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newsclips -- Newsclips for January 10, 2013 Posted: 10 Jan 2014 13:08:01
ARB Newsclips for January 10, 2014. 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 Inslee hints he may impose cap-and-trade by executive order. Gov. Jay Inslee on Thursday ignored pleas from leaders of both parties and both houses of the Washington State Legislature to deny rumors he intends to impose by executive fiat a cap-and-trade plan that could raise gasoline prices by an estimated $1 to $1.20 a gallon. “I find that very surprising,” he said when told of the lawmakers’ concerns. Posted. http://theolympiareport.com/inslee-hints-he-may-impose-cap-and-trade-by-executive-order/ AIR POLLUTION Central Hong Kong Sees Record Roadside Pollution Levels in 2013. Roadside pollution worsened in Hong Kong’s Central district last year as vehicular emissions helped send nitrogen dioxide concentrations to record levels. Citywide levels of the pollutant, which is linked to damaged lung function, were the second highest on record, according to Clean Air Network Ltd. an environmental advocacy group. Particulate matter levels at all monitoring stations exceeded…Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-01-10/central-hong-kong-sees-record-roadside-pollution-levels-in-2013.html Exide recycling plant exceeds lead limits again, officials say. A Vernon battery recycler has once again exceeded South Coast Air Quality Management District lead limits, officials said Thursday. Officials at Exide Technologies, one of the world's leading makers and recyclers of lead-acid batteries, told air district officials Wednesday evening that an air monitor had picked up elevated lead readings late last week. The plant cut production starting Thursday morning. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/local/la-me-exide-20140110,0,6309451.story#axzz2q0vvpZrI Bad air quality not going away. For the past two weeks, the air quality in the Valley has been unfavorable — either for sensitive groups or for everyone. “From January 1 to January 7, this has been an unhealthy area,” said Anton Simanov, outreach community representative for the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District, talking about the Porterville area. It is all due to a ridge of high pressure that has refused to leave, resulting in stagnated air conditions, he said. Posted. http://www.recorderonline.com/news/bad-air-quality-not-going-away/article_7e3363c2-78cf-11e3-a791-001a4bcf6878.html Natural gas plants emit 56% less CO2 than coal plants – study. Combined-cycle natural gas plants produce less than half the emissions of coal plants, says a new study. Scientists from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES) at the University of Colorado, Boulder, sifted through publicly available data from U.S. EPA's Air Markets Program to measure how much carbon dioxide, sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides has been released from the nation's fleet of power plants. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059992706/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY CLIMATE CHANGE Scientists: Americans are becoming weather wimps. We've become weather wimps. As the world warms, the United States is getting fewer bitter cold spells like the one that gripped much of the nation this week. So when a deep freeze strikes, scientists say, it seems more unprecedented than it really is. An Associated Press analysis of the daily national winter temperature shows that cold extremes have happened about once every four years since 1900. Posted. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_SCI_DEEP_FREEZE_WEATHER_WIMPS?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT OTHER RELATED STORIES http://www.fresnobee.com/2014/01/09/3705561/scientists-americans-are-becoming.html No deep freeze: Australia swelters in heat wave. Bats are dropping from trees, kangaroos are collapsing in the Outback and gardens are turning brown. While North America freezes under record polar temperatures, the southern hemisphere is experiencing the opposite extreme as heat records are being set in Australia after the hottest year ever. Weather forecasters in Australia said some parts of the sparsely populated Pilbara region along the rugged northwest coast…Posted. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/A/AS_AUSTRALIA_HEAT_WAVE?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT Reid Unveils New Task Force to Defend Obama's Climate Agenda. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) is setting aside time at his party's weekly caucus lunch in the Capitol to focus solely on climate change, a senior Senate aide said Jan. 9, in hopes of one day reviving a bill to cut carbon dioxide emissions and better defend President Barack Obama's climate efforts from Republican attacks. Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/print/2014-01-10/reid-unveils-new-task-force-to-defend-obama-s-climate-agenda.html Group aims to slap global warming labels on Calif. gas pumps. If a group of Bay Area environmentalists gets its way, California drivers pumping gas may soon be warned about the harmful effects of climate change. The group is trying to get global warming warning labels placed on gasoline pumps to remind consumers of the link between climate change and driving. "Human beings are not really wired for seeing the cause and effect of climate change," said Jamie Brooks, with the Bay Area chapter of 350.org. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059992684/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY USC Releases Sea Level Rise Vulnerability Report. The City of Los Angeles has initiated research to support planning for the impacts of climate change. The Sea Level Rise Vulnerability Report for the City of Los Angeles was released on January 7th; it is a summary of initial research on the potential impacts of sea level rise and associated flooding from storms for coastal communities in the City of L.A. Posted. http://www.venicenc.org/usc-releases-sea-level-rise-vulnerability-report-for-the-city-of-los-angeles/ DIESEL EMISSIONS Study: Big Savings from Emissions Monitoring. Advanced emissions monitoring of large ships calling at EU ports could help save owners and operators of large ships up to €9 million/year, according to a new study published by sustainable transport group T&E. These savings would come from lower operational costs of using automated systems such as fuel flow meters or continuous emissions monitoring, which are already used by many of the world’s largest shipping companies. Posted. http://www.marinelink.com/news/monitoring-emissions362729.aspx FUELS As Calif. develops regulations, opponents re-strategize how to win fracking moratorium. Emergency rules policing unconventional drilling for oil and natural gas took effect Jan. 1 in California, and the state is crafting permanent restrictions that become law next year. The developments arrived after a multiyear battle over the practice of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in which companies blast chemical-laced water some 8,000 feet underground at high pressure to break apart rock formations and release petroleum. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/energywire/2014/01/10/stories/1059992670 BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY VEHICLES Alternative energy powered cars on a roll at CES. While autonomous driving is a major theme at the International CES gadget show, cars that use futuristic sources of energy are potentially much closer on the horizon. Ford Motor Co. showed off a prototype solar hybrid car called the C-MAX Solar Energi, which has a gas engine along with rooftop solar panels that also power the engine. Posted. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_TEC_GADGET_SHOW_SMART_CARS_ENERGY?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT HIGH-SPEED RAIL High-speed rail funding to be key budget issue, Senate leader says. A proposal to use money from the state’s cap-and-trade system of pollution credits to help fund the proposed high-speed rail system “is going to be one of the central issues in the budget,” Senate President Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg (D-Sacramento) predicted Thursday. “I’m open to the issue,” Steinberg said, but he added that Gov. Jerry Brown will have to provide a “credible plan to fund the next extension” of the rail system…Posted. http://www.latimes.com/local/political/la-me-pc-california-budget-high-speed-rail-20140109,0,318236.story#ixzz2q0u5yd2F Brown's Budget Proposal Spends Cap and Trade Money. California Governor Jerry Brown’s budget proposal includes some major investments in the environment. As Amy Quinton reports from Sacramento, it lays out how he wants to spend $850 million in revenue from the state’s greenhouse gas reduction program known as cap-and-trade. As expected, Governor Brown wants to invest a large portion of money raised from carbon auctions on High Speed Rail. Posted. http://kvpr.org/post/browns-budget-proposal-spends-cap-and-trade-money GREEN ENERGY Obama orders quadrennial study of energy strategy. President Barack Obama is setting up a panel to study the United States' energy strategy and then report to the president every four years. In a presidential memorandum, Obama says the U.S. needs a comprehensive, coordinated strategy to improve economic productivity and quality of life, and to protect the environment and the nation's security. Posted. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_OBAMA_ENERGY_REVIEW?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT OTHER RELATED STORIES http://www.fresnobee.com/2014/01/09/3705396/obama-orders-quadrennial-study.html California seeks wave-energy facility. California will likely be in contention to host a national wave energy test facility, thanks to a federal grant awarded to Cal Poly's upstart Institute for Advanced Technology and Public Research. The institute has been awarded up to $750,000 by the Department of Energy to explore the feasibility of tethering a rig miles off the California coast for research into generating electricity from the rise and fall of ocean waves. Posted. http://www.utsandiego.com/news/2014/jan/09/wave-energy-research-facility/ MISCELLANEOUS Poll: O.C., San Diego area residents don't want gas-fired power plants. A majority of electricity consumers in Orange and San Diego counties would prefer that energy needed to replace the output of the shuttered San Onofre nuclear power plant come from renewable, non-polluting sources, according to a new poll. The survey, conducted by Public Policy Polling of Raleigh, N.C., for the Sierra Club, concludes that 56% of ratepayers in the two counties want new power to come from wind, solar…Posted. http://www.latimes.com/business/money/la-fi-mo-poll-says-residents-dont-want-gas-powered-plants-20140108,0,4973129.story#ixzz2q0w3F5Qv 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/2014/01/09/columns/versaw/versaw.txt BLOGS Brown says cap-and-trade money for high-speed rail 'very appropriate' Calling his high-speed rail project consistent with California's history as "a generator of dreams and great initiatives," Gov. Jerry Brown on Thursday defended his decision to shore up the project's shaky finances with money from the state's cap-and-trade fund. "The alternative would be not to spend the money, and you do need that money, and we're going to spend it," Brown said. Posted. http://blogs.sacbee.com/capitolalertlatest/2014/01/cap-and-trade-money-for-high-speed-rail-jerry-brown-says.html#storylink=cpy Green is good, as Governor Brown's budget proposal boosts money for environment issues. Surging revenue returned a wave of funding to environmental issues in California, as Governor Jerry Brown released his budget Thursday. It’s a good news kind of year. Maintenance for state parks deferred in lean budget years gets a $40 billion boost this time around. And Brown’s budget anticipates a lean water year, upping investments in water storage, like groundwater aquifers and reservoirs, and regional water self-sufficiency. Posted. http://www.scpr.org/blogs/environment/2014/01/09/15571/green-is-good-as-governor-brown-s-budget-proposal/ The Climate Post: Carbon Markets Show Glimmers of Recovery in 2014. A year after the launch of its cap-and-trade program, California formally linked its emissions trading scheme with Quebec's -- enabling carbon allowances and offset credits to be exchanged between participants in the two jurisdictions. The linkage, which marks the first agreement in North America that allows for the trading of greenhouse gas emissions across borders, is designed to escalate the price on the amount of carbon businesses can emit. Posted. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/tim-profeta/the-climate-post-carbon-m_b_4574933.html Chinese Vehicle Sales Soar Past 20 Million, Smog Worse Than Ever. The number of vehicles on China's roads continues to grow--and so does the severity of the country's air pollution. China became the first nation to surpass 20 million new-car sales last year, Bloomberg reports. That represents a 14 percent increase over 2012, and continues its reign as the world's largest car market. Posted. http://www.greencarreports.com/news/1089595_chinese-vehicle-sales-soar-past-20-million-smog-worse-than-ever Time to seriously rethink mass market EV incentives. Even though plug-in electric vehicle (EV) sales were much higher in 2013 than the previous year, arguments are being made that government policies are failing. An opinion piece in Energy Policy, for example, opposes federal policies incentivizing EVs and calls them inefficient and ineffective. The main thrust of the argument is that the incentives are too focused on the mainstream and could be better targeted at niche markets and early adopters. In other words, the $7,500 federal tax credit is the wrong way to promote EVs. Posted. http://green.autoblog.com/2014/01/10/time-to-seriously-rethink-mass-market-ev-incentives/ Battery Development May Extend Range of Electric Cars. It's known that electric vehicles could travel longer distances before needing to charge and more renewable energy could be saved for a rainy day if lithium-sulfur batteries can just overcome a few technical hurdles. Now, a novel design for a critical part of the battery has been shown to significantly extend the technology's lifespan, bringing it closer to commercial use. Posted. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2014/01/140109175504.htm 2014 BMW i3 with range-extender won’t get California HOV lane “White Sticker”. For green-car drivers, the California High-Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) lane sticker is like a badge of honor. The sticker – green for plug-in hybrids, white for electric cars – allows solo drivers access to the carpool lanes. However, the 2014 BMW i3 with range extender doesn’t qualify for an electric-car white sticker, according to The Street (via InsideEVs). Cue dramatic music. Posted. http://ecomento.com/2014/01/10/2014-bmw-i3-range-extender-wont-get-california-hov-lane-white-sticker/