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newsclips -- Newsclips for October 24, 2011. Posted: 24 Oct 2011 13:18:44
California Air Resources Board News Clips for October 24, 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 Railroads cite voluntary steps to reduce diesel emissions. A lawsuit recently filed by three environmental groups against two railroad companies raises questions about the pollution emitted from the state's rail yards and the health risks on nearby residents. However, the railroad companies say they have made numerous changes over the years in an attempt to reduce toxic pollutants. Posted. http://www.contracostatimes.com/california/ci_19182120 BY SUBSCRIPTION House GOP wants to waive environmental laws on U.S. borders. In a move aimed at improving national security, House Republicans want to give the U.S. Border Patrol unprecedented authority to ignore 36 environmental laws on federal land in a 100-mile zone stretching along the Canadian and Mexican borders. If the legislation is approved, the Border Patrol would not have to comply with the Endangered Species Act, the Clean Air Act, the Safe Drinking Water Act, the Solid Waste Disposal Act and 32 other federal laws in such popular places as Olympic National Park, Glacier Park, the Great Lakes and the Boundary Waters Wilderness Area. Posted. http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/10/23/2587693/house-gop-wants-to-waive-environmental.html#storylink=misearch CLIMATE CHANGE State's cap and trade program gets final approval. Sacramento -- California's plan to cap greenhouse gas emissions and put a price on carbon is set to take effect on Jan. 1 after the Air Resources Board voted Thursday to make final adjustments in the regulation. The state board first passed the cap-and-trade program last December. But the board, which normally allows its staff to finalize details, took the unusual step of personally tying up the loose ends of the nation's only comprehensive limit on greenhouse gases. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/10/21/MN901LK83V.DTL&type=green Calif. Board Finalizes Cap and Trade. The California Air Resources Board yesterday gave its final approval to the state’s cap-and-trade system, which sets limits on carbon emissions starting next year. CARB unanimously approved details of the regulations over the objections of industry groups, the San Francisco Chronicle reported, with the board’s major actions focusing on the allocation of carbon allowances. Under the plan approved yesterday, the state will limit carbon emissions from its 350 or so biggest emitters starting in 2012, with enforcement starting in 2013. Posted. http://www.environmentalleader.com/2011/10/21/calif-board-finalizes-cap-and-trade/ California Passes Cap-And-Trade Regulations. The California Air Resources Board approved Thursday new cap-and-trade regulations which will limit the amount of greenhouse emissions that industrial refineries can produce while creating a market where businesses can buy the ability to emit more greenhouse gases from facilities that reduce their carbon emissions below state standards. The decision makes California the only state to approve a state-administered cap-and-trade program. Posted. http://www.neontommy.com/news/2011/10/california-passes-cap-and-trade-regulations Russian Heat Wave Statistically Linked to Climate Change. A new method of crunching climate data could make it possible to put a figure on climate change’s contribution to freak weather events, something that’s been difficult to do with empirical precision. The debut subject: the Russian heat wave of July 2010, which killed 700 people and was unprecedented since record keeping began in the 19th century. According to the analysis, there’s an 80 percent chance that climate change was responsible. Posted. http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2011/10/russian-heat-climate-change/ DIESEL EMISSIONS CARB Diesel PM Filter Retrofit Deadline Looms; Some Fleets Still Have Compliance Options. The deadline for meeting California's Truck and Bus regulation diesel particulate filter retrofit requirement is January 1, 2012, but fleets can still apply for staggered implementation schedule or flexible phase-in option. The Air Resources Board is reminding owners of heavier diesel trucks that they need to act now in order to comply with California's Truck and Bus regulation, which has its first diesel filter deadlines in January 2012. Posted. http://www.truckinginfo.com/news/news-print.asp?news_id=75093 VEHICLES Nissan aims to be world No. 1 in green vehicles. Nissan Motor Co. is aiming to be the world's No. 1 in green cars, targeting cumulative sales of 1.5 million zero-emission vehicles with alliance partner Renault SA of France. The Japanese maker of the Leaf electric car announced Monday its six-year strategy, planning a plug-in hybrid by fiscal 2016 and reducing carbon dioxide emissions by 20 percent per vehicle compared with 2005 levels. Nissan, based in Yokohama, also aims to improve fuel efficiency of its vehicles by 35 percent by fiscal 2016 compared with 2005. Posted. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/A/AS_JAPAN_NISSAN?SITE=PAYOK&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/industries/nissan-aims-to-be-no-1-in-green-vehicles-targets-15-million-cumulative-sales-with-renault/2011/10/24/gIQA1pfEBM_story.html http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/10/23/2588265/nissan-aims-to-be-world-no-1-in.html#storylink=misearch http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_19180137 http://www.contracostatimes.com/ci_19180137 http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/oct/24/nissan-aims-to-be-world-no-1-in-green-vehicles/ http://www.nctimes.com/business/article_d8b1ec60-e2ce-5606-9c1b-be75de6b9555.html http://www.modbee.com/2011/10/23/1917315/nissan-aims-to-be-world-no-1-in.html Anticipating Big Growth at Tesla. Tesla Motors makes pure electric cars, but it’s valued like a hybrid. Quarterly numbers — due in the coming weeks — hint at its ability to hit manufacturing targets. But Silicon Valley-style growth is central to the story. Like many young tech companies, Tesla burns cash. In the coming months, it will wind down its run of 2,500 blisteringly fast Roadster cars, and next year, it will start producing the more sedate Model S sedan at a rate of 20,000 a year. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/24/business/anticipating-big-growth-at-tesla.html?ref=electricvehicles All-electric DeLorean DMC-12 coming in 2013. The DeLorean - yes, that DeLorean - is back. The iconic vehicle made famous as the time machine Marty McFly used in the "Back to the Future" series is set to re-enter the marketplace as an all-electric version of its former self. "I've always had a soft spot for electric vehicles, and I knew the next thing I wanted to work with was the DeLorean," CEO Stephen Wynne told AutoWeek. "After Tesla opened the door with their car, it got the fluids racing again, and I started thinking of doing it with the DeLorean." Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/10/24/v-print/4002593/all-electric-delorean-dmc-12-coming.html IEC released standards for harmonised global EV charging system. The two new international standards IEC 62196-1 and IEC 62196-2 released by the International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) define plugs and sockets for electric vehicle (EV) charging while addressing diverse regulations and electricity infrastructure in different countries around the world. They represent a prerequisite for a mass adoption of EVs and are imperative in ensuring the global compatibility of charging infrastructure. Posted. http://www.cars21.com/content/articles/67820111024.php GREEN ENERGY Special Report: Singed by Solyndra - David Prend is one of the most respected investors in green technology - but even he picks some losers. Like the Department of Energy, Prend thought Solyndra, an innovative solar company, was a good bet. His venture capital firm, RockPort Capital, began investing in the company three years before the federal government gave the start-up a loan guarantee. RockPort eventually put more than $63.5 million into Solyndra. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/10/24/us-usa-prend-idUSTRE79N2JP20111024 Environmental Features in Science Campus Plans. If Cornell University were to win the city’s competition to build a new science graduate school, it would install on Roosevelt Island almost four acres of solar panels, 500 geothermal wells, and buildings with the rare distinction of generating as much power as they use. Stanford University’s proposal for the island calls for minimizing energy use, creating a marsh to filter water, and recycling water from storm runoff and sinks, and possibly from toilets as well. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/24/education/24science.html?scp=4&sq=greenhouse%20gases&st=cse West Davis Village touts zero net energy living. Davis -- Sustainable design is often measured by the use of recycled materials and power-saving gadgets. But architecture itself can embody the quest for conservation, as is the case in this university city 80 miles east of San Francisco, where a new 130-acre development aspires to be the nation's largest zero net energy community. The first 23 buildings have just opened, so it's too early to say whether the enclave will consume no more energy than is generated by the on-site solar panels. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/10/24/MNK61LK8KM.DTL&type=printable MISCELLANEOUS Green Tips For Your Dog: Reduce Your Pet's Carbon Pawprint. In recent years, many of us have become increasingly focused on reducing our environmental impact and boosting conservation efforts. But in trying to reduce our own carbon footprint, we often forget about our pets. ABC News reported a few years ago that two New Zealand scientists wrote a book alleging "pets have a carbon footprint that is about twice the size of ... gas guzzling [SUVs]." Posted. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/23/green-tips-dog-pet-care-environment_n_1007901.html Clean-up plan renews plutonium fears in Livermore. Plans to capture contaminated groundwater from the Lawrence Livermore Laboratory have resurrected old worries among some residents about plutonium in the city's soil. Leaders of the Livermore Lab watchdog group Tri-Valley Communities Against a Radioactive Environment (CAREs) are concerned about what they see as safety shortfalls in the Department of Energy's designs for a pipeline extension along the Arroyo Seco, where elevated levels of plutonium were found in the 1990s. Posted. http://www.contracostatimes.com/news/ci_19172799?source=rss BY SUBSCRIPTION Marten Law Launches San Francisco Office. Former Orrick Environmental Partner to Anchor Firm's Expansion to California. Robert Lawrence, former chair of Orrick's environmental transactions group, will anchor Marten Law's new San Francisco office -- making it one of the largest environmental and energy law firms on the West Coast. The firm's new San Francisco office is its first outside the Pacific Northwest and continues its expansion into new markets and new practice areas. Posted. http://www.marketwatch.com/story/marten-law-launches-san-francisco-office-2011-10-24 What your new home will look like in 2015. The fact that the average American home is slowly but surely shrinking - and will most likely continue to do so if and when the country shakes off its current financial woes - isn't exactly revolutionary news. But when members of the National Association of Home Builders (NAHB) were asked earlier this year what they anticipate the new home size will be 2015, it's how they think single-family homes will shrink - …Posted. http://www.modbee.com/2011/10/24/1917707/what-your-new-home-will-look-like.html OPINIONS California’s Persistence. California has a long and productive history as a leader in environmental policy, requiring cleaner cars and power plants and more energy-efficient appliances. The state continued to break new ground last week when it unveiled the country’s first comprehensive, statewide cap-and-trade system to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and combat climate change. The announcement was a rare bright spot at time when Republicans in Washington, and their corporate backers, have turned the words “cap and trade” into an epithet. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/24/opinion/californias-persistence-on-greenhouse-gas-emissions.html?adxnnl=1&adxnnlx=1319472021-iRQRUxiEx7onQJkSOZKsnQ Shifting Attitudes on Global Warming To the Editor: “Where Did Global Warming Go?” (Sunday Review, Oct. 16) notes that Europe, Australia, China, India and Brazil are all moving ahead with policies to reduce heat-trapping pollution, while most American politicians duck the issue or actively question the reality of the problem. Unfortunately, the article offers a sweeping — and in my opinion wrong — claim that Americans are just “wired to be holdouts.” Yes, Americans value personal freedom, but we also believe, …Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/24/opinion/shifting-attitudes-on-global-warming.html?_r=1&pagewanted=print Cost of Subsidizing Fossil Fuels Is High, but Cutting Them Is Tough. The bankruptcy this summer of Solyndra — a solar company heavily subsidized by the U.S. government — unleashed a torrent of concern about the risks of wasting taxpayer money on renewable-energy projects. There have been similar worries in Europe, where bountiful state support led to a boom and bust in the Spanish solar sector and where targets for some biofuels may contribute to greenhouse emissions. But what are the effects of subsidies that continue to flow to fossil fuels? Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/10/24/business/global/cost-of-subsidizing-fossil-fuels-is-high-but-cutting-them-is-tough.html?_r=1&scp=1&sq=diesel%20emissions&st=cse Editorial: Cap-and-trade is high-stakes bet on state's future. With last week's passage of the cap-and-trade plan for carbon dioxide emissions that is the centerpiece of California's effort to reduce greenhouse gases, we see two possible futures. In the rosy one sketched out by cap-and-trade's proponents, technological innovation and savvy policies to promote renewable energy succeed in proving that California can have it all — a strong economy that nonetheless reduces the carbon emissions that, over time, threaten to dramatically warm our friendly planet. Posted. http://www.redding.com/news/2011/oct/23/cap-and-trade-is-high-stakes-bet-on-states/ As We See It: Capping job losses: Will California's cap and trade, and Democrats infrastructure spending get people working? Can California successfully navigate climate change legislation while finding a way to get people back to work? On this page, we offer two opinion columns on the topics of jobs and employment. In one, liberal economist and New York Times columnist Paul Krugman argues that greenhouse gas polluters actually cost jobs. In another, veteran Sacramento Bee columnist Dan Walters compares Texas' enviable employment figures to California's. Posted. http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/localnews/ci_19175704 California’s big pollution bet. California’s efforts to scrub its dirty skies and curb greenhouse gases are well under way. Tailpipe emission rules, wider use of alternative energy and cleaner fuel are examples of a pioneering 2006 law. Now comes the hard part: bringing down industrial pollution through a cap-and-trade system never tried at such a large scale. The state Air Resources Board gave its blessing to a steady-step system targeting mainly oil refineries, power plants and major smokestack facilities. Posted. No URL. OUR VIEW: Don't let one scandal derail all investment. The Solyndra bankruptcy and accompanying allegations that the U.S. Energy Department was pressured to approve a loan for the company deserve a thorough investigation. But the partisan fervor that has erupted over the scandal threatens to cut off much-needed support for the renewable energy industry -- and could jeopardize our nation's alternative energy future, stunt the growth of California industry and cost jobs. Posted. http://www.bakersfield.com/opinion/x1766488840/Dont-let-one-scandal-derail-all-investment GREENHUT: Bureaucrats don't mind jobs 'leakage'. As California's unemployment rate hovers above 12 percent, even the state's Democratic leaders ---- notorious for regulating, taxing and complaining about California's business community ---- are talking about jobs. They are championing the occasional job expansion in Silicon Valley (i.e., Dell) and proposing their jobs plans, even if such plans ignore the reason businesses aren't growing here. (Hint: high taxes, punitive regulations, regulators' hostility to the private sector.) Posted. http://www.nctimes.com/news/opinion/columnists/greenhut/article_ab34656c-0d7d-5e45-90d8-91b975419223.html Pollution is not the secret to job creation. Paul Krugman's column in The New York Times Thursday laments one of the many ironies of our time: Politicians in Washington are finally talking about job creation, but Republicans (and some Democrats, I'm sure) pin their hopes for employment on environmental deregulation. As Krugman points out, "Serious economic analysis actually says that we need more protection, not less." Posted. http://www.grist.org/pollution/2011-10-21-pollution-is-not-the-secret-to-job-creation The War Against Climate Science Unravels. The skeptic case against climate change is unraveling before our eyes like someone walking away from an old sweater, thread in hand. For those who have ever put the skeptic arguments to the test, it has always been clear that their criticisms rarely stand up to even the most basic level of academic rigor. But last week's release of the Berkeley Earth Surface Temperature (BEST) study delivered a decisive blow to the edifice of climate skepticism. Posted. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/kelly-rigg/the-war-against-climate-s_b_1027644.html BLOGS Will California’s carbon market spur cleantech growth? Before California regulators announced they unanimously approved regulations for a cap and trade market on Thursday, the chair of the California Air Resources Board made much ado about the impact it would have on the development of clean technology in the state. Chairwoman Mary Nichols said in her opening remarks: “Cap and trade sends a policy signal to the market and guarantees that California will continue to attract the lion’s share of investment in clean technology.” Posted. http://blogs.reuters.com/environment/2011/10/21/californias-carbon-market-will-spur-cleantech-growth/ Will new studies confirming global warming settle skeptics’ questions? Don’t hold your breath. During the past several years, some skeptics of manmade global warming have focused their attention on the reliability of the modern surface temperature record, which according to numerous studies, shows a distinct warming trend starting in the middle of the 20th century, and continuing through the present day. The surface temperature record isn’t reliable, the skeptics argue, because the data is biased by the urban heat island effect, which can raise temperatures in cities compared to rural locations. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/capital-weather-gang/post/will-new-climate-studies-settle-skeptics-questions-dont-hold-your-breath/2011/10/23/gIQApUDiCM_blog.html Cap and Trade: Sweating the Small Stuff. Associated Press Mary Nichols, chairman of the California Air Resources Board. One thing built into a politician’s DNA is a sense of occasion. Regulators tend to lack that gene. One of the most startling things about California’s groundbreaking adoption of a market-based policy to cut emissions of the heat-trapping gases was how unstartling the final meeting was. The California Air Resources Board’s all-day hearing Thursday was such a well-oiled exercise in democracy and administrative procedure that the momentousness of the occasion was almost lost in the footnotes. Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/10/22/cap-and-trade-sweating-the-small-stuff/?pagemode=print California's Cap-and-Trade Program Gets Green Light. California's Air Resources Board has formally adopted the state's greenhouse cap-and-trade program today, following a lawsuit that delayed compliance with the controversial scheme by a year. The program, which will begin in mid-2012 with auctions of the emissions allowances, will be the nation's most stringent cap-and-trade mandate but not the first. It follows in the footsteps of the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative, a program that covers utilities in Northeastern and mid-Atlantic states. Posted. http://www.greenbiz.com/blog/2011/10/20/californias-cap-trade-program-gets-green-light New Technology Could Double Solar Cell Efficiency. Solar photovoltaic prices are coming down. Between 1998 and 2010, installed costs have dropped by 43 percent, and that does not include any government tax credits or subsidies. This is good for consumers, but not so good for some solar manufacturers. Energy Secretary Chu says that solar will soon achieve cost parity with fossil fuels. Posted. http://www.triplepundit.com/2011/10/new-technology-could-double-solar-cell-efficiency/ Green Car of the Year Award finalists include diesel, hybrid, natural gas, electric. Those are the past winners of the Green Car of the Year award, given out each year at the LA Auto Show by Green Car Journal. The five finalists for the 2012 award were announced today and there are four different powertrains among them. Here they are: Ford Focus Electric, Honda Civic Natural Gas, Mitsubishi i, Toyota Prius V and Volkswagen Passat TDI. Posted. http://green.autoblog.com/2011/10/24/2012-green-car-of-the-year-award-la-auto-show/ California Approves Cap and Trade System. California’s Air Resources Board has formally approved a cap and trade system to minimize climate change pollution, becoming the first state in the nation with a cap and trade program. Legislation authorizing a cap and trade system was passed in California back in 2006, but after multiple reviews, the CARB finally approved the program. The California Air Resources Board voted unanimously today to adopt rules for a program that will use the trading of pollution permits …Posted. http://news.firedoglake.com/2011/10/21/california-approves-cap-and-trade-system/ California’s crazy cap &trade scheme. The California Air Resources Board has imposed a limit on carbon dioxide emissions on California businesses. The limits will be lowered each year until 2020. Industries can obtain carbon credits, initially free but which later must be purchased, in order to emit more carbon dioxide than the regulations decree. See more of the story from the San Francisco Chronicle here. These regulations will increase the cost of energy, hence the cost of doing business. Posted. http://tucsoncitizen.com/wryheat/2011/10/24/california%E2%80%99s-crazy-cap-trade-scheme/ DOW Starts Mass Marketing Solar Shingles. Dow Solar company has started mass marketing solar shingles. Solar shingles are roof shingles with solar cells (electricity generating material) integrated into them, so the shingles are the solar panels. The solar shingles plug into each other and help to hold each other down very securely during strong winds. The solar shingles can only be stolen by first unplugging those at the edge of the array and then working your way inwards, which means that securing the edge only will actually secure the entire solar panel array from thieves. Posted. http://cleantechnica.com/2011/10/22/dow-starts-mass-marketing-solar-shingles/ Study concludes that sugar cane-based biorefineries producing ethanol and electricity could power a global auto fleet of hybrids and EVs using only 4% of available cropland. If sugar cane is used as the feedstock to produce ethanol and electricity for the same final use—fueling vehicles for personal mobility—only 4% of the world’s available cropland area would be sufficient to produce fuels that would power a global car fleet consisting of hybrids and electric vehicles, according to a new study by Sergio Pacca and Jose Moreira at the University of Sao Paolo, Brazil. Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2011/10/pacca-20111024.html