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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for April 24, 2014.

Posted: 24 Apr 2014 14:19:48
ARB Newsclips for April 24, 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.


UPDATE 1-China to impose tougher penalties on polluters under new
law. China on Thursday passed amendments to an environmental
protection law imposing tougher penalties on polluters in the
most sweeping revisions to the law in 25 years amid mounting
public anger over pollution. The much-anticipated amendments
follow a two-year debate among scholars, the government and
state-owned enterprises over changes to the environmental
protection law. Posted.


Fresno ranks No. 1 on California pollution list. New Cal/EPA maps
show that Fresno contains eight of the 10 areas most heavily
burdened by pollution. But the data tell just part of the story.
The state's new effort to map the areas most at risk from
pollution features hot spots up and down California. But nowhere
are there more of the worst-afflicted areas than in

New map could refocus California's pollution battles.  The
California Environmental Protection Agency has released a
statewide list of census tracts most burdened by pollution,
providing a first-of-its-kind ranking certain to pressure
regulators to clean up neighborhoods with long-standing health
risks. Many of the worst pollution pockets identified and mapped
by state officials are in the San Joaquin Valley, Los Angeles
County and the Inland Empire. Posted.

Feds asked to beef up planned state air pollution tests at Albany
port. An environmental group working with Albany South End
residents is urging the federal government to step in over
concerns that a proposed state air-testing plan for the Port of
Albany is too weak. The state Department of Environmental
Conservation is planning tests next month for potential air
pollution from an influx of crude oil trains discharging oil at
the port…Posted.

Economic freedom leads to cleaner air – study. Greater economic
freedom leads to lower levels of air pollution, according to a
new study that says such freedom helps support property rights
and legal remedies for pollution victims. In 2010, the study
found that the 20 highest-ranked economically free countries,
such as Singapore, New Zealand and Canada, had fine particulate
matter concentrations (PM10) almost 40 percent lower than the 20
lowest-ranked countries, which include Syria, Nigeria and China.
Posted. http://www.eenews.net/greenwire/stories/1059998396/print


Australia climate plan leaves emission cuts with government. 
Australia on Thursday released a draft climate plan that would
leave the government responsible for funding the nation's
emission cuts while the nation's biggest carbon emitters would
only be liable if they exceed historically high levels.  The
A$2.55 billion ($2.37 bln) Emissions Reduction Fund is the
Liberal government's main weapon to meet its target of cutting
Australia's climate-changing emissions to 5 percent below 2000
levels by 2020. Posted.

UPDATE 2-South Asia monsoon seen below-average to average in 2014
–WMO. India and its South Asian neighbors are expected to see
below-average to average rains this year if the El Nino weather
pattern gains strength during the four-month monsoon season, a
forum of weather experts said on Wednesday. Poor monsoons could
dent crop output in India - the world's No.2 rice and sugar
producer, while less rains in soybean areas could make the

Springing Forward, and Its Consequences. This is a busy time of
year for Richard B. Primack, a biologist at Boston University. He
and his colleagues survey the plants growing around Concord,
Mass., recording the first day they send up flowers and leaves.
Compared to the last five springs, things are pretty slow right
now around Concord, in large part because of the relatively cold
winter and chilly March. Posted.

Study Finds Less Green in the Congo Rain Forest. Years of drier
conditions in the Congo River basin in central Africa appear to
be affecting trees in the region’s vast rain forests, scientists
reported on Wednesday. Writing in the journal Nature, the
researchers said the capacity of the trees to photosynthesize had
declined. If this trend continues, they suggested, a long-term
result could be changes in the structure and composition of the
region’s forests…Posted.

Climate change threatens California's air quality, report says.
Climate change and extreme weather could set back decades of
improvement in California’s air quality, a new report by the
state’s pollution control officers says. A higher number of
extreme heat days from global warming will boost smog formation
and increase severe wildfires that release harmful smoke into the

Forum: Climate change impacts everyone. The debate on climate
change is over. Global warming is happening and humans are
responsible for it. This was the message delivered by U.S. Sen.
Chris Murphy on Wednesday at a climate change forum at the
Legislative Office Building in Hartford. Posted.

Study links California drought to global warming. While
researchers have sometimes connected weather extremes to man-made
global warming, usually it’s not done in real time. Now a study
is asserting a link between climate change and both the
intensifying California drought and the polar vortex blamed for a
harsh winter that mercifully has just ended in many places.




Cal State University playing a critical role in water
conservation.  As water agencies wrestle with California’s
drought emergency, and lawmakers pass bills seeking relief from a
third consecutive dry year in the state, another institution, the
public university system, is continuing to play a critical role
in water conservation. Among its 23 campuses, California State
University has 12 water research institutes, with more than 250
faculty studying the issue, from drought patterns…Posted.


In reversal of roles, eyes of trucking will be on CARB this week.
Truck drivers throughout North America know they are watched for
incompliant trucks, reefer trailers and other diesel engines
every time they cross into the state of California. This week,
however, many throughout the trucking industry will be watching
the California Air Resources Board as it examines exemptions and
timelines for administering its Truck and Bus Regulation. Posted.


Lufthansa says helping to test new aviation biofuel.  Lufthansa
is testing a new type of biofuel for use in aircraft, the German
carrier said on Wednesday, as the airline industry steps up
efforts to cut its carbon dioxide emissions. Lufthansa was the
first airline worldwide to use biofuels in commercial flights in
2011, when it used a 50:50 mix of biofuel - gained from plant
oils and animal fats - and regular kerosene to power one engine
per plane on daily flights between Frankfurt and Hamburg. Posted.

Jury awards Texas family nearly $3 million in fracking case.  A
family says fracking and other drilling by Aruba Petroleum near
their ranch created severe health problems. The civil jury
verdict may be the first of its kind in a fracking case. In a
landmark legal victory that centered on fracking, a middle-class
north Texas ranching family won nearly $3 million from a big
natural gas company whose drilling, they contend, caused years of
sickness, killed pets and livestock…Posted.

Cruder than Alberta tar sands.  According to experts and the New
York Times, President Obama's eventual decision on the Keystone
XL Pipeline - last week, the administration once again postponed
a decision - "will have a marginal impact on global warming
emissions." The global economy releases lots of greenhouse gas -
32.6 billion metric tons of carbon in 2011. Posted.

Keystone XL's Latest Delay Is Great News for This Company.  The
U.S. State Department is once again extending the approval
process for TransCanada's Keystone XL pipeline. That's bad news
for the pipeline company, but good news for Canadian National
Railway , which is shipping Canadian crude by rail all the way
down to the U.S. Gulf Coast—exactly the path TransCanada's
Keystone is supposed to traverse. Posted.

Keystone XL Pipeline Delayed Again: What Companies Will Suffer?
The U.S. government has again held off making a decision on the
controversial Keystone XL oil pipeline. The State Department
announced recently that litigation currently pending in the
Nebraska courts is one reason for the delay. It's likely that the
issue will not be settled until after national, state, and local
elections later this year. Posted.

Obama admin mulls regulating mine methane releases. The Bureau of
Land Management is moving forward with a potential rulemaking to
control methane releases from mining operations on public land.
Environmental advocates have for years pressed regulators to
require the capture, destruction or sale of methane, a powerful
greenhouse gas, from mining operations. Companies have generally
resisted new requirements, calling them uneconomic and
potentially dangerous. Methane venting is needed to protect
miners underground and prevent explosions. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/greenwire/stories/1059998411/print BY


3 Reasons Why Tesla Motors Inc.'s Sales in China Will Accelerate
When It Starts Manufacturing In-Cou. Tesla Motors CEO Elon Musk,
who's in China to kick off the initial deliveries of the
company's Model S sedan in the country, said on Monday: "At some
point in the next three or four years we'll be establishing local
manufacturing in China." This "local manufacturing" will likely
be in the form of a joint venture with a Chinese company, which
is required of Tesla…Posted.


Green groups urge U.S. to drop solar trade case against India.
Environmental groups urged the United States on Wednesday to drop
a challenge to India's massive solar program and said the World
Trade Organization case would only hurt the growth of renewable
energy resources. The United States is taking action at the WTO
over the domestic content requirements in India's program, which
aims to ease chronic energy shortages in Asia's third-largest
economy. Posted.

Britain's Conservatives to end onshore wind farm subsidies.
British Prime Minister David Cameron's Conservative party pledged
to end government subsidies for onshore wind farms if it wins a
national election next year, increasing uncertainty for investors
in renewable energy. Michael Fallon, a Conservative energy
minister, said that onshore wind still had a role to play in
helping Britain meet its energy needs and renewable energy

Subtle surprises fuel today's green business tactics. Born of the
hippie, flower-child culture of the 1960s, the modern
environmentalist movement in business today is in many ways about
dollars and cents. The green economy has gone mainstream, whether
that means traditional businesses adopting environmental
principles, or environmentally friendly businesses becoming the
norm. Posted.

SunPower and Google invest $250 million in residential solar
panel leases. Google and SunPower are planning to invest up to
$250 million to lease solar panels to homeowners, the companies
said on Wednesday. Google is investing up to $100 million, while
solar panel maker SunPower is committing the other $150 million.
Some 20,000 people in the U.S. already lease solar panels from
San Jose-based SunPower, the companies said. Posted.


Koch brothers vs. the solar industry. Re "The right takes aim at
the solar industry," April 20. The vast sums of money used by the
Koch brothers and their ilk originated from average Americans
fueling their vehicles and powering their homes. Billions of
dollars are sucked out of our economy by those who want us to
keep using carbon-based energy. The use of oil, coal and natural
gas has massive external costs that are not paid by the end user.

Viewpoints: Cleaning up coal emissions through cap and trade.
This week, the California Air Resources Board is planning to vote
on whether to adopt changes to its cap-and-trade program,
including how to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from coal mines.
Some may wonder why ARB is doing this with almost no active coal
mines or coal-fired power plants in California. The answer lies
outside our state’s borders. Posted.

Profits from cap and trade. Re "Cleaning up coal emissions
through cap and trade" (Viewpoints, April 24): Coal is evil and
Greg Arnold profiting from Cap and Trade Taxation is good. I'm
surprised that you printed an op-ed from someone who stands to
gain financially from the manmade global warming myth. To believe
taxing California's business will have any effects on the Earth's
temperature is to believe Leland Yee was a great Legislator.

Berkeley Voice letters to the editor: Public health funding is
critical; monopoly on free speech. Climate change liars are
wrong. On April 17, I attended an excellently filmed movie at the
Rialto Cinema Cerrito about losing ice from the Arctic Circle,
"Chasing Ice." Only 8 percent of the world's ice is in the Arctic
Circle. Two percent of the ice is on the world's mountain caps
and 91 percent of the world's ice is in Antarctica, which has not
lost 1 pound of ice. Posted.

Fracking moratorium could hurt state's economy. California is
blessed with two-thirds of the nation’s estimated shale oil
reserves — 15.4 billion barrels of clean energy — so with an
unemployment rate of 8.5 percent and chronic budget deficits, the
state should be doing all it can to encourage new business
development to create jobs and raise revenue. Posted.


A Deeper Look at a Study Finding High Leak Rates From Gas
Drilling. Most efforts to slow the natural gas drilling boom in
the United States have focused on questions about the
environmental impacts of the process called hydraulic fracturing,
or fracking, which occurs deep underground after a well is
drilled. That’s why a great deal of attention was paid last week
to the results of a two-day aerial survey over gas fields…Posted.

When it comes to climate change, not all forests are created
equal. Any gardener can tell you that plants need nutrients such
as nitrogen and phosphorus to grow. The gardener who feeds
homemade compost or fertilizer pellets to her plants can expect
bountiful harvests and lush landscapes — while failing to do so
could yield a much scrubbier planter box. Posted.

Congress’ power plays. Our opinion: Congress needs to support
wind power, not keep leaving the industry dangling while it doles
out billions for fossil fuels. A savvy shopper with an eye on the
household budget knows that items need to be both nice and
necessary before going in the cart. Congress sure gets the nice
part of that equation, raking in millions in political giving
from the oil and gas industry while doling out billions to it
annually in tax breaks. Posted.

Diesel Truck Pollution: The Truth is Lost in the Fumes.  A couple
things about diesel truck pollution: there’s still a lot of it in
California, truck drivers are suffering from it, and most truck
owners oppose rolling back the statewide truck clean-up rule. 
These facts have been obscured by all the fumes emanating from a
tiny but vocal minority of trucktivists who want to do away with
the Air Resources Board measure curbing diesel pollution from
trucks.  Posted.

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

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