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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for September 25, 2013. Posted: 25 Sep 2013 15:08:16
ARB Newsclips for September 25, 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 Lawsuit: Pollution from fire making residents sick. About a dozen Slaughter residents allege respiratory problems and diminished property values in a lawsuit filed in the wake of the Nov. 19 blaze that destroyed the Monolyte Laboratories Inc. chemical facility. The Advocate reports the suit, filed Tuesday in state District Court in Baton Rouge, seeks an unspecified amount of damages from Monolyte and several other companies. Posted. http://www.modbee.com/2013/09/25/2940321/lawsuit-pollution-from-fire-making.html#storylink=cpy http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/Lawsuit-Pollution-from-fire-making-residents-sick-4841590.php This Map Shows Where You're Most Likely To Die From Air Pollution. A toxic type of outdoor air pollution, known as fine particulate matter (PM 2.5), causes 2.1 million deaths worldwide each year, according to a July study led by University of North Carolina earth scientist Jason West. The researchers measured human-caused air pollution around the world based on the difference in pollution levels between 1850 and 2000. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/This-Map-Shows-Where-You-re-Most-Likely-To-Die-4841225.php CLIMATE CHANGE UC Davis to lead national climate change study. The University of California, Davis, has been awarded an $11 million federal grant to lead a study of how to reduce the impact the nation's transportation system has on climate change. The Sacramento Bee reports the school was chosen this week in a national competition by the U.S. Department of Transportation. Posted. http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2013/sep/25/uc-davis-to-lead-national-climate-change-study/ http://www.sacbee.com/2013/09/25/5765465/uc-davis-to-lead-national-climate.html#mi_rss=Our%20Region Alameda Point studies threat of rising sea level. Plan on moving to Alameda Point someday? You might want to pack a swimsuit and snorkel. Much of the former Naval Air Station - site of a projected 1,425-home development - will be underwater by the end of the century due to sea level rise brought on by climate change, according to the city's draft environmental impact report on the project released this month. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/science/article/Alameda-Point-studies-threat-of-rising-sea-level-4840453.php DIESEL EMISSIONS California Truckers Say They're Choking on State's Emission Rules. Truck operators in California are complaining that several new rules issued by the state’s Air Resources Board (CARB) are either too costly or impossible to comply with, given current engine and fuel technology. In at least one case, industry charges, a diesel soot filter mandated by CARB caused a major fire in Washington state, leading to the destruction of nearly 4,000 acres of forest and grassland. Posted. http://www.forbes.com/sites/robertbowman/2013/09/24/california-truckers-say-theyre-choking-on-states-emission-rules/ Black Carbon Reduction Efforts Win Bipartisan Support. U.S. senators from both parties on Tuesday called for increased funding to reduce so-called black carbon emissions from diesel engines, criticizing the Obama administration for cutting a program that provides financial incentives for owners to retrofit or replace their equipment. The Diesel Emissions Reduction Program was originally authorized for $200 million per year when it was created in 2005…Posted. http://www.law360.com/environmental/articles/474827/black-carbon-reduction-efforts-win-bipartisan-support BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY FUELS U.S. senator asks CFTC to look into biofuel credit pricing. The head of the Senate Agriculture Committee asked the regulator of U.S. futures markets on Tuesday to probe whether traders manipulated the price of biofuel credits that soared over the summer and were blamed for raising gasoline prices. In a letter to the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, Chairwoman Debbie Stabenow said she was concerned about "possible manipulation of the markets for Renewable Identification Numbers," the formal name for RINs. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/09/24/us-usa-agriculture-biofuels-idUSBRE98N0P720130924 NREL researchers find wind and solar power provide net benefits to Western grid. Fossil fuel power plants that have long provided steady baseload power to much of the West will not be significantly affected by the integration of more solar and wind energy on the grid, a new analysis from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory has found. The findings, presented in phase two of NREL's "Western Wind and Solar Integration Study," should help dispel the notion that the addition of intermittent energy resources like wind and solar …Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059987792/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY VEHICLES Calif. to extend EV tax credits, build hydrogen fuel stations. The California legislature has approved measures to raise $2 billion to extend rebates for electric vehicles and to help develop up to 100 fueling stations over the next decade for vehicles powered by hydrogen fuel cells. The legislation, expected to be signed by Gov. Jerry Brown, would extend some vehicle fees to help pay for the programs. The state has made its zero emission vehicle program a cornerstone of its efforts to reduce smog and greenhouse gas emissions. Posted. http://www.detroitnews.com/article/20130924/AUTO01/309240096#ixzz2fvRo0gC7 GREEN ENERGY Atomic Goal: 800 Years of Power From Waste. In a drab one-story building here, set between an indoor tennis club and a home appliance showroom, dozens of engineers, physicists and nuclear experts are chasing a radical dream of Bill Gates. The quest is for a new kind of nuclear reactor that would be fueled by today’s nuclear waste, supply all the electricity in the United States for the next 800 years and, possibly, cut the risk of nuclear weapons proliferation around the world. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/09/25/business/energy-environment/atomic-goal-800-years-of-power-from-waste.html?ref=science California lawmakers fly to Scandinavia to learn about energy. A delegation of nine California state lawmakers has left on a trip to Sweden and Norway to study how the Scandinavians have advanced environmental and energy policies. The trip is one of several largely paid for over the years by the California Foundation on the Environment and the Economy, a nonprofit group funded by business and labor groups, including the oil and energy industries. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/local/political/la-me-pc-california-lawmakers-fly-to-scandanavia-to-learn-about-energy-20130924,0,1820724.story MISCELLANEOUS Robert Bullard, pioneer in environmental justice, is honored by the Sierra Club. One freezing February day in 1994, environmental scholar and activist Robert Bullard was summoned to the White House. He had no idea why. When he was ushered into the Oval Office, he discovered that President Bill Clinton had invited him to witness the signing of an executive order that would require the federal government to consider the environmental consequences to low-income communities before implementing policies. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/robert-bullard-pioneer-in-environmental-justice-is-honored-by-the-sierra-club/2013/09/24/88e0e882-251c-11e3-b3e9-d97fb087acd6_story.html State Agencies Embrace $11 Mil. Initiative to Curb Greenhouse Gas Emissions on Roads. The California State Transportation Agency today joined the California Air Resources Board and California Department of Transportation in announcing support for a new national research program to support sustainable transportation. “The California Transportation Agency is taking action to combat climate change by reducing greenhouse gas emissions from transportation,” California State Transportation Agency Secretary Brian Kelly said. Posted. http://scvnews.com/2013/09/24/state-agencies-embrace-11-mil-initiative-to-curb-greenhouse-gas-emissions-on-roads/ OPINIONS Warming Up for Another Climate-Change Report. Every six years, a U.N. panel issues its findings, and the media hail them as definitive. Skepticism may be in order. At a closed-door meeting in Stockholm this week, each paragraph of a document written by scientists is being projected onto large screens. Delegations from scores of nations participate in the editing: Words will be substituted, emphasis will be added, entire sentences may well be inserted or deleted. Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424127887323981304579079030750537994.html?KEYWORDS=climate+change What Should Be Done About Global Warming? There's a consensus among leading scientists that global warming is caused by human activity. So we asked The Experts: What—if anything—should we do about it? This discussion relates to a recent Journal Report on myths about renewable energy and formed the basis of a discussion on The Experts blog on Sept. 24. Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303759604579095760652498736.html#printMode?KEYWORDS=climate+change Letters: About that climate change 'hiatus'. Re "What's this global warming ‘hiatus’?" Sept. 23. I'm not a climate scientist and will not attempt to argue the interpretation of the data presented in this piece, but I do know what the word "hiatus" means: merely a lapse in continuity — in this case, with the extent of global warming predictions. This is by no means an excuse to continue burning fossil fuels in lieu of using clean, renewable energy sources. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/opinion/letters/la-le-0925-wednesday-climate-change-hiatus-20130925,0,7913594.story Mark Buchanan: uncertainty on climate is a sign of good science. Scientists can’t say for sure that humans are the cause of global climate change. They’re still a little uncertain, and that’s a good thing. It means the science is working the way it should. A well-educated friend of mine, a climate-change skeptic, once told me that he didn’t believe anything coming out of the big computer models that scientists use to reason about the complex nonlinear feedbacks driving the Earth’s climate system. Posted. http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2013/sep/25/tp-mark-buchanan-uncertainty-on-climate-is-a-sign/ BLOGS Let’s Upgrade Our Insurance Policy on Climate-Change Risk. There’s a consensus among leading scientists that global warming is caused by human activity. What–if anything–should we do about it? KATE GORDON: Climate change presents potentially catastrophic risks to our economy. If you don’t believe me, ask someone who just went through Colorado’s historic floods, or Superstorm Sandy, or the Yosemite Rim fire. Posted. http://blogs.wsj.com/experts/2013/09/24/lets-upgrade-our-insurance-policy-on-climate-change-risk/?KEYWORDS=climate+change Wanted: A Climate Solution for Developing Countries. There’s a consensus among leading scientists that global warming is caused by human activity. What–if anything–should we do about it? ROBERT RAPIER: Although climate change will continue to be a topic that arouses passions on both sides, it is indisputable that the world is conducting a giant experiment on the global atmosphere for which the ultimate outcome is unknown. Posted. http://blogs.wsj.com/experts/2013/09/24/wanted-a-climate-solution-for-developing-countries/?KEYWORDS=climate+change Is Natural Gas ‘Clean’? The question is whether the natural gas “revolution,” which is a real thing — production is up about a third since 2005 — is also a good thing. One reason natural gas is called “clean” is because it emits 50 percent less carbon dioxide than coal when you burn it. Thus it’s seen by some as a “bridge” fuel until zero-carbon-producing renewables can take over. But natural gas isn’t clean in the way that solar is clean. It’s clean-er than coal. It’s better than the worst; that’s all. Posted. http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/09/24/is-natural-gas-clean/?_r=0 Good News for the Climate: Electric Vehicles Posting Record Sales Across the Nation. Plug-in electric vehicles (EVs) posted record sales numbers in August, with the Chevy Volt and Nissan LEAF both boasting their best sales month ever. This is good news for a technology that is an important part of getting our nation on track to cut our oil use in half and tackle global warming. As more EVs hit the streets, we get a clearer picture of the plug-in car market. Posted. http://blog.ucsusa.org/good-news-for-the-climate-electric-vehicles-posting-record-sales-across-the-nation-252 Regional Greenhouse Gas Effort Eyed As National Model. As the Obama Administration drafts rules to control carbon emissions from power plants, advocates say there is a proven model in the Northeast for the nation to follow. The focus now is on a market-based system that Vermont helped create called the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative. The Environmental Protection Agency last week announced new greenhouse gas reduction standards for new gas and coal-fired power plants. Posted. http://digital.vpr.net/post/regional-greenhouse-gas-effort-eyed-national-model Wheelies: The Fire Sale E.V.’s Edition. Electric cars: for sale, cheap. That is, in essence, what two resellers are saying about leftover cars from Coda Automotive – reborn as Coda Energy after it filed for bankruptcy this year. After the company took a nose-dive, the resellers bought up the rest of the E.V.’s and parts that Coda had in stock. Posted. http://wheels.blogs.nytimes.com/2013/09/24/wheelies-the-fire-sale-e-v-s-edition/ MADRE FIRE: Unhealthful air drifting into San Bernardino Mountains. Smoke from the Madre Fire is burning above Azusa is drifting east and could result in unhealthful air quality in the western San Bernardino Mountains, say air district officials. The South Coast Air Quality Management District issued health advisories Tuesday, Sept. 24, for areas in the San Gabriel Valley and the San Bernardino Mountains. Air quality may reach the unhealthy range or higher in these areas. Posted. http://blog.pe.com/air-quality/2013/09/24/wildfire-unhealthful-air-drifting-into-san-bernardino-mountains/ BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY RENEWABLE ENERGY: Ivanpah project completes first test. BrightSource Energy Inc. officials were celebrating a first successful test today, Sept. 24, of the Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System in northeast San Bernardino County. The “first sync” was an output of energy between the plant’s Unit 1 and the power grid, company officials said in a news release. Power generated during the test will go to Pacific Gas and Electric, which has a power purchase agreement at Ivanpah. Posted. http://blog.pe.com/environment/2013/09/24/renewable-energy-ivanpah-project-completes-first-test/ BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY RFA: ethanol cuts gas prices by up to $1.50 a gallon. The Renewable Fuels Association (RFA) is giving us up to 2.6 trillion reasons why blending ethanol with the US fuel supply are a good thing for the economy. Citing former Ford and Carter administration energy advisor Philip Verleger, the RFA estimates that gas would be between 50 cents and $1.50 more per gallon than its costs today. Posted. http://green.autoblog.com/2013/09/25/rfa-ethanol-cuts-gas-prices-by-up-to-1-50-a-gallon/ Air Pollution Deaths: NASA Map Illustrates Where Fine Particle Matter Is The Most Deadly. Air pollution may be to blame for millions of deaths per year, but which countries are the worst offenders? Based on data unveiled in a study on air pollution deaths earlier this year, a new NASA map illustrates the nations with the highest rates of premature mortality due to air pollution. The map -- which compares data from Jan. 1, 1850, and Jan. 1, 2000…Posted. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/09/24/air-pollution-deaths-countries-at-risk-nasa-map_n_3982535.html?view=print&comm_ref=false