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newsclips -- Newsclips for October 26, 2011.

Posted: 26 Oct 2011 12:36:59
California Air Resources Board News Clips for October 26, 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 delays rule on fracking emissions by a month. The U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency said it will delay by a month
final standards on emissions from hydraulic fracturing, its third
postponement of air pollution rules since early September. The
EPA and environmental groups that sued the agency have agreed to
a 35-day extension for the finalization of the proposed standards
to reduce air pollution from oil and gas drilling operations, an
agency spokeswoman said on Wednesday. Posted.

Modesto Irrigation District hears algae pitch and income
potential. Algae that eat pollutants might help keep electricity
bills in check in the Modesto Irrigation District. Tuesday
morning, the MID board heard a company's plan to have the tiny
plants consume carbon dioxide and nitrous oxide at the district's
natural gas-fueled power plant on Woodland Avenue in Modesto. The
process would reduce the cost of emission control and generate
byproducts for sale, such as fertilizer and animal feed, said
Charles Snyder, president of Paradigm Biosciences International.

The Dangers of Indoor Air Pollution. If you travel to undeveloped
countries, you simply get used to the aroma of cooking fires,
both outdoors and indoors. In fact, as I have globe-trotted over
the past several decades, I have learned to readily differentiate
between the cooking smells of one nation and the next. In India,
for example, dried cow dung is a primary source of fuel for
cooking fires. Its aroma is surprisingly pleasant, and the smell
is everywhere. In the South Pacific, logs and coconut husks are
typically used. These fires also smell pleasant, and they
definitely evoke an atmosphere of rustic life. Posted.


CA Senate Panel Attacks Drivers.  Supporters of AB 32,
California’s global warming and climate change law, have been
busy planning their next move.  A hearing held Monday in the
Senate Transportation and Housing Committee covered the long-term
viability of available fuels needed to meet California’s
increasing green energy demands — demands that are increasing
because of laws passed by the state Legislature. Posted. 


Kohler Engine introduces cleaner diesel engine. The Kohler Engine
Co. has developed a new line of cleaner small diesel engines to
meet stricter air emissions regulations that go into effect in
2013 in the United States and Europe. The diesel engines produce
10 times fewer carbon particulate emissions, also known as soot,
and will come in 1.9-liter and 2.5-liter sizes, meant for
machines including small tractors, forklifts, generators and
compressors. Posted. 


Questioning Europe's Math on Biofuels. Much of the appeal of
generating energy from plants was that they emit only as much
carbon when burned in cars and power plants as they absorb while
growing. Lately, that appeal seems to be going up in smoke. It
turns out that the emissions from growing and processing some
biofuels significantly diminish their benefits, when taking into
account factors like the use of fertilizers manufactured with
fossil fuels. Posted. 

RIVERSIDE: Gas company pumped up about fueling station.  A new
compressed natural gas pump christened Tuesday morning in
Riverside might be the primer for how to reduce oil use and
improve air quality in the Inland area, officials said. Local and
state officials joined the Southern California Gas Company at the
opening of a new CNG pump at the gas company’s Howard Avenue
fueling station, off 14th Street near Highway 91. Officials
touted the public station as a way to encourage more companies –
and private drivers – to switch to natural gas vehicles, which
emit less pollution than gasoline-burning engines. Posted. 


UC Davis West 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.

Smart electric grid yields jobs, report says. The effort to
develop a smarter electricity grid has created more than 12,560
jobs in the Bay Area and could produce many more, according to a
report to be released today. Those jobs will come not just from
companies that specialize in smart- grid equipment, such as
Echelon Corp. or Silver Spring Networks, but from an older
generation of information technology giants moving into the
field. Silicon Valley stalwarts Cisco Systems and Oracle Corp.
already offer smart-grid products. Posted.

California panel resumes green energy tax breaks.  A state panel
voted Tuesday to resume a tax break program for clean energy
manufacturers after lawmakers found the effort has been working
as intended to help foster alternative energy in California.  The
California Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation
Financing Authority had temporarily suspended the program after
awarding $25 million in sales tax breaks to the failed Fremont
solar startup Solyndra.  Posted. 

Future of Solar and Wind Power May Hinge on Federal Aid. In
recent years, wind and solar power have been among the
fastest-growing sources of energy in the country.  But questions
loom over their future: Will federal incentives that are
important to their growth continue? And what happens if those
incentives expire?  For wind power, the situation is especially
precarious, energy specialists say. Posted. 


California attorney general goes after questionable
'biodegradable plastic' bottles. In a move that could have a
major impact on the recycling industry, California Attorney
General Kamala Harris will sue three national companies that make
plastic bottles or sell bottled water in California, contending
that they illegally claim their bottles are "biodegradable."

L.A. County OKs Newhall Ranch development's second phase. The
Board of Supervisors approves the Mission Village segment, which
will have 4,000 housing units, 580 acres of open space and three
preserves. Environmentalists say the Santa Clarita Valley project
will worsen traffic and pollution. Los Angeles County supervisors
Tuesday approved plans for the second phase of a controversial
development near Six Flags Magic Mountain in the Santa Clarita
Valley. Posted.


Hot air from wind-farm foes After reading “Does huge wind farm
fit near Borrego state park?” (Local, Oct. 24), on the proposed
wind farm in Imperial County, I almost had to laugh at the
comments made by Mark Jorgensen, the retired superintendent of
the state park, if they weren’t so myopic. Unfortunately, he and
the other people who make up the environmental left continue to
whine and become obstacles in the path of common sense progress.
The idea that a wind farm would destroy the “view shed” is almost
comical. Posted.

JEAN FULLER: CARB's cap-and-trade plan needs close monitoring.
Whether one is a skeptic that man-made carbon emissions are
killing our planet, or a dyed-in-the-wool Al Gore believer in the
carbon dioxide phenomenon, you should be very concerned about the
California Air Resources Board's recent adoption of the
cap-and-trade rules designed to help the state comply with AB 32,
the greenhouse gas emission reduction law that required carbon
emissions be cut to 1990 levels by 2020. Posted.

CARB's cap-and-trade rules. How is it that the California Air
Resources Board has the power to increase taxes and fees on
businesses and individuals without voter approval? Where are our
elected state representatives on this? This cap-and-trade plan is
only going to put the state further in the hole. Why can't CARB
invest some of the billions of dollars it has to clean up these
so-called coal-burning plants by converting them to coal
gasification, or building some clean nuclear power plants?

Editorial: Pollution czars’ plan to choke California business.
California foolishly is going where Congress fears to tread, and
where even European global warming zealots are backing away.
Nevertheless, an unelected, virtually unaccountable board of
government overseers has voted unanimously to impose mandatory
cap-and-trade regulations on California businesses that will
likely kill jobs, chase companies out of state and impose $2
billion in new taxes, all in a Quixotic quest to reduce
greenhouse gas emissions, a highly questionable, perhaps
meaningless, goal. Posted.

ROBINSON: Climate change just got hotter. For the clueless or
cynical diehards who deny global warming, it's getting awfully
cold out there. The latest icy blast of reality comes from an
eminent scientist whom the climate-change skeptics once lauded as
one of their own. Richard Muller, a respected physicist at the
University of California, Berkeley, used to dismiss alarmist
climate research as being “polluted by political and activist
frenzy.” Posted. 

Cap and kill. California Gov. Jerry “Moonbeam” Brown lived up to
his nickname last week when he signed the state’s proposed cap
and trade legislation into law. Starting in 2013, California’s
Air Resources Board (CARB) will give polluters an allowance of
carbon credits (the amount of carbon they can emit) at the
beginning of each year based on emissions reductions benchmarks.
If a company doesn’t use all of its credits, it can sell them —
hence the “trade” part. Posted.

Grove: AB 32 is a hindrance, not solution. Ridgecrest, Calif. —
Last week, I participated in a hearing in Fresno of the Assembly
Legislative Rural Caucus. As a member of this caucus, we bring
attention to legislation that affects our Central Valley. We
focused on the impact of AB 32 on the Central Valley’s air,
agriculture and food manufacturing industry. AB 32, known as the
“California Global Warming Solutions Act”, passed the Legislature
in 2006 and is set to begin next year.  Posted.

New greenhouse gas rules draw local criticism. A landmark “cap
and trade” system adopted in California last week to limit
greenhouse gas emissions is drawing a lot of local comment — most
of it negative. Supporters of the law believe it will create new,
cleaner industries over time, and say climate change is a growing
environmental threat that can hurt farming in the long run. But
agricultural and political leaders from the area say the state’s
groundbreaking law to limit global warming gases is going to cost
Kings County jobs, result in higher food costs and lead to higher
utility bills. Posted.

California's Economic Suicide.  Regulations finalized by the
California Air Resources Board establish the nation's first
state-run cap-and-trade regime. Despite Solyndra, the state will
gather solar panels while it may.  The 262 pages of regulations
implementing California's 2006 global warming legislation,
Assembly Bill 32, approved by CARB last Thursday, will probably
reduce employment more than it reduces emissions. The only thing
it will cap is economic growth by bleeding a patient that is
already hemorrhaging red ink.  Posted. 

Car pool lanes should be used to keep traffic moving. What is the
purpose of high-occupancy vehicle lanes? Is it to make people who
aren't in car pool lanes feel resentful? Or, as University of
California, Berkeley, civil and environmental engineering
professor Michael Cassidy believes, is the goal to reduce the
number of people-hours traveled? Cassidy believes HOV lanes work
but used to work better. Posted. 


Will California’s cap-and-trade experiment catch on? As the old
Louis Brandeis quip goes, states can serve as laboratories of
democracy if they so choose. And California has just volunteered
itself as a guinea pig for a particularly high-stakes experiment.
The California Air Resources Board is putting the finishing
touches on a statewide cap-and-trade system for greenhouse-gas
emissions. You can bone up on the details in the Los Angeles
Times. But here’s a broader question: Posted.

California lifts suspension of green energy tax credit. Members
of a state commission unanimously voted to lift a month-long
suspension of an alternative energy-related tax credit that had
been imposed following the bankruptcy of Solyndra, a politically
connected California solar panel company. The California
Alternative Energy and Advanced Transportation Financing
Authority, after reviewing its operations and the granting of
$25.1 million in sales tax credits to Solyndra, concluded it
could tighten the way it handles applications. Posted.

Forest biofuel projects could increase West Coast carbon
emissions. Thinning West Coast forests on a widespread scale to
feed bioenergy projects would increase the region's production of
greenhouse gases, according to a new study. Research published
Oct. 23 in the journal Nature Climate Change undermines the
argument that substituting wood-based biofuel for fossil fuels
would reduce carbon emissions. Posted.

2013 Honda Fit EV to debut at Los Angeles Auto Show. Japanese
automaker Honda will roll out the production version of the 2013
Fit EV at the 2011 Los Angeles Auto Show in mid-November. We're
guessing Honda's electric-only 2013 Fit will somewhat resemble
the automaker's Fit EV Concept, a vehicle which made its debut
back at the 2010 LA Auto Show and is pictured above. When the
production version of the electric Honda Fit hits the streets in
late 2012, it will feature a lithium-ion battery and coaxial
electric motor derived from the unit used in the Honda FCX
Clarity. Posted. 

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