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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for November 27, 2012. Posted: 27 Nov 2012 14:41:23
ARB Newsclips for November 27, 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 Traffic pollution tied to autism risk: study. Babies who are exposed to lots of traffic-related air pollution in the womb and during their first year of life are more likely to become autistic, according to a U.S. study. The findings, which appeared in the Archives of General Psychiatry, support previous research linking how close children live to freeways to their risk of autism, the study's lead author says. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/11/26/health-autism-idUSL4N09641B20121126 http://www.mercurynews.com/breaking-news/ci_22069643/air-pollution-may-be-factor-autism-researchers-report http://www.contracostatimes.com/ci_22072307/un-thawing-permafrost-cause-increased-warming?IADID=Search-www.contracostatimes.com-www.contracostatimes.com http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_22069643?IADID=Search-www.insidebayarea.com-www.insidebayarea.com http://www.dailynews.com/news/ci_22070464/air-pollution-may-be-factor-autism-researchers-report?source=rss http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-204_162-57554703/autism-risk-increases-with-air-pollution-exposure-study-finds/ AQMD issues one-day bans on fireplace use in Los Angeles, Riverside areas. As temperatures begin to drop and the winter season approaches, the South Coast Air Quality Management District this week issued its first-ever mandatory "no burn alerts" prohibiting residents in some areas from lighting up their wood-burning fireplaces. In an effort to reduce harmful pollutants that become trapped during particular weather conditions, the Diamond Bar-based smog control agency began implementing the mandatory program on Nov. 1 for the second consecutive year. Posted. http://www.mercurynews.com/news/ci_22069693/aqmd-issues-one-day-bans-fireplace-use-los New fireplace rules not coming until 2016 or later. A valley air district proposal that could increase restrictions on residential wood burning in the San Joaquin Valley will not become official until at least 2016 or 2017, air district officials said Monday. An article in Monday's Californian, based on an Associated Press report, was unclear on when the new restrictions might take place. Posted. http://www.bakersfieldcalifornian.com/health/x1801509964/New-fireplace-rules-not-coming-until-2016-or-later BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY First no-burn alerts issued. The South Coast Air Quality Management District has issued its first two no-burn orders for Southern California. Neither alert affected Southwest County. To fight the buildup of particle pollution or soot during the cooler months, the district put in place last year a program to curb fireplace and wood stove fires when pollution is expected to reach the unhealthful range. The program runs November through February. Posted. http://www.nctimes.com/special-reports/crime-fire/first-no-burn-alerts-issued/article_e4fbace8-3818-11e2-bd93-0019bb2963f4.html CLIMATE CHANGE Looking to Cities, in Search of Global Warming’s Silver Lining. Heat, carbon dioxide and air pollution are already having significant effects on trees, plants and crops, and for most plant scientists, the debate over climate change ended long before the arrival of extreme weather like Hurricane Sandy. Now, some of those scientists have moved beyond political questions to explore how rising levels of heat and emissions might provide at least some benefits for the planet. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/27/science/studying-cities-to-find-global-warmings-benefits.html U.N. Climate Talks Promise Little Drama. The last three United Nations climate change summit meetings have been disorderly affairs, marked by brinkmanship, breakdowns and a weary sense that there has to be a better way to address the intensifying challenge of a simmering planet. The meeting of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change this year, which opened Monday in Doha, Qatar, promises to be a more staid affair than the three previous sessions — in Copenhagen in 2009; Cancún, Mexico, in 2010; and Durban, South Africa, last year. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/27/business/energy-environment/un-climate-talks-promise-little-drama.html http://www.contracostatimes.com/ci_22068630/doha-climate-change-talks-kyoto-protocol-global-warming?IADID=Search-www.contracostatimes.com-www.contracostatimes.com http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_22068630?IADID=Search-www.insidebayarea.com-www.insidebayarea.com Cap-and-trade spending legally limited. Among the revenue that will strengthen California's general fund this year is cash from the state's new cap-and-trade program to limit greenhouse-gas emissions - about half a billion dollars - but officials may be legally barred from spending much of that money. The nonpartisan Legislative Analyst's Office says lawmakers and the governor will probably be able to use only $100 million or so of the $500 million they were counting on spending in this year's budget. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/science/article/Cap-and-trade-spending-legally-limited-4065869.php#ixzz2DS78OIOJ Rich, poor spar at climate talks. The first signs of tensions emerged at the U.N. climate talks on Tuesday as delegates from island and African nations chided rich countries for refusing to offer up new emissions cuts over the next eight years which could help stem global warming. The debate mostly swirled around the Kyoto Protocol — a legally-binding emissions cap that expires this year and remains the most significant international achievement in the fight against global warming. Posted. http://www.businessweek.com/ap/2012-11-27/un-says-thawing-permafrost-to-boost-global-warming http://www.fresnobee.com/2012/11/26/3079497/us-defends-enormous-climate-efforts.html#storylink=misearch http://www.vcstar.com/news/2012/nov/27/un-thawing-permafrost-to-cause-increased-warming/ http://www.nctimes.com/news/national/rich-poor-spar-at-climate-talks/article_2019e754-dd50-5c3c-8849-207daca1e943.html UN climate scientist: Sandy no coincidence. Though it's tricky to link a single weather event to climate change, Hurricane Sandy was "probably not a coincidence" but an example of the extreme weather events that are likely to strike the U.S. more often as the world gets warmer, the U.N. climate panel's No. 2 scientist said Tuesday. Jean-Pascal van Ypersele, the vice chairman of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, predicted that as stronger and more frequent heat waves and storms become part of life, people will stop asking whether global warming played a role. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/news/science/article/UN-climate-scientist-Sandy-no-coincidence-4069107.php#ixzz2DSDLugpe http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/nov/27/un-says-thawing-permafrost-boost-global-warming/ Tensions emerge at UN climate talks as delegates debate extending Kyoto Protocol. The first signs of tensions emerged at the U.N. climate talks on Tuesday as delegates from island and African nations chided rich countries for refusing to offer up new emissions cuts over the next eight years which could help stem global warming. The debate mostly swirled around the Kyoto Protocol — a legally-binding emissions cap that expires this year and remains the most significant international achievement in the fight against global warming. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/middle_east/at-climate-conference-un-warns-that-thawing-permafrost-will-cause-increased-global-warming/2012/11/27/abdb72e0-3881-11e2-9258-ac7c78d5c680_story.html US defends 'enormous' climate efforts at UN talks. Anticipating an onslaught of criticism from poor nations, the United States claimed "enormous" strides in reducing greenhouse emissions at the opening of U.N. climate talks Monday, despite failing to join other industrialized nations in committing to binding cuts. The pre-emptive U.S. approach underscores one of the major showdowns expected at the two-week conference as China pushes developed countries to take an even greater role in tackling global warming. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2012/nov/26/us-defends-enormous-climate-efforts-at-un-talks/ Spending cap-and-trade proceeds is legally restricted. California's cap-and-trade program is expected to produce about half a billion dollars in revenue this year for general fund programs through the sale of carbon credits. But state officials may be able to spend only a fifth of that revenue, according to the state's Legislative Analyst's Office. State regulations require proceeds from fees to be spent on programs related to the fees. For example, fees collected at state parks must be used on park-related activities. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2012/11/27/8 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY U.S. touts its greenhouse gas reductions at climate talks. The Obama administration has made "enormous" efforts to cut domestic greenhouse gas emissions, U.S. Deputy Envoy for Climate Change Jonathan Pershing said yesterday. Speaking in Doha, Qatar, on the opening day of the U.N. climate change conference, Pershing said U.S. emissions peaked "several years ago." He also appeared to take umbrage at a suggestion that America hasn't pulled its weight in the global quest to curb greenhouse gases, citing fuel efficiency measures, financial investments in clean technology and U.S. EPA regulations of power plant emissions. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2012/11/27/5 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY DIESEL EMISSIONS Hybrid trucks could ease air pollution fueled by shipping. San Diego, California, California - While shopping online might contribute to air pollution due to increased trucking, perfecting hybrid trucks could help control emissions and cut fuel consumption in half. Buses and trucks, particularly vehicles used to transport goods, represent a huge percentage of global fuel consumption and tailpipe emissions, said Gregory Shaver, a Purdue University associate professor of mechanical engineering. Growth in e-commerce is one phenomenon leading to significant increases in the number of trucks needed to transport goods. Posted. http://www.imperialvalleynews.com/index.php/news/latest-news/2408-hybrid-trucks-could-ease-air-pollution-fueled-by-shipping.html Natural Gas Summit This Week. The American Trucking Associations' sold-out Summit on Natural Gas in Trucking will be held this week, Nov. 28-30, featuring natural gas heavyweights such as T. Boone Pickens. The event starts with "Natural Gas 101: A Primer," by Rich Kolodziej, president of NGVAmerica, followed by a panel discussion of natural gas production. Top executives from Pilot Flying J, TravelCenters of America and Love's Travel Stops will discuss infrastructure hurdles. Posted. http://www.truckinginfo.com/news/news-detail.asp?news_id=78627 Heavy-duty trucking sector could pay off efficiency upgrades in 18 months – study. By adopting technologies that pay themselves off in less than two years, the road freight industry could deliver hefty emissions reductions and save thousands of dollars in fuel costs, according to a report released today by the Carbon War Room. By adding a suite of seven efficiency technologies to its tractor-trailer fleet, the U.S. trucking sector could save 624 million tons of carbon dioxide by 2022, according to the report. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2012/11/27/4 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY FUELS Iraq to help Jordan with free crude oil. Iraq says it is giving neighboring Jordan 100,000 barrels of oil as a gift to help overcome its economic difficulties. The decision by the Cabinet Tuesday could be seen as an attempt by the Shiite-led Iraqi government to offer support to one of its Sunni neighbors. Hundreds of thousands of Iraqis have fled to Jordan because of violence that followed the 2003 U.S.-led invasion of their country. Posted. http://www.nctimes.com/business/iraq-to-help-jordan-with-free-crude-oil/article_0452549d-5467-5085-9310-52e1db337d14.html Truck, bus fleets targeted for fuel conversion. Praising natural gas as a cheaper and cleaner alternative to diesel, drillers, public utilities and government officials are trying to boost demand for natural-gas-powered work vehicles of all sorts, while also encouraging development of the necessary refueling infrastructure. The savings are tempting. Natural gas costs about $1.50 to $2 per gallon equivalent less than gasoline and diesel, adding up to tens of thousands of dollars in savings for vehicles that consume the most fuel. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/energywire/print/2012/11/27/10 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY Study Shows Saltwater Algae May Become Viable For Biofuels. The findings of a U.C. San Diego study conclude that marine (saltwater) algae can be just as efficient as freshwater algae in producing biofuels. The availability of significant saltwater environments for algae production is obvious. According to a Pacific Northwest National Laboratory's (PNNL) report, algal fuels grown in saline water from existing aquifers and recycling nutrients would be able to provide up to twice the goal for advanced biofuels set under the Energy Independence and Security Act - roughly 40 billion gallons or 20 percent of annual transportation fuel demand. Posted. http://www.science20.com/news_articles/study_shows_saltwater_algae_may_become_viable_biofuels-97154 UCSD/Sapphire team shows marine algae can be engineered to perform as well as fresh water algae to produce enzymes and biofuels; removing the constraint of fresh water. Researchers from UC San Diego and Sapphire Energy, Inc. have demonstrated for the first time that genetically engineered marine algae can be just as capable as fresh water algae in producing industrially relevant products such as enzymes or biofuels. Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2012/11/ucsd-20111127.html Synthetic fuels could eliminate entire U.S. need for crude oil. The United States could eliminate the need for crude oil by using a combination of coal, natural gas, and non-food crops to make synthetic fuel, a team of Princeton University researchers has found. Besides economic and national security benefits, the plan has potential environmental advantages. Because plants absorb carbon dioxide to grow, the United States could cut vehicle greenhouse emissions by as much as 50% in the next several decades using non-food crops to create liquid fuels, the researchers say. Posted. http://www.rdmag.com/news/2012/11/synthetic-fuels-could-eliminate-entire-us-need-crude-oil VEHICLES GM rolls out new electric mini-car at LA Auto Show. General Motors is giving its Chevrolet Spark a jolt of electricity. An all-electric version of the mini-car will debut this week at the Los Angeles Auto Show. It goes on sale this summer in California, Oregon, Canada and South Korea, where it's made. Other markets will follow. Unlike the Chevrolet Volt sedan, which can run in all-electric mode but also has a backup gas engine, the Spark EV is a pure electric. Posted. http://www.modbee.com/2012/11/27/2471402/gm-rolls-out-new-electric-mini.html#storylink=misearch BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY HIGH-SPEED RAIL Fresno EDC to hold workshops on high-speed rail work. The Fresno Economic Development Corporation will hold free workshops on Friday and Saturday for small businesses looking for work as subcontractors on California's high-speed rail project. The workshops are planned for experts to walk business owners through the steps needed to become certified as small businesses or disadvantaged business enterprises. A list of the businesses certified at the workshops will be provided to each of the five contracting firms expected to bid for the first high-speed rail construction segment between Madera and Fresno. Posted. http://www.fresnobee.com/2012/11/26/3079874/fresno-edc-to-hold-workshops-on.html EV maintenance and repair costs: 35 % cheaper than for ICEs. “In addition to financial incentives and lower cost of electricity compared to conventional fuels, EV owners can also save on servicing costs to compensate for higher purchase costs” said Prof. Willi Diez, IFA Institute Director. The Institute calculated these numbers on the basis of a small car with a lifetime of 8 years and an annual mileage of 8,000km. For ICEs, running on gasoline or diesel, maintenance and repair costs will represent on average 3,650€, when owners of a battery-electric car will only have to pay 2,350€. Posted. http://www.cars21.com/news/view/5046 GREEN ENERGY New Sources of Energy Sought for Britain's Future. With a generation of aging power plants nearing closure and tough carbon-cutting targets kicking in soon, Britain’s government is seeking to lay the groundwork for big changes in the country’s electricity sector. A mammoth energy bill to be published this week is likely to reshape Britain’s power landscape, encouraging the growth of natural gas, a new generation of nuclear plants and renewable technologies like offshore wind and solar. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/27/business/energy-environment/new-sources-of-energy-sought-for-britains-future.html Veterans find jobs, and new mission, in clean tech. When military veterans search for jobs, they often want more than a paycheck. Many say they look for rewarding work and a team of dedicated people focused on a common mission. With the war in Iraq officially over and the American presence in Afghanistan winding down, many veterans are finding new careers and that strong sense of purpose in the growing clean-tech economy. Posted. http://www.modbee.com/2012/11/27/2471438/veterans-find-jobs-and-new-mission.html#storylink=misearch BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY US/China research team proposes “solar energy funnel” to harness photons for electricity; using elastic strain to capture a wider spectrum. Researchers from Peking University in China and MIT are proposing using elastic strain as a viable agent to create an optoelectronic material with a spatially varying bandgap that is tunable for use in photovoltaics, photocatalysis and photodetection. In a paper published in Nature Photonics, they propose that a photovoltaic device made from a strain-engineered MoS2 monolayer will capture a broad range of the solar spectrum and concentrate excitons or charge carriers. Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2012/11/funnel-20121126.html MISCELLANEOUS Environment compromise reached for beltway in southeast Sacramento County. Environmentalists and proponents of a planned $500 million expressway in southeast Sacramento County have reached a lawsuit settlement that will allow the beltway to be built but will reduce its potential growth impacts in the open hills and river plain to the east. Representatives of the Environmental Council of Sacramento and officials with the Capital SouthEast Connector Joint Powers Authority said they signed the landmark agreement Monday after months of negotiations. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2012/11/27/v-print/5011999/environment-compromise-reached.html BLOGS Grappling With the Permafrost Problem. The greatest single uncertainty about climate change is how much the warming of the planet will feed on itself. As the temperature increases because of human emissions, feedbacks could cause new pools of carbon to be released into the atmosphere, magnifying the trend. Other types of feedbacks could potentially slow the warming. Over all, climate scientists have only best guesses about how these conflicting tendencies will balance out, though most of them think the net result is likely to be a substantial rise in the planet’s average temperature. Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/11/27/grappling-with-the-permafrost-problem/ How Concerned Are You About Climate Change? After Hurricane Sandy, many asked if climate change were to blame. While scientists are not sure if the storm was caused or made worse by human-induced global warming, they agree that it is clear that humans are changing the environment. What have you learned about climate change? How concerned are you about it? What do you think should be done to address it? http://learning.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/11/27/how-concerned-are-you-about-climate-change/?src=twrhp