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newsclips -- Newsclips for October 15, 2013

Posted: 15 Oct 2013 14:57:20
ARB Newsclips for October 15, 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.


Wood fires and diesel cars pose pollution threat - EU watchdog.
Air pollution is dangerously high across many parts of Europe,
resulting in premature deaths, ill health and huge economic
losses linked to reduced crop yields, Europe's environmental
watchdog said on Tuesday. While emissions of some pollutants have
declined sharply in Europe in recent decades, more diesel cars
and a rise in wood burning by households as a cheap alternative
to gas mean other types of harmful pollution are receding more
slowly. Posted.

Bulgaria’s Air Is Dirtiest in Europe, Study Finds, Followed by
Poland. Hold your breath if you visit Bulgaria. The air in the
small Black Sea nation is thicker with several major air
pollutants than the air in any other country in Europe, according
to a new study prepared by Europe’s environmental regulators.
Bulgaria has the highest concentrations of the two major
varieties of particulate matter, which are tiny airborne droplets
or gas particles that come from smokestacks, vehicle tailpipes or
a variety of other sources. Posted.

Nutrient pollution threatens national park ecosystems, study
says. National parks from the Sierra Nevada to the Great Smoky
Mountains are increasingly being fertilized by unwanted nutrients
drifting through the air from agricultural operations, putting
some of the country’s most treasured natural landscapes at risk
of ecological damage, a new study has found. Thirty-eight of 45
national parks examined by scientists are receiving doses of
nitrogen at or above a critical threshold that can harm sensitive


High court will review EPA global warming rules.  The Supreme
Court agreed Tuesday to decide whether to block key aspects of
the Obama administration's plan aimed at cutting power plant and
factory emissions of the gases blamed for global warming.  The
justices said they will review a unanimous federal appeals court
ruling that upheld the government's unprecedented regulation of
six heat-trapping gases.  Posted. 







Another dry year could be bad news for California. Water managers
Monday urged Californians to step up their conservation efforts,
warning that many parts of the state could face water shortages
next year if this winter proves to be another dry one. “Use these
dry conditions as a wake-up call,” said Mark Cowin, director of
the state Department of Water Resources. Officials are not ready
to declare a statewide drought. And managers of the Metropolitan
Water District of Southern California…Posted.

Va. forum to examine farming, climate change.  A forum in
Harrisonburg will assess how climate change will impact farming.
The Tuesday evening session is sponsored by the Climate Action
Alliance of the Valley. It will feature a specialist with the
Virginia Cooperative Extension and a local grower and soil
conservation technician. Maria Papadakis is professor of
integrated science and technology at James Madison University. 

Inslee suggests statewide cap to climate group. Gov. Jay Inslee
says he supports a statewide cap on carbon-fuel emissions, one of
several ideas he says can get the state closer to reaching goals
set in 2008 to cut global warming pollution. The ideas put forth
by Inslee on Monday — including phasing out of coal-fired
electricity supplies and more energy efficiency in existing


RPT-Brazil ethanol exports to U.S. at risk if EPA eases blend
rule. U.S. imports of Brazilian sugar cane ethanol could be cut
by more than half if a draft proposal to reduce next year's U.S.
biofuel blending mandate is enacted. While the U.S. corn-based
ethanol industry has issued the most fierce complaints over news
this week that the Environmental Protection Agency may ease
volumes, it may be Brazilian ethanol producers like Raizen and
traders like Royal Dutch Shell PLC and Vitol S.A. who suffer a
deeper blow. Posted.

UPDATE 1-China to raise prices for gas-fired power generation.
China will raise the on-grid prices paid to power generators that
use natural gas to encourage the use of cleaner forms of energy
and address the impact of possible supply shortages, the
country's top planning agency said on Tuesday. In a notice posted
on its website (www.ndrc.gov.cn), the National Development and
Reform Commission (NDRC) said recent natural gas price hikes had
raised generation costs and power prices needed to be adjusted
accordingly. Posted.

Oil industry petitions EPA for revised 2013 renewable fuel
targets. The oil industry is asking U.S. EPA to reconsider this
year's renewable fuel targets on concerns that the agency relied
on the wrong data and overshot its estimate of the amount of
cellulosic biofuel that will be produced. The American Petroleum
Institute warns in a petition filed late Friday that the targets
will pose problems for refiners that must abide by the renewable
fuel standard's requirements. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/greenwire/stories/1059988838/print BY


High-Speed Rail CEO: No Construction Yet, But Work "Under Way". 
California’s High-Speed Rail Authority is asking contractors that
want to build the second stretch of Central Valley track to step
forward.  It also says work on the project’s first phase is
“under way.”  But actual construction has not yet begun – despite
promises that it would by now.  Construction on California’s
high-speed rail project was supposed to have started by the end
of last year.  Posted. 


The Two Faces of California. How the greenest state in the
country copes with an oil and gas boom. Locals call the boardwalk
along the beach the "Strand." In this small Los Angeles suburb 15
miles south of the famous Santa Monica pier, it's easy to run
into someone you know, and you can walk just about everywhere.
But this is still Southern California. Most people have cars,
too. The city's 20,000 residents, whose average income is roughly
$100,000 (almost double the national average), also have noble
sustainability commitments. Posted.


Moose Die-Off Alarms Scientists.  Across North America — in
places as far-flung as Montana and British Columbia, New
Hampshire and Minnesota — moose populations are in steep decline.
And no one is sure why. What exactly has changed remains a
mystery. Several factors are clearly at work. But a common thread
in most hypotheses is climate change. Posted.

Edison again says customers should help pay for San Onofre. For
the second time in two months, Southern California Edison Co. has
put advertisements in local papers to make the case that
customers should help pay for the closing and cleanup of the San
Onofre nuclear power plant. Ratepayer advocates accuse Edison of
trying to shift the cost of the plant's decommissioning from its
shareholders to its ratepayers. Posted.

California Air Resources Board Deputy Will Keynote First
Afternoon of SAE International 2013 Fuels and Lubricants
Symposium in Long Beach.  Alberto Ayala, Deputy Executive Officer
of the California Air Resources Board, will deliver the Executive
Keynote address on the opening day (Monday, Nov. 18 at 2:30 p.m.)
of the “SAE 2013 Fuels, Lubricants, and Aftertreatment Symposium:
Achieving Fuel Economy and GHG Targets,” which will be held Nov.
18-21, at the Hyatt Regency Long Beach, on Long Beach, Calif.  
Posted.  http://www.digitaljournal.com/pr/1524521 


COLUMN-German renewable energy support is poor value: Wynn.
Germany's cost for upgrading its grid to bring in more wind and
solar power exceeds the monetary benefits it receives from
savings on fossil fuel and avoiding the damage caused by global
warming. Once the net cost of a multi-billion-euro subsidy
programme is thrown in, then Germany's renewable energy policy
seems to be poor value for money. Posted.

A real dialogue on climate change. I love it when people who lean
politically to one side of center are willing and able to
consider the data, apply reason and embrace a position that is
stereotypically thought to be on the other side of center. Kudos
to Michael Gerson, who did this with his evidence-based concern
about the real challenges of climate change [“A difficult
climate,” op-ed, Oct. 11]. Mr. Gerson also pointed out the
political obstacles that defeat constructive action. Posted.

Cracking the Energy Puzzles of the 21st Century. Not long ago,
Chevron’s exploration teams were stuck. Several years earlier
they had struck oil at a place called Rosebank, 9,000 feet below
the surface of the Atlantic Ocean west of Britain’s Shetland
Islands. But the usual seismic surveys could not make out the
location of the field clearly enough for Chevron to decide where
to place wells, which can cost $100 million or more apiece.

Combat climate change with your fork.  Swarms of giant hornets
have killed dozens of people and injured 1,600 in central China
in recent months. Experts believe that unusually warm
temperatures in the region have enabled the hornets to breed more
successfully. Jellyfish recently clogged water-intake pipes at a
nuclear power plant in Sweden, forcing officials there to shut
down a 1,400-megawatt reactor. Almost all jellyfish breed better
and faster in warmer waters. Posted. 

Climate change is here and now: Our view.  All too often, global
warming is discussed as something that will affect future
generations of people, penguins and polar bears. That it will.
But a mounting body of evidence demonstrates that climate change
is neither distant nor theoretical. It is here and now: The
latest report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change,
the internationally accepted authority on the subject…Posted. 

IPCC exaggerates risks: Opposing view. U.N. panel has backed down
from its previous forecasts of increases in droughts and
hurricanes. And it admits, but does not explain, why no warming
has occurred for the past 15 years. Environmentalists hoped the
latest study from the United Nations' Intergovernmental Panel on
Climate Change (IPCC) would finally end the increasingly
acrimonious debate over the causes and consequences of climate
change. It has had the opposite effect. Posted.

State dictates hurt north state.  Our view: New rules that will
put some small-scale truckers out of business and put others in
debt should be delayed.  If you follow letters to the editor,
you've observed that many local business owners are very worried
about expensive new restrictions on trucks mandated by a state
board.  The new rules are scheduled to take effect Jan. 1. It's
one of those one-size-fits-all mandates frequently handed out by
Sacramento that doesn't make much sense to small-business owners
up here. Posted. 

California spends big money on alternative energy. California has
spent billions of dollars in recent years on alternative energy
programs, even as education, public safety and other spending was
cut, a newspaper reported. Over the years, state money has funded
some failed projects and private companies with political ties,
the Los Angeles Times (http://lat.ms/16GLqlv) reported Sunday.
"Suddenly, you look up and there are literally hundreds of
millions of dollars going into investments that produce marginal


AM Alert: California dreamin' of future energy consumption.  The
post-legislative lull has descended over Sacramento, but there's
still energy in the air. By that, of course, we mean crafting
policies around California's future energy consumption. Two
different state entities charged with considering such matters
will be seeking public input today.  Over at the Air Resources
Board, staff members will be sparking discussion on a new
blueprint for achieving the emissions reduction goals set out in
2006's landmark AB 32.  Posted. 


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