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newsclips -- Newsclips for December 30, 2011 Posted: 30 Dec 2011 12:16:46
California Air Resources Board News Clips for December 30, 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 Chinese suspect Beijing's air more polluted than reported. Sitting on a park bench in downtown Beijing on Tuesday afternoon, Wang Kuang paused to consider the air in front of his face. The sky in Beijing is often a murky color, something between gray and brown. But the past few days have been particularly bad: hundreds of flights canceled, sections of highway temporarily closed and entire buildings seemingly vanished from the horizon. "I worry about whether this is pollution or fog," said Wang, a 31-year-old who works in sports ticketing and merchandising. Posted. http://www.modbee.com/2011/12/06/1976448/chinese-suspect-beijings-air-more.html Air district says climate causing bad air quality. The valley's air quality is off to a rough start this winter and the air district said the weather is to blame. The valley counties have already had four times as many unhealthy days this season than in the entire 2010-2011 winter season, a San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District news release sent Thursday said. The number of wood burning prohibition days is also up throughout the district this year, according to the news release. A La Nina weather pattern, which causes drier, stagnant weather, is responsible for the conditions causing the poor air, the district said. Posted. http://www.bakersfield.com/news/local/x1797587495/Air-district-says-climate-causing-bad-air-quality FUELS Federal judge blocks California low-carbon fuels rule. California officials say they will ask a federal judge to stay his ruling that blocks the state from enforcing the first-in-the-nation mandate for cleaner, low-carbon fuels. In a decision issued Thursday, Fresno-based U.S. District Court Judge Lawrence O'Neill said the low-carbon fuel rules favor biofuels produced in the state. He said that violates the U.S. Constitution's commerce clause by discriminating against crude oil and biofuels producers located outside California. Posted. http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5i8DeH62YzeWneWmsmWzXmVcJs1MA?docId=de589b840e554815becacd81fa8a509c AP Newsbreak: http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/federal-judge-blocks-california-low-carbon-fuels-rule-saying-it-favors-in-state-producers/2011/12/29/gIQAhyDIPP_story.html http://www.insidebayarea.com/nation-world/ci_19646488?IADID=Search-www.insidebayarea.com-www.insidebayarea.com http://www.contracostatimes.com/nation-world/ci_19646488?IADID=Search-www.contracostatimes.com-www.contracostatimes.com http://localsearch.modbee.com/sp?eId=100&gcId=45196557&rNum=1&url=http%3A%2F%2Fmodbee.com%2F2011%2F12%2F29%2F2004914%2Ffederal-judge-blocks-calif-low.html&siteIdType=2 http://sacbee.com/2011/12/29/4151952/judge-halts-enforcement-of-low.html#storylink=misearch http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/12/30/BUBR1MIEOI.DTL http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/dec/30/federal-judge-blocks-calif-low-carbon-fuels-rule/ http://www.nctimes.com/news/national/federal-judge-blocks-calif-low-carbon-fuels-rule/article_dde453c9-2359-550a-b073-8e6df99e7cfb.html California Low-Carbon Rules Halted. In a victory for refiners and ethanol producers, a federal judge halted enforcement of California's low-carbon fuel rules Thursday, saying they discriminated against crude oil and ethanol imported into the state. The decision puts on hold a major portion of California's effort to cut greenhouse-gas emissions, at a time when the most-populous state's stance has taken on extra importance nationwide because of a stalemate in Washington over greenhouse-gas legislation. Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204720204577128972816077652.html?mod=googlenews_wsj What the Frack? The recent press about the potential of shale gas would have you believe that America is now sitting on a 100-year supply of natural gas. It's a "game-changer." A "golden age of gas" awaits, one in which the United States will be energy independent, even exporting gas to the rest of the world, upending our current energy-importing situation. The data, however, tell a very different story. Between the demonstrable gas reserves, and the potential resources blared in the headlines, lies an enormous gulf of uncertainty. Posted. http://www.slate.com/articles/health_and_science/future_tense/2011/12/is_there_really_100_years_worth_of_natural_gas_beneath_the_united_states_.html GREEN ENERGY New regulations for light bulbs starts Jan. 1. Q What do I need to know about the new energy efficiency standards for light bulbs that take effect in January? Will certain bulbs be unavailable? And am I supposed to switch out my older inefficient bulbs with newer efficient ones? A Indeed, January marks the beginning of a planned phaseout of inefficient light bulbs in the United States that was signed into law five years ago by President George W. Bush. It was designed to reduce energy usage nationally from lighting by some 30 percent overall within three years. Posted. http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_19640626?IADID=Search-www.insidebayarea.com-www.insidebayarea.com http://www.mercurynews.com/ci_19640626?IADID=Search-www.mercurynews.com-www.mercurynews.com MISCELLANEOUS Times Square ball-drop switches to LEDs. Despite Republicans' efforts to equate efficient lighting with tyranny, the age of incandescent bulbs will be officially over as of Jan. 1. The best indication of this switch-over is not any one piece of legislation coming out of Washington, but a totally symbolic move: When the Times Square balls drops at midnight on New Year's Eve, its shining light will be emanating from 32,256 LED bulbs. Posted. http://www.grist.org/list/2011-12-30-times-square-ball-drop-switches-to-leds BLOGS Judge Blocks California’s Low-Carbon Fuel Rule. A federal judge on Thursday blocked enforcement of a California regulation favoring producers of gasoline, diesel fuel and biofuels whose methods generate fewer greenhouse gas emissions. The ruling by the judge, Lawrence J. O’Neill of United States District Court in Fresno, said the rule unconstitutionally discriminates against out-of-state producers and attempts to regulate activities that take place entirely outside state boundaries, from producers’ choice of farming methods to refiners’ use of coal-fired electricity. Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/12/29/judge-enjoins-californias-low-carbon-fuel-standard/ On Our Radar: Scientists Appeal to G.O.P. Candidates. Less than two weeks before the New Hampshire primary, 50 scientists in that state call on Republican presidential candidates to accept the “overwhelming” scientific evidence on the human role in climate change and to support action to rein in greenhouse gas emissions. Their statement follows a similar appeal from scientists in Iowa. [E2Wire.] After angry residents block its first attempt to deliver an environmental impact statement to a prefectural government in Okinawa, Japan’s Defense Ministry makes the delivery under cover of darkness. Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/12/29/on-our-radar-scientists-appeal-to-g-o-p-candidates/ For Entrepreneurial ‘Change Agents,’ a Green M.B.A. As we noted in a post in August about a new survey, an increasing number of colleges are beginning to offer courses or entire programs devoted to green business practices in response to growing demand. Such programs teach students how to manage a business’s social and environmental impact in addition to focusing on profits. The latest school to add its name to this list is Bard, the liberal arts college just north of New York City, which this month announced that it would begin offering an M.B.A. program centering on sustainability. Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/12/30/for-entrepreneurial-change-agents-a-green-m-b-a/?scp=3&sq=climate%20change&st=cse So, you want to subsidize solar energy? Do you realize… The green lobby, which never found a taxpayer dollar it didn’t want to redistribute, insists that we should divert our hard-earned wealth for the greater good by subsidizing things like solar energy. Who profits? Even if you buy the reasoning, you might want to know more about how that works in practice. T.J. Rodgers in the Wall Street Journal has a nifty little primer on the details. Posted. http://orangepunch.ocregister.com/2011/12/29/so-you-want-to-subsidize-solar-energy-do-you-realize/65978/ Federal Judge rules California Low Carbon Fuel Standard violates Commerce Clause of US Constitution. Federal District Judge Lawrence J. O’Neill, Eastern District of California, ruled on Thursday that the State of California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) program is in violation of the Commerce Clause of the US Constitution and issued an injunction prohibiting its enforcement. (Earlier post.) The LCFS intends to reduce, on a full-fuel lifecycle basis, the carbon intensity (CI) of transportation fuels (measured in gCO2e/MJ) used in California by an average of 10% by the year 2020. (Earlier post.) Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2011/12/lcfs-20111230.html Ford targeting 30% reduction in water used per vehicle by 2015. Ford plans to cut the amount of water used to make each vehicle 30% globally by 2015, compared with the amount of water used per vehicle in 2009. If Ford meets the 30% goal, the amount of water used to make a vehicle will have dropped from 9.5 m3 (2,510 gallons US) in 2000 to approximately 3.5 m3 (925 gallons US) in 2015. Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2011/12/ford-targeting-30-reduction-in-water-used-per-vehicle-by-2015.html