-push-for-electric-cars-while-driving-gas/?page=all Germany Doubles EV Research And Development Aid. BERLIN -- The German government announced an additional 1 billion euros ($1.4 billion) in research and development aid for electric vehicles, doubling its budget by 2013 in a bid to position itself at the technology's vanguard. Tax rebates, dedicated parking spots and measures aimed at promoting government use of electric cars are among the other incentives to... Posted. http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20110516/ANE/305169817/1193 Rising Fuel Prices: It's Time For Electric Vehicles. The news this week that energy prices could more than double in the next decade is, unfortunately,not surprising - the first five months of this year have seen some of the highest oil prices in memory. At the time of writing, gasoline prices are pushing GBP1.40 (US$2.28) per litre - an astronomical price which affects everyone's bottom line, from big businesses with fleets of company cars to young families with a car for the school run. If the predictions are correct, owning and running a gasoline-powered car could become, for many, untenable. Posted. http://www.automotiveworld.com/news/components/87143-rising-fuel-prices-it-s-the-time-for-electric-vehicles GREEN ENERGY SAN MARCOS: Permit Sought For Methane-To-Energy Operation. The San Marcos Planning Commission will consider a conditional use permit Monday for a methane-to-energy operation at the former San Marcos landfill in San Elijo Hills. The operation initially received a permit in 1988 to convert methane released by the landfill to electrical energy on a quarter-acre parcel of the 80-acre site, a staff report to the commission stated. The landfill ceased accepting trash in 1997 and formally closed in 2007, while the methane-to-energy operation continued. Posted. http://www.nctimes.com/news/local/san-marcos/article_202b3141-648c-5c46-9d74-440fca4df11d.html Renewable Energy Can Exceed Global Demand, According To IPCC. “The report clearly demonstrates that renewable technologies could supply the world with more energy than it would ever need, and at a highly competitive cost,” said Steve Sawyer, Secretary General of the Global Wind Energy Council. The IPCC studied six renewable energy sectors – bioenergy, direct solar energy, geothermal, hydropower, ocean energy and wind energy. Renewable energy sources are expected to contribute up to 80% of global energy supply by 2050, according to a new report published by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Posted. http://www.evwind.es/noticias.php?id_not=11585 Ending Nuclear Power Is Possible In A Decade, Using Renewable Energy – Report. Germany should phase out all of its nuclear reactors by 2021, recommends a leaked draft report. The stance reinforces a law passed almost 10 years ago in the country, but that policymakers had worked to overturn prior to the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear disaster in Japan. The shutdown target was passed by former Chancellor Schröder in 2002, and Japan's recent disaster has intensified the push to nix nuclear. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/05/16/9 GM Begins Building Solar Field At Detroit Plant. General Motors Co. broke ground last week on a 6-acre field of solar panels to be installed in front of its Detroit-Hamtramck plan. The solar field comes as part of an effort to add sustainability to the production of GM's Chevrolet Volt extended-range electric car. As part of its Solar Currents program, DTE Energy will own and operate the 516-kilowatt system. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/05/16/11 MISCELLANEOUS Smoking Ban For California Residential Housing Seeks Approval. For a number of years now the landlord community has hotly debated the value of providing No Smoking units within apartment communities. A large number of property owners believe that the detriments of smoking are so numerous and the economic cost of smoke damage so high, that common sense requires owners to implement broad No-Smoking policies. Posted. http://www.examiner.com/rental-business-in-san-francisco/smoking-ban-for-california-residential-housing-seeks-approval Leave Your Car Behind For A Day. With rising gas prices, it's not tough to find a reason to want to drive less. And when there are incentives like prizes, it's even easier. This annual event, organized by Commute Connection, encourages community members to take a day (or more) off driving and hop on bikes or use public transit to ease the problems of traffic congestion and air pollution. Posted. http://www.recordnet.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20110515/A_LIFE/105140308&cid=sitesearch OPINION Climate Change Denial Becomes Harder To Justify. “CLIMATE CHANGE is occurring, is very likely caused by human activities, and poses significant risks for a broad range of human and natural systems.” So says — in response to a request from Congress — the National Research Council of the National Academy of Sciences, the country’s preeminent institution chartered to provide scientific advice to lawmakers. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/climate-change-denial-becomes-harder-to-justify/2011/05/13/AF44QQ4G_story.html California's High-Speed Train Wreck. The state's plan to build a bullet train has become a monument to the ways poor planning, mismanagement and political interference can screw up major public works. We can do better. California's much-vaunted high-speed rail project is, to put it bluntly, a train wreck. Intended to demonstrate the state's commitment to sustainable, cutting-edge transportation systems, and to show that the U.S. can build rail networks as sophisticated…Posted. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/opinionla/la-ed-bullettrain-20110516,0,1884698,print.story Editorial: Locals Should Level Playing Field For Solar. California has invested lots of money and sweat equity in building the foundation for green energy, nowhere more so than in the Sacramento region. It would be a crying shame if too much government red tape got in the way of reaping the rewards. As The Bee's Rick Daysog reported this month, contractors and others in the business of installing solar panels are complaining about exorbitant permit fees and inconsistent regulations from one city or county to the next. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/05/16/v-print/3629130/editorial-locals-should-level.html Viewpoints: As Gas Costs Rise, Clean Cars Will Help Consumers Cope. Seven presidents have declared the goal of reducing U.S. dependence on oil, with George W. Bush, an oilman from Texas, lamenting the national addiction to oil. None has come close to achieving this goal. But, over the course of this spring and summer, the United States has an opportunity to dramatically change the trajectory of national oil consumption. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/05/15/v-print/3625817/as-gas-costs-rise-clean-cars-will.html Opinion: California's Missing The Boat On Trash-To-Power Technology. In 2010, after recycling, California put 35 million tons of municipal waste into landfills. The organic materials in this waste stream contain the energy equivalent of more than 60 million barrels of crude oil. Theoretically, from just this single waste resource, California could produce 1.6 billion gallons of advanced, non-food-derived biofuels and some 1,250 megawatts of power, potentially reducing the amount of waste that we place in landfills by up to 80 percent. Posted. http://www.mercurynews.com/opinion/ci_18060824 Opinion: Wind Energy: Its Time Has Come (Back) For California. On May 22-25, the American wind energy industry will gather in Anaheim for the WindPower 2011 Conference and Exhibition, the largest annual wind power event in the world with 1,200 exhibitors and 20,000 attendees expected. It's a homecoming for the industry, which was born right here in California in 1981 under a visionary young governor, Jerry Brown. Then, as today, America and California were faced with momentous energy policy decisions. Posted. http://www.mercurynews.com/opinion/ci_18061908?nclick_check=1 Natural Gas Just Won't Cut It In The Long Run. Rep. Kevin McCarthy and two members of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform met in Bakersfield on May 6 to urge that federal regulations to facilitate extracting oil and natural gas be "streamlined." The committee spent government money to discuss only one point of interest: natural gas. Natural gas is primarily methane with carbon dioxide and longer hydrocarbons; hydrocarbons are burned to make heat. Posted. http://www.bakersfield.com/opinion/letters/x504580339/Natural-gas-just-wont-cut-it-in-the-long-run BLOGS Philips Brightens Its LED Lineup. LED lamps are expected to revolutionize the lighting industry because of their sharply reduced power consumption and their long life compared with standard incandescents. But to date, market acceptance has been slow given the high initial cost ($50 and up in many cases) and limited brightness. LED lamps have only been able to emit light equivalent to a 60-watt standard bulb. Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/05/16/philips-brightens-its-led-lineup/ $25,000, 350-Mile-Per-Charge Electric Car Could Be Reality By 2017, DOE Says. In an event flanked with all the electric cars that have recently come to market and a handful of those that are poised for sale later this year, U.S. Energy Secretary Steven Chu and L.A. Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa flipped the switch today on the 500th electric-vehicle charging station installed by Coulomb Technologies as part of its ChargePoint America network. Posted. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/greenspace/2011/05/la-ev-charging-stations.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+GreenspaceEnvironmentBlog+%28Greenspace%29