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newsclips -- Newsclips for June 21, 2011 Posted: 21 Jun 2011 11:22:29
California Air Resources Board News Clips for June 21, 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. CLIMATE CHANGE Court Blocks States' Greenhouse-Gas Suit. The Supreme Court blocked six states from suing power-plant operators over greenhouse-gas emissions, ruling Monday unanimously that pending federal regulation under the Clean Air Act pre-empts the case. But the justices split 4-4 on related legal questions, leaving open the possibility that states could revive their action if the Obama administration fails to issue a final emissions rule by May 2012. Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304070104576397570856062518.html?KEYWORDS=climate+change Supreme Court kills global warming suit. Reporting from Washington— The fight over global warming and whether to limit carbon pollution from coal-fired power plants must be resolved by the Environmental Protection Agency, the Supreme Court said, killing a suit in federal court brought against the nation's five largest electric power companies. The 8-0 decision Monday was a setback — but not a surprise — for environmentalists. The outcome puts more pressure on the Obama administration and the EPA to follow through with promises to propose new regulations in the fall that will restrict carbon pollution from power plants. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/news/science/environment/la-na-court-global-warming-20110621,0,3932178.story?track=rss&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+latimes%2Fnews%2Fscience%2Fenvironment+%28L.A.+Times+-+Environment%29&utm_content=Google+Reader Commerce secretary nominee John Bryson becomes pawn in political chess match. Tapping a respected Southern California businessman as the next Commerce secretary seemed an astute move by President Obama to mend fences with corporate America, but former Edison International Chief Executive John Bryson still faces a rocky road for confirmation. Heading into a Senate hearing Tuesday, Bryson, 67, has become a pawn in a hyper-partisan Washington political chess match that has left dozens of nominees on hold. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-bryson-commerce-20110621,0,4093161.story Climate Change: Public Skeptical, Scientists Sure. The American public is less likely to believe in global warming than it was just five years ago. Yet, paradoxically, scientists are more confident than ever that climate change is real and caused largely by human activities. Something a bit strange is happening with public opinion and climate change. Anthony Leiserowitz, who directs the Yale University Project on Climate Change Communication, delved into this in a recent poll. He not only asked citizens what they thought of climate change, he also asked them to estimate how climate scientists feel about global warming. Posted. http://www.npr.org/2011/06/21/137309964/climate-change-public-skeptical-scientists-sure China says it's committed to low-carbon economy. BEIJING—Chinese officials announced Wednesday a three-day international conference to discuss how to address climate change, while conveying to the world that China is determined to develop a low-carbon economy. Representatives from 30 international organizations and 10 areas and countries will attend the conference in Beijing starting Wednesday, said Huang Wenhang of the National Development and Reform Commission, China's top economic planning body. She told a news conference that delegates would focus on policy measures for green carbon development, adapting to climate change and capacity building, including how to widen fundraising channels. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/jun/21/china-says-its-committed-to-low-carbon-economy/ http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_18320006 http://www.modbee.com/2011/06/20/1741485/china-says-its-committed-to-low.html FUELS NATURAL GAS: Texas passes fracking disclosure law. A law signed Friday by Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R) takes the state one step closer to complete disclosure of the chemicals used in the controversial process of hydraulic fracturing. The law will require companies to publicize the chemicals used for hydraulic fracturing jobs in the Lone Star State. In the past, companies have protected that information, arguing that the chemicals they use to carry out the shale gas drilling technique constitute trade secrets. Posted. BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY. http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/2011/06/20/9/ US military ready to buy affordable, homegrown jet biofuels. ANDREWS AIR FORCE BASE, Md. -- Maj. Aaron Jelinek of the Air Force Thunderbirds flies his F-16 upside down, rolls it, thunders past his teammates in breathtaking close charges and joins five other fighter jets in precision formation. And for the first time in the 58 years of Thunderbird air shows, Jelinek's flight last month was fueled by a 50-50 blend of conventional jet fuel and biofuels. "Flying is a blast," he said after the show at Andrews Air Force Base, outside Washington. As for the biofuels blend, he said: "There is no difference that I can tell." Biofuels have buzz in the military because the Air Force and the Navy are taking a lead role in creating a U.S. market for them. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/06/21/3716102/us-military-ready-to-buy-affordable.html#storylink=misearch http://www.modbee.com/2011/06/21/1741801/us-military-ready-to-buy-affordable.html GREEN ENERGY PROMISES, PROMISES: White House misses own deadline for installing solar panels on roof. WASHINGTON (AP) -- Last October, the Obama administration announced plans to install solar panels on the roof of the White House by the spring of this year, returning the power of the sun to the pinnacle of prominence a quarter-century after Jimmy Carter's pioneering system was taken down. Spring has come and gone, and the promised panels have yet to see the light of day. Administration officials blame the complexities of the contracting process, and say the solar project is still an active one. But they can't say when it'll be complete. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/promises-promises-white-house-misses-own-deadline-for-installing-solar-panels-on-roof/2011/06/21/AGMjcydH_story.html http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/n/a/2011/06/21/national/w000801D18.DTL http://www.mercurynews.com/ci_18320511?nclick_check=1 http://www.signonsandiego.com/news/2011/jun/21/promises-promises-wh-solar-panels-are-no-shows/ http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_18320511 http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/jun/21/promises-promises-wh-solar-panels-are-no-shows/ http://www.nctimes.com/news/national/article_e15a6637-e9a3-52f4-b716-6404ffae1a88.html NATIONS: Middle East's push toward renewable energy spurred by rising oil prices. There's a revolution sweeping the Middle East that has nothing to do with street uprisings or Twitter protests. It's a clean energy upheaval with international implications that could transform the Arab world from North Africa to the Persian Gulf. Solar plants are cropping up in Jordan and Morocco. Wind farms are being built in Egypt and Tunisia. Eight Arab nations and the Palestinian territories have a renewable energy target, and at least five more are taking serious steps to promote the domestic use of clean energy. Posted. BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/2011/06/21/1/ VEHICLES EU project focuses on electric car batteries. With €3.5million in funding, a two-year research project has been launched by an EU consortium with the aim of developing fast rechargeable zinc-polymer batteries for hybrid and electric vehicles. The research programme looks at fundamental material and process advances in ionic liquids, ultra-fast pulse charge injection techniques, conducting polymers, rechargeable zinc electrodes and constructing prototypes battery units for industry standard testing. It is hoped that the research will help create a battery device that will be low cost, with low environmental impact, while having the energy and power density to compete with alternative battery technologies. Posted. http://www.thegreencarwebsite.co.uk/blog/index.php/2011/06/21/eu-project-focuses-on-electric-car-batteries/ MISCELLANEOUS Lake Mohave: Houseboat center floats eco-friendly ideas. A floating building, decked out with environmentally friendly features, is open for business in southern Nevada. The facility at Cottonwood Cove on Lake Mohave, 14 miles east of Searchlight, Nev., serves as the new operations center for Forever Resorts, which rents a variety of watercraft, from WaveRunners to houseboats. The decking of the new building is made from rice hulls, and recycled tires form much of the outer shell. With its somewhat unconventional materials, the structure cost $642,000 -- more than the cost of traditional construction, the operators say. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/travel/deals/la-trb-forever-resorts-building-20110617,0,4717599.story Protected bike lanes will change the fearful realities of urban cycling. I have seen the potential future of biking in cities across the country. And friends, our heart-pounding, car door-fearing, bus-dodging urban rides may never be the same. In Chicago, you can get a glimpse of it. It is a protected bike lane, the first of its kind in Chicago, under construction as part of a federally funded test. But I recently saw and rode a fully operational version in New York, where 4.9 miles of protected bike lanes have been built over the last few years. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/06/20/3715563/protected-bike-lanes-will-change.html#storylink=misearch BLOGS How politicians intimidate global warming scientists. Politics and science make for a dangerous brew, Raymond S. Bradley reveals in his book “Global Warming and Political Intimidation: How Politicians Cracked Down on Scientists as the Earth Heated Up,” to be released next month by University of Massachusetts Press. Bradley, director of the Climate System Research Center at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, describes how politicians who disagree with findings on global warming have intimidated him and his colleagues. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/political-bookworm/post/how-politicians-intimidate-global-warming-scientists/2011/06/20/AGWcQReH_blog.html Implications of Today’s U.S. Supreme Court Decision in AEP v. Connecticut for Climate Change Regulation. Thank you so much for the warm welcome. I really look forward to being part of the dialogue and am honored to be joining this interesting group. As a first post, I wanted to share some reflections on today's Supreme Court decision in AEP v. Connecticut. In an 8-0 decision authored by Justice Ginsburg (with Justice Sotomayor recusing herself), the U.S. Supreme Court held that “the Clean Air Act and the EPA actions it authorizes displace any federal common law right to seek abatement of carbon-dioxide emissions from fossil-fuel fired power plants. Posted. http://lawprofessors.typepad.com/environmental_law/2011/06/implications-of-todays-us-supreme-court-decision-in-aep-v-connecticut-for-climate-change-regulation.html Electric Vehicles: Federal Funding and Bi-Partisan Support. Advocates of electric vehicles are found throughout our political spectrum from environmentalists seeking to address climate change issues to national security analysts endorsing a reduction in the import of foreign oil. Whether the motivation is the environment or national security, one of the most noteworthy accomplishments of the burgeoning electric vehicle industry is its ability to transcend traditional, partisan lines. Posted. http://www.triplepundit.com/2011/06/electric-vehicles-house-resolution-1685/ Do we have to choose between big or small clean energy projects? A recent Colorado news story captures the tension between two visions of renewable energy, with a quote that illustrates the conventional wisdom: "It's not an either or choice, that we only put solar on rooftops or on people's homes or do utility scale, large projects," said Pete Maysmith, executive director of the Colorado Conservation Voters. "As we move forward toward energy independence, reducing our dependence on foreign oil, on dirty, polluting sources of energy like coal, we need to move forward on all fronts with renewable [energy], and that includes rooftop solar and community solar gardens, local power. It also includes utility-scale solar that is properly sited, and that’s really important." On the contrary, we may have to choose. Posted. http://www.grist.org/energy-policy/2011-06-20-we-may-have-to-choose-between-big-and-small-on-renewable-energy