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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for July 18, 2013. Posted: 18 Jul 2013 15:57:44
ARB Newsclips for July 18, 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 PG&E, Wildlife Group Unite to Back Foreign Offsets in California. Pacific Gas & Electric Co., Southern California Edison and the Wildlife Conservation Society joined forces today to endorse a plan that would allow California companies to use credits from forestry projects overseas to comply with state emissions limits. An advisory panel is issuing recommendations today on how to implement the plan. Posted. http://www.businessweek.com/news/2013-07-18/pg-and-e-wildlife-group-unite-to-back-foreign-offsets-in-california Northeast cuts power plant polluting allowances. Less carbon dioxide is polluting the air in the Northeast, prompting state environmental officials to cut allowances for emissions in one of only two cap-and-trade programs in the United States. Officials in all six New England states and Delaware, Maryland and New York are putting in place new rules, adjusting the limit on emissions for 2014 to 91 million tons of carbon dioxide from 165 million tons. Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/AP1c80104f3fb9431ebdb29eac3ac2dae4.html#printMode Cap-and-trade officials float the possibility of more free allowances for industry. California officials are planning to give more emissions permits away for free to refineries, metal manufacturers and other industries that are vulnerable to competition from outside the state, according to proposed changes to the nation's largest trading program for greenhouse gases. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059984616/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY Conservatives attack each other over carbon tax plans. Conservative critics of taxing carbon launched a campaign yesterday to discredit Republican voices that describe the climate policy as a winning solution for the party and the economy. In related maneuvering, Republican energy lobbyists are urging House leaders to vote on a resolution that denounces a carbon tax before the August recess. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059984618/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY AIR POLLUTION INTERVIEW-China asks EU for aid in curbing pollution - EU environment chief. China has asked the European Union to help it tackle some of its most severe pollution problems, the EU's environment commissioner said on Thursday, underscoring Beijing's concerns about addressing a key source of social discontent. The European Union and China, the world's biggest carbon dioxide emitter, have frequently clashed over climate policy. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/07/18/china-eu-environment-idUSL4N0FL0VB20130718 More EU states could block Daimler sales in coolant row. More European Union countries could join France in blocking registrations of new Daimler AG vehicles using a banned coolant, after EU governments agreed on Wednesday to take action against the German carmaker. France has halted registrations of Mercedes A-Class, B-Class and SL cars assembled after June because of Daimler's refusal to stop using the refrigerant R134a, which was banned throughout the bloc from the start of this year. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/07/17/eu-daimler-coolant-idUSL6N0FN3PP20130717 CLIMATE CHANGE State receives a menu of climate change options. Washington now has a list of programs worldwide from which to steal, or borrow, as a legislative panel tackles climate change in this state. The panel's consultant — Science Application International Corp. of Virginia — has done some initial sifting through worldwide climate change fix-it ventures to study, and SAIC presented that list to a panel of two Republican and two Democratic legislators led by Gov. Jay Inslee on Wednesday. Posted. http://crosscut.com/2013/07/18/environment/115604/state-has-menu-climate-change-options/ As ice melts, U.S. remains unprepared to police open sea. Last year, 46 vessels traversed Arctic waters, 10 times the number in 2010. Sea ice extent in the Arctic has declined by roughly 3 percent a decade since the 1970s. By 2060, open-water vessels may regularly travel the Northwest Passage, according to a study this year. With those numbers in mind, federal and military officials said yesterday that there is a massive need for additional research and mapping of Arctic areas to improve safety for drillers and commercial and military boats…Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059984615/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY Scientists see runoff accelerating the surprising melt in Greenland's interior ice. In an Arctic battle between water-as-liquid and water-as-ice, liquid seems to be winning. At least that's what researcher Thomas Phillips, a glaciologist from the Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) at the University of Colorado, Boulder, has found. Phillips studies melting on the Greenland ice sheet. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059984617/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY As CO2 concentrations increase, so does wetlands' ability to absorb it. A study carried out over nearly two decades in a Maryland marsh shows that wetland ecosystems might be able to absorb more carbon dioxide in the future if greenhouse gas levels continue their relentless rise. Beginning in 1987, when the atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide was only at 340 parts per million (it surpassed 400 ppm in May)…Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059984592/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY Spike in allergy symptoms may be linked to global warming. Researchers at the University of Massachusetts, Amherst, are studying the links between global warming and a recent spike in people suffering from allergies. Rising temperatures are causing plants to flower earlier, lengthening the allergy season by two to three weeks, and increased levels of carbon dioxide are leading to greater pollen creation. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059984588/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY FUELS California officials wrestle with handling trade secrets on fracking. State officials have been flooded with more than 20,000 comments and suggestions regarding proposed regulations of a controversial oil and gas drilling technique known as fracking, officials said Wednesday. Members of the California Water Commission voiced concerns of their own Wednesday about whether the state should treat the recipes for some fracking liquids as trade secrets, not to be disclosed to the public. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/local/political/la-me-pc-fracking-rules-developing-20130717,0,2605370.story?track=rss Air Force Considers More Drilling Off California Coast. The U.S. Military has taken the lead in getting the nation off fossil fuels and onto renewable energy in a series of well-thought-out programs over the past few years. This isn't one of them. In an announcement Wednesday, the Air Force announced it would be studying the possibility of drilling slantwise from Vandenberg Air Force Base near Lompoc into oil reserves off the California coast. Posted. http://www.kcet.org/news/rewire/petroleum/air-force-considers-more-drilling-off-california-coast.html Is Arctic oil exploration dead in the U.S.? A year ago this September, Royal Dutch Shell PLC began the first new oil drilling in U.S. Arctic waters in more than two decades. The company spent $5 billion and dispatched an armada of ships and equipment to offshore Alaska to evaluate the energy resources on its federal leases. From the beginning, however, Shell's operation faced a multitude of problems -- everything from lingering sea ice to a damaged oil spill containment dome. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/energywire/stories/1059984582/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY AAA chapter says oil group's ad misrepresents ethanol position. A state chapter of North America's largest motor club is accusing the oil and gas industry's largest trade group of misrepresenting its position on ethanol in a new ad campaign seeking repeal of the renewable fuel standard. The television ad by the American Petroleum Institute began airing in several states and Washington, D.C., early this week and features a mechanic discussing the alleged pitfalls of increasing the amount of ethanol in gasoline. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/greenwire/stories/1059984650/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONL VEHICLES Exclusive: GM delays Chevy Cruze debut by a year – sources. General Motors Co has delayed the launch of the next-generation Chevrolet Cruze by a year due to engineering changes and a desire to squeeze more sales from the small car before it is redesigned, people familiar with the U.S. automaker's plans said. The next version of the Cruze, which had originally been scheduled to debut in late 2014, will now begin production in December 2015, said the sources, most of whom asked not to be identified in discussing GM's plans. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/07/17/us-autos-gm-cruze-idUSBRE96G1F720130717 http://www.freep.com/article/20130718/BUSINESS0103/307180029/chrysler-fiat-500E-hybrids-electric-vehicles L.A. Expands Electric Car Charger Program. An effort by the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power to promote customer installations of chargers for electric cars was so successful that the utility is expanding it. LADWP will be offering rebates up to $750 for residents and businesses in its service area who install fast charging stations. Posted. http://www.kcet.org/news/rewire/transportation/dwp-boosts-subsidies-for-personal-car-chargers.html GREEN ENERGY SoftBank Forms a Fuel Cell Venture With a Silicon Valley Start-Up. When Masayoshi Son, SoftBank’s chief executive, first visited the Silicon Valley fuel cell start-up Bloom Energy late last year, one word came to his mind: crazy. But the fuel cell technology — which promised efficient, cleaner and increasingly inexpensive “energy in a box” — intrigued him. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/18/business/global/softbank-forms-fuel-cell-venture-with-silicon-valley-start-up.html?_r=0&pagewanted=print Seattle's cost-saving pilot program may help commercialize energy efficiency. The first commercial application of metered energy efficiency, a pilot program at an early stage in Seattle, was highlighted as a prime case study during a forum at the World Bank this week. The meeting between the Energy Efficiency Community of Practice and the International Finance Corp. explored upcoming models in energy efficiency …Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059984614/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY Sierra Club victory halts plans for trash-burning plant. The Superior Court of Arizona has ruled in favor of the Sierra Club in a move that blocks plans for a trash-burning power plant west of Phoenix. The Arizona Corporation Commission requires utilities to get 15 percent of their electricity from renewable sources. Originally, the rules did not count trash burning as a form of renewable energy. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/greenwire/stories/1059984640/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY MISCELLANEOUS Curiosity rover confirms Martian air is mostly CO2. The Curiosity rover has tasted Mars' air: It's made mostly of carbon dioxide with hints of other gases. The measurements by the most advanced spacecraft to land on the red planet closely match what the twin Viking landers detected in the late 1970s and what scientists have gleaned from Martian meteorites — rock fragments that fell to Earth. Mars' atmosphere is overwhelmingly dominated by carbon dioxide, unlike Earth's air, which is a mix of nitrogen and oxygen. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/news/science/article/Curiosity-rover-confirms-Martian-air-is-mostly-CO2-4672716.php Water Birds Turning Up Dead at Solar Projects in the Desert. Big desert solar installations have a problem: They seem to be imperiling water birds. A ReWire investigation has revealed that since mid-March, two large industrial solar power plants in California's remote, arid desert may have killed or injured more than 20 birds commonly associated with lakes or wetlands rather than the open desert surrounding the projects. Posted. http://www.kcet.org/news/rewire/solar/water-birds-turning-up-dead-at-solar-projects-in-desert.html OPINIONS UN joins global warming craze, blames 'humanity's emissions'. The United Nations agency that charts worldwide weather has charged that "human-caused climate change" helped make the last decade the hottest on record, due to "humanity's emissions" of carbons and other chemicals into the atmosphere. The World Meteorological Organization, the U.N.'s Swiss-based weather outfit, said in a new report of climate extremes from 2001-2010 that nature played a role, but that man and worldwide development are responsible for the trend up in temperatures. Posted. http://washingtonexaminer.com/article/2533200 Oil Industry Should Blame Itself For Federal Fracking Rules. When it comes to regulation, the oil and gas industry needs rules that encourage best practices. Too often, it settles for guidelines that support the lowest common denominator. That seems to be what U.S. Interior Secretary Sally Jewell was getting at in defending federal rules on hydraulic fracturing before the House Natural Resources Committee. Posted. http://www.forbes.com/sites/lorensteffy/2013/07/18/oil-industry-should-blame-itself-for-federal-fracking-rules/ The Real Keystone 'Atrocity:' Environmental Hyperbole. Regardless of how much oil the Keystone XL pipeline actually moves someday, it has already tapped into an unlimited reservoir of rhetoric from the environmental community. The latest comes from former Vice President Al Gore, who declared that the pipeline is “an atrocity” and called on President Obama to veto it.Gore’s hyperbole follows that of Robert Redford, who last year called Keystone “one of the most nightmarish fossil fuel projects of our time.” Posted. http://www.forbes.com/sites/lorensteffy/2013/06/17/the-real-keystone-atrocity-environmental-hyperbole/ BLOGS A U.S. Battery Recycler Says We Should Keep the Lead In. Building on a recent guest post describing how exports of old car batteries from the United States are creating a toxic trail in poorer nations, here’s a “Your Dot” contribution from Robert E. Finn, the president of RSR Corporation, a company that smelts recycled lead here at home. Finn focuses on the need to improve the environmental performance of his industry. Posted. http://dotearth.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/07/18/a-u-s-battery-recycler-says-we-should-keep-the-lead-in/?partner=rss&emc=rss Unpacking ARB's Proposed Cap-and-Trade Amendments. The California Air Resources Board just released a sweeping set of proposed amendments to the cap-and-trade program, a key element of the state’s comprehensive effort to cut greenhouse gas emissions under AB 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act. The amendments offered earlier this week cover a wide range of issues that are the subject of a workshop today (July 18). Posted. http://switchboard.nrdc.org/blogs/ajackson/unpacking_arbs_proposed_cap-an.html Climate change forces US Forest Service to shift its strategy on larger fires. Climate change is forcing the US Forest Service to rethink how it fights large wildfires. Global warming has increased the intensity of fires, forcing the USFS to spend more and more of its money fighting them. Now the agency has decided that it should be less aggressive in attacking big blazes, so long as they are not threatening property. In 1991, the US Forest Service’s spent 13 percent of its budget on fire management. Posted. http://www.scpr.org/blogs/environment/2013/07/17/14287/climate-change-forces-us-forest-service-to-shift-i/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+893KpccSouthernCaliforniaNews+%28KPCC%3A+News%29 How Fracking Affects Your Farmer's Market. As we become more careful about what we put into our bodies, options and opportunities to be more health conscious abound: organic, non-GMO, gluten free...the list goes on. Will we soon be adding frack-free to this growing list? And even if we wanted to, would we have enough information to be able to? As a quick reminder, fracking is a drilling technique that involves the fracturing of rock through the use of high-pressure…Posted. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/maria-rodale/how-fracking-affects-your_b_3613373.html