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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for October 26, 2012.

Posted: 26 Oct 2012 12:13:46
ARB Newsclips for October 26, 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.


Distant air pollution might bite Butte County farmers. Local
farmers might have to replace their tractors and other diesel
equipment in a few years, because of how bad the air pollution is
in the San Joaquin Valley and Los Angeles basin. The Butte County
Air Quality Management District board got that news Thursday
morning at the end of a board-requested review of the history of
air pollution controls imposed on farmers. County Air Pollution
Control Officer Jim Wagoner told the board the so-called "tractor
rules" …Posted.



Treasure Island sites safe, state says. State health officials
have declared day care and youth centers, ball fields, some
residential backyards and other sites on Treasure Island safe
from radiation in response to fears about the area's nuclear
past. The state surveyed the 24 locations in response to public
concern about exposure to radioactivity at the former Treasure
Island Naval Station. Health department technicians found
negligible levels of radiation posing no health threat at those
locations, according to reports produced in response to a Bay
Citizen public records request. Posted.








Cost of CO2 rules risk more UK energy price hikes. Britain's
utilities face a 2-billion-pound ($3.2 billion) bill in 2013 from
schemes to cut carbon dioxide emissions, Reuters data show,
risking higher prices for consumers and more discomfort for a
government anxious to keep energy costs down. Prime Minister
David Cameron threw Britain's energy policy into confusion last
week when, amid rising prices, he gave an unexpected pledge to
parliament that energy suppliers would be forced to give
customers their cheapest tariffs. Posted.

Calif.'s cap-and-trade system is tested and ready to launch,
regulators say. California's landmark carbon cap-and-trade system
is set to start next month without delay, a state air board
official assured market participants yesterday. "We are ready to
go," said Michael Gibbs, assistant executive officer at the
California Air Resources Board (ARB). He added, "We're really
excited to get the program up and going." Speaking at the
Environmental Markets Association's annual fall meeting, Gibbs
addressed traders…Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2012/10/26/5  BY

Cap-and-trade system likely to survive lawsuits – experts.
California's pending cap-and-trade system is likely to survive
most legal challenges, court experts said yesterday. The Golden
State's landmark program is designed in ways that should allow it
to steer clear of problems that have tripped up other green
rules, said panelists at the Environmental Markets Association's
fall meeting here. "The cap-and-trade program will likely go
forward without significant tinkering by the courts," said Cara
Horowitz, executive director of the Emmett Center on Climate
Change and the Environment at the UCLA School of Law. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2012/10/26/3  BY

Pay-to-save programs help cities cut their carbon emissions.
Brea, Calif., about 25 miles southeast of Los Angeles, set out to
cut its carbon emissions but had trouble finding cash to pay for
projects. So the city turned to an energy-savings performance
contract that requires no upfront costs and allows the city to
pay for the project over time using the savings on utility bills.
It's becoming a popular method among other cities. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2012/10/26/10  BY

Climate skeptics, seeing rising prospects for a carbon tax, vow
to make it 'toxic' Climate skeptics concerned about the rise of
conservative groups favoring a carbon tax are preparing a
response that seeks to make the policy politically "toxic" for
Republicans who might consider it. The pre-emptive effort, still
in its early stages, is designed to discredit the idea that
taxing carbon emissions is a good trade-off for lower corporate
and individual tax rates, as the nation lurches toward, perhaps,
a wide-ranging overhaul to its tax system. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2012/10/26/1  BY

Ports eye LNG as marine fuel but shift will be slow. Ports around
the world are considering liquefied natural gas (LNG) as a ship
fuel in a drive to reduce carbon emissions, but the shift will be
slow due to the high capital costs of fitting ports and vessels
and a lack of investors, industry players say. The Rotterdam and
Singapore ports, both major international sea transportation
hubs, recently announced plans to invest in facilities that would
allow ships to take LNG as fuel instead of oil-based fuel
products, known as bunker fuels. osted.

Mexico clashes with auto industry over fuel efficiency. Carmaker
Toyota and Mexico's auto industry have sued the Mexican
government to try to block proposed regulations to align the fuel
efficiency standard of cars and light trucks with that of the
United States to cut greenhouse gas emissions. Toyota last month
obtained a federal court injunction to stop the government's work
on Nom-163, a rule that would require the fleet of new cars and
light trucks to achieve a fuel economy rate of 14.9 kilometers
per liter, or 35 miles per gallon…Posted.

Shale Glut Becomes $2 Diesel Using Gas-to-Liquids Plants. Drivers
are next in line to benefit from the U.S. shale boom.
Technologies that create motor fuels from raw materials other
than oil, some drawing on techniques first commercialized in Nazi
Germany, are poised to turn the glut of U.S. natural gas into
energy for cars, trucks and planes. A Chesapeake Energy
Corp.-backed company and Oxford Catalysts Group Plc are planning
U.S. factories to make diesel, gasoline and jet fuel from gas,
which fell to a decade-low price this year. Posted.

Judge's death may alter fuel standard ruling. The future of
California's low-carbon fuels standard, requiring suppliers to
cut tailpipe emissions of greenhouse gases, may be shaped by a
random drawing to replace a federal appeals court judge who died
after hearing arguments in the case last week. Judge Betty Binns
Fletcher, part of a three-judge panel of the Ninth U.S. Circuit
Court of Appeals that held a hearing Oct. 16 on a lawsuit by fuel
companies, truckers and out-of-state farmers, died Monday in
Seattle. Posted.

Westerly students donate $25K worth of bioheat. Westerly youth
group that hopes to expand its grease and oil recycling project
into Providence is presenting $25,000 worth of bioheat to five
charities. Students on the Junior WIN Team of the Westerly
Innovation Network are in Providence on Friday to formally
announce the donation and demonstrate how households can recycle
their oil waste. Mayor Angel Taveras (tuh-VEHR'-us) will welcome
them to Veazie Street Elementary School. Posted.

Drilling waste soars with ND oil output. The state Health
Department says waste from drilling activity in western North
Dakota has grown exponentially with the output of oil, and more
special landfills are proposed to keep pace. Data obtained by The
Associated Press show the amount of so-called oilfield special
waste has increased nearly 5,100 percent in the past decade, to
more than 512,000 tons last year. Posted.

Lack of competition in Calif. gasoline market sends prices
soaring. Earlier this month, gasoline prices in California hit a
record high of $4.67 a gallon. The share of that price going to
refiners, known as the margin, jumped to $1.22 a gallon -- up 75
percent from the week before and nearly triple the average margin
of 42 cents a gallon, according to California Energy Commission
data. That led to huge protests from consumers and calls for
investigations by senators, and it left gasoline station owners
raising prices while making little profit. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2012/10/26/19  BY

BP shelves plans for cellulosic plant and focuses on research
center and demonstration plant. BP Biofuels is shelving a plan to
build a 36-million-gallon plant for ethanol from sugar cane, the
company announced yesterday. Instead, the company will be
shifting resources from its proposed plant in Florida to a
research facility in San Diego and a demonstration plant in
Jennings, La., to continue developing and testing its technology.
Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2012/10/26/6  BY

Novozymes cuts its U.S. ethanol production forecast further.
Novozymes, the world's biggest maker of enzymes used in ethanol
production, slightly reduced its forecast for the U.S. ethanol
market this year amid falling gasoline prices and high raw
material costs. The Danish company now expects full-year 2012
U.S. ethanol production to end at around 13.3 billion gallons, a
decrease of approximately 5 percent compared with 2011 and
slightly lower than the 13.4 billion gallons Novozymes forecast
in August. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2012/10/26/7  BY

Methane destabilizing off East Coast may add to global warming –
study. Temperature changes in the Gulf Stream off the East Coast
have destabilized frozen methane hydrate deposits trapped under
nearly 4,000 square miles of seafloor. Researchers estimate that
2.5 metric gigatons of frozen methane hydrate could separate into
gas and water. It is not clear whether that is happening yet, but
that methane gas would have the potential to rise up through the
ocean and into the atmosphere, where it would add to the
greenhouse gases warming Earth. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2012/10/26/8 BY


Electric-car maker Tesla bucks traditional dealership network.
Tesla opens its own stores to sell its flagship Model S directly
to consumers. Some auto dealers and regional associations have
sued the automaker. When electric-car company Tesla Motors Inc.
started selling its flagship Model S luxury hatchback earlier
this year, it eschewed the traditional dealership network to open
its own stores. But that's not sitting well with U.S. auto
dealers, who have controlled new-vehicle sales for nearly a
century. Posted.


California PUC launches probe of San Onofre outage. The probe
will look at the costs already incurred in the long-running
outage at the nuclear power plant resulting from defective
replacement steam generators. The California Public Utilities
Commission has launched an investigation into the nine-month
outage at the San Onofre nuclear plant, which could result in
rates eventually being lowered or money refunded to utility
customers. The five commissioners voted unanimously to launch the
investigation at a meeting Thursday in Irvine, the first such
probe in California in a decade. Posted.

Obama Agrees: Wind Generators Make More Than Just Energy. eMarine
Systems, a Southwest Wind Power master distributor, is benefiting
from this new interest in wind generators. President Obama
visited the highly endorsed Southwest Wind Power in Flagstaff, AZ
because they are the largest worldwide manufacturer of small wind
generators (100 KW and below). It is difficult to truly
appreciate how emerging technologies impact our economy. It is
not just about manufacturing of wind generators. The generators
require poles to mount them plus wires and controls for proper
connectivity and installation. Posted.


Yolo-Solano Air Quality Management District set to start
restrictions. The Yolo-Solano Air Quality Management District has
announced that the 2012-13 season of its Don't Light Tonight
program will launch on Nov. 1. Wood smoke is a significant
contributor to wintertime air pollution in Yolo and Solano
counties, air district officials said, adding that the smoke
contains fine particulate pollution, which has been shown to have
serious health effects when breathed, particularly for children,
the elderly and those with respiratory ailments such as asthma.

Going green: Preschool tries nontoxic pest control. When the
directors and staff at Peregrine Early Childhood Center in Davis
decided to take a completely green approach to pest management
this year, they were fortunate to have in their midst Belinda
Messenger. Messenger’s twin daughters, 3-year-olds Charlotte and
Margaret, attend Peregrine. And Messenger herself is an
environmental scientist with the California Department of
Pesticide Regulation, which has developed an integrated pest
management program specifically for child care facilities
emphasizing non-chemical pest management. Posted.

Green energy’s top foe: Other greens. ‘Think globally, act
locally”: Amazingly often, that principle leaves the
environmental movement fighting environmental projects. And a
major case of it may be coming soon to New York. Indeed, New York
City’s already gotten a taste of it: Just last year, Park Slope
residents’ leveraged environmental-review requirements to sue the
city to remove bike lanes by Prospect Park. Enough copycat
lawsuits could mean big bills for the city: In 2006, an
environmental suit against San Francisco’s bike-lane plan kicked
off a five-year legal battle that cost the city over $1

Italy blames the messengers. Scientists shouldn't be jailed
because they can't precisely predict the future. I used to say,
during doctoral examinations in theoretical physics, that the
stakes were a bit more relaxed than passing or failing a medical
student. After all, granting a doctorate was unlikely to result
in life or death for anyone. Well, an Italian court decided this
week that I was wrong. Six scientists were convicted of
manslaughter because their data did not allow them to predict a
6.3-magnitude temblor in the city of L'Aquila in 2009 with enough
certainty to issue a safety warning. Posted.

Editorial: Californians stranded on a 'fuel island'. State
motorists vulnerable to price spikes. Prices at gasoline pumps in
California have receded from the record highs recorded two weeks
ago and may well drop below $4 a gallon, on average, by
Thanksgiving. The development is welcomed by the state's
motorists, who, in some cases, saw gasoline prices rise by as
much as 20 cents a gallon overnight, and, in some locations, fuel
prices top $5 a gallon. Posted.

Carbon Tax: Will Tweedle Dum Snatch Defeat From the Jaws of
Victory? Are carbon taxes an idea whose time has come? That’s
what some Republicans are saying, including former Secy. of State
George Schulz, former South Carolina Rep. Bob Inglis, and several
economists advising Gov. Mitt Romney: Greg Mankiw, Glenn Hubbard,
Douglas Holtz-Eakin, and Arthur Laffer. Romney opposes a carbon
tax, though he has not made a compelling case against it. He
should do so, because carbon taxes are political poison for the
GOP. Posted.


Is U.S. climate policy better off without cap-and-trade? When
negotiations over a cap-and-trade bill in the Senate collapsed
back in April 2010, environmentalists despaired. The legislation
to reduce U.S. carbon emissions, wrote Ryan Lizza,”perhaps the
last best chance to deal with global warming in the Obama era,
was officially dead.” But a surprising thing happened next. Even
though cap-and-trade died, U.S. carbon emissions kept dropping.
Since 2006, the United States has cut its carbon-dioxide
emissions by 7.7 percent — comparable to what Europe is achieving
under its cap-and-trade system. Posted.

Toward a Tougher Cap and Trade Program. The multistate carbon
trading system known as the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative is
undergoing its first comprehensive review since it was first put
into effect in 2009. While the nine participating Northeastern
and mid-Atlantic states, including New York, have found that RGGI
(pronounced reggie) has succeeded in producing almost $1 billion
for energy efficiency programs and in encouraging reliance on
renewable energy, they are considering making some changes.

Reports of Clean Energy's Demise Have Been Greatly Exaggerated.
If the notion "he who lives by the subsidy dies by the subsidy"
is true, then oil, gas and nuclear companies must be dying a
thousand deaths. "A Sad Green Story," the recent New York Times
article by David Brooks, is way off the mark with where we need
to go as a country and as an entire planet. Now is not the time
to malign investments in our health, welfare and a sustainable
energy future. The idea that our energy industry should be a free
market, without "government interference," is regrettably
mistaken. Posted.

Stavins: Cap-and-Trade, Carbon Taxes, and My Neighbor’s Lovely
Lawn. Speaking of externalities associated with energy use,
Robert Stavins throws cold water on "current enthusiasm about
carbon taxes in the academic and broader policy-wonk community": 
 Cap-and-Trade, Carbon Taxes, and My Neighbor’s Lovely Lawn, by
Robert Stavins: …my conclusion in 1998 strongly favored a
market-based carbon policy, but was somewhat neutral between
carbon taxes and cap-and-trade. Indeed, at that time and for the
subsequent eight years or so, I remained agnostic regarding what
I viewed as the trade-offs between cap-and-trade and carbon
taxes. Posted.

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