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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for March 7, 2013. Posted: 07 Mar 2013 13:05:25
ARB Newsclips for March 7, 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. AIR POLLUTION How much smoke pollution did we create during Bay Area burn season? A chimney is silhouetted against the night sky in San Jose. Reduced wood burning is partially responsible for the Bay Area having one of its cleanest air quality seasons for smoke and other air-borne fine particles, a regional pollution agency reported Wednesday. Soot concentrations in the nine Bay Area counties violated the federal public health standard on just one day during the Spare the Air season that ran from Nov. 1 to Feb. 28. Posted. http://www.mercurynews.com/breaking-news/ci_22733386/how-much-smoke-pollution-did-we-create-during?source=rss http://www.contracostatimes.com/breaking-news/ci_22733386/how-much-smoke-pollution-did-we-create-during?IADID=Search-www.contracostatimes.com-www.contracostatimes.com http://www.insidebayarea.com/breaking-news/ci_22733386/how-much-smoke-pollution-did-we-create-during?IADID=Search-www.insidebayarea.com-www.insidebayarea.com Critics Warn Of Increased Pollution If Rail Yard Built Near Port Of LA. A vote by port officials Thursday could clear the way for a $500 million railway project at The Port of Los Angeles. The Los Angeles Board of Harbor Commissioners are scheduled to cast their vote on an Environmental Impact Report (EIR) for the project that some community leaders say will increase pollution in the area. Posted. http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2013/03/07/critics-warn-of-increased-pollution-if-rail-yard-built-near-port-of-la/ REGION: More aggregate mines needed, report says. California and parts of the Inland area need more aggregate mines to meet future demand and prevent higher construction costs and air pollution, according to a new state report. The findings of the California Geological Survey report mirror arguments made by mine developer Granite Construction during its failed bid to build Liberty Quarry outside Temecula. But quarry opponents and Temecula officials said fears of an aggregate shortage are overblown. Posted. http://www.pe.com/local-news/politics/jeff-horseman-headlines/20130306-region-more-aggregate-mines-needed-report-says.ece Mont. power plant sued over pollution controls. Environmental groups filed a federal lawsuit Wednesday against the owners of Montana's massive Colstrip coal-fired power plant, seeking to force the installation of more pollution controls at the decades-old facility. The Montana Environmental Information Center and Sierra Club also asked the U.S. District Court in Billings to issue penalties for alleged emissions violations. The center's Anne Hedges said the penalties could total many millions of dollars for violations over 20 years. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2013/mar/06/mont-power-plant-sued-over-pollution-controls/#ixzz2MsGleb5L CLIMATE CHANGE Canada's Arctic glaciers headed for unstoppable thaw: study. Canadian glaciers that are the world's third biggest store of ice after Antarctica and Greenland seem headed for an irreversible melt that will push up sea levels, scientists said on Thursday. About 20 percent of the ice in glaciers, on islands such as Ellesmere or Devon off northern Canada, could vanish by the end of the 21st century in a melt that would add 3.5 cm (1.4 inch) to global sea levels, they said. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/07/us-climate-canada-idUSBRE92613N20130307 Report: Most insurers not prepared for climate change. Are insurers ready for the risks posed by climate change? New study finds most aren't fully prepared, but the industry says it can handle claims. Most insurance companies do not have comprehensive strategies to cope with climate change despite mounting weather-related claims, says a report to be released Thursday. Posted. http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/03/07/insurance-industry-climate-change/1968003/ FUELS W. Pa. health board seeks 24-hour drilling notice. The Allegheny County Board of Health wants natural gas companies to provide 24-hour advance notice before drilling starts. The board passed the recommendation unanimously Wednesday night. Authorities say they want the advance notice so air pollution can be monitored at drill sites. Pittsburgh is in Allegheny County. The requirement covers shale gas extraction, including well drilling and hydraulic fracturing, or fracking. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/news/science/article/W-Pa-health-board-seeks-24-hour-drilling-notice-4335731.php#ixzz2MsrhehtK Can this contraption make fracking greener? Although natural gas production emits less CO2 than other fossil fuels, it still spits plenty of junk into the atmosphere. But backers of a new gadget released Monday say they’ve hit on a way to help frackers clean up their act. Boosters of natural gas often flaunt the stuff as a “clean” fossil fuel, because when it burns — in a power plant, say — it releases far less carbon dioxide than coal or oil. Posted. http://grist.org/climate-energy/can-this-contraption-make-fracking-greener/ VEHICLES Subaru recalls vehicles over engines that may start on their own. Subaru of America is recalling more than 47,000 cars and sport utility vehicles because their engines might start on their own. Several models are involved. The recall includes model year 2010 to 2013 Legacy passenger cars and Outback SUVs equipped with an automatic or CVT transmission and an Audiovox remote engine starter (RES) accessory. It also includes 2012-13 Imprezas and 2013 XV Crosstrek SUVs equipped with a CVT transmission…Posted. http://www.latimes.com/business/autos/la-fi-hy-subaru-recall-20130307,0,7452758.story http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/News-Summary-Subaru-recalls-47-000-vehicles-4336768.php Study finds that increased vehicle travel and decreased occupancy have undercut the impact of improving fuel economy over last 40 years. A new study by Dr. Michael Sivak, Director, Sustainable Worldwide Transportation, University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI), has found that from 1970-2010, an increase in vehicle distance travelled in the US, coupled with a decrease in the number of occupants in the vehicles, combined to undercut the impact of advances in vehicle fuel economy during that period. Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2013/03/sivak-20130306.html GREEN ENERGY Walgreen attempts to go "green" in energy-producing store. Walgreen Co is getting behind the "green" part of its name, as it aims to build what it believes will be the first store in the United States to produce at least as much energy as it consumes. The largest U.S. drugstore chain is preparing to build the "net zero energy" store in Evanston, Illinois, less than 20 miles (32 km) from its headquarters in Deerfield, Illinois. That location provides relatively easy access for its engineers to measure the store's performance. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/03/07/walgreen-environment-idUSL1N0BYFH520130307 U.S. has energy trade surplus with China. American clean-energy companies racked up a $1.6 billion trade surplus with China in 2011, according to a report issued Wednesday. That's right - surplus. The report from the Pew Charitable Trusts contradicts the widely held belief that China has overtaken U.S. leadership in clean technologies, a belief reinforced by the collapse of Fremont solar company Solyndra. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/business/article/U-S-has-energy-trade-surplus-with-China-4334788.php#ixzz2MsRsPpc2 Calif. urged to integrate energy policies. California has adopted so many different policies to change the way we generate and use energy that the state now needs to figure out how they all fit together and how much they'll cost. That's one of the central messages of a new report that surveys clean-tech executives in California. The report, issued by the Advanced Energy Economy business group, argues that looming problems could stymie the growth of the clean-energy economy that California officials have worked so hard to nurture. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/business/article/Calif-urged-to-integrate-energy-policies-4329633.php#ixzz2Msr1DozD Jewell pledges balanced approach on energy. President Barack Obama's nominee for Interior secretary is pledging a balanced approach to energy that would expand and diversify production on public lands while preserving protection on certain land and water. Recreational Equipment Inc. president and chief executive Sally Jewell tells a Senate committee she supports Obama's "all-of-the-above" energy strategy that embraces fossil fuels such as oil, natural gas and coal, as well as renewable sources such as wind and solar. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/news/science/article/Jewell-pledges-balanced-approach-on-energy-4336200.php#ixzz2MsycOgqF California Leads Nation In Creation Of Green Jobs. A new report finds California had nearly a quarter of all green jobs created last year. Environmental Entrepreneurs tracks the creation of green jobs on a monthly basis. The 2012 wrap-up found firms announced the creation of 110,000 green jobs last year. About 26,000 of those jobs were in California. The positions range from jobs created by solar and wind farms to positions needed to build large mass transit projects. Posted. http://www.kpbs.org/news/2013/mar/06/green-jobs-california-lead-nation/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+kpbs%2Flocal+%28KPBS+News%3A+Local+Headlines%29 Mandatory Solar May Come To One California City. If one Antelope Valley mayor has his way, his city will soon become the first in the nation to require solar panels on all new homes built in the city limits. Lancaster Mayor R. Rex Parris tells ReWire that a decision on the potentially precedent-setting change to the city's zoning laws could come from the Lancaster City Council in as little as two weeks. Under Parris' proposed zoning change, residences built in Lancaster after January 1, 2014 would need to have associated solar generation either built in…Posted. http://www.kcet.org/news/rewire/solar/photovoltaic-pv/mandatory-solar-may-come-to-lancaster.html MISCELLANEOUS 'Greedy Lying Bastards' review: falls short. "Greedy Lying Bastards" is a provocative premise for a documentary: The oil industry and various groups are thwarting progress on battling climate change, in the face of meteorological disasters and mounting scientific evidence that humans cause global warming. But this film spends a lot of time telling, rather than showing, at least when it comes to the greedy, lying bastards whom we are eager to learn about. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/entertainment/article/Greedy-Lying-Bastards-review-falls-short-4336604.php#ixzz2Mst0BZnD Researchers offer 'unprecedented' method to efficiently capture carbon. An international team of chemists announced it has discovered a new use for an existing material that could separate carbon dioxide from waste streams at power plants and drilling sites in a cheaper and more efficient manner than current technology. The team from the University of South Florida and King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) in Saudi Arabia found that an existing material that is water-resistant, relatively inexpensive and reusable can be very effective at capturing carbon for commercial application…Posted. http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2013/03/07/15 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY OPINIONS Viewpoints: Investment needed in new low-carbon fuel. Large oil companies like to tell the public "We Agree" when it comes to clean energy. But in Sacramento and Washington, their motto seems to be "It Can't Be Done." A Jan. 31 article in the San Jose Mercury News, "Chevron and its allies take aim at California's low carbon fuel standard," demonstrates how the oil industry has once again banded together to oppose groundbreaking environmental initiatives. Passed by Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger in 2007…Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2013/03/07/5242551/investment-needed-in-new-low-carbon.html#storylink=cpy Documentary goes after global warming deniers with the gloves off. Seven years after "An Inconvenient Truth," what has changed in the world's efforts to come to grips with global warming? The scientific consensus has firmed up, even further. Public opinion has, at last, fallen in line with the science, assisted by any number of in-your-face extreme weather events - epic droughts, record ice melts, multiple applications of the phrase "storm of the century." But action? Nothing. By anyone. Posted. http://www.fresnobee.com/2013/03/07/3202194/documentary-goes-after-global.html#storylink=misearch CEQA reform: Time for meaningful changes to 43-year-old landmark law. According to recent public polling, voters are feeling more optimistic about the direction of the state and more confident in the ability of elected officials to solve California's problems. At the same time, voters express the desire to enhance the slowly recovering economy while advancing environmental protections to keep California both golden and green. Posted. http://www.mercurynews.com/opinion/ci_22722092/ceqa-reform BLOGS A Communications Scholar Analyzes Bill McKibben’s Path on Climate. Bill McKibben and I have been on parallel but very different journeys related to human-driven global warming since the greenhouse effect first became front-page news back in the late 1980s (examples here and here). (Our video chat above was done in December for my Pace University blogging class.) Posted. http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/03/07/a-communications-scholar-analyzes-bill-mckibbens-path-on-climate/ Solar Eclipse. The Egyptian pound is weakening at an alarming rate. Hard currency reserves are dwindling. Unemployment is up; investment is down. Imports are being restricted, and banks are no longer giving out loans. The list of worrisome indicators goes on, but there is no word that better encapsulates the severity of Egypt’s economic situation than “solar.” Posted. http://latitude.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/03/07/diesel-fuel-the-leading-concern-of-most-egyptians/ Learning from the cap-and-trade debate. Two months ago, my report “Naming the Problem: What It Will Take to Counter Extremism and Engage Americans in the Fight Against Global Warming” [PDF] was posted online (along with an important companion report, “The Too Polite Revolution” [PDF], by journalists Petra Bartosiewicz and Marissa Miley). These reports probed what happened with the big push for cap-and-trade legislation in 2009 and 2010, and mine used the results of months of research to place this episode within the larger political trends that have been playing out in U.S. politics in recent years. Posted. http://grist.org/politics/learning-from-the-cap-and-trade-debate/ Poll: Most Americans See Population Growth as Threat to Wildlife, Climate. If you feel like our crowded planet is taking a tough toll on the wild, you're not alone. A new poll finds a clear majority of Americans believe the world's growing human population is driving wildlife species toward extinction and is making climate change worse. Respondents also said addressing the human population -- which topped 7 billion in 2011 -- is an important environmental issue and that society has a "moral obligation" to address wildlife extinctions related to population growth. Posted. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/jerry-karnas/poll-most-americans-see-p_b_2828624.html?utm_hp_ref=climate-change