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newsclips -- Newsclips for April 15, 2014

Posted: 15 Apr 2014 11:55:09
ARB Newsclips for April 15, 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.


California lawmaker scraps plan to replace carbon market with tax
on fuels.  A top Democratic lawmaker in California on Monday
backed off an unpopular plan to tax gasoline and diesel fuels and
instead proposed a less controversial plan to spend up to $5
billion a year from the state's fledgling carbon program on
affordable housing and mass transit.  Posted. 

Other related articles:


Asian air pollution could have impact on global weather patterns.
 A study finds that air pollution from Asia directly affects the
storm pattern over the Pacific Ocean. Researchers further
speculate that this could be driving freak winter weather in
North America.  "The Pacific storm track is a major driving force
over global weather patterns," says the study's lead author Yuan
Wang, a post-doctorate fellow at the NASA U.S. Jet Propulsion
Laboratory.  Posted. 

U.S. appeals court upholds hazardous air pollution rule.  In a
victory for the Obama administration, a U.S. appeals court on
Tuesday upheld a regulation that would limit emissions of mercury
and other hazardous pollutants mainly from coal-fired power
plants, starting next year.  Posted. 


Southland air regulators seek to hold ports to pollution targets.
Air quality regulators, embarking on a bold new strategy to
reduce smog in Southern California, want to hold the ports of Los
Angeles and Long Beach responsible for their pledges to cut
pollution from thousands of trucks, ships and trains carrying
goods to and from the nation's largest port complex.  Posted. 


Political Rifts Slow U.S. Effort on Climate Laws.  The United
States needs to enact a major climate change law, such as a tax
on carbon pollution, by the end of this decade to stave off the
most catastrophic impacts of global warming, according to the
authors of a report released this week by the United Nations
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. But aggressive efforts
to tackle climate change have repeatedly collided with political
reality in Washington, where some Republicans question the
underlying science of global warming and lawmakers’ ties to the
fossil fuel industry have made them resistant to change. Posted.

El Nino Signs Detected, Presaging Global Weather Change.  Signs
have been detected that a periodic warming of the tropical
Pacific known as El Nino is imminent, presaging changes to global
weather patterns in the months ahead, the World Meteorological
Organization said. Water temperatures below the surface of the
Pacific’s equatorial waters have warmed to levels similar to the
onset of El Nino, and about two-thirds of climate models indicate
thresholds for the phenomenon may be reached from June to August,
the United Nations’ WMO said today in an e-mailed statement.

City growth by almost 2 Manhattans a day said key to climate. 
The world's urban areas are set to grow by almost twice the size
of Manhattan a day until 2030 and the design of future cities in
Asia and Africa will be crucial to slow global warming, a U.N.
study showed on Monday. The breakneck expansion means
billion-dollar opportunities for companies, ranging from greener
construction of homes and offices to improved rail and bus
networks, according to a report by the U.N.'s Intergovernmental
Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). Posted.


EU lawmakers vote for redesign to make trucks safer and greener. 
European trucks will be transformed to make driver cabs more
aerodynamic, cutting emissions and improving safety, under new
rules backed by EU politicians on Tuesday that could divide the
industry due to the cost. Campaigners hailed the vote at the
European Parliament in Strasbourg as the beginning of the end of
trucks' brick-shaped cabs blamed for cyclist and pedestrian
deaths because of poor driver visibility. Posted.


ARB posts 5 new LCFS pathways; two renewable diesel.  California
Air Resources Board (ARB) staff has posted five new and one
revised Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS) fuel pathway applications
to the LCFS public comment website. The new pathways include two
renewable diesel pathways; two biodiesel pathways, and one corn
ethanol pathway. The revised package is for corn oil biodiesel. 

Dual Turning Point for Biofuels.  There is an old joke in the
energy business that advanced biofuels are the fuel of the
future, and always will be. A Spanish company, Abengoa Bioenergy,
has bet $500 million on robbing that joke of its punch line. In
the middle of a cornfield here it is building a 38-acre Erector
set of electrical cable and pipe that will soon begin producing
cellulosic ethanol, which it calls a low-polluting alternative to
petroleum products. Posted.


Couple gets $1.3M in wind turbine settlement.  A Vermont couple
whose Northeast Kingdom farm became a focal point in the fight
against construction of a 21-turbine industrial wind project on
Lowell Mountain said Monday that they were selling their 540-acre
farm to Green Mountain Power for $1.3 million. In announcing they
had agreed to settle a lawsuit over a boundary dispute filed
against them by GMP, Don and Shirley Nelson said they felt they
could have won in court, but it would not have led to the removal
of the now-operating turbines. Posted.


Public Attitudes About Climate Change.  Ted Nordhaus and Michael
Shellenberger (“Global Warming Scare Tactics,” Op-Ed, April 9)
embrace uncritically what can be called the ultimate technocratic
illusion: that whatever we human beings do to our habitat can be
fixed by a rescue technology. Just as the American media are
beginning, belatedly, to take seriously the dire effects of
climate change, the writers scold these efforts as “fear-based.”

Climate change has arrived.  In case there was still any doubt,
and there shouldn't be at this point, the Intergovernmental Panel
on Climate Change, a United Nations group of scientists, has made
it official: Climate change is not coming, it's already here. And
it's going to get worse unless the whole world - especially the
industrial world - greatly reduces greenhouse emissions causing
global warming. The U.N. panel periodically weighs in on the
state of the Earth's climate. Posted.


By 2050, every company needs to be a zero-energy company. Or
else.  The latest climate change report from the U.N.
Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change is out, and the news
isn’t good: attempts to reduce carbon emissions over the past
decade have failed, and we’re looking at some pretty grim
scenarios if governments around the world don’t find a way to
reduce our reliance on fossil fuels by the year 2050.  Posted. 

Could natural gas be the answer to London’s pollution concerns? 
Over 8% of the deaths in some parts of London may be attributable
to long-term exposure to man-made particulate air pollution,
according to a new study from UK government body Public Health
England.  Posted. 

Court upholds EPA air pollution rule.  A federal appeals court on
Tuesday upheld the Obama administration's standards for curbing
mercury and toxic air pollution from power plants.  The U.S.
Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit rejected a
challenge to the rule, which was completed by the Environmental
Protection Agency in 2011 and set the first national limits on
air pollution emitted by coal and oil-fired power plants,
specifically mercury, arsenic and acid gases.  Posted. 

FEV says new PHEV transmission ready for 'sports car
performance.'  At the SAE World Congress in Detroit last week,
FEV showed off what it calls an "innovative" new plug-in hybrid
transmission. The reason for that moniker is that the system does
away with the need for a torque converter while offering two
speeds, which makes it particularly good during launch. Posted.

Is 120 miles just about perfect for EV range?  When it comes to
battery-electric vehicles, our friend Brad Berman over at Plug In
Cars says 40 miles makes all the difference in the world. That's
the approximate difference in single-charge range between the
battery-electric version of the Toyota RAV4 and the Nissan Leaf.
It's also the difference between the appearance or disappearance
of range anxiety. Posted.

California is in a drought emergency.
Visit www.SaveOurH2O.org for water conservation tips.

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