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newsclips -- Newsclips for May 19, 2011. Posted: 19 May 2011 13:04:24
California Air Resources Board News Clips for May 19, 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 EPA Admits Making Math Error In Mercury Proposal. After being taken to task by critics in the utility industry, U.S. EPA conceded yesterday that it made mathematical errors in newly proposed limits on mercury from coal-fired power plants. The Utility Air Regulatory Group, a coalition of power companies that often challenges new Clean Air Act rules, recently claimed that "egregious errors" by EPA led to estimates that the cleanest power plants are releasing 1,000 times less mercury than they actually are. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2011/05/19/2 CLIMATE CHANGE Climate Study Congress Requested Falls on Deaf Ears in the Capitol. The latest climate report from U.S. scientists urges action but avoids policy recipes. Some fear this method of communicating science is no longer adequate. Ho hum. The average air temperature in the United States has leapt two degrees in the last five decades. Yawn. Coastal regions in the country are disappearing because of rising sea levels. Hit the snooze button. The already-arid Southwest is becoming drier. Snore. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/assets/print?aid=US347362584520110518 Energy: America's Top Climate Cop. The United States has abandoned comprehensive greenhouse-gas curbs, but California is pressing ahead. Mary Nichols is leading the fight against emissions. Mary Nichols can take some pride in the view as she travels out of Los Angeles. The San Gabriel Mountains rise up to the north, framed by blue sky with just a touch of midday haze. The clear vista comes in large part because of the California Air Resources Board (CARB), the agency that Nichols leads, which has spent decades cleaning up the city's air. Posted. http://www.nature.com/news/2011/110518/full/473268a.html Emissions Traders Suggest A Buffer Pool To Minimize Offset Project Risks. A group of greenhouse gas emissions traders and oil companies is floating an alternative to California's plan for managing risk from voluntary emissions-reduction projects. The International Emissions Trading Association (IETA), the Western States Petroleum Association and other groups sent a letter to the California Air Resources Board (ARB) on May 2 asking for 1.5 percent of all offset credits to be put into a fund that would compensate credit buyers if a given project falls through due to misrepresentation or fraud. Posted. http://eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/05/19/4 EPA Launches Awards as ‘Climate Leaders Legacy’. The Environmental Protection Agency, Climate Registry, Pew Center on Global Climate Change and Association of Climate Change Officers have announced a new national awards program for climate leadership, to serve as a legacy for the EPA’s now-defunct Climate Leaders program. The awards program is designed to recognize exemplary corporate, organizational and individual leadership in response to climate change. Posted. http://www.environmentalleader.com/2011/05/19/epa-launches-awards-as-climate-leaders-legacy/ FUELS O.C. Firm Reopens 10 Oil Wells In Kansas. Force Fuels Inc. in Costa Mesa has reopened 10 oil wells in Montgomery County in southern Kansas and plans to reopen another 10 wells by June 2. The four-employee firm specializes in marginally producing wells. It has leases on 2,600 acres in Chautauqua and Montgomery counties and on 1,200 acres in Oklahoma. The properties have a number of wells that have been shut down for several years, President Thomas Hemingway said in a phone interview. Posted. http://jan.ocregister.com/2011/05/19/o-c-firm-reopens-10-oil-wells-in-kansas/59321/ Research Shows No Historic Evidence Of Indirect Land Use Change. A research project meant to analyze possible indirect land use change (ILUC) as a result of biofuels production has found no factual evidence that ILUC occurred from 1990 through 2007. The study, titled “Indirect land use change for biofuels: Testing predictions and improving analytical methodologies,” was funded by the U.S. DOE’s Great Lakes Bioenergy Research Center and examined data from countries that are historical grain …Posted. http://www.ethanolproducer.com/articles/7797/research-shows-no-historic-evidence-of-indirect-land-use-change VEHICLES Japan Produces Autos Over Weekend In Power Crunch. Japanese automakers are going to be producing cars over the weekend and taking Thursday and Friday off to avoid blackouts from a power crunch caused by problem nuclear reactors. Toshiyuki Shiga, chairman of the Japan Automobile Manufacturers Association and chief operating officer of Nissan Motor Co., told reporters Thursday the plan, which includes auto-parts suppliers, kicks in July, August and September _ the peak months for electricity use in Japan. Posted. http://www.nctimes.com/business/article_a95ad1ce-140b-52cb-b71a-2dc986877b80.html http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20110519/OEM01/305199917/1117 Ford To Build First Transmission Plant In China. A Ford Motor Co. joint venture in China will spend $350 million to build the company's first transmission plant in the world's largest auto market. The company said Thursday that the factory in Chongqing in southwest China will be able to build 400,000 six-speed automatic transmissions. It will make them for Changan Ford Mazda Automobile Limited, the Chinese joint venture. Posted. http://www.dailynews.com/ci_18094728?IADID=Search-www.dailynews.com-www.dailynews.com http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_18094728?IADID=Search-www.insidebayarea.com-www.insidebayarea.com http://www.contracostatimes.com/ci_18094728?IADID=Search-www.contracostatimes.com-www.contracostatimes.com http://www.modbee.com/2011/05/19/1694912/ford-to-build-first-transmission.html http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20110519/GLOBAL03/305199880/1131 GREEN ENERGY California Energy Commission Awards Nearly $2.9 Million for Research Projects. Sacramento, California - The California Energy Commission today awarded $2,872,755 for four research projects. The research areas include renewable energy, climate change, and the safety of natural gas pipelines. Funds for the projects come from the Commission's Public Interest Energy Research (PIER) program. Posted. http://imperialvalleynews.com/index.php?option=com_content&task=view&id=10368&Itemid=1 MISCELLANEOUS Hanford-Area Residents Slam High-Speed Rail Route. Hanford -- Farmers and rural residents turned out in force Wednesday to state their opposition to the planned California high-speed rail project east of Hanford. They got their message across, but expressed frustration that the information session for the public did not allow the public to speak out. "It's like talking to a brick wall," said almond farmer Helen Sullivan, whose orchard could be cut in half by tracks. Posted. http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/05/18/v-print/2393604/hanford-area-residents-slam-high.html Sanger Chile Farm Uses Controversial Pesticide. Methyl iodide was applied to a field of chili peppers. Methyl iodide, a powerful but controversial fumigant, has been applied for the first time in California -- on a one-acre chili pepper farm near Sanger. The fumigant's use Tuesday took environmentalists by surprise: They have been waging a battle against the fumigant and have been trying to track where and when it would be used. Environmentalists say the chemical is a significant threat to public health. Posted. http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/05/18/v-print/2393701/sanger-farm-uses-controversial.html Calif. Statute To Blame For Flame Retardants In Baby Products, Watchdogs Say. A 1975 California statute encouraged manufacturers to include potentially toxic flame retardants in baby products, a group of scientists and chemical watchdogs said today. At issue is California Technical Bulletin 117 (TB 117), which requires polyurethane foam used in upholstered furniture to be able to withstand an open flame for 12 seconds. To comply, manufacturers have used flame retardants in nursing pillows, car seats, highchairs and other baby products. Posted. http://eenews.net/eenewspm/print/2011/05/18/6 Hagman's Assembly Bill 135 Gets Unanimous Approval. The proposed measure would mandate that small business owners have representation on the State Air Resources Board. A bill designed to give small business owners representation on the State Air Resources Board received unanimous support on the Assembly Floor last week. Assembly Bill 135, authored by Assemblyman Curt Hagman, R-Chino Hills, said in press released that he is pleased that 71 members voted in favor of the measure. Posted. http://walnut.patch.com/articles/hagmans-assembly-bill-135-gets-unanimous-approval OPINION California’s High-Speed Train Project Is Going Off The Rails. THERE’S A SCANDAL brewing in California, and we are not talking about Arnold Schwarzenegger. We refer to the $43 billion high-speed rail project in that state, to which the Obama administration has pledged more than $3 billion in federal funding, even though study after authoritative study has cast serious doubt on its financial feasibility. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/californias-high-speed-train-project-is-going-off-the-rails/2011/05/18/AFdaUl6G_story.html BLOGS Natural Gas: Study Raises Doubts On U.S. Supply. The United States does not have a decades-long supply of inexpensive, locally sourced natural gas, according to a new report commissioned by the Post Carbon Institute, a nonprofit think tank that examines issues related to the economy, energy and the environment. The report, titled "Will Natural Gas Fuel America in the 21st Century?" is a challenge to the commonly cited projection that domestic natural gas can meet U.S. demand for more than 100 years. Posted. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/greenspace/2011/05/natural-gas-fuel.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+GreenspaceEnvironmentBlog+%28Greenspace%29 Protesters Shell Mojave Solar Plant. Oakland's BrightSource Energy and Environmentalists throw down over a threatened tortoise. What some have billed as the world's largest solar project in the Mojave came under fire again today. This time a baby desert tortoise led the charge with a cohort of environmentalists. While the tortoise provided a slow-motion picket around downtown Oakland, protestors lined up in front of BrightSource Energy's corporate headquarters, determined to preserve the Mojave desert and keep solar projects local. Posted. http://blogs.kqed.org/climatewatch/2011/05/18/protesters-shell-mojave-solar-plant/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+kqed%2FClimateWatchBlog+%28KQED%27s+Climate+Watch+Blog%29&utm_content=Google+Reader Global Weirding And You. "More than 3.4 billion people worldwide are already threatened by natural hazards, most of them in the developing world. Climate change could make matters even worse. Innovative insurance solutions offer these large populations more adequate financial tools to help them cope with the growing risks in a changing climate." "Climate change will continue to expose local communities to the mounting challenges - and costs - of protecting lives and assets against extreme weather and other climate-related risks. Posted. http://blogs.redding.com/dcraig/archives/2011/05/global-weirding.html Global Warming Means More Fire. For those of us who study the science of climate change, we know that a warmer world is bad in about every way you can imagine the Earth being bad. More droughts, more floods, more heat waves, increased extinctions, rising seas, dead trees, more disease, climate refugees, water scarcity, more acidic oceans, melting permafrost and increased methane releases. And that's the short list. Posted. http://blogs.redding.com/dcraig/archives/2011/05/global-warming-3.html It’s Time To Put A Price On Carbon, NRC Says. Substantial, immediate action on climate should begin, new report says By Janet Raloff Web edition : 1:49 pm Text Size “Climate change is occurring, is very likely caused by human activities, and poses significant risks for a broad range of human and natural systems.” As such, “it is imprudent to delay actions that at least begin the process of substantially reducing emissions [of greenhouse gases].” Posted. http://www.sciencenews.org/view/generic/id/74483/title/It%E2%80%99s_time_to_put_a_price_on_carbon,_NRC_says Will Gas Prices Turn America into Europe? If you thought driving sporty little fuel-efficient vehicles and living a reasonable distance from work was strictly an affectation of Continentals who kiss their ladies down there, we've got news for you: Turns out these behaviors can be induced in any population, whatever the likelihood that its colors will run, simply by increasing the cost of fuel. Probably. Posted. http://www.grist.org/list/2011-05-19-will-gas-prices-turn-america-into-europe A Violent Climate is the New Normal, Say Scientists. "Extreme weather" may soon just be called "weather." Thanks to climate change, floods and storms and droughts and Snowpocalypses and the like will soon be standard office procedure, according to scientists and civic planners brought together by the Union of Concerned Scientists. Posted. http://www.grist.org/list/2011-05-19-a-violent-climate-is-the-new-normal-say-scientists Doe Expands Partnership With Industry To Advance Next-Generation Automotive Technologies, Adds Tesla And Epri As Members: Us Drive. The US Department of Energy (DOE) has launched US DRIVE, a cooperative partnership with industry to accelerate the development of clean, advanced, energy-efficient technologies for cars and light trucks and the infrastructure needed to support their widespread use. Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2011/05/usdrive-20110519.html Pwc Industry Survey Provides “Check-Up” On Determining Factors For EV Success. PwC has released the first edition of the “Charging Forward: Electric Vehicle Survey”, which it developed to provide a check-up on some of the major determining factors for the success of EVs in the near-, mid- and long-term. More than 200 participants from the automotive, utilities, energy, technology, government, finance, education and other sectors provided their feedback for the effort. Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2011/05/pwc-20110519.html Robert F. Kennedy Jr.: Restore Free Market Capitalism for the Environment. Robert F. Kennedy Jr. is well known as an environmental advocate and attorney. Given his pro-environment position, it is quite unexpected to hear Kennedy advocate for free market capitalism in order to protect the environment. If you ask many committed environmental folks, they would probably be anti-free market capitalism. If you ask many free market adherents, they would probably be anti-environmentalist. Posted. http://www.triplepundit.com/2011/05/robert-kennedy-jr-restore-free-market-capitalism-environment/