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newsclips -- Newsclips for June 14, 2013 Posted: 14 Jun 2013 11:42:31
ARB Newsclips for June 14, 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. CAP AND TRADE Brown: Prop. 39 helps justify disputed $500 million cap-and-trade loan. Gov. Brown said his plan to take $500 million from California's cap-and-trade auction funds -- money that was intended to directly further efforts to fight greenhouse gas emissions -- is a "reasonable accommodation" aided in part by voters' approval last year of a measure to raise corporate taxes. "We had Proposition 39 funding for many of these projects," Brown told a Capitol news conference. The $500 million loan is part of the governor's 2013-14 state budget draft, which was approved Monday by a two-house conference committee. It now goes to the floors of the Assembly and Senate for a vote by Saturday, the constitutional deadline to send the budget to the governor's desk. Posted. http://www.capitolweekly.net/article.php?xid=11hxeq3vjeqluqa AIR POLLUTION Air pollution can cause heart arrhythmias (study). For people with existing heart problems, exposure to high levels of air pollution can trigger the irregular heartbeats that may lead to a stroke or heart attack, according to a new study. Past research has linked air pollution to ventricular fibrillation, electrical confusion in the lower chambers of the heart which can cause sudden death. The new study also finds an association with atrial fibrillation (AF), erratic quivering in the heart's upper chambers and the most common type of irregular heartbeat. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/06/13/us-air-pollution-heart-idUSBRE95C0UO20130613 http://www.dailynews.com/ci_23459073/air-pollution-can-cause-heart-arrhythmias-study?IADID=Search-www.dailynews.com-www.dailynews.com http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_23459074/air-pollution-can-cause-heart-arrhythmias-study?IADID=Search-www.insidebayarea.com-www.insidebayarea.com http://www.mercurynews.com/ci_23459073/air-pollution-can-cause-heart-arrhythmias-study?IADID=Search-www.mercurynews.com-www.mercurynews.com China Vows Fresh Measures to Fight Air Pollution. China on Friday announced a series of measures aimed at cleaning up the nation's badly polluted air, pledging to speed up the elimination of outdated factory equipment and boost the supply of clean energy. "The control of air pollution is not only an important matter concerning people's livelihoods but also an opportunity to upgrade the economy," the State Council, or cabinet, said in a statement posted on the central government website. The authorities will speed up efforts to eliminate outdated equipment and close obsolete plants in key industries, such as steel, cement and electrolytic aluminum, the statement said. These are sectors where China is grappling with overcapacity. Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/BT-CO-20130614-704435.html?mod=googlenews_wsj CLIMATE CHANGE UN climate talks marred by decision-making spat. U.N. climate talks have hit a stumbling block that some delegates say poses a serious challenge to their already slow-moving effort to craft a global response to climate change. As the latest negotiation session ended Friday in the German city of Bonn, one track of the talks was paralyzed by a request by Russia, Ukraine and Belarus to review the decision-making procedure in the two-decade-long U.N. process. Posted. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/E/EU_UN_CLIMATE_TALKS?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/europe/un-climate-talks-marred-by-dispute-over-how-decisions-are-made-in-2-decade-long-process/2013/06/14/61cfd2b0-d50a-11e2-b3a2-3bf5eb37b9d0_story.html http://www.modbee.com/2013/06/14/2762635/un-climate-talks-marred-by-decision.html US researchers explore deep Caribbean reefs. Scientists with the Smithsonian Institution have discovered at least one new fish species at a deep reef off Curacao while conducting a yearlong project to gather data on temperature and biodiversity for monitoring climate change effects in the Caribbean. The discovery occurred in recent weeks off the southern edge of the Dutch Caribbean island as scientists used a submarine to explore depths up to 1,000 feet (305 meters). Dr. Carole Baldwin, a Smithsonian research zoologist, told The Associated Press on Thursday that the team is studying 25 to 30 other specimens of fish and invertebrates collected during the trip that they believe are new species. Posted. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/C/CB_CARIBBEAN_PROTECTING_REEFS?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_23459651/us-researchers-explore-deep-caribbean-reefs?IADID=Search-www.insidebayarea.com-www.insidebayarea.com http://www.dailynews.com/ci_23459651/us-researchers-explore-deep-caribbean-reefs?IADID=Search-www.dailynews.com-www.dailynews.com http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/US-researchers-explore-deep-Caribbean-reefs-4599310.php Climate change could slash snowfall in Southern California mountains. Climate change is likely to wipe a lot of the white from those postcard winter scenes of Los Angeles ringed by snow-capped mountains, according to new research. A UCLA study released Friday projects a significant decline in snowfall on the ranges that provide a dramatic backdrop to urban Southern California. By mid-century, the amount of snow draping the mountains could decrease 30% to 40%, researchers say. If greenhouse gas emissions continue unabated, the ranges could lose two-thirds of their snow by century’s end. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/news/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-southern-california-snow-20130614,0,1562365.story DIESEL EMISSIONS California's efforts to clean up diesel engines have helped reduce impact of climate change on state, study finds. Reductions in emissions of black carbon since the late 1980s, mostly from diesel engines as a result of air quality programs, have resulted in a measurable reduction of concentrations of global warming pollutants in the atmosphere, according to a first-of-its-kind study examining the impact of black carbon on California's climate. The study, funded by the California Air Resources Board and led by Dr. Veerabhadran Ramanathan of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California, San Diego, estimates that reductions in black carbon as a result of clean air regulations were equivalent to reducing carbon dioxide emissions in California by 21 million metric tons annually or taking more than 4 million cars off California roads every year. Posted. http://phys.org/news/2013-06-california-efforts-diesel-impact-climate.html http://www.truckinginfo.com/news/story/2013/06/carb-report-claims-success-with-diesel-emissions-regulations.aspx?prestitial=1 Supreme Court strikes down parts of L.A. port's Clean Truck Program. The Supreme Court handed the American Trucking Assn. a partial victory on Thursday, ruling that drivers don't have to affix the "How am I driving?" placards on its trucks or have off-site parking plans in order to haul goods in and out of the Port of Los Angeles. The trucking association sued the city of Los Angeles, which operates the port, to overturn the Clean Truck Program. The program, enacted in 2008 to curb pollution at the largest port in the country, sought to restrict the types of trucks that carried goods to and from the port. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/business/money/la-fi-mo-supreme-court-partially-strikes-down-port-of-la-clean-truck-program-20130613,0,5318959.story Other related stories: http://losangeles.cbslocal.com/2013/06/13/supreme-court-strikes-down-clean-trucks-program-at-port-of-la/ http://www.scpr.org/news/2013/06/13/37706/supreme-court-overturns-part-of-port-of-los-angele/ http://www.labusinessjournal.com/news/2013/jun/13/high-court-weakens-ports-clean-truck-program/ http://www.dailybreeze.com/news/ci_23453261/port-los-angeles-clean-trucks-program-takes-hit FUELS Study: CA’s low carbon fuel standard will work. To hear the oil industry tell it, California’s “low carbon fuel standard” is a train wreck waiting to happen. The standard, adopted by state air quality regulators in 2009, requires oil companies to cut the greenhouse gas emissions associated with fuel they sell in the state. By 2020, the “carbon intensity” of California fuels is supposed to fall 10 percent. The oil industry has fought back, challenging the standard in court. There aren’t enough advanced biofuels available, the industry argues, to make the system work. The state wants oil companies to rely on products that just aren’t there, at least not in the quantities required. Posted. http://blog.sfgate.com/energy/2013/06/12/study-cas-low-carbon-fuel-standard-will-work/ VEHICLES Good-bye granola: Hybrid cars go ainstream in California. At least one East Coast stereotype about California may be on the mark: we love our hybrid cars — especially the Prius. Toyota’s iconic gas-electric vehicle became the No. 1 selling car or light truck in California last year, topping perennial winners like the Toyota Camry and Ford F-150 pickup. Prius jumped to the top spot from No. 4 in 2011, a surge fueled in part by the introduction of three new Prius models. BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY. Posted. http://www.bizjournals.com/sacramento/print-edition/2013/06/14/hybrid-cars-go-mainstream-california.html?ana=e_sac_rdup&s=newsletter&ed=2013-06-14&u=tHaD45CBIIz237t8xB++mpJf+Dd&t=1371224735 California awards $18 million to build hydrogen fueling stations. Projects supporting California’s hydrogen fuel cell infrastructure will see a hefty boost thanks to more than $18 million in grant funding, the state’s Energy Commission announced this week. The agency’s dollars will go toward installing, or in some cases upgrading, hydrogen fuel stations in several counties around Southern California. Ranging in size from $1.5 million to more than $6.6 million, the five awards come through the Energy Commission’s Alternative and Renewable Fuel and Vehicle Technology Program. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/business/autos/la-fi-hy-fuel-cell-grants-20130613,0,520900.story GREEN ENERGY Solar power hits state records. Solar power generation is rising in California, breaking records twice in the past week. On Friday, the state hit an all-time high output of 2,071 megawatts of electrical generation 12:59 p.m. That record was broken again at 12:53 p.m. on Monday, when output reached 2,104 megawatts. It was just last September that California for the first time peaked at 1,000 megawatts. Posted. http://www.bizjournals.com/sacramento/news/2013/06/13/solar-power-hits-state-records.html?ana=RSS&s=article_search&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+bizj_sacramento+%28Sacramento+Business+Journal%29 OPINION Another View: State shouldn't spend cap-and-trade cash while court cases are under review. Most financial planners would discourage a family from borrowing more money than they may be able to pay back. The same sound advice would also apply to the state of California and its plan to "loan" $500 million from the Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund to its general fund. The problem is that substantial legal questions still surround how that money was "taxed" and taken from Californians, and whether the process should be stopped and the money collected to date refunded. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2013/06/14/5495790/state-shouldnt-spend-cap-and-trade.html Long Beach port at critical crossroads. There have been many critical times in the 100-plus years of the port of Long Beach, but none were more serious than what the port is going through now. The port continues to face increased global competition. To keep pace and move ahead, the port is spending billions on major initiatives like the Middle Harbor container terminal, a new Gerald Desmond bridge and other facility upgrades. Posted. http://www.presstelegram.com/opinions/ci_23446702/long-beach-port-at-critical-crossroads-editorial BLOGS Talking Climate Online With David Roberts of Grist. David Roberts of the green blog Grist and I have a constructive, if sometimes prickly, relationship as nodes in the network of online communicators focused on human-driven climate change. I’m in a camp he sometimes refers to as “Very Serious People” (the capital letters are required and it’s not a compliment most of the time). He’s in a category whose members sometimes call themselves “dirty hippies.” Posted. http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/06/14/talking-climate-online-with-david-roberts-of-grist/ Global warming appears to have slowed lately. That’s no reason to celebrate. A few things stand out. First, the planet has grown considerably warmer since mid-century, by more than half a degree Celsius. Second, even if the overall trend is upward, there’s a fair bit of variation year to year. Some of that, as we can see, has to do with El Niño and La Niña cycles, which can shift heat into and out of the ocean. There’s a third aspect of this chart, however, that’s getting a barrage of attention lately. The past decade has clearly been the warmest decade on record. But the pace of warming in the last 15 years has been slower than it was in the 20 years before that. And that’s despite the fact that greenhouse gases are piling up in the atmosphere at a record pace. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/wonkblog/wp/2013/06/14/global-warming-appears-to-have-slowed-lately-thats-no-reason-to-celebrate/ May new-vehicle fleetwide fuel-economy remains at record 23.7 mpg. Former NBA great Shaquille O'Neal retired with a career scoring average of 23.7 points per game. And like Shaq's scoring average, the new-vehicle fleetwide fuel economy mpg number doesn't want to budge, either. May was the third straight month that fleetwide fuel economy stayed at 23.7 miles per gallon, according to TrueCar. That's a monthly record, but year-over-year, fuel economy was up 0.6 mpg, with Nissan and Chrysler having particularly strong gains. Posted. http://green.autoblog.com/2013/06/13/may-new-vehicle-fleetwide-fuel-economy-remains-a-record-23-mpg/ Automakers top annual list of greenest global brands. When Interbrand released its report on the greenest global business brands earlier this week, automakers topped the list. But while the industry has made gains, it isn’t a bastion of green policies and often fights the efforts by regulators to reduce emissions. “The question remains as to whether the auto industry continues to invest in fuel economy and zero emission technologies or will they fight back whenever there is a periodic review,” said Simon Mui, director of the California vehicles and fuels office at the Natural Resources Defense Council. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/business/autos/la-fi-hy-ford-sustainability-report-20130614,0,6123667.story