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newsclips -- Newsclips for October 6, 2011

Posted: 06 Oct 2011 11:22:15
California Air Resources Board News Clips for October 6, 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.


EPA to Ease Rule on Power Plants.  The Environmental Protection
Agency, under pressure from some states, industry and Congress,
is expected to ease an air quality rule that would require power
plants in 27 states to slash emissions, said people familiar with
the matter.  The EPA, which made the rule final in July, plans to
propose as early as this week to allow certain states and
companies to emit more pollutants than it previously permitted,
these people said. The states and companies affected couldn't be
learned.  Posted. 

Election shows widespread opposition to Prop 2.  A look at
election results in the Fairbanks North Star Borough shows that
some of the strongest opponents of a failed measure aimed at
improving air quality live in the smokiest areas.  Borough
monitoring shows that North Pole and its surrounding areas have
seen the smokiest winters. But the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner (
http://bit.ly/qEbX11) says those areas also were a stronghold
against the proposition rejected by voters on Tuesday.  Posted. 

House votes to delay controls on toxic pollution.  he
Republican-controlled House has passed the first of two bills
that would delay rules to cut toxic air pollution and mercury
from cement plants, solid waste incinerators and industrial
boilers.  House Republicans have gone after Environmental
Protection Agency rules that they view at job killers. But the
bills they're pushing probably will stall in the Democratic-run
Senate.  The first one passed the House by a 262-161 vote
Thursday.  Posted.  

County Public Works fined $27,000.  The Imperial County Public
Works Department will have to pay $27,000 in fines to the state
for air quality violations.  The California Air Resources Board
fined the department for failure to properly conduct
self-inspections aimed at measuring vehicle smoke emissions to
ensure state requirements are met, according to a press
statement.  An audit by the state found that the department’s
diesel-run heavy equipment such as trucks were not tested for
smoke emissions in 2009, Director of Public Works Bill Brunet
said. The fines came specifically for not conducting the tests
that year, Brunet said, not for failing the tests.  Posted. 

Dem amendments to cement bill shot down, final votes today.  The
House yesterday evening rejected 13 Democratic amendments, paving
the way for likely passage today of bills to rescind U.S EPA's
toxic emissions rules for cement kilns and industrial boilers. 
The House is expected to make short work of 10 more amendments by
the minority today before the final votes on the two bills. 
Among the amendments defeated last night was one by Rep. Henry
Waxman (D-Calif.), the top Democrat on the House Energy and
Commerce Committee, that would have allowed EPA to move ahead
with the rule if the White House Office of Management and Budget
determined it violated congressional budgetary rules requiring
all new spending to be offset by cuts elsewhere in the budget. 

EPA plans to tweak interstate emissions limits.  U.S. EPA will
give a few states and electric companies more leeway to release
air pollution under a new program meant to clean up soot and smog
from power plants, an Obama administration official said today. 
The Cross-State Air Pollution Rule, finalized this summer as a
successor to the George W. Bush administration's Clean Air
Interstate Rule, orders power plants in 27 Eastern states to meet
stricter limits next January and show compliance in 2014. 


EU court indicates loss for US, Canadian airlines over emissions
trading scheme.  European Union efforts to force international
airlines to pay for their polluting emissions received a big
boost Thursday when a legal adviser urged the EU's highest court
to reject a U.S. challenge.  Several U.S. and Canada-based
airlines and airlines associations had sued the EU for its plan
to include them in the emissions trading scheme as of next year.
Under that plan, all airlines would have to have costly emissions
permits for flights to and from EU airports. So far only large
factories and power plants are part of the scheme.  Posted. 



Scientists seek to document later fall colors.  Clocks may not be
the only thing falling back: That signature autumn change in leaf
colors may be drifting further down the calendar. Scientists
don't quite know if global warming is changing the signs of fall
like it already has with an earlier-arriving spring. They're
turning their attention to fall foliage in hopes of determining
whether climate change is leading to a later arrival of autumn's
golden, orange and red hues. 

AP Newsbreak: 


Cap-and-Trade Proceeds in California, Governor Signs Solar Bills.
 California's Air Resources Board (CARB) can proceed with
implementation of the state's cap-and-trade program, a Supreme
Court judge ruled Wednesday.  The program, which was announced in
November 2010 after four years of development, has been held up
because of a March court ruling that requires CARB to further
examine alternatives to cap-and-trade that might be better routes
to reducing greenhouse gases.  Posted. 

Argus Launches California Carbon Allowance Index.  Global energy
price reporting agency Argus has launched a monthly index for
emissions allowances created by the California Air Resources
Board's greenhouse gas trading program.  Argus began daily
pricing for the California Carbon Allowance market on 26 August
and published the first monthly index on 30 September.  The new
California Carbon Allowance monthly index provides independent
price discovery ahead of the launch of the state's greenhouse gas
cap-and-trade program in 2013.  Posted. 

E.U. has legal right to include foreign airlines in carbon
trading, Advocate General says.  The European Union's inclusion
of international aviation in its emissions trading system is
compatible with international law, the European Court of Justice
Advocate General Juliane Kokott concluded today in a written
opinion.  The opinion is not binding, but the Luxembourg court
has usually followed the advice of Advocate Generals advice at
least in part in previous cases. The court will now begin
deliberations and will issue its decision at a later date. 


U.S. alleges $9 million biofuel scheme paid for exotic cars.  A
Maryland man has been charged by the federal government for
selling $9 million in fraudulent renewable fuel credits and using
the money to buy a Ferrari, a Lamborghini, and a Maserati, among
other things.  The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said on
Tuesday that Rodney Hailey, the owner of Clean Green Fuel, LLC,
has been charged with wire fraud, money laundering, and violation
of the Clean Air Act in connection to trade in renewable
identification numbers, or RINs, purportedly produced by his
company.  Posted. 


Green Tech Venture Investments Jumped 23% in Q3.  Investors doled
out $2.23 billion for 189 green tech venture deals worldwide in
the third quarter and counted energy storage, solar and energy
efficiency as their top three picks, according to preliminary
data from the Cleantech Group on Wednesday.  The third-quarter
investment dollars shot up 12 percent from the previous quarter’s
$1.98 billion and 23 percent from the third quarter of 2010, when
investments reached $1.81 billion. The bump is a reversal from
the second quarter of this year, when venture investments slid 10
percent from the first quarter and 28 percent from the second
quarter of 2010.  Posted. 

Seeing green in Pleasanton.  Long before being green was the
thing to do, the Hacienda Business Park and the city of
Pleasanton were working on ways to reduce their carbon footprint.
 What began two decades ago as searching for ways to provide
congestion relief for the thousands of workers at the park, has
evolved into a cooperative sustainability effort that includes a
nationally recognized carpool program, energy efficient
streetlights, green building practices and innovative irrigation
techniques at the 875-acre park.  Posted. 

New energy storage methods may overcome solar energy's flaws. 
The sun is the most abundant power source on Earth, but new
designs soon hitting the market could keep its energy flowing
even after sunset.  Researchers are exploring various strategies
to put sunshine on tap, converting the sun's energy into fuels
that can be stored, transported and used as needed. Setting
excess power aside can help solar plants produce consistent
electricity throughout the day, diminishing one of solar energy's
biggest drawbacks. Sun-derived fuels can also be used to power
fuel cells that drive cars or provide heat to warm homes. 


INLAND: Cleaner tow trucks proposed for freeway patrol.  Tow
trucks that patrol Inland freeways to clear lanes might one day
ditch diesel fuel in favor of natural gas, but only if it makes
economic sense, officials said.  San Bernardino transportation
officials did not ratify a suggestion Wednesday by Chino Mayor
Dennis Yates to require all future Freeway Service Patrol
contracts to require the use of compressed natural gas vehicles,
but officials said they would explore the idea.  Posted. 

Consumers expect more from electric vehicles than makers can
supply.  Consumers aren’t impressed with electric vehicles
currently being offered by automakers – a new survey from
Deloitte reveals that they expect electric cars to go longer on a
charge, charge quicker and retail for a much lower price. 
Deloitte said consumers’ expectations around performance and
purchase price are so divergent from the actual offerings
available today that no more than 2 to 4 percent of consumers
worldwide would have their expectations met.  Posted. 


Gas guzzling mower? Trade for brand-new electric.  Smog
regulators will hold their next lawn mower exchange in Mission
Viejo Saturday, offering shiny new electric mowers for
gas-powered versions and as little as $100.  The exchange, part
of the "Mow Down Air Pollution" program, is open to anyone living
within the South Coast Air Quality Management District, including
Orange County and parts of Los Angeles, Riverside and San
Bernardino counties.  Posted. 


Climate activism stands with Occupy Wall Street Movement.  The
Occupy Wall Street Movement started with a handful of protesters
in the middle of September. Today, it is snowballing into a
national movement for "the other 99 percent" -- representing a
diverse group of Americans who feel disenfranchised by a
political and financial system that ignores them.  And now,
riding on the momentum created by the Keystone XL pipeline
protests in Washington last month, leaders of the climate
movement are getting involved.  Posted. 

Could a New Shipping Route Through the Arctic Reduce Global
Emissions?  Traditionally when people talk about melting ice in
the Arctic, it is a cause for great concern and considered
another symptom of global warming. However, Scandinavian tanker
companies believe that with the ice melting, new sea routes
between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans could be opened up,
saving time, money and emissions.  Supertankers, that transport
oil, cars and other products, famously produce large quantities
of CO2 (it is estimated that worldwide shipping currently
accounts for more than 3 percent of all annual global emissions),
but receding Arctic ice could change that.  Posted. 

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