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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for March 5, 2014. Posted: 05 Mar 2014 14:50:57
ARB Newsclips for March 5, 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 Statkraft Awarded Tender to Sell UN Carbon Credits to Flanders. Statkraft AS won a tender to sell United Nations carbon credits to Belgium’s region of Flanders, according to a spokeswoman for Norway’s biggest utility. “We have been awarded three lots in the tender,” Ursula John, a communications adviser at Statkraft Markets GmbH, said by phone today from Dusseldorf, Germany without commenting on the amount or price of the deal. Bart Naessens, an official at the Flemish department of environment, declined to comment on the award. Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/print/2014-03-05/statkraft-awarded-tender-to-sell-un-carbon-credits-to-flanders.html AIR POLLUTION China Sets Targets to Curb Pollution. China on Wednesday provided more details on how it plans to reform some of its tightly regulated resource prices this year and gave hard targets for reducing pollution in 2014. "The problems of consumption of resources and environmental pollution are prominent," the National Development and Reform Commission, the country's top economic planning agency, said in an annual report. "In particular, smog frequently engulfs large areas of China and seriously affects people's lives and health." Posted. http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702304585004579419911740859426 Li Says China Will Declare War on Pollution as Smog Spreads. Chinese Premier Li Keqiang said pollution is a major problem and the government will “‘declare war’’ on smog by removing high-emission cars from the road and closing coal-fired furnaces. Pollution is ‘‘nature’s red-light warning against the model of inefficient and blind development,’’ Li said today in his work report at the start of this year’s National People’s Congress in Beijing. ‘‘Fostering a sound ecological environment is vital for people’s lives and the future of our nation.” Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-03-05/china-to-declare-war-on-pollution-as-smog-spreads-across-country.html http://www.reuters.com/article/2014/03/05/china-parliament-pollution-idUSL3N0M20IS20140305 Big Victory for Chevron Over Claims in Ecuador. Since losing a $19 billion judgment in an Ecuadorean court three years ago, Chevron has drawn the condemnation of human rights and environmental activists by refusing to pay anything in fines or accept blame for polluting the Ecuadorean rain forest. The award against Chevron was one of the largest judgments ever imposed by a court for environmental pollution, and it appeared to pit a mighty corporate Goliath against powerless peasants and the principal lawyer who represented them, Steven R. Donziger, as a brave David. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/05/business/federal-judge-rules-for-chevron-in-ecuadorean-pollution-case.html Drought linked to polluted winter air. Lack of rainfall, along with low winds and stagnant conditions that trapped pollution near the ground, contributed to increase in soot, officials say. California's parched winter brought a big surge in air pollution, pushing the number of bad air days one-third higher than the previous winter and posing a serious health threat, state air quality officials said Tuesday. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/science/la-me-0305-winter-air-20140305,0,1205897.story#ixzz2v79MWqIo China May Use Drones To Kill The Smog Problem. China has for some time now struggled with smog, and now Chinese premier Li Keqiang has "declared war" against pollution. Policymakers want to lower emissions of "PM10 and PM2.5, particulate matters in air smaller than 10 and 2.5 micrometers respectively, which are believed to be hazardous to health and major contributors to smog," according to Xinhua. Coal-fired furnaces will be shut down and high-emission vehicles will be taken off the road. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/China-May-Use-Drones-To-Kill-The-Smog-Problem-5290639.php CLIMATE CHANGE Climate engineering ideas no longer considered pie in the sky. Scientists backed by the government and Bill Gates are studying schemes such as sunlight-blocking particles and giant carbon vacuums to halt climate change. As international efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions stall, schemes to slow global warming using fantastical technologies once dismissed as a sideshow are getting serious consideration in Washington. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/nation/la-na-climate-engineering-20140305,0,3602250.story#ixzz2v78nHw3p Relax, Chipotle won't stop serving guacamole because of global warming A single sentence in a corporate filing by Chipotle had lovers of the burrito chain in a frenzy Wednesday morning over whether Chipotle would stop serving guacamole because of global warming. In a paragraph on pricing, the company said that because of changes in global weather patterns, prices of certain items on the menu, such as chicken, beef, cheese, avocados, beans, rice, tomatoes and pork could rise. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/food/dailydish/la-dd-guacamole-chipotle-global-warming-20140305,0,7093960.story#ixzz2v7E3icLn Begich says he doesn't support a carbon tax. U.S. Sen. Mark Begich's campaign is running radio ads taking aim at Charles Koch and David Koch, the billionaire backers of the conservative group Americans for Prosperity. The group, in an ad that began running last month, said Begich is on record supporting a carbon tax and urging Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid to make it a priority. That claim stemmed from a 2010 letter Begich signed with 11 other senators. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/Begich-says-he-doesn-t-support-a-carbon-tax-5287884.php Ex-Greenpeacer Patrick Moore questions climate change, challenges liberals. As a former Greenpeace insider, Patrick Moore wasn’t surprised by the heated reaction from the left on his explosive testimony about climate change last week before a Senate committee. Mr. Moore drew headlines for disputing the environmental movement’s doomsday scenario, depicting climate change over the past century as “minor warming” and arguing that “there is no scientific proof that human emissions of carbon dioxide are the dominant cause.” Posted. http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2014/mar/4/former-greenpeace-insider-patrick-moore-who-questi/#ixzz2v7D3GY8y DROUGHT In California, Drought Plays Out Unexpectedly. Semiarid South Is Relatively Flush, While the North Faces Restrictions. As the Golden State suffers through a three-year drought, residents of semiarid Southern California are mostly being asked to voluntarily conserve water. In typically wetter Northern California, residents are faced with mandatory rationing. Posted. http://online.wsj.com/news/articles/SB10001424052702303636404579397403690607412?mod=WSJ_WSJ_US_News_5&mg=reno64-wsj L.A. County reservoirs get 6-billion-gallon infusion from storms. Even so, L.A. County is still far short of normal rainfall for this time of year; water allotments may have to be reduced later. The storms that doused Los Angeles County over the weekend filled reservoirs in the San Gabriel Mountains with some 6 billion gallons of water, enough to supply more than 150,000 people for a year. The twin storms left more than 11 inches of rain in some higher elevations. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/local/la-me-water-tally-20140305,0,3776729.story#axzz2v1p1mktu Sacramento council votes to launch ‘cash for grass’ program to save water. The City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to launch a “cash for grass” program that will provide rebates to homeowners who replace their grass lawns with drought-tolerant landscaping. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2014/03/04/6209303/sacramento-council-votes-to-launch.html#mi_rss=Our%20Region Reservoirs Rising But Still Well Below Normal. Several days of rain and snow have raised water levels in most major California reservoirs in the past month. Several days of rain and snow have raised water levels in most major California reservoirs in the past month. But, Doug Carlson with the California Department of Water Resources says the state is nowhere near even a normal year for rain and snow. Posted. http://www.capradio.org/19281 FUELS U.S. Seeks to Reduce Ukraine’s Reliance on Russia for Natural Gas. The crisis in Crimea is accelerating Obama administration efforts to reduce Ukraine’s dependence on Russia for natural gas, part of a diplomatic push that seeks to undercut President Vladimir V. Putin’s ability to use his nation’s gas supplies as a weapon. The effort has created an unusual group of allies in Washington, as Republican leaders on Capitol Hill have joined with the Obama administration and major oil companies in promoting the natural gas sales. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/03/06/world/europe/us-seeks-to-reduce-ukraines-reliance-on-russia-for-natural-gas.html?action=click&module=Search®ion=searchResults%230&version=&url=http%3A%2F%2Fquery.nytimes.com%2Fsearch%2Fsitesearch%2F%3Faction%3Dclick%26region%3DMasthead%26pgtype%3DHomepage%26module%3DSearchSubmit%26contentCollection%3DHomepage%26t%3Dqry236%23%2Fclimate%2Bchange%2F24hours%2Fallresults%2F1%2Fallauthors%2Fnewest%2F VEHICLES President Obama Plans Support Natural Gas Trucks. According to United Parcel Service, "In 2012, liquefied natural gas vehicles finally became a viable option worthy of broad-scale deployment..." That's a good thing because the president is now calling for tighter fuel-efficiency standards for the nation's trucking fleet. That will most likely mean an increase in the number of natural-gas powered trucks riding the nation's streets and highways. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/President-Obama-Plans-Support-Natural-Gas-Trucks-5290295.php HIGH-SPEED RAIL Judge: Kings County high-speed rail lawsuit can move forward. A Sacramento judge ruled Tuesday that Kings County and two of its residents can forge ahead with a challenge to the California High-Speed Rail Authority over its statewide bullet-train plans. Sacramento County Superior Court Judge Michael Kenny denied a request by the rail agency to dismiss the second stage of a lawsuit that questions whether the state's proposed high-speed train system complies with state law. Posted. here: http://www.fresnobee.com/2014/03/04/3802992/judge-kings-county-high-speed.html#storylink=cpy MISCELLANEOUS CARB to hold diesel education training courses in March. The California Air Resources Board will hold several free courses to help educate the public about its diesel emission regulations this month. Course 511 – Controlling Diesel Emissions, devices and filters – will focus on diesel particulate matter and health effects, particulate matter and NOx control strategies as well as diesel particulate filters. The course will be offered from 9 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. March 20 in Diamond Bar, CA. Posted. http://www.landlinemag.com/Story.aspx?StoryID=26645 OPINIONS Editorial: Green-energy focus means higher electricity prices. San Diego Gas & Electric is proposing to significantly alter its rate structure – and many people are not happy about it. The company, which serves 3.4 million energy customers in San Diego and southern Orange counties, wants to shift to a more dynamic “time-of-service” pricing model that would charge higher prices during peak-demand hours. Under the plan, peak hours would now include early evening hours and would run from 2-9 p.m. Posted. http://www.ocregister.com/articles/energy-604200-customers-proposal.html BLOGS Pacific Ocean Actually Absorbs Smog. Oh boy, Fox News is going to have a field day with this one. It turns out that at least some the pollution that causes global warming (allegedly!) is actually soaked up by the very ocean beloved by the only folks who can afford to live anywhere close to it anymore - liberal Hollywood celebrities who are always yapping about global warming. Posted. http://www.laweekly.com/informer/2014/03/04/pacific-ocean-actually-absorbs-smog Smart Growth Helps Combat Climate Change. We are past the point of arguing about the science of climate change. Study after study, expert after expert, has confirmed that it is real. We are also past the point of denying the effects of climate change. Droughts, hurricanes, wildfires, the polar vortex, and record highs and lows, make it clear that the damage of climate change is real. Those are the debates of the past. What we now need to focus on, and quickly, are solutions. Posted. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/rep-doris-matsui/smart-growth-helps-combat_b_4899548.html?view=print&comm_ref=false Chipotle Warns It Might Stop Serving Guacamole If Climate Change Gets Worse. It’s your choice, America. Fix the climate, or the guac gets it. Chipotle Inc. is warning investors that extreme weather events “associated with global climate change” might eventually affect the availability of some of its ingredients. If availability is limited, prices will rise — and Chipotle isn’t sure it’s willing to pay. Posted. http://thinkprogress.org/climate/2014/03/04/3360731/chipotle-guacamole-crisis/ California is in a drought emergency. Visit www.SaveOurH2O.org for water conservation tips.