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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for October 17, 2012. Posted: 17 Oct 2012 14:11:00
ARB Newsclips for October 17, 2012. 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 EPA funds asthma management in San Diego schools. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency recently awarded $39,327 to the American Lung Association of California to improve air quality, as well as student asthma self-management skills in low-income schools in San Diego. With this funding, indoor environmental asthma trigger training will be provided for more than 300 children with asthma in 20 schools that bear the greatest asthma burden in San Diego. Posted. http://www.nctimes.com/test/epa-funds-asthma-management-in-san-diego-schools/article_5aeef5c6-2faa-563d-bc36-2bab3103bde2.html Speakers criticize air pollution rules at local oil conference. Consumers may end up paying the price when pending state and federal air regulations hit California's energy industry, a pair of speakers warned at Tuesday's 2012 Oil & Gas Conference in Bakersfield. The two speakers -- one a leading West Coast oil industry representative, the other the Central Valley's top air quality regulator -- said there is little chance that refiners and industry in general will be able to comply with rules pending at the state and federal levels. http://www.equities.com/news/headline-story?dt=2012-10-16&val=598773&cat=energy http://www.bakersfieldcalifornian.com/business/x1526555552/Speakers-criticize-air-pollution-rules-at-local-oil-conference BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY Court weighs challenge to soot standards implementation. Federal appeals court judges appeared skeptical today about U.S. EPA's argument that it is required under the Clean Air Act to use a less stringent implementation regime for fine particulates than it is for more coarse -- and less dangerous -- particles. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit is considering the legality of EPA's rules for implementation limits on air pollution from power plants, boilers and car tailpipes. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2012/10/17/4 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY CLIMATE CHANGE Scientists increasingly linking climate change to weather phenomena. Somewhere, someone is sitting in a dimly lit room, looking anxiously at a calendar and thinking, "Which of the last 20 days of this campaign will be the one in which the candidates address climate change?" Bad news, straw man. It ain't going to happen. Part of the reason it's not going to happen is that voters don't prioritize the issue. Another large part is that climate scientists aren't usually in the business of making climate science a political issue. Posted. http://grist.org/news/scientists-increasingly-linking-climate-change-to-weather-phenomena/ LOW CARBON FUEL STANDARDS Court hears arguments in Calif. clean fuels case. In a case seeking to stop California's first-in-the-nation mandate requiring fuel producers to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, federal justices on Tuesday focused their questions on whether the law discriminates against out-of-state businesses. A three-justice panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments about the constitutionality of California's "Low Carbon Fuel Standard," a piece of the state's landmark global warming law, AB 32. Posted. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_LOW_CARBON_FUELS?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT OTHER RELATED STORIES http://www.sfgate.com/news/article/Court-hears-arguments-in-Calif-clean-fuels-case-3951664.php#ixzz29a3Htj00 http://www.sacbee.com/2012/10/16/4914924/court-to-hear-arguments-in-calif.html http://www.recordnet.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20121016/A_NEWS/121019929&cid=sitesearch http://www.vcstar.com/news/2012/oct/16/court-to-hear-arguments-in-calif-clean-fuels/ California defends greenhouse gas regulation for fuels. California attorneys advocating for a program to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from fuels came under stern questioning from a three-judge panel on Tuesday, in a case that threatens a key component of the state's ambitious effort to combat climate change. A packed courtroom at the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals on Tuesday heard arguments from attorneys on both sides of the debate over California's low carbon fuel standard which…Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/10/16/us-california-emissions-idUSBRE89F1TP20121016 http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/17/california-greenhouse-gas-carbon-fuel-standards_n_1972116.html?utm_hp_ref=green http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/16/california-low-carbon-fuel-standard_n_1971819.html http://www.miamiherald.com/2012/10/16/3052086/court-to-hear-arguments-in-calif.html http://www.seattlepi.com/news/article/Court-to-hear-arguments-in-Calif-clean-fuels-case-3951662.php Environment: California greenhouse gas rules on shaky ground in appeals court. California greenhouse gas rules face major court test. California's unprecedented regulations to reduce the carbon footprint of transportation fuels appears to face a smoggy future in the courts. During nearly an hour of arguments here Tuesday, the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals expressed concerns that California's aggressive approach to curtailing greenhouse gas emissions goes too far, conflicting with federal law by reaching into the business practices of other states. Posted. http://www.mercurynews.com/crime-courts/ci_21784536/environment-california-greenhouse-gas-rules-shaky-ground-appeals?IADID=Search-www.mercurynews.com-www.mercurynews.com California Asks Court to Reinstate Carbon Fuel Standard. California’s low-carbon fuel standard, which complements the state’s first-in-the-nation economy-wide cap and trade program, appears to favor in-state fuel producers over Midwest ethanol makers, two U.S. appeals court judges said. Two members of a three-judge panel questioned state lawyers today about why the standard is tougher on ethanol produced in the Midwest and whether California’s method of assessing a higher “carbon-intensity” for Midwest ethanol because of the energy expended to make and then transport it to California was unfair to out of state producers. Posted. http://www.businessweek.com/printer/articles/345086?type=bloomberg Appeals court focuses on whether clean fuels law discriminates against non-Calif. Businesses. Court hears arguments in Calif. clean fuels case. A three-justice panel of the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals heard oral arguments about the constitutionality of California's "Low Carbon Fuel Standard," a piece of the state's landmark global warming law, AB 32. The California Air Resources Board, the agency in charge of implementing the law, said the standard will cut California's dependence on petroleum by 20 percent…Posted. http://www.newser.com/article/da1uqsr83/appeals-court-focuses-on-whether-clean-fuels-law-discriminates-against-non-calif-businesses.html#continuedBelow Judges ask whether Calif. low-carbon fuels rule hurts other states' businesses. Federal judges probed California's low-carbon fuel standard yesterday, focusing on whether the rule clearly protects the state's economic interests at the expense of Midwestern and other fuel producers. Judge Mary Murguia -- at 52, the youngest of the three judges by at least 30 years -- led the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals' questioning in yesterday's hearing, in a closely watched case that 14 other states have joined (ClimateWire, June 20). Posted. http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2012/10/17/16 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY FUELS Diesel price spikes may be the new norm. Diesel and heating oil users in Europe and the United States may wonder why they are paying near record prices when recession has cut fuel demand and the price of crude is well below record highs. But while the world has enough crude, shrinking refinery capacity in Europe and on the U.S. East Coast means consumers will need to get used to regular price spikes as increasing dependence on imports reduces supply security. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/10/17/distillate-supply-crunch-idUSL5E8LCEXP20121017 US East Coast distillate imports at record low, winter looms. Imports of diesel and heating oil into the East Coast of the United States have fallen to the lowest level since records began eight years ago, prompting concerns about the state of fuel supplies ahead of the coldest winter months. Figures from the U.S. Energy Information Administration on Wednesday showed distillate imports averaged 49,000 barrels per day over the past four weeks, well below the norm for the time of year. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/10/17/distillates-usa-eastcoast-imports-idUSL1E8LHBKF20121017?type=marketsNews Halliburton 3Q profit falls on drilling slowdown. Halliburton Co. said Wednesday its third-quarter net income fell 12 percent as drilling activity declined and costs rose in its core North American business. The Houston energy services company earned $602 million, or 65 cents per share, down from $683 million, or 74 cents per share, a year ago. Revenue rose 9 percent to $7.11 billion. Posted. http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_21791082/halliburton-3q-profit-falls-drilling-slowdown?IADID=Search-www.insidebayarea.com-www.insidebayarea.com http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/halliburton-3rd-qtr-profit-down-12-percent-on-north-american-drilling-slowdown-higher-costs/2012/10/17/2b290854-184e-11e2-a346-f24efc680b8d_story.html Richmond may look to Chevron for compensation for Aug. 6 refinery fire. Chevron's refinery showered the city in black soot when a crude unit burst into flames on Aug. 6. At least one city leader thinks it should shower the city in some cash as compensation. "The fire set us back," said Councilman Jeff Ritterman, who may propose a resolution at Tuesday's City Council meeting urging the global energy giant to volunteer a community compensation package. " Posted. http://www.insidebayarea.com/news/ci_21778785/richmond-look-chevron-compensation-aug-6-fire?source=rss Beckett company sues over endangered ocelot. A company owned by Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher Josh Beckett is suing a pipeline builder on claims that habitat for the endangered ocelot was destroyed on a South Texas ranch. The lawsuit filed Tuesday in Laredo says Eagle Ford Midstream LP violated the federal Endangered Species Act by clearing land to build a natural gas pipeline. Posted. http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_21791517/beckett-company-sues-over-endangered-ocelot?IADID=Search-www.insidebayarea.com-www.insidebayarea.com http://www.fresnobee.com/2012/10/17/3032289/beckett-company-sues-over-endangered.html#storylink=misearch EU mulls ways to reduce use of food-based biofuel. As a U.S. drought pushes up food prices worldwide, the European Union is considering limiting the amount of food-based biofuels that can count toward its mandatory renewable fuel targets. The bloc previously decided that 10 percent of fuel used by its transport sector must come from renewable sources by 2020. Posted. http://www.contracostatimes.com/ci_21791939/eu-mulls-ways-reduce-use-food-based-biofuel?IADID=Search-www.contracostatimes.com-www.contracostatimes.com http://www.fresnobee.com/2012/10/17/3032506/eu-mulls-ways-to-reduce-use-of.html#storylink=misearch http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/eu-considers-limiting-percentage-of-biofuels-made-from-food-that-count-toward-renewable-target/2012/10/17/7d42385c-1873-11e2-a346-f24efc680b8d_story.html Texas landowners take a rare stand against Big Oil. Oil has long lived in harmony with farmland and cattle across the Texas landscape, a symbiosis nurtured by generations and built on an unspoken honor code that allowed agriculture to thrive while oil was extracted. Proud Texans have long welcomed the industry because of the cash it brings to sustain agriculture, but also see its presence as part of their patriotic duty to help wean the United States off "foreign" oil. So the answer to companies that wanted to build pipelines has usually been simple: Yes. Posted. http://www.nctimes.com/news/national/texas-landowners-take-a-rare-stand-against-big-oil/article_70300ac6-7c51-5b15-bd92-98b1493cb0ab.html Solyndra sues Chinese competitors for $1.5 billion. When Solyndra declared bankruptcy last year, the company identified a few reasons why the action was necessary: oversupply, regulatory issues, problems raising capital. But the main culprit, it said, was China, which it argued had undercut $1.2 billion in contracts. Last week, the company filed a lawsuit against three U.S.-based, Chinese-owned solar companies. Posted. http://grist.org/news/solyndra-sues-chinese-competitors-for-1-5-billion/ Green groups sue to block new permits for oil and gas wells. Environmental groups yesterday filed a lawsuit seeking to bar California from issuing any more permits for oil and gas drilling until it toughens state oversight. The Center for Biological Diversity, Earthworks, the Environmental Working Group and Sierra Club California charged that California too often exempts new wells from environmental review or issues a declaration finding no significant negative effects. Both practices violate the state's environmental protection law, the suit claims. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/energywire/print/2012/10/17/4 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY VEHICLES Battery maker A123 files for bankruptcy protection. After years of struggling with weak sales and mounting losses, electric-car battery maker A123 Systems filed for bankruptcy protection and reached a deal to sell its automotive assets Tuesday. Auto parts maker Johnson Controls will pay $125 million for A123's auto business, which includes two Michigan factories and the lithium-ion battery technology used in cars like the Fisker Karma and upcoming Chevrolet Spark. A123's demise as an independent business reflects the problems of the electric-car industry. Posted. http://www.mercurynews.com/cars/ci_21786099/battery-maker-a123-files-bankruptcy-protection Nissan shows safety features, electronic steering. Electronically managed steering that completely bypasses the mechanical link of a clutch is among the new safety technology from Japanese automaker Nissan. Other vehicles are smart enough to park themselves. And some swerve automatically to avoid pedestrians. Nissan Motor Co. Executive Vice President Mitsuhiko Yamashita said the latest safety advancements are proactive, unlike air-bags and other "passive" features that are triggered by a crash. Posted. http://www.nctimes.com/business/nissan-shows-safety-features-electronic-steering/article_d8b1ec60-e2ce-5606-9c1b-be75de6b9555.html Study finds households manage charging of PHEVs without help from online tools. Households with plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs) and smart meters actively managed how, when and where they charged their cars based on electricity rates but rarely took advantage of online feedback, according to a two-year study by a team at the University of Colorado Boulder’s Renewable and Sustainable Energy Institute (RASEI). Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2012/10/rasei-20121017.html Harvard team finds that the phase of atmospheric secondary organic material affects chemical aging; may require revision of regional and global climate models. Atmospheric chemists at the Harvard School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS) have found that the phase of secondary organic materials (SOM) in the atmosphere—solid, semisolid, or liquid—can effect their chemical reactivity (chemical aging) in the atmosphere. Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2012/10/mikinori-20121017.html Nissan introducing independent control electric steering technology; to be deployed on select Infiniti models within a year. Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. unveiled the first steering technology that allows independent control of a vehicle’s tire angle and steering inputs. This next-generation steering technology was developed by Nissan and will be deployed on select Infiniti models on sale within one year. Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2012/10/nissan-steering-20121017.html LanzaTech exploring lipids production as part of its CO2 to acetic acid plans; pathways to renewable fuels. Earlier this week, LanzaTech announced a partnership with Malaysia’s Petronas to extend the core LanzaTech proprietary CO gas fermentation process to include CO2-containing gases from a variety of sources—including refinery off-gases and natural gas wells—to produce acetic acid, a high-value chemical with applications in the polymers and plastics markets— as well as a possible intermediate for the formation of lipids. Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2012/10/lanzatech-20121017.html Cadillac ELR due in late 2013. General Motors plans to build the all-new Cadillac ELR extended-range electric vehicle at its Detroit-Hamtramck Assembly plant. The automaker expects to start production of the luxury coupe in late 2013, GM North America President Mark Reuss announced Tuesday at the Society of Automotive Engineers' Convergence conference in Detroit. The ELR will vault Cadillac into direct competition with other luxury electric vehicles such as Fisker Automotive's Karma and Tesla Motors' Model S. Posted. http://www.freep.com/article/20121017/BUSINESS01/310170026/Cadillac-ELR-due-in-late-2013 GREEN ENERGY Energy Price Increases Pose Challenge for Merkel. In the aftermath of the tsunami and nuclear meltdown in Japan last year, Chancellor Angela Merkel announced perhaps her most sweeping domestic ambition, a plan to shutter Germany’s 17 nuclear reactors and switch to 80 percent reliance on wind, solar and other renewable sources by 2050. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/10/17/world/europe/energy-price-increases-pose-challenge-for-merkel.html NORCO: Officials could shelve controversial manure project. Norco may again delay its decade-long study of a manure-to-energy project. For more than 15 years, the city has been exploring what to do with tons of horse manure produced daily in its boundaries. “I was on the animal-keeping ad hoc committee that first floated this,” in the late 1990s, Norco Mayor Kevin Bash said. “People were just leaving the manure on their property and the runoff was going into the street.” Posted. http://www.pe.com/local-news/riverside-county/corona/corona-headlines-index/20121016-norco-officials-could-shelve-controversial-manure-project.ece S.J. supes OK solar facility. The San Joaquin County Board of Supervisors on Tuesday gave the go-ahead to a plan to build a 20-acre solar power facility in an eastern, rural area of the county, overturning a decision by the county Planning Commission to deny the project. The 1.5-megawatt facility is small compared to solar farms on hundreds of acres found elsewhere in the state, but it's on a larger scale than any other solar project in the county, according to planning staff. Posted. http://www.recordnet.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20121017/A_NEWS/210170315/-1/A_NEWS14 MISCELLANEOUS CPUC readies probe of San Onofre, its costs. State utility regulators are preparing a possible investigation in to whether Southern California utilities can continue to bill customers for a nuclear plant that has not produced electricity for nearly nine months. The San Francisco-based California Public Utilities Commission on Tuesday published a draft investigation order regarding the idled San Onofre Nuclear Generating Station. It will take up the matter at a public meeting Oct. 25 in Irvine. Posted. http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2012/oct/17/cpuc-readies-probe-san-onofre-its-costs/ OPINIONS Letters: The Golden State's pricey gas. Re "Refueling California," Opinion, Oct. 12. Jamie Court's idea for oil refiners to keep a reserve of gasoline on hand is probably a good idea, but it's a stopgap. What we really need is ample energy availability that isn't subject to gaming by suppliers and speculators and that can't be exported to the highest bidder. That's why wind and solar are so vital — not only because the energy stays local but also because the utility companies are more directly accountable to the consumer. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/news/opinion/letters/la-le-1016-tuesday-gas-california-20121016,0,3354847.story Fuel Industry Incites Fear of CA's Low Carbon Fuel Standard. You think 50 cents in one week is bad - wait till the state adopts the Low Carbon Fuel Standard", warns one critic, predicting increases three times as much. The regulation was devised by the CA Air Resources Board to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Energy reporter David Baker writes on the business opposition facing California's Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) "which is designed to cut the greenhouse gas emissions that come from making and burning fuel. Posted. http://www.planetizen.com/node/58846 BLOGS Obama-Backed Battery Maker Files for Bankruptcy. An electric car battery maker that President Obama touted as part of a vanguard of a new American electric car industry has filed for bankruptcy and is selling its major assets, the company announced on Tuesday. A123 Systems, which produces lithium ion batteries for the electric car maker Fisker and the truck manufacturer Navistar, received a $249 million Department of Energy grant that was financed by Mr. Obama’s stimulus program. Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/10/16/obama-backed-battery-maker-files-for-bankruptcy/ Environmentalists sue California oil regulators over fracking. A coalition of environmental advocates has filed suit against California oil regulators over the controversial method of oil extraction called hydraulic fracturing, accusing state officials of illegally "rubber-stamping" drilling permits without performing key environmental reviews. In a lawsuit filed Tuesday, environmentalists allege that regulators are breaking state law by routinely exempting oil projects from the California Environmental Quality Act…Posted. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/california-politics/2012/10/fracking-lawsuit-california.html Fighting Climate Change and Air Pollution With One Swat. I've just arrived in Moscow for a meeting -- the subject will be soot. You may hear it called black carbon or even elemental carbon. Scientists getting technical will call it the "light-absorbing part of particles suspended in the atmosphere." Let's just keep it simple and call it soot.* (More on black carbon.) Soot: pollution that is prehistoric, pollution that sits. It's almost certainly the most visible air pollutant. You have seen it in the black smoke of old diesel engines or a smoldering campfire. Posted. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/bill-chameides/fighting-climate-change-a_b_1971770.html?utm_hp_ref=green