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newsclips -- Newsclips for June 8, 2011. Posted: 08 Jun 2011 15:51:18
California Air Resources Board News Clips for June 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. AIR POLLUTION EPA Honors Placer County's Forest Debris System. Placer County was honored Tuesday by the Environmental Protection Agency for its work to create cleaner air. The EPA Clean Air Excellence Award recognizes the work of the county's air pollution control district in diverting Lake Tahoe area forest debris from burn piles. "By transporting this forest residue out and instead of burning it in burn piles we are reducing pollution put into the atmosphere," said Supervisor Jim Holmes, who is in Washington, D.C., to accept the award. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/06/08/v-print/3684520/fdsgffsdjfgdshfdsgfdh.html http://www.modbee.com/2011/06/07/1722119/placer-county-clean-air-efforts.html http://www.rocklintoday.com/news/templates/community_news.asp?articleid=9979&zoneid=4 Federal Court Won’t Dismiss Lawsuit Accusing Exxon’s Texas Refinery Of Violating Clean Air Act. Houston -- A federal court will allow environmental groups to pursue a lawsuit that accuses the largest U.S. refinery of violating federal air pollution laws thousands of times in the past five years. The U.S. District Court Southern District on Tuesday dismissed a request by Exxon Mobil Corp. to dismiss the lawsuit regarding its Texas facility. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/federal-court-wont-dismiss-lawsuit-accusing-exxons-texas-refinery-of-violating-clean-air-act/2011/06/08/AGT9szLH_story.html http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/06/08/2419292/federal-court-wont-dismiss-lawsuit.html#storylink=misearch Utility Groups Trade Blows On New EPA Emissions Rules. Coal-heavy power companies and their cleaner cousins are continuing to spar over new air pollution regulations from U.S. EPA, releasing competing analyses this week on the effects of a pair of rules that would make coal plants spend billions of dollars to control toxic chemicals and emissions that lead to soot and smog. Those two regulations -- the Clean Air Transport Rule, which would cap key emissions that travel across state lines …Posted. http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2011/06/08/1 People of Faith Should Join Campaign to Fight Asthma in Their Communities. The Center for American Progress Action Fund Pushes for Cleaner Air. The Center for American Progress Action Fund, a sister organization of CAP, is leading a campaign to curb asthma and other harmful health effects from coal-fired power plants. This campaign is already underway, and it will continue until July 5, 2011. It provides a new opportunity for faith communities to expand their environmental stewardship advocacy efforts at the federal level. Posted. http://www.americanprogress.org/issues/2011/06/faith_asthma.html CLIMATE CHANGE EU Needs Stricter CO2 Target, Cap-and-Trade Rules, Report Shows. The European Union should move to a stricter emissions-reduction target for 2020 to attain its 2050 climate goal in a cost-effective way, a report by a network of climate experts and a research group showed. Standing by the current EU goal to cut emissions by 20 percent in 2020 compared with 1990 levels would mean a “rapidly accelerating reduction effort” to attain the 2050 goal of at least 80 percent, according the report by Climate Strategies …Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-06-08/eu-needs-stricter-co2-target-cap-and-trade-rules-report-shows.html Aviation Has to Contribute to Fighting Climate Change, EU Says. The inclusion of the aviation sector in the European Union’s emissions trading system is a “practical example” of steps that need to be made to prevent global warming, EU Climate Commissioner Connie Hedegaard said. “‘If we had only done that for European airlines only it wouldn’t be fair,” Hedegaard told a seminar in Brussels today. “Everyone agrees the aviation sector has to contribute.” Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-06-08/aviation-has-to-contribute-to-fighting-climate-change-eu-says.html Solano Plans For Climate Change, Possible Floods From Rising Oceans. The debate on the validity of rising sea levels and climate change continues as Solano County agrees on strategic plans to address both in the future. Two public hearings Tuesday attracted several Solano residents to hear what supervisors had to say about the two contentious issues. Posted. http://www.timesheraldonline.com/news/ci_18228952 State Climate Law Back On Track Following 'Baffling' Court Overlap. Dueling court orders over the last few days that served to confuse many insiders have left the California Air Resources Board (ARB) just where it wants to be: implementing the state's climate change law and back on track to go live with a cap-and-trade market for greenhouse gas emissions by Jan. 1. For now, anyway. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/06/08/4 Climate Change Creates Health Risks Indoors, Too. Weatherizing buildings to increase their energy efficiency could backfire by creating new health risks for occupants, according to a new report that warns climate change and efforts to combat it could worsen indoor air quality. "New building materials and equipment arrive on the market every day, and experience suggests that some may bring unforeseen problems of indoor environmental quality with them," the Institute of Medicine analysis says. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/06/08/5 EPA Sends Final Rule On GHG Emissions From Trucks To White House. The Obama administration is advancing its plan to finalize greenhouse gas emissions standards for medium- and heavy-duty trucks, although an announcement may not come until later this summer. U.S. EPA and the Department of Transportation have sent the first emissions standards for trucks and buses to the White House Office of Management and Budget for final approval, according to a website that tracks federal rulemaking. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2011/06/08/2 FUELS A Carbon Tax To Fund Renewable Fuels Could Help Countries Meet Mandates – Study. A new World Bank policy paper says a carbon tax could help buoy biofuels development more effectively than subsidies alone. Lead author and World Bank Senior Research Economist Govinda Timilsina suggests that the most effective strategy for boosting biofuels is to use revenue culled from a tax on fossil fuels in transportation to buttress subsidies. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/06/08/7 VEHICLES Porsche Reveals More Details About the All-Electric Boxster E. More information has been shared by Porsche about their prototype eclectic cars and the best news is they are being tested out on the roads today. The Porsche electric prototype cars are being used as part of the government-funded "Model Region Electro-Mobility Stuttgart", which is a large-scale trial to study the everyday reasonableness of using all-electric vehicles. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/06/08/idUS105292943120110608 State Electric-Car Rebate Fund Runs Low On Cash. California's rebate program for people who buy electric cars has grown so popular that it's about to run out of cash. The state offers rebates of up to $5,000 to clean-car buyers, on a first-come, first-served basis. So many have applied during the current fiscal year, however, that the program's $5 million annual funding will probably be used up before the next fiscal year begins in July, state officials reported Tuesday. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/06/07/BUOS1JQRCA.DTL http://www.foxnews.com/leisure/2011/06/08/california-running-out-money-for-electric-car-rebates/ http://www.centralvalleybusinesstimes.com/stories/001/?ID=18616 GREEN ENERGY Turkey To Use GE Natural-Gas Plant Design With Renewable Features. General Electric Co. (GE) unveiled Tuesday a new power-plant design that integrates natural-gas generation with intermittent sources of solar and wind power as a way to tap into the broader trends toward cleaner sources of energy. GE has a long history in the power business, tracing back to Thomas Edison, who invented the light bulb. Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/BT-CO-20110607-711963.html Blustery States Boost Wind Power Over Gas With U.S. Tax Break. A U.S. tax break has helped wind power stem the growth of natural gas as a power-plant fuel in blustery states. The natural-gas share of electricity generation increased by less than 1 percent over the past decade in states such as North Dakota that have strong winds to drive turbines, a Bloomberg Government Study found. It grew 17 percent in states such as Florida, where there was no wind to compete with gas. Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-06-08/blustery-states-boost-wind-power-over-gas-with-u-s-tax-break.html Calling for ‘Achievable’ Target, Christie Plans Cut in State’s Renewable Energy Goals. Gov. Chris Christie said Tuesday that he planned to scale back New Jersey’s goals for renewable energy as he looked for an “achievable” approach to generating electricity in the state. His change is part of an overhaul of the state’s 10-year energy master plan, which had been expected since last year, when he asked the New Jersey Board of Public Utilities to evaluate renewable energy targets he found too aggressive. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/08/science/earth/08christie.html?_r=1&pagewanted=print MISCELLANEOUS Former Interior Secretary Calls Out Obama On The Environment. Bruce Babbitt says Obama has failed to defend against Republican and industry attacks on environmental safeguards. President Obama has failed to answer Republican attacks on environmental safeguards "forcefully and persuasively" and to articulate his own vision for conserving American wilderness and water, former Interior Secretary Bruce Babbitt charged Tuesday. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-environment-babbitt-20110608,0,3529847,print.story OPINION The Gas Is Greener. IN April, Gov. Jerry Brown made headlines by signing into law an ambitious mandate that requires California to obtain one-third of its electricity from renewable energy sources like sunlight and wind by 2020. Twenty-nine states and the District of Columbia now have renewable electricity mandates. President Obama and several members of Congress have supported one at the federal level. Polls routinely show strong support among voters for renewable energy projects — as long as they don’t cost too much. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/06/08/opinion/08bryce.html BLOGS Reimagining Auto Retail for Electric Cars. For independent electric car companies, it’s so long, automobile row. Some electric vehicle manufacturers have jettisoned the old model of franchise auto dealerships in an effort to change not only how we drive, but also how we buy cars. “Because we’re ushering in a new powertrain, it’s an opportunity to say, ‘Should we shake up everything?’ ” Steve Burns, president of Amp Electric Vehicles, wondered in a telephone interview. Posted. http://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/06/08/reimagining-auto-retail-for-electric-cars/?pagemode=print A Hybrid Power Plant Takes Shape in Turkey. General Electric. A hybrid electric plant designed by General Electric. Mirrors focus sunlight on power towers, top right, that make steam that is injected through pipes into a turbine, center, to make electricity. Wind turbines, rear, make electricity to either help run the plant or to feed the grid. How can the electric system take intermittent energy sources like wind and sun and integrate them with conventional fuels for electricity, like natural gas? Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/06/07/a-hybrid-power-plant-takes-shape-in-turkey/?pagemode=print Global Warming As A Heat Wave Enhancer. Any time it’s hot or hotter than average, the subject of global warming invariably arises. The usual question I hear is: Is this global warming (or climate change)? The answer I give is that global warming is not causing hot weather but almost certainly intensifying it. In other words, think of the greenhouse gases building up in the atmosphere from human activities as steroids. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/capital-weather-gang/post/global-warming-as-a-heat-wave-enhancer/2011/06/08/AGnsFCMH_blog.html Program Offers Homeowners Cash Rebates For Energy-Efficiency Upgrades. Bay Area residents may soon begin to see ads for a new program that allows homeowners to better insulate their houses while getting a considerable of rebate for doing the upgrade. After an 11-month pilot program, the full version of Energy Upgrade California -- a statewide effort to promote energy efficiency -- is now going full throttle. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/blogs/inoakland/detail?entry_id=90493 California’s Small Businesses Need AB 32 To Stay Strong. Some people might be skeptical if they were told a bunch of CEOs got together and agreed that restrictions on pollution are good for business. After all, environmental regulations and economic success are mutually exclusive, right? Wrong.California’s Global Warming Solutions Act, AB 32, is under assault from opponents trying to delay implementation of this landmark legislation. Posted http://www.smallbusinessmajority.org/blog/small-business-majority/healthcare/california%E2%80%99s-small-businesses-need-ab-32-to-stay-strong/ First-ever Fuel Efficiency and Carbon Pollution Standards for Heavy Trucks Move Closer to Adoption. This week, the Department of Transportation and Environmental Protection Agency took one of the final steps toward adopting the first-ever standards to improve fuel-efficiency and cut carbon pollution from highway trucks by seeking final approval from the White House Office of Management and Budget. This is a welcome development toward cleaning up our freight transport and easing the pain at the pump for truckers and businesses. Posted. http://switchboard.nrdc.org/blogs/ltonachel/first-ever_fuel_efficiency_and.html Summers Will Keep Getting Hotter, Stanford Researchers Say. While California experiences cooler-than-expected temperatures for early June, the rest of the country is reeling under a blazing heat wave. According to a team of Stanford University researchers, those furnace-hot temperatures soon may become the summer norm for North America. Nations in more tropical zones could experience “the permanent emergence of unprecedented summer heat.” And the researchers say this is not a centuries-long forecast. Posted. http://californiawatch.org/dailyreport/summers-will-keep-getting-hotter-stanford-researchers-say-10697 California Energy Commission Extends Clean Vehicle Rebates in California. Today the California Energy Commission (CEC) and the Air Resources Board (ARB) officially finalized an agreement that will make many EV early adopters in California smile. The interagency agreement, which was publicly announced on Plug In Cars in January, puts an extra $2 million dollars in the state rebate program, known as the Clean Vehicle Rebate Project (CVRP). Posted. http://www.plugincars.com/california-energy-commission-extends-clean-vehicle-rebates-california-107278.html Double Standard For Fuel Efficiency Is Literally Killing Americans. An economist at UC San Diego has made a startling finding: The peculiarly American system of having one fuel efficiency standard for cars and a different, less stringent one for SUVs and trucks is increasing highway fatalities. The problem is that under the existing, two-tiered system, increases in fuel efficiency standards force car makers to shrink cars even faster than they shrink trucks and SUVs (which by law have to remain above a certain weight, anyway). Posted. http://www.grist.org/list/2011-06-08-double-standard-for-fuel-efficiency-is-literally-killing-america EPA Critics Are Hogging The Air Time. According to a Media Matters report, cable news channels are flooding the airwaves with people who oppose the EPA's rules regulating greenhouse gases: They get four times as much airtime as supporters. Of 199 guests discussing EPA rules on cable news shows between December 2009 and this April, 152 opposed the rules, and only 35 supported them. Posted. http://www.grist.org/list/2011-06-08-epa-critics-are-hogging-the-air-time