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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for October 1, 2013. Posted: 01 Oct 2013 12:43:38
ARB Newsclips for October 1, 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 Air Quality Watch issued for Santa Maria. The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department and county Air Pollution Control District Monday issued an Air Quality Watch for the Santa Maria area to be in effect until Wednesday. This watch is only for the Santa Maria area, and is in effect until Wednesday morning. Levels of particles recorded at the Santa Maria monitoring station have exceeded the state standard six out of the last seven days. Areas affected and levels of particles…Posted. http://santamariatimes.com/news/local/air-quality-watch-issued-for-santa-maria/article_fa21ff56-2a06-11e3-abb9-001a4bcf887a.html?comment_form=true APCD study to be reviewed at meeting. Over the last year, implementation has been under way of the San Luis Obispo County Air Pollution Control District’s Rule 1001 that requires the Off-Highway Vehicle Division of State the California Department of Parks and Recreation to mitigate the silica dust coming from its park on the Dunes. Recently, APCD director Larry Allen told the board of directors the State Parks Department has not been complying with Rule 1001. Posted. http://www.theadobepress.com/articles/2013/09/30/columns/versaw/versaw.txt CLIMATE CHANGE Climate Change Rescue in U.S. Makes Steyer Converge With Paulson. Billionaire Tom Steyer recalls a dinner at the U.S. Treasury in Washington with two senior department officials and six money managers. It was August 2012, and the meal was part of an effort by the agency to keep up with what the financial community was worrying about. The diners discussed China’s slowdown, Federal Reserve policy and other trends affecting the U.S. economy. Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2013-10-01/climate-change-rescue-in-u-s-makes-steyer-converge-with-paulson.html EU Carbon Market Main Hurdle to Aviation Deal, India Says. The European Union’s plan to keep its curbs on pollution from airlines is the main hindrance to an international agreement on a carbon market for the industry, according to a senior Indian official. An accord discussed by the International Civil Aviation Organization shouldn’t authorize EU measures prior to the global deal unless they are mutually agreed with other states…Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/print/2013-10-01/global-aviation-co2-deal-stumbles-on-eu-plan-india-says.html UPDATE 1-U.S. Supreme Court takes no action on climate change cases. The U.S. Supreme Court took no action on Tuesday on petitions that could have it undertake a potentially wide-ranging legal review of the Obama administration's first wave of regulations aimed at battling climate change. The rules, which apply to a cross-section of polluters from vehicles to industrial facilities, are aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Scientists say these are the prime contributor to climate change. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/10/01/usa-court-climate-idUSL1N0HR0SA20131001 Reducing dangerous greenhouse gas emissions at DOE facilities. While the Department of Energy (DOE) has long been committed to reducing greenhouse gas emissions that contribute to global warming, Josh Silverman discovered that many of the department’s facilities were unknowingly emitting a very powerful pollutant. Silverman, the DOE’s director of sustainability support, examined the operations at the department’s national laboratories…Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/federal_government/reducing-dangerous-greenhouse-gas-emissions-at-doe-facilities/2013/10/01/1536b86c-2a8a-11e3-8ade-a1f23cda135e_story.html Gov. Brown sees his ambitious agenda as a template for nation. He says his efforts in California to combat global warming, reverse income inequality and give undocumented immigrants new rights could change national political climate. For the first two years of his late-in-life second act as governor, Jerry Brown focused almost exclusively on California's woeful budget situation. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/local/politics/la-me-gov-brown-20131001,0,4808269.story Defending its coast, New York elevates homes. Nearly a year after Hurricane Sandy inundated the Northeastern Seaboard, New York City is enacting coastal building codes that will elevate some homes by as much as 11 feet. New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg has pledged that buildings will not retreat from the coastline, as the city contemplates rising sea levels linked to climate change and extreme weather. Posted. http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2013/oct/01/new-york-raises-homes/ Merced hires firm to streamline climate plan, officials say. With the city’s climate action plan in place for a year, Merced has hired a firm to develop a streamlined plan for reducing greenhouse gases that is easy for developers to use. Merced City Council hired Rancho Cordova-based PMC Inc. at $190,550 to develop the “programmatic climate action plan,” or PCAP. It must be completed in no longer than three years. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2013/10/01/5782999/merced-hires-firm-to-streamline.html http://www.modbee.com/2013/10/01/2951124/merced-hires-firm-to-streamline.html#storylink=cpy In science of climate change, still much to be learned. The science of climate change has advanced significantly in the years since the release of the last Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) physical science report in early 2007. Yet despite key advances in areas like sea-level rise and humans' role in a changing climate, a nagging question remains. The question, often referred to as climate sensitivity, is simple:..Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/2013/10/01/stories/1059988117 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY Environment Canada projects 2 C of warming by 2050. Environment Canada predicts even faster warming of the atmosphere than a consensus reached last week by the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. In the best-case scenarios for limiting growth of greenhouse gas emissions, the Canadian federal department's computer models project an average global warming of about 2 degrees Celsius above preindustrial levels by 2050, said Environment Canada senior scientist Greg Flato. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059988094/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY High court mum on whether it will review EPA emissions regs. The Supreme Court took no action today in deciding whether to review a potentially wide-ranging challenge to U.S. EPA's regulations for addressing heat-trapping greenhouse gas emissions. Justices were scheduled yesterday to consider nine petitions asking the high court to reverse all or part of an appeals court's June 2012 decision that upheld four EPA rules, including the agency's finding that greenhouse gases pose a risk to human health. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/greenwire/stories/1059988153/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY FUELS EPA to be hit hard in shutdown, could delay renewable fuel standard. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will take one of the biggest hits of any federal agency if the government shuts down this week, operating with under 7 percent of its employees, according to guidance issued by the agency. Among those furloughed would be most workers at the Office of Air and Radiation, which is in charge of writing and implementing most of the EPA's major air pollution rules. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/09/30/us-usa-fiscal-epa-idUSBRE98T12E20130930 Britain seen putting off subsea coal gasification projects. Plans to burn Britain's large reserves of coal to produce gas for power plants may wait for years because of concerns about climate change and a public perception that the technology is similar to fracking. Cluff Resources, one of the companies trying to develop underground coal gasification in Britain, said the technology is not likely to be deployed for at least another five years, while government officials are tied up with the public opposition to hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, for shale gas. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/10/01/coal-britain-syngas-idUSL5N0HL2PT20131001 Ethanol’s Discount to Gasoline Tightens on Below-Average Supply. Ethanol’s discount to gasoline tightened on concern the delayed corn harvest will cut supplies of the biofuel. The spread, or price difference, narrowed 1.22 cents to 92 cents a gallon at 11:41 a.m. New York time as stockpiles of the additive are below average for this time of year. Ethanol is made mostly from corn in the U.S., and the fall harvest for the grain is behind schedule. Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/print/2013-10-01/ethanol-s-discount-to-gasoline-tightens-on-below-average-supply.html . U.S. Loses $53.3 Million on Sugar Deal. Government Sells to Ethanol Makers for Less than It Paid, in Bid to Keep Sugar Prices Up. The U.S. Department of Agriculture bought sugar from domestic processors and sold it to ethanol makers at a loss of $53.3 million, the latest move by the agency to reduce domestic supplies. This was the second use of a sugar-to-ethanol program outlined in the 2008 Farm Bill…Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303918804579107672636781520.html Cheneyesque fracking loophole leaves home and land owners uncertain (Video). A Cheneyesque fracking loophole in California’s recent SB4 fracking legislation re-sets the national tone of the oil & gas industry towards home and land owner’s properties to 'uncertain.' The “Golden” state, known for leading the way in its renewable portfolio standards to 33% by 2020, may now instead be marred with the unintended consequences of ‘green lighting,’ rather than abating the practice of fracking. Posted. http://www.examiner.com/article/cheneyesque-fracking-loophole-leaves-home-and-land-owners-uncertain Methane's warming potential rises in latest report. The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change has revised upward its estimate for the global warming potential of methane. Methane is 34 times more potent a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide on a 100-year time scale. It was previously assumed to be 25 times more potent. The number was published in the IPCC's most recent report, which was released in full yesterday. The global warming potential (GWP) is the basis for a number of inventories, from U.S. EPA's greenhouse gas reporting program…Posted. http://www.eenews.net/energywire/stories/1059988104/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY VEHICLES Father of the Prius sees long road to a fully electric future. Toyota Motor Corp. Chairman Takeshi Uchiyamada rode his pioneering work on the Prius hybrid to the top of the world’s biggest car company. But that doesn’t mean he is a zealot when it comes to the growing expectations for electric vehicle technology. The technical barriers to better battery life and performance are real, he said in an interview on Monday, and are not on the verge of disappearing. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/economy/father-of-the-prius-sees-long-road-to-a-fully-electric-future/2013/09/30/f1c540c2-29f0-11e3-b139-029811dbb57f_story.html In Electric BMW I3, Hopes for a Stylish Future of Green. When the BMW i3 finally rolls out this year in Europe and next year in North America, it will undoubtedly turn heads, but it is also very different in that it is designed to cash in on the space, handling and design that an electric drive train and ultra light carbon fiber body allow. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/10/01/business/energy-environment/in-electric-bmw-i3-hopes-for-a-stylish-future-of-green.html?_r=0 UC Riverside gets more eco-friendly. Researchers from the University of California, Riverside, will be part of a new national sustainable transportation research center to be funded with $11.2 million in federal, state and local money. The National Center for Sustainable Transportation, which will be based at the University of California, Davis, will help the U.S. Department of Transportation reduce greenhouse-gas emissions from passenger and …Posted. http://www.mydesert.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=2013309300021 Toyota Green Vehicles Awarded In California. Toyota, Lexus and Scion took top honors in the 2013 Green Car Guide, published today by the Automobile Club of Southern California. Six of the top ten overall green vehicle and “best value” scores are held by the Toyota family. The 2013 Toyota RAV4 EV compact SUV achieved the highest overall green car score in the history of Green Car Guide…Posted. http://www.hybridcars.com/toyota-green-vehicles-awarded-in-california/ Calif. approves a $2B package of incentives for clean cars, cuts some regulatory powers. A new law in California will generate $2 billion in funding to advance cleaner cars, but as part of a political deal, it also will block a top environmental agency from enforcing one of its rules. Gov. Jerry Brown (D) on Saturday signed A.B. 8 from Assembly members Henry Perea (D) and Nancy Skinner (D) and Sen. Fran Pavley (D). Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/2013/10/01/stories/1059988122 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY GREEN ENERGY Nominee for energy regulatory post withdraws. President Barack Obama's nominee to be the nation's top energy regulator withdrew Tuesday, conceding he did not have enough support for confirmation. Ron Binz, a former Colorado energy regulator who strongly backs renewable energy, was opposed by at least half of the 22-member Senate Energy Committee, including all 10 Republicans and at least one Democrat. Posted. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_ENERGY_REGULATOR?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT OTHER RELATED STORIES http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303464504579109140381446728.html?KEYWORDS=ENERGY North Carolina team's solar house: surprise in the concrete walls. For Solar Decathlon 2013, we put a virtual microphone in front of some teams and let the competitors explain their home design, in their own words. First up: the University of North Carolina at Charlotte, which like the 19 other teams in the Department of Energy competition, is racing to finish construction by Wednesday, so it could open to the public Tuesday at the Orange County Great Park. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/home/la-lh-north-carolina-solar-decathlon-house-20130930,0,5771891.story Terminal Island plant converts solid waste to energy for Long Beach residents. Much of the garbage being picked up along curbs citywide returns as energy that is enough to power more than 35,000 homes annually. Situated on Terminal Island is the Southeast Resource Recovery Facility, a waste-to-energy plant where lease operator Covanta Energy processes 1,380 tons of solid waste a day generated from the city and the Sanitation Districts of Los Angeles County, which own the facility under a joint agreement. Posted. http://www.presstelegram.com/environment-and-nature/20130930/terminal-island-plant-converts-solid-waste-to-energy-for-long-beach-residents OPINIONS COLUMN-Carbon budgets can provide emissions guide: Wynn. A U.N. panel of climate scientists has for the first time backed a limit on cumulative global carbon emissions, in a so-called budget approach that is useful but with certain limitations. Carbon budgets estimate the maximum greenhouse gases that countries can emit cumulatively for the world to stay below a certain amount of global warming, and so are related to targets that set an emissions limit in any particular year. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/10/01/column-wynn-climate-carbon-idUSL6N0HQ0S120131001 Climate of Uncertainty. A U.N. report can't explain the hiatus in global warming. Between 1998 and 2012 the global economy more than doubled in size—to some $71 trillion in GDP from $30 trillion. That's the good news. Over the same period the world pumped more than 100 billion tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. That is supposedly the bad news. Yet global surface temperatures have remained essentially flat. Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702304713704579092883286839894.html?mod=hp_opinion BY SUBSCRIPTION The Political Science of Global Warming. The U.N.'s latest climate-change report should be its last. "Human influence extremely likely to be the dominant cause of observed warming since the middle of the last century," was the headline from Friday's release of the first installment of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's fifth assessment report. "Extremely likely"—indicating a 95%-100% likelihood—was ratcheted up one notch from the 2007 fourth assessment report's "very likely." Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052702303464504579106993839343868.html?KEYWORDS=CLIMATE+CHANGE BY SUBSCRIPTION Letters: Preparing for climate catastrophe. Re "Experts set threshold for climate-change calamity," Sept. 28 Twenty-five years to reach the climate-change tipping point sounds like a long time. But the truth is it will take all of that time, and more, to rebuild our fossil fuel-based energy system using clean renewable energy. It will take a concerted, sustained effort to make it happen, not business as usual. A good place to start is to implement the "polluter pays" principle: …Posted. http://www.latimes.com/opinion/letters/la-le-1001-tuesday-global-warming-20131001,0,3749266.story Time for an economywide carbon tax. Re "U.N.panel endorses global emissions ceiling" (Page A6, Sept. 28): The world's top scientists have concluded with 95 percent certainty that humans are causing global warming and climate change. Even more importantly, they endorse action by humanity to establish a limit on carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gas pollution. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2013/09/30/5779675/focus-on-political-action-not.html#storylink=cpy Viewpoints: A preventive approach to keeping harmful chemicals out of everyday products. Persistence and energy prevail. During the past five years, those who believe in making consumer products free from toxic ingredients traveled a long and sometimes tortuous path that has led to the nation’s first comprehensive process for making the goods we buy safer. Starting today, California’s Safer Consumer Products regulation will set in motion a process that reduces …Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2013/10/01/5782576/viewpoints-a-preventative-approach.html#storylink=cpy Economic boom or environmental failure? The U-T on Sept. 29 reports there are 2.8 million oil field jobs for the asking if California exploits its oil reserves via new fracking technology. These jobs would provide average compensation of $50,000 a year. The total economic impact in California would come close to $1 trillion a year! All this at a time when the middle class in California is suffering, and poverty rates are soaring. Posted. http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2013/sep/30/letters-fracking/ BLOGS Hybrids Not a Driving Force in Making China Greener. After 16 months of waiting for a permit to register a car in the capital, a Beijing resident surnamed Cao bought a Lexus CT200h gasoline-electric hybrid last year. He put down a hefty 300,000 yuan ($48,000) figuring he would at least make a small contribution to keeping the city’s already woefully polluted air from getting worse. Posted. http://blogs.wsj.com/chinarealtime/2013/10/01/hybrids-not-a-driving-force-in-making-china-greener/?KEYWORDS=electric+vehicles Toyota on All-Electric Cars: ‘We Do Not Believe There is a Market’ Toyota Motor Corp.7203.TO 0.00% isn’t going to be investing heavily into electric vehicles and the company Chairman, Takeshi Uchiyamada, doesn’t think there is much of a market for them. “The reason why Toyota doesn’t introduce any major [all-electric product] is because we do not believe there is a market to accept it,” Mr. Uchiyamada said in an interview following a speech on Monday at the Economic Club of Washington, D.C. Posted. http://blogs.wsj.com/japanrealtime/2013/10/01/toyota-on-all-electric-cars-we-do-not-believe-there-is-a-market/?KEYWORDS=electric+vehicles BY SUBSCRIPTION SUSTAINABLE LIVING: EcoFest coming to CSUSB. Live music, vendors, games and workshops about sustainable living will be the focus of an EcoFest celebration at Cal State San Bernardino on Friday, Oct. 18. EcoFest will be held from 2 p.m. to 10 p.m. in the university’s Lower Commons and surrounding areas. Admission is free. Posted. http://blog.pe.com/colleges-universities/2013/09/30/sustainable-living-ecofest-coming-to-csusb/ California's Cap-and-Trade Market Still Needs a Price Ceiling. Back in May, I blogged about the problem of low GHG allowance prices in the EU-ETS. I explained the sound reasons for having both a price floor and a price ceiling in any allowance market where science doesn’t dictate a single do-or-die target for emissions. At that time, I held up the California cap and trade market as a good example because the market has a price floor and I reported that the regulator (the California Air Resources Board, CARB) was on the way to adopting a price ceiling. Posted. http://theenergycollective.com/severinborenstein/282621/californias-cap-and-trade-market-still-needs-price-ceiling In the renewable energy race, solar power is hot hot hot. Solar power installations are expected to edge out new wind farms this year for the title of fastest-growing clean energy source. Bloomberg New Energy Finance has projected that photovoltaic plants like this monster that we reported on last week will add 36.7 gigawatts of capacity this year — up 20 percent from last year. New wind farms, meanwhile, will add 35.5 gigawatts. Posted. http://grist.org/news/in-the-renewable-energy-race-solar-power-is-hot-hot-hot/