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newsclips -- Newsclips for December 8, 2011.

Posted: 08 Dec 2011 11:35:42
California Air Resources Board News Clips for December 8, 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.


China's pollution data shrouded in official fog.  Armed with a
device that looks like an old transistor radio, some Beijing
residents are recording pollution levels and posting them online.
It's an act that borders on subversion.  The government keeps
secret all data on the fine particles that shroud China's capital
in a health-threatening smog most days. But as they grow more
prosperous, Chinese are demanding the right to know what the
government does not tell them: just how polluted their city is. 

AP Newsbreak:

Spare the Air alert issued for Thursday. A Winter Spare the Air
alert has been issued for Thursday, meaning burning of wood logs
and other wood products is prohibited. It's the second
consecutive Spare the Air day and the second so far this winter
season on which air quality and weather forecasts have prompted
the Bay Area Air Quality Management District to prohibit wood
fires. Still, cold air allows wood smoke to collect and
concentrate. Fine soot particulates can pass deep into a person's
lungs, causing serious respiratory health problems, officials
said. Posted. 


S.F. judge OKs cap and trade for emissions law. A San Francisco
judge has given the go-ahead to California's plan to reduce
greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global warming,
ruling that state regulators adequately considered alternatives
to a market-based cap-and-trade system. Superior Court Judge
Ernest Goldsmith had ruled in March that the Air Resources Board
had not looked hard enough at other options, like numerical
limits on emissions or a tax on carbon-based fuels. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/2011/12/08/11 BY SUBCRIPTION

Climate talks in final push; National interests, economic worries
hinder attempt at agreement.  Delegates attending a 194-nation
climate conference agree the world needs to send less carbon into
the atmosphere, but national interests and economic worries have
so far hindered attempts to reach an agreement that would oblige
governments to curb the emissions that are warming the planet. 
The talks, due to wrap up Friday or early Saturday, are likely to
finalize a massive fund to help poor countries cope with climate
change.  Posted. 

A global cooling to the U.S. position on climate change.
Environmentalists and other nations say U.S. policy changes raise
questions about whether it is committed to substantially cutting
emissions and aiding developing nations in their efforts to do
so. When an energized U.S. delegation arrived in Copenhagen for
world climate talks two years ago, environmentalists were
encouraged by its willingness to tackle global warming. Posted.

Jorge Montt Glacier in Patagonia shrinking fast. Santiago, Chile
-- Researchers in Chile released a series of time-lapse photos
Wednesday showing the dramatic retreat of a glacier in Patagonia.
The Jorge Montt Glacier is shrinking faster than any other in
Chile, with its snout retreating more than a half mile between
February 2010 and January 2011, glaciologist Andres Rivera said.
Rivera said that global warming is a factor and that the glacier
also is melting especially quickly because it partly rests in the
waters of a growing fjord. Posted.

Review of rich-poor divide underpins climate talks. The head of
the group of developing countries says the outcome of U.N.
climate negotiations boils down to whether the two-tiered system
of rich and poor countries should continue, or whether all
nations should be treated more equally. The two-week climate
conference is in the final push before Friday's scheduled
closing. Industrial countries want to revise the 20-year-old
division that has created two levels of responsibility: …Posted. 

Climate Changes Faster Than Species Can Adapt, Rattlesnake Study
Finds. The ranges of species will have to change dramatically as
a result of climate change between now and 2100 because the
climate will change more than 100 times faster than the rate at
which species can adapt, according to a newly published study by
Indiana University researchers. Posted.


Clean Diesel Technologies, Inc. Wins Additional $1.7 Million in
Orders Under New Jersey and California Diesel Retrofit Programs.
Clean Diesel Technologies, Inc. (NASDAQ: CDTI) ("Clean Diesel"),
a cleantech emissions reduction company, announced today that its
Heavy Duty Diesel Systems division has won new orders valued in
excess of $1.7 million for its verified (approved) emission
reduction products. The new orders were received under the New
Jersey Department of Environmental Protection ("NJDEP") Mandatory
Diesel Retrofit Program and Air Resources Board's Lower Emission
School Bus Program in Northern California. Shipments of these new
orders have commenced and are expected to be completed in early
2012. Posted.


‘Alternative fuels are necessary to meet the policy objectives’ –
CARS 21 Interim Report.  The re-launched CARS 21 High-level Group
has published its Interim Report on 2 December 2011, with first
recommendations and key messages to better prepare tomorrow’s
mobility solutions. Environment, technology, jobs,
competitiveness are discussed but the Group agrees that
alternative fuels are necessary, not only because of upcoming oil
scarcity, but also to meet policy objectives.  Posted. 


Air board's new rules aim to boost electric cars in California.
The state unveiled a new set of clean car regulations Wednesday
that aim to sharply increase the number of electric cars on
California's roads, boost fuel efficiency and reduce air
pollution. The proposed rules largely parallel President Barack
Obama's goal of doubling the nation's auto fuel economy standards
for new cars from the current 27.3 mph to 54.5 mph by the year
2025. Posted.

Exxon Mobil predicts surge in hybrid vehicles. Exxon expects to
see more and more hybrids on the world's roads, with gas-sipping
models like the Toyota Prius making up half of all vehicles by
2040. The largest publicly traded oil and gas company says in its
annual energy outlook that the use of hybrids _ vehicles that
rely on both gas and electricity for power _ and other efficiency
gains will keep energy demand in check for the U.S. and other
major industrialized countries for years. Posted. 

China’s EV industry urged to transform its business model.  In
China’s EV industry, solid business models needs to be
established to address the existing technology and manufacturing
gaps. The industry requires more involvement of related
stakeholders to perfect the EV value chains and a more balanced
strategy to stimulate demand and supply, says a new report
supported by the World Bank.  A new report called “The China New
Energy Vehicles Program: Challenges and Opportunities” financed
by the World Bank analyses the development of the electric
vehicle industry in China. 

BMW designers lean on plastics for zero-emission cars. Plastics
are playing a larger role in making cars lighter and
commercializing electric vehicles, but for one prominent
automotive designer, more still needs to be done. In an interview
at the recent Business of Design Week in Hong Kong, Adrian van
Hooydonk, senior vice president of BMW Group Design, said he was
excited by the creative possibilities opening up with the new
lightweight materials, including traditional plastics, carbon
fiber reinforced plastics and aluminum. Posted.

Solar Plant Sold to Berkshire Unit. First Solar Inc. is selling
one of its large California solar farms to MidAmerican Energy
Holdings Co., ending the solar-panel maker's search for a buyer.
The sale places MidAmerican Energy, a unit of Warren Buffett's
Berkshire Hathaway Inc., in the solar-power business for the
first time. MidAmerican operates fleets of wind farms and
conventional power plants.  Posted.


Noxious pollution creating the great pall of China. China has to
find a way to continue its rapid growth without choking to death.
Literally. When I landed in Beijing last week, the sky was a
brownish miasma through which distant landmarks were only faintly
visible. The moment I stepped outside the city's vast
international airport, I noticed an acrid hint of burning coal in
the all-too-palpable air. The next day, when I went to see the
Great Wall, China's most famous cultural treasure was wreathed in
a gauzy shroud of pollution. Posted. 


California Air Board Moves to Increase Presence of Zero-Emissions
Vehicles. California has the worst air quality in the country,
according to the state’s air resources board, and 40 percent of
the contributing pollution comes from passenger cars and
light-duty trucks. In its effort to improve the state’s air, the
board, commonly known as CARB, proposed a package of new rules on
Wednesday intended to cut vehicle emissions while aggressively
increasing the number of advanced clean cars on the state’s
roads, as well as fueling stations to serve them. Posted.

California leads venture funding for electric vehicle technology.
California is fast becoming a global center for electric-vehicle
innovation and jobs. Businesses in the state collected $467
million in electric vehicle venture capital investment during the
first half of this year, or 69% of the global total, according to
a study by Next 10, a nonprofit founded by Silicon Valley venture
capitalist F. Noel Perry. California also is now tied with
Michigan, the traditional center of the U.S. auto industry, in
the number of patents filed for electric vehicle technology.

Is the Chevy Volt headed for a recall? The latest article we've
found about the Chevrolet Volt/NHTSA crash test fire incident
mentions a word we've not heard uttered before: recall. GM is
obviously trying to figure out what caused the post-crash fire.
That's not all that's happening. According to a memo posted to
safercar.gov, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration
is investigating weld points near the crashed Volt's battery to
try and understand if a damaged pack can somehow affect these
welded areas. Posted. 

Oil Industry Lobbyists Play Dirty Against Clean Fuel Standards. 
Oil industry lobbyists have been working to convince European
governments to drop environmental standards that would result in
proper accounting and cleaning up of dirtier fuel sources, such
as Canadian tar sands. In 2009, California implemented similar
provisions now being considered in the European Union with the
adoption of the state's clean fuel standard, known as the Low
Carbon Fuel Standard, phasing in cleaner fuels while phasing out
dirtier ones.  Posted. 

How We All Benefit From California's Advanced Clean Cars Program.
 Today, California released its formal regulatory proposal that
demonstrates state leadership in driving clean car technologies
into the state and across the nation. The package of standards,
as described earlier in a blog here, will have large benefits in
terms of saving consumers money, cutting dangerous air
pollutants, and also reducing our dependence on oil.  How do you
and I benefit from the program?  Posted. 

Is Anything Going to Happen at Durban? The Kyoto Protocol is an
international agreement linked to the United Nations Framework
Convention on Climate Change. The major feature of the Kyoto
Protocol is that it sets binding targets for 37 industrialized
countries and the European community for reducing greenhouse gas
(GHG) emissions. Now delegates from more than 190 nations are in
the 17th Conference of the Parties (COP17) to the United Nations
Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) in coastal city
of Durban , South Africa, (from November 28 -December 9, 2011)

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