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newsclips -- Newsclips for December 2, 2011

Posted: 02 Dec 2011 11:40:01
California Air Resources Board News Clips for December 2, 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 eases boiler rule; health benefits unchanged.  Facing
criticism from industry and lawmakers, the Obama administration
is easing rules aimed at reducing toxic air pollution from
industrial boilers and incinerators.  But administration
officials maintain the health benefits of the regulation won't
change.  In a proposal released Friday, the Environmental
Protection Agency said it would place emissions limits on the
largest and most polluting boilers. Smaller ones could meet the
rule through routine tune-ups.  Posted. 

AP Newsbreak:






China signals coming shift in measuring CO2 limits.  An
influential Chinese analyst says his country may adjust how it
measures carbon emission targets as early as 2020, bringing it
more in line with Western governments and signaling a possible
opening in international climate negotiations.  Xu Huaqing, a
senior researcher for China's Energy Research Institute, was
quoted Friday in the semiofficial China Daily as saying Beijing
could set absolute caps on its carbon emissions — comments later
confirmed privately by one of China's top climate negotiators on
the sidelines of the international climate talks in South Africa.

AP Newsbreak:



CARB TRU Compliance Extension Application Forms now Available. 
Owner of reefer equipment unable to comply with the Dec. 31 2011
deadline due to delays in delivery, installation, or financing,
reefer owners may apply for a compliance extension.  Back on Oct.
21, 2011, the California Air Resources Board approved an
amendment to the Transport Refrigeration Unit (TRU or reefer)
regulation that allows compliance dates to be extended for a
limited time.  For model year 2004 engines, owners must make a
good-faith effort to comply by the end of 2011.  Posted. 

Frito-Lay Electric Delivery Trucks Hit the "Green" Streets of
Orlando.  PepsiCo's Frito-Lay North America announces ten new
electric trucks will be rolling out in Orlando.  These electric
delivery trucks will ultimately be part of the largest planned
fleet of commercial all-electric trucks in North America. 
Electric trucks reduce fuel consumption, noise pollution and CO2
emissions, compared to traditional delivery trucks. In total,
Frito-Lay will deploy 176 electric trucks this year in the U.S.
and Canada, making Frito-Lay the largest commercial fleet of
all-electric trucks in North America.  Posted. 


Learning Too Late of Perils in Gas Well Leases.  After Scott Ely
and his father talked with salesmen from an energy company about
signing the lease allowing gas drilling on their land in
northeastern Pennsylvania, he said he felt certain it required
the company to leave the property as good as new. So Mr. Ely said
he was surprised several years later when the drilling company,
Cabot Oil and Gas, informed them that rather than draining and
hauling away the toxic drilling sludge stored in large waste
ponds on the property, it would leave the waste, cover it with
dirt and seed the area with grass. Posted. 

2012 Honda Civic Natural Gas.  Thirteen years after launching its
natural gas-powered Civic as a low-emission, low-fuel-price
vehicle for public utilities and other business fleets, Honda is
expanding availability to more consumers than ever.  For the
first time, car shoppers in 30-plus states, including California,
should find natural gas-powered Civics sitting on lots at select
Honda dealerships.  Posted. 



Geoengineering could save Earth—or destroy it.  Brighten clouds
with sea water? Spray aerosols high in the stratosphere? Paint
roofs white and plant light-colored crops? How about positioning
"sun shades" over the Earth?  At a time of deep concern over
global warming, a group of scientists, philosophers and legal
scholars examined whether human intervention could artificially
cool the Earth—and what would happen if it did.  Posted. 

Obama, Clinton together again, pitching efficiency. President
Barack Obama and former President Bill Clinton are presenting a
unified front in pushing more energy-efficient government and
private buildings. The unusual joint appearance of Obama and the
popular former president is drawing outsize attention to a $4
billion administration initiative aimed at achieving fuel savings
and job creation at no increased cost to taxpayers. Obama says
the program will help create jobs, save money and cut down on
pollution. He calls it a "trifecta." The cost to renovate
buildings is to be off-set by energy savings. Clinton calls it
"the nearest thing we've got to a free lunch in a tough economy."
Obama and Clinton announced the plan Friday at a downtown office
building that is undergoing renovations under the new commitment.

Yet more evidence that shutting down coal plants will not
threaten reliability.  Remember way back, uh, two days ago when I
wrote a post arguing that new EPA rules will not threaten
electric system reliability? Well, just in the last day or so,
more evidence has emerged to support that position. I enjoy being
right, so I'm doing a follow-up post. Hopefully this will not be
a daily thing.  First, as Inside EPA reports, the Edison Electric
Institute (EEI), a trade group for investor-owned utilities, has
done its own internal study on coal-plant shutdowns.  Posted. 


Toyota, BMW to work on greener car battery.  Auto giants Toyota
and BMW said Thursday they have agreed to collaborate on research
for cleaner, next-generation car batteries, underlining the
growing push in the industry for green technology.  The agreement
brings together Toyota Motor Corp., Japan's No. 1 carmaker and a
leader in gas-electric hybrids, and BMW AG of Germany, a European
maker that has a strong luxury brand image in both Japan and
Europe.  "We are now joining forces to further develop
environmentally-friendly technologies and to expand our
innovation leadership in each of our segments," Norbert
Reithofer, chairman of BMW, said in a statement.  Posted. 


Portable chargers to the rescue for EVs.  With the increased
number of electric vehicles (EVs) on the roads, the complementary
services become ever more important. Just like a car with an
internal combustion engine can run out of gas, an EV can run out
of electricity. In response to this need companies are starting a
number of pilot projects to assist EVs with mobile charging
points.  As electric cars become more and more popular, there is
an increasingly large number of firms providing charging
equipment for EVs, ranging from wall-mounted residential charging
points through to large, commercial rapid charging stations for
parking places, shopping centres and gas stations.  Posted. 

Electric Vehicles Critical to the Reduction of Greenhouse Gas.  A
research report, conducted by the US Department of Energy’s
Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and Energy and
Environmental Economics, concluded that the widespread
substitution of direct fuel is necessary to reduce greenhouse gas
emissions by 80 percent below 1990 levels by 2050.  The research
indicates that the transformation poses significant concurrent
opportunities and challenges for economic growth and climate
policy, unrealized technology development, infrastructure
transformation and capital investment.  Posted. 


Cupertino: Solar panel project nearly complete at De Anza
College.  The sun is setting on the installation of De Anza
College's solar panel project. Preparation is nearly complete and
designers hope to turn on the electricity-saving devices in
mid-December.  Campus visitors and motorists can easily spot the
large panels doubling as shade structures in the campus parking
lots. The panels will have a capacity of 1.1 megawatt hours and
an expected first-year output of approximately 2.3 million
kilowatts per hour, according to the college's website.  Posted. 



New Pollution Rules for Boilers and Incinerators. The
Environmental Protection Agency on Friday released its
much-delayed and oft-revised air quality regulations for
industrial boilers and incinerators. The proposal is a modest
refashioning of boiler rules introduced earlier this year, which
were themselves a major revision of a 2010 plan by the agency
that drew heavy political and industry opposition. The E.P.A. has
been recalibrating its approach to pollution regulation in recent
months after President Obama made it clear that he was going to
give close scrutiny to rules that impose heavy compliance costs
on businesses and local governments. Posted. 

On Our Radar: China Hints at Emissions Timetable. For the first
time, a Chinese official suggests that Beijing is “likely” to
agree to a target for limiting its greenhouse gas emissions after
2020. But that depends on the outcome of international climate
change negotiations in Durban, South Africa, he says. [China
Daily] Posted. 

Durban Climate Talks: What’s At Stake? When UN climate chief
Christiana Figueres kicked off the Durban Climate Summit this
week, she told those assembled that a commitment to cut
greenhouse gas emissions was “the defining issue of this
conference.” She went on to quote former president Nelson
Mandela, who said, speaking of the great struggle he led his
people through, “It always seems impossible until it is done.”
Ten points for the positive attitude, but the challenges are
daunting. For starters, the US, according to a letter sent to
Secretary of State Hillary Clinton from sixteen organizations
including Greenpeace, NRDC, Oxfam, UCS and the WWF, appears to be
an “obstacle to progress.” Posted. 

GM now willing to buy back Volts from worried owners. According
to the Associated Press, GM CEO Dan Akerson has said General
Motors will buy back any Chevrolet Volt from owners who are
concerned about the vehicle's fire risk. Akerson said that his
company isn't making the move because the plug-in hybrids are
unsafe, but because GM is committed to keeping its customers
happy. The CEO also said that GM is prepared to recall the 6,000
Volt models currently on the road if the federal government deems
such an action necessary. As you may recall, the National Highway
Traffic Safety Administration discovered that the Volt could
catch fire several days after a severe side-impact crash and
rollover. Posted. 

A hole in the ground: Storing carbon dioxide thousands of feet
below Illinois.  One blazing hot afternoon in August of 2010, I
stood on a mountain top in Alabama, staring at a styrofoam beer
cooler upended over the top of a metal pole. Alongside me were a
couple dozen sweaty engineers and geologists. That beer cooler
was one of the few visible signs of the research project
happening far below our feet.  Over the course of two months,
scientists from the University of Alabama had injected 278 tons
of carbon dioxide into the Earth. The goal was to keep it there
forever, locked in geologic formations.  Posted. 

Steyr introduces first production natural gas tractor with FPT
engine; diesels with SCR and idle speed management.  Steyr has
introduced the first production tractor powered by natural gas.
The new Steyr Profi 4135 Natural Power is equipped with a
turbocharged mono-fuel CNG engine, made by Fiat Powertrain
Technologies (FPT), another Fiat group company. (Steyr is part of
CNH Global N.V., a majority-owned subsidiary of Fiat Industrial
S.p.A., and was originally formed by the merger of Case Corp. and
New Holland in 1999.)  Posted. 

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