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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for January 11, 2013.

Posted: 11 Jan 2013 12:09:35
ARB Newsclips for January 11, 2013. 
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.


NASA Working to Improve Air Quality Knowledge.  Residents in
California's San Joaquin Valley will see some unusual air traffic
over their region in January and February of 2013 that is
designed to someday help improve the air all of us breathe. Two
NASA research planes will fly between Bakersfield and Fresno -
one as close as 1,000 feet to the ground – to measure air
pollution with a number of onboard science instruments.  Posted. 


UN Developed-Country Carbon Drops to Record on EU Ban Proposal.
United Nations carbon credits for December slumped to their
lowest ever after the European Union proposed to ban some offsets
imported from countries including Russia unless they undergo
additional checks. UN Emission Reduction Units issued after 2012
from countries without new emission goals under the Kyoto
Protocol may be held in the EU registry as long as it is certain
they represent carbon cuts taking place before the end of last
year, according to a draft regulation presented by the European
Commission yesterday. Posted.

EU Seeks Vote on Carbon Registry on Jan. 23, Document Shows. The
European Union scheduled a vote on Jan. 23 on draft
carbon-registry regulation that may include limits on some
imported emission credits and is seeking further talks on a
permit-supply fix, according to an EU document. The European
Commission, the bloc’s regulatory arm, wants to restrict the use
of some Emission Reduction Units, or ERUs, from countries that
fail to adopt new carbon goals under the United Nations Kyoto
Protocol as of this year. Posted.

California Estimates Cap-and-Trade Earnings At Just $200M. 
California Gov. Jerry Brown's new budget plan estimates the state
will take in $200 million this year from the sale of greenhouse
gas permits sold in the state’s cap-and-trade program, which puts
a price on carbon emitted from power plants, cement factories and
other industries.  Earlier estimates put that number as high as
$1 billion. 

What Effect Will California's Cap-And-Trade Law Have?  Beginning
this month, 350 California businesses will start paying for some
of the carbon they emit. Businesses that participated in an
auction in November paid $10.09 to offset every ton of CO2 they
produce beyond a cap set by the state. Over the next few years,
the cap on how much CO2 a company can produce will decrease, as
the price of carbon credits increases.  Lawmakers hope that pinch
will spur innovation in carbon-efficient technology, but there is
some concern that it may instead cause businesses to leave the
state.  Posted. 

Gov. Brown's budget suggests how to spend cap-and-trade cash.
Revenue from California's cap-and-trade auctions should be spent
to help shrink carbon pollution in areas like transportation and
electricity generation, the state's governor said yesterday. Gov.
Jerry Brown (D) in his proposed budget for 2013-2014 set out
categories for spending an estimated $600 million from the Golden
State's sale of carbon allowances.
The funds are a tiny part of the state's proposed $97.7 billion
budget, Brown said, but come from a crucial program. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2013/01/11/2 BY

Groups want White House, not Congress, to guide climate policy.
As the White House mulls over whom to nominate as the next
administrator of U.S. EPA, business and environmental groups are
sending their lists of climate change priorities to the Obama
administration. The Clean Air Task Force released yesterday a
list of recommendations it says would help the administration
achieve an 80 percent reduction in greenhouse gas emissions by
2050, which Obama promised in the beginning of his first term.
Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2013/01/11/3 BY


Study Examines Heavy-Duty Trucks, Alternative Fuels to 2050.  On
Feb. 4, leaders from the National Petroleum Councils study on
Future Transportation Fuels will provide an overview of the
study's findings and present publicly, for the first time, an
in-depth review of the findings on the future of the heavy-duty
industry.  This two-year study, entitled Advancing Technology for
Americas Transportation Future, developed a comprehensive
viewpoint on the future of alternative fuels, including natural
gas, plug-in electric power, hydrogen, biodiesel, and gasoline
and ethanol blends.  Posted. 


Ontario phases out entire coal fleet. By the end of the year,
Ontario will become the first jurisdiction in North America to
shut down almost its entire coal fleet. Yesterday, the province
announced that its last two large coal units will close before
2014, making more than 99 percent of the province's electricity
generated from non-coal sources. It is a major shift for Ontario,
which fired 25 percent of its grid from coal a decade ago.
"Today, all Ontarians can breathe a little easier," said Ontario
Premier Dalton McGuinty in a statement. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2013/01/11/5 BY


Californian EV Market Shows Frst Signs of Maturity.  This is a
website about electric cars, and ever day there is more news
about EVs on the market today or coming soon. That's amazing,
considering that barely six years ago, there wasn't a single new
electric car available in the United States. The first customers
of the Tesla Roadster got their car in 2007, but it was a
$100,000 car very few could afford. The Nissan LEAF, the first EV
with mass-market appeal, followed three years later. It was the
only one of its kind, but in 2013, there will be EVs in nearly
every segment of the market.  Posted. 


High-Speed Rail on track to start construction in July.  A
representative of California High-Speed Rail was in San Francisco
today to talk about the rail system's near- and long-term plans
in the Bay Area.  Regional director of CHSR in Northern
California Ben Tripousis joined San Francisco Director of
Transportation Policy Gillian Gillett for a high-speed rail forum
at the San Francisco Planning and Urban Research Association. 


California solar energy systems top 1 gigawatt. California's
rebate program for businesses and homeowners who install solar
panels has now funded enough systems to generate 1 gigawatt of
electricity - a level few countries and no other states have ever
reached. California officials reported Thursday that state
residents have installed 1,066 megawatts of solar systems using
rebates from the $2.4 billion California Solar Initiative,
launched in 2007 as a way to jump-start the industry. Posted.

Technology helps wind industry overcome 'start-stop' hurdles.
According to Bill Noto, a software engineer for GE Renewable
Energy, the wind energy highway is rife with speed traps. When
there's sufficient demand and room for electricity to flow,
utilities and grid overseers want wind farms to run full
throttle. But during periods of congestion, or when market
conditions call for less power on the grid, wind energy operators
have to apply the brakes to keep their power from overwhelming
the system. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2013/01/11/1 BY


Hinkley's pollution plume being questioned by water agency again.
The water regulatory agency charged with the clean up of
contaminated groundwater here has ordered San Francisco-based
Pacific Gas & Electric Co. to better define its plume of chromium
6. "It is important that we have a clear and up-to-date
understanding of the chromium plume boundaries," Patty
Kouyoumdjian, executive officer of the Lahontan Regional Water
Quality Control Board, wrote in a letter to Kirk Howard, PG&E's
vice president of gas transmissions and distribution. Posted. 


Hot enough for you?  All right, now can we talk about climate
change? After a year when the lower 48 states suffered the
warmest temperatures, and the second-craziest weather, since
record-keeping began?  Apparently not. The climate-change
denialists — especially those who manipulate the data in
transparently bogus ways to claim that warming has halted or even
reversed course — have been silent, as one might expect. Posted. 



More On a Quest for Common Ground on Climate Change.  In 2011, I
wrote about efforts by two scientists with different political
orientations to identify common ground in weighing risks posed by
global warming driven by greenhouse gases. The scientists were
Peter C. Frumhoff, an ecologist who directs science and policy
for the Union of Concerned Scientists, and Kerry Emanuel, a
veteran climate and hurricane researcher at the Massachusetts
Institute of Technology. (Emanuel has a new edition of his short
everyman’s guide to global warming, by the way.)  Posted. 

Carbon Taxes Provoke Debate on Economic Impact.  Since the
beginning of the year, California, the most populous of the
United States, has a price on carbon emissions.  The
cap-and-trade system known as AB 23 ultimately puts a dollar
price on industry carbon emissions (according to our colleague
Felicity Barringer, the precise price of $10.09 per metric ton of
emissions in the first free-market bidding in November).  “By
putting a price on carbon, we can break our unhealthy dependence
on fossil fuels,” said Mary D. Nichols, the chairwoman of the
California Air Resources Board, according to Felicity’s report. 

Federal green car fleet buys more Hyundai hybrids as overall
number goes down.  The Obama administration made a big deal about
how it had a long-term plan to green up the federal vehicle fleet
back in early 2011. Even with that big target, the overall number
of hybrids is going down. And, after spending time buying
fuel-efficient US cars, the Obama administration has been turning
more to hybrids from foreign automakers – just like the general
public –…Posted. 

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