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newsclips -- Newsclips for July 11, 2011. Posted: 11 Jul 2011 12:50:16
California Air Resources Board News Clips for July 11, 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 Biking On Busy Streets Linked To Heart Risks. When Ed Campaniello chooses his biking route between his Mission District home and job in downtown San Francisco, traffic is a top consideration. And new research shows that's a smart move - not only because fewer cars mean less of a chance of being hit, but because polluting vehicles may give cyclists heart problems. The 42-year-old solar energy consultant said it makes sense. Occasionally, he gets a funky taste in his mouth after riding behind trucks and buses. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/07/10/BAGG1K737V.DTL&type=printable Qantas: Australia Carbon Tax To Increase Fares. Australia's tax on carbon emissions will cost Qantas 110 million to 115 million Australian dollars ($118 million to $123 million) for the 2013 financial year and lead to an increase in passenger fares, the airline said Monday. The flagship Australian carrier is one of the first of the nation's major companies to release details of the financial impact of the tax, which will force the 500 worst polluters to pay AU$23 for every ton of carbon they emit. Posted. http://www.nctimes.com/business/article_31a199ea-fc33-5464-a8e1-efe699266aa8.html Clean Coal Group Spent $940,000 On 1Q Lobbying. The American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity, which represents industries involved in coal-generated electricity, spent $940,000 in the first quarter to lobby the federal government on legislation related to the environment, according to a recent disclosure report. Posted. http://www.modbee.com/2011/07/08/1767105/clean-coal-group-spent-940000.html How Dirty Is The Yellow School Bus? Air Pollution: Tailpipe controls on buses don't clear the air inside bus cabins. As iconic yellow buses transport children to and from school, their diesel engines deliver big doses of air pollutants. In response, school districts have started retrofitting their buses to cut tailpipe emissions. Posted. http://pubs.acs.org/cen/email/html/8928scene2.html# Critical List: Australia Will Tax Carbon; U.S. Cars Kill 32.5 Trillion Insects Each Year. This is a carbon tax: Australia is going to put a tax of $23 per metric ton on carbon emissions from 500 companies. Hybrids and electric vehicles may no longer be legally allowed to slink quietly down the street, surprising pedestrians and dogs everywhere. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is proposing a rule requiring that the near-silent cars emit some sort of sound at low speeds. Posted. http://www.grist.org/list/2011-07-11-critical-list-australia-will-tax-carbon-u.s.-cars-kill-32.5-tril CLIMATE CHANGE Australia To Tax Nation's Worst Polluters. Sydney—Australia will force its 500 worst polluters to pay 23 Australian dollars ($25) for every ton of carbon dioxide they emit, with the government promising to compensate households hit with higher power bills under a plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions unveiled Sunday. Prime Minister Julia Gillard sought to reassure wary Australians that the deeply unpopular carbon tax will only cause a minority of households to pay more and insisted it is critical to helping the country lower its massive carbon emissions. Posted. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/A/AS_AUSTRALIA_CARBON_TAX?SITE=NCASH&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT AP Newsbreak http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/07/09/2459238/australia-to-tax-nations-worst.html#storylink=misearch http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_18450334 http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/jul/10/australia-to-tax-nations-worst-polluters/ http://www.nctimes.com/business/article_0b51bee6-10af-5ba4-a028-4259c01b94b5.html Free Cap-And-Trade System Beats Carbon Tax, Study Finds. As governments try to figure out the best way to get carbon polluters to invest in and produce cleaner energy, two scenarios continue to come forward: cap and trade vs. carbon tax. A new study from UC Merced and the University of New South Wales in Australia suggests that a free and uninhibited cap-and-trade system is the best way to go. Posted. http://californiawatch.org/dailyreport/free-cap-and-trade-system-beats-carbon-tax-study-finds-11395 FUELS Alon: No Impact From Upset At Bakersfield Refinery. Houston - Alon USA Energy (ALJ.N) said there was no impact on production from upsets over the weekend on a sulfur unit at its Bakersfield, California refinery. "Other than a couple of trips on the sulfur unit, everything ran perfectly fine for us in Bakersfield over the weekend," Chief Operating Officer Joseph Israel said. "We are now converting gasoil into CARB diesel and CARBOB gasoline for the California/Bakersfield market in our Bakersfield refinery." Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/07/11/refinery-operations-alon-bakersfield-idUSWEN520920110711 What Does The Volatile Past Of Natural Gas Tell Us About Its Future? In mid-2000, the chairman of Chesapeake Energy, a beleaguered natural gas producer, was returning on the company's jet to his headquarters in Oklahoma City, buoyed with optimism. He was coming from a meeting with Calpine, a growing California-based power company, and he was encouraged by what he'd heard. Posted. http://www.grist.org/natural-gas/2011-07-11-what-does-volatile-past-of-natural-gas-say-about-its-future VEHICLES As Green As Can Be: Nissan Tests Solar Charging For Leaf. Yokohama, Japan -- Japanese automaker Nissan is testing a super-green way to recharge its Leaf electric vehicle using solar power, part of a broader drive to improve electricity storage systems. Nissan's Leaf went on sale late last year, but the automaker is looking ahead about five years, when aging Leaf vehicles may offer alternative business opportunities in using their lithium-ion batteries as a storage place for electricity. Posted. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/A/AS_JAPAN_NISSAN?SITE=CACHI&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT AP Newsbreak: http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/technology/nissan-works-on-recharging-leaf-electric-vehicle-with-solar-power-mulling-business/2011/07/11/gIQA2d5B8H_story.html http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/07/10/2460053/nissan-works-on-recharging-leaf.html#storylink=misearch http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_18453296 http://www.contracostatimes.com/ci_1845364 http://www.mercurynews.com/cars/ci_18455170?nclick_check=1 http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/jul/11/nissan-works-on-recharging-leaf-with-solar-power/ http://www.nctimes.com/business/article_d8b1ec60-e2ce-5606-9c1b-be75de6b9555.html Renault: Ties With Daimler Could Extend To Electric Vehicles. FLINS, France (Dow Jones)--Renault SA's (RNO.FR) cooperation with German premium auto maker Daimler AG (DAI.XE) could eventually be extended to cover production of electric vehicles, the newly appointed chief operating officer of the French car maker said Monday. Carlos Tavares, speaking to journalists at an event where users of electric vehicles related their experiences, said cooperation between the two companies is developing at the pace at which new projects are being agreed on. Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/BT-CO-20110711-708040.html Future Of Electric Cars Hinges On Better Batteries. Electric cars are a game-changing technology with an Achilles’ heel — the battery. Current batteries are expensive and have limited range, making it hard to drive from San Jose to San Francisco and back without stopping to recharge. Experts agree consumers will never fully embrace electric vehicles until they can travel as far as a gas-powered car on a single charge. Posted. http://www.mercurynews.com/business/ci_18450778?source=rss Eye On The Environment: Choosing Clean-Burning Car Reduces Pollution. The California coast has always held the allure of sunshine, beaches, jaw-dropping vistas and open roads. Nowhere is this more intoxicating than the famous Ventura Highway, where tourists hum a familiar tune and locals know the same throughway can snarl with traffic and vehicle exhaust. Since the days of tail-finned, chromed-out, choking-on-raw-gas-fumes, lucky-if-you-get-10-mpg cars, California has cleaned up its act. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/jul/09/choosing-clean-burning-car-reduces-pollution/?print=1 Midterm Review Of Mpg Goals Likely. The White House is likely to require an interim review of eventual 2017-25 model year mpg standards in response to automakers' doubts about future electric vehicle sales…automakers have one unlikely ally -- the California Air Resources Board, which says future sales of hybrids vehicles are uncertain. Posted. http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20110711/OEM06/307119953/1186 GREEN ENERGY Orient Green Power to Raise Capacity 38% on Wind-Energy Demand. Orient Green Power Co., the first renewable-energy company to list in India, plans to increase capacity by 38 percent as demand for cleaner electricity grows. Operating capacity for wind-power and biomass projects will rise to 342 megawatts in the financial year through March 2012, the Chennai-based company said today in an e-mailed statement. Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/print/2011-07-11/orient-green-power-to-raise-capacity-38-on-wind-energy-demand.html Texas Aglow With Effort To Save The Incandescent Bulb. Irritated with federal regulation, Republicans hope a state law will get around a national mandate to replace old-fashioned bulbs with more efficient lamps. It doesn't have the ring of "Remember the Alamo," but a new battle cry has gone up in Texas: "Remember the incandescent bulb." Texas has become the first state seeking to skirt a federal law that phases out old-fashioned incandescent light bulbs in favor of more efficient lamps — Posted. http://www.latimes.com/news/nationworld/nation/la-na-adv-texas-light-bulbs-20110710,0,1014091,print.story Phoenix Light-Rail Station Is Cooled By The Sun. Passengers using a newly retrofitted light rail station in downtown Phoenix, Arizona can press a button to be showered in cool air, powered by solar energy and cold water from an efficient district cooling system. The system, which was inspired by similar installations in Dubai, uses solar power to run fans that blow cool air. The cool air itself comes from a system of chilled water that has been running in Phoenix's business district since 2001. Posted. http://www.grist.org/list/2011-07-11-phoenix-light-rail-station-is-cooled-by-the-sun MISCELLANEOUS San Joaquin Air District Seeks Funding For Projects. The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District is requesting proposals for projects that demonstrate bold, innovative and creative emission-reduction technologies as part of the district's Technology Advancement Program. The district is seeking technology demonstrations in the areas of renewable energy, waste solutions and mobile sources to improve valley air quality. Posted. http://www.modbee.com/2011/07/08/1767722/air-district-seeks-funding-for.html OPINIONS The E.U. Has The Right Idea In Regulating Greenhouse Gases From Airplanes. AVIATION ACCOUNTS for only 2 or 3 percent of the world greenhouse gas emissions contributing to climate change. But that share is rising as air travel increases. So in 2012, the European Union will bring airlines under its carbon cap, requiring them to reduce their emissions by 5 percent over the next decade or to pay for not doing so. Europe, though, doesn’t want to restrict the greenhouse gases planes produce only while flying over E.U. nations. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/the-eu-has-the-right-idea-in-regulating-greenhouse-gases-from-airplanes/2011/07/08/gIQADGLn7H_story.html An Aggressive Ruling on Clean Air. The Environmental Protection Agency on Thursday issued a welcome and overdue rule compelling power plants in 27 states and the District of Columbia to reduce smokestack emissions that pollute the air and poison forests, lakes and streams across the eastern United States. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/11/opinion/11mon1.html?scp=3&sq=air%20pollution&st=cse Word Choice Matters for Energy Policy. When President Barack Obama speaks about the fuels of the future, his term of choice is usually “clean energy.” At the “Twitter Town Hall” last week, where people asked the president questions via Twitter, Mr. Obama referred to “clean energy” five times. The only similar term he used was “alternative energy,” once. Other descriptors, like “renewable,” “sustainable” and “green,” were not mentioned. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/07/11/business/global/11iht-green11.html?_r=1 Editorial: Roll Back Bulb Standards? Not A Bright Idea. Unless sharper minds prevail, the U.S. House of Representatives today is expected to eliminate lighting efficiency standards that former President George W. Bush signed into law in 2007. Those standards have helped usher in a new wave of super-efficient, power-saving light bulbs by dimming the switch on incandescent ones, even though those older bulbs remain popular among some Americans. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/07/11/v-print/3760447/roll-back-bulb-standards-not-a.html Will Obama Cave On Fuel Efficiency? For more than two years, President Barack Obama has talked tough about the need to bolster fuel economy standards to reduce pollution and dependence on foreign oil. Yet as Obama starts to mount a 2012 re-election campaign, there are disturbing signs he may cave on fuel economy standards to placate Detroit and improve his chances to win Michigan and other states in the general election. Posted. http://www.modbee.com/2011/07/11/1770196/will-obama-cave-on-fuel-efficiency.html Cap-And-Trade Could Spur Faster Cleantech Investment Than Carbon Tax. I am painfully aware that the "cap-and-trade vs. carbon tax" debate, which was never particularly useful, has now become spectacularly pointless. Cap-and-trade is dead at the national level and seems to be slowly dying at the state level. And a carbon tax, despite the eternally brimming hopes of its many apostles, still has no chance in hell. So it's a "unicorns vs. bigfoot" kind of thing at this point. http://www.grist.org/climate-policy/2011-07-07-cap-and-trade-spur-faster-cleantech-investment-than-carbon-tax BLOGS Corporate Giants Add One Million Vehicles to National Clean Fleets Partnership. In a clear case of high bar-setting, earlier this year the U.S. Department of Energy kicked off its National Clean Fleets Partnership with a select group of official partners: AT&T, FedEx, PepsiCo, UPS and Verizon. The program aims to reduce diesel and gasoline pollution from fleet vehicles and with these global A-listers on board others were bound to follow. Posted. http://www.triplepundit.com/2011/07/corporate-giants-add-one-million-vehicles-national-clean-fleets-partnership/ When It Comes to Natural Gas Fracking, France Learns from U.S. Mistakes. Last week, France became the first country to ban hydraulic fracturing in gas and oil operations. Known as fracking for short, the practice is associated with serious water contamination issues, and a recent study by Cornell University indicates that it may generate more greenhouse gas emissions than coal mining due to the release of methane gas during the operation. Posted. http://www.triplepundit.com/2011/07/france-ban-fracking-natural-gas/ France Expands Nuclear Capabilities by Opening a Nuclear Institute. Instead of abandoning nuclear power, France has opened a nuclear energy institute. France currently generates 78 percent of its electricity from nuclear power plants, the highest percentage in the world. Posted. http://www.celsias.com/article/france-expands-nuclear-capabilities-opening-nuclea/ What a Difference Some Greens Make in Australian Carbon Politics. The politics of carbon in Australia have been seriously difficult and claimed a number of scalps along the way. Before the last election Julia Gillard had promised there would be no carbon tax after she herself rolled Kevin Rudd after his seriously changed stance on carbon. Then, as elections can and do, she was left with a minority government and needed the support of the Greens and an Independent MP to retain power. Posted. http://www.celsias.com/article/what-difference-some-greens-make-australian-carbon/ Nissan And 4R Energy Develop New EV Charging System Combining Solar And Li-Ion Batteries. Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. and 4R Energy Corporation, a joint venture established by Nissan and Sumitomo Corporation in September 2010 to explore second-life applications for automotive battery packs (earlier post), have developed a charging system for electric vehicles that combines a solar power generation system with high-capacity lithium-ion batteries. Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2011/07/nissan4r-20110711.html Revisiting Historical Ocean Surface Temperatures. Readers may recall discussions of a paper by Thompson et al (2008) back in May 2008. This paper demonstrated that there was very likely an artifact in the sea surface temperature (SST) collation by the Hadley Centre (HadSST2) around the end of the second world war and for a few years subsequently, related to the different ways ocean temperatures were taken by different fleets. Posted. http://www.realclimate.org/index.php/archives/2011/07/revisiting-historical-ocean-surface-temperatures/ Boston Consulting Group Says Evs Not Necessary To Meet 2020 Emissions Targets. Internal combustion engines (ICEs) are improving rapidly and their ability to cut CO2 emissions at lower-than-expected costs will continue to make them the auto industry's dominant powertrain technology over the next decade. According to new Boston Consulting Group report entitled, "Powering Autos to 2020: The Era of the Electric Car?," automakers should be able to meet 2020 emissions targets mainly by applying advanced technologies to conventional ICEs – they won't be forced to resort to electric cars. Posted. http://green.autoblog.com/ Plug In America Talks Electric Vehicles With The Air Force. Plug In America's Kate Baker interviewed Lt. Col. Brian Rusler and veteran Tim Goodrich of the United States Air Force regarding the military branch's green energy plans. The Air Force has been employing electric vehicles as early as 1997 with the use of electric golf carts for personnel transport within the bases. Posted. http://green.autoblog.com/ Repealing Light Bulb Efficiency Standards Would Cost Americans $12.5 Billion. Since the idea was first put forth last fall, we have been closely following the quest of U.S. Republicans to repeal the energy efficiency standards for light bulbs. Introduced by Representative Joe Barton (R-Texas), the Better Use of Light Bulb (BULB) Act (HR 6144) would block parts of the 2007 energy law signed by George W. Bush that calls for phasing out the inefficient incandescent light bulb. Posted. http://inhabitat.com/repealing-light-bulb-efficiency-standards-would-cost-americans-12-5-billion/