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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for December 14, 2012. Posted: 14 Dec 2012 13:02:48
ARB Newsclips for December 14, 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 Tighter Soot Standard on Way. The Obama administration is expected to tighten national standards for soot pollution, paving the way for rules that could force industry to further limit emissions from smokestacks and tailpipes. Responding to a federal-court ruling, the Environmental Protection Agency will set the health standard for fine-particulate matter, or soot, to a new level of 12 micrograms per cubic meter, several environmental groups say. The previous standard of 15 micrograms per cubic meter was unchanged since George W. Bush's administration. Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323981504578179371801481886.html?mod=googlenews_wsj http://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/epa-to-tighten-soot-rules-by-20-percent/2012/12/14/5d39c0c0-4541-11e2-8061-253bccfc7532_story.html http://modbee.com/2012/12/14/2495679/epa-to-tighten-standards-for-soot.html#storylink=misearch http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2012/12/14/1 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY CLIMATE CHANGE California planning low-carbon oasis where cars aren't king. Vacant industrial land near salt marshes and a derelict rail bridge seem like an odd setting for the beginnings of a lifestyle revolution in scenic California, but planners in the San Francisco Bay suburb of Newark view it as just that. With an eye on the state's new land-use laws to cut carbon output, Newark's city council just voted to convert 200 acres owned largely by chemical companies into a development that should set the trend for a state bent on decarbonizing its economy, the world's ninth largest. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/12/14/us-california-carboneconomy-idUSBRE8BD0RB20121214 Human link to climate change stronger than ever - draft report. International climate scientists are more certain than ever that humans are responsible for global warming, rising sea levels and extreme weather events, according to a leaked draft report by an influential panel of experts. The early draft, which is still subject to change before a final version is released in late 2013, showed that a rise in global average temperatures since pre-industrial times was set to exceed 2 degrees Celsius by 2100, and may reach 4.8 Celsius. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2012/12/14/climate-ipcc-idUSL5E8NEA0U20121214 California Carbon Rises to Eight-Week High After Quebec Votes. California carbon futures rose to the highest price in almost two months after Quebec approved changes to allow links between their cap-and-trade systems. Carbon markets in Quebec and California will be connected next spring, and their governments will hold the first joint auction of carbon allowances in August, Yves-François Blanchet, Quebec’s minister of sustainable development, environment, wildlife and parks, said in a statement on his agency’s website. Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2012-12-14/california-carbon-rises-to-eight-week-high-after-quebec-votes.html Climate change taken seriously by insurance industry, study says. Paying out billions of dollars here and billions of dollars there has made the global insurance industry a believer in climate change, according to a new study that shows insurance companies are staunch advocates for reducing carbon emissions and minimizing the risk posed by increasingly severe weather events. “Climate change stands as a stress test for insurance, the world’s largest industry with U.S. $4.6 trillion in revenues…Posted. http://www.latimes.com/news/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-climate-change-that-you-can-believe-in-20121213,0,2503364.story?track=rss California king tides used as climate change lesson. Environmental advocates in Northern California plan to take photographs of some of the highest tides of the year to draw attention to what climate change could do decades from now. The so-called king tides are expected to peak during the next several days, with surges over 9 feet in some areas. The phenomenon is caused by a unique alignment of the sun, moon and earth. The tides already produced some minor flooding in low-lying areas. Posted. http://www.pressdemocrat.com/article/20121213/WIRE/121219790/1033/news?Title=California-king-tides-used-as-climate-change-lesson Even skeptics now warming to climate change, says new poll. Global warming skeptics - those who don't trust scientists - are increasingly believers in climate change, says an AP-Gfk poll. Among skeptics, 61 percent now say temperatures have been rising over the past 100 years. That's up from 47 percent in 2009. Nearly 4 out of 5 Americans now think temperatures are rising and that global warming will be a serious problem for the United States if nothing is done about it…Posted. http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/2012/1214/Even-skeptics-now-warming-to-climate-change-says-new-poll Quebec poised to link with Calif. greenhouse gas market. California appears set to have at least one partner in its economywide greenhouse gas market next year with the province of Quebec completing regulations yesterday to set up a trading system. The regulations authorize a trading system starting Jan. 1. Quebec's system will have quarterly auctions starting at $10 per ton and increasing by 5 percent annually plus the rate of inflation, as California's system does. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2012/12/14/9 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY Phony carbon emission credits join long list of hard-sell investment scams. The lure of carbon credits, tradeable permits allowing smokestack industries and other industrial projects to emit carbon dioxide, is being used in boiler room operations that fraud artists organize to separate the unwary from their savings. While the multibillion-dollar annual trade in carbon emission permits issued by the European Union and the United Nations to curb global carbon emissions is now a well-established and legal business, the credits being offered by fraudsters are rarely more than hot air. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2012/12/14/5 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY FUELS With U.S. awash in natural gas, why aren’t fuel bills falling? Here’s a question a lot of homeowners are asking: If there is so much cheap natural gas floating around the United States, why aren’t people’s fuel bills falling? The answer is that fuel is only part of the fuel bill. A lot of what homeowners pay goes to building new power lines or tending to aging gas pipelines. In one recent rate case, a utility got a rate increase to cover pension costs. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/with-us-awash-in-natural-gas-why-arent-bills-falling/2012/12/14/a26dcc48-45a7-11e2-8061-253bccfc7532_story.html VEHICLES Electric Cars: More Models, Cheaper Prices Coming in 2013. The electric car has already gone through so much—from being pumped up as a game changer to all but being declared a flop—that it’s easy to forget the Chevy Volt and Nissan Leaf have only been widely available to the public since 2011. Even as sales for these two plug-in pioneers have fallen well short of projections, automakers aren’t giving up on electric cars. Posted. http://business.time.com/2012/12/13/electric-cars-more-models-cheaper-prices-coming-in-2013/ HIGH-SPEED RAIL High Speed Rail Authority meeting today in Merced. The High Speed Rail Authority will hold a public meeting this today to address the concerns of property owners. The meeting is scheduled from 4 to 7 p.m. at the Merced College, Business Resource Center located at 630 W 19th St. The proposed high-speed rail station and tracks will likely displace dozens of businesses and home owners in the city of Merced. Posted. http://www.mercedsunstar.com/2012/12/13/2704757/high-speed-rail-authority-meeting.html MISCELLANEOUS Capitola City Council bans plastic bags, 25 cent charge for paper bags. The City Council unanimously approved a ban on plastic bags and a 25 cent fee on paper bags on a 3-2 vote Thursday night. Mayor Stephanie Harlan said she preferred to set the paper bag charge at 10 cents, but after council members Dennis Norton and Ed Bottorff voted for the 25-cent fee, she cast the third yes vote. The county instituted a 10-cent charge that will go up to 25 cents in March. Posted. http://www.santacruzsentinel.com/capitola/ci_22190469/capitola-city-council-bans-plastic-bags-25-cent?source=rss Philippines green-lights electric tricycles. The Philippines will roll out 100,000 electric tricycles, or e-trikes, in an effort to replace the estimated 3.5 million gas-powered motorcycles and tricycles already in use in the country. "It will not stop at e-trike. It will expand horizontally to other transports like buses ... and once that happens, nationwide, the country's consumption of oil will come down," said Asian Development Bank energy specialist Sohail Hasnie. A launch date has not been set for the $500 million project. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2012/12/14/12 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY OPINIONS Editorial: McCarthy's bid to kill high-speed rail is baffling. No place in California stands to reap the rewards of high-speed rail more than the San Joaquin Valley. That is why the opposition of U.S. House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy, R-Bakersfield, and Rep. Jeff Denham, R-Turlock, is so puzzling. At a one-sided House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee hearing last Thursday – where the California High-Speed Rail Authority was not invited to testify – the two made it clear they want to kill future federal funding for high-speed rail in California. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2012/12/14/5053567/mccarthys-bid-to-kill-high-speed.html BLOGS Climate Change Poll Reveals Nearly 4 In 5 Americans Acknowledge Rising Temperatures. Nearly 4 out of 5 Americans now think temperatures are rising and that global warming will be a serious problem for the United States if nothing is done about it, a new Associated Press-GfK poll finds. Belief and worry about climate change are inching up among Americans in general, but concern is growing faster among people who don't often trust scientists on the environment. Posted. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/12/14/climate-change-poll_n_2298231.html Doctors Urge U.S. to Block Gas Export Terminals. More than 100 physicians urged the Obama administration on Thursday not to approve the construction of liquefied natural gas export terminals until more is known about the health effects of hydraulic fracturing, the drilling process that has opened the way for a big increase in domestic gas production. A group called Physicians, Scientists and Engineers for Healthy Energy, which conducts research into unconventional natural gas production…Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/12/13/doctors-urge-u-s-to-block-gas-export-terminals/ German automakers renew push for clean-diesel sales in US. Germany's largest automakers are renewing their pitch for their clean-diesel vehicles in the US as a way for consumers to combat high gas prices without having to resort to the (often) even pricier hybrid and plug-in hybrid options. Audi, BMW, Mercedes-Benz parent Daimler, Porsche and Volkswagen, along with auto-component supplier Bosch, have joined together in a campaign titled: "Clean Diesel. Clearly Better." Posted. http://green.autoblog.com/2012/12/13/german-automakers-renew-push-for-clean-diesel-sales-in-us/