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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for January 25, 2017. Posted: 25 Jan 2017 14:42:52
ARB Newsclips for January 25, 2017. 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 Trump administration tells EPA to cut climate page from website: sources. U.S. President Donald Trump's administration has instructed the Environmental Protection Agency to remove the climate change page from its website, two agency employees told Reuters, the latest move by the newly minted leadership to erase ex-President Barack Obama's climate change initiatives. http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-epa-climatechange-idUSKBN15906G?utm_source=Inside+Climate+News&utm_campaign=26dd190879-Today_s_Climate12_10_2014&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_29c928ffb5-26dd190879-327747457 The future of California's cap-and-trade program remains uncertain as it gets its day in court. Lawyers for the state and businesses clashed in a Sacramento appeals court Tuesday over how much power California has to regulate greenhouse gas emissions and whether that authority includes raising revenue for lawmakers to spend. The case could determine the future of the state’s cap-and-trade program, which requires companies to buy permits to release greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. http://www.latimes.com/politics/la-pol-ca-california-climate-court-hearing-20170124-story.html Is it a fee or tax? California’s cap-and-trade faces tough questions. California’s marquee climate-change program faced tough scrutiny on Tuesday from a state appeals court judge who seemed skeptical that the $4.4 billion raised from the state’s cap-and-trade program complied with laws regulating taxes and fees. “Where does this end?” Associate Justice Harry Hull asked state lawyers at a hearing in a long-running lawsuit… http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article128494604.html#storylink=cpy California’s Cap and Trade: Appeals Court to Decide Its Future. Businesses looking to invalidate California’s fee for carbon pollution take their arguments to a state appeals court Tuesday in a case that could determine the future of one of California’s signature efforts to combat climate change. With a central piece of Gov. Jerry Brown’s legacy on the line, lawyers for the state and for environmental advocacy groups will defend… https://ww2.kqed.org/science/2017/01/24/californias-cap-and-trade-appeals-court-to-decide-its-future/ Hearings begin on constitutionality of California cap and trade. In an uncertain political landscape, cap and trade in California faced a fresh hurdle as hearings began before an appeals court over the constitutional legitimacy of the regime. “A long-running lawsuit filed by the California Chamber of Commerce seeks to have the system declared an illegal business tax that should have required a two-thirds vote of the legislature to take effect,”… http://calwatchdog.com/2017/01/25/hearings-begin-constitutionality-california-cap-trade/ California’s cap-and-trade faces tough questions. California’s marquee climate-change program faced tough scrutiny on Tuesday from a state appeals court judge who seemed skeptical that the $4.4 billion raised from the state’s cap-and-trade program complied with laws regulating taxes and fees. “Where does this end?” Associate Justice Harry Hull asked state lawyers at a hearing in a long-running lawsuit that challenges… http://www.capoliticalreview.com/trending/californias-cap-and-trade-faces-tough-questions/ Appellate court hears arguments on cap-and-trade auction. A Sacramento appellate court will hear oral arguments this morning on a closely-watched lawsuit filed by CalChamber concerning the California Air Resources Board’s cap-and-trade auction. In 2012, CalChamber sued the ARB seeking to invalidate the auction in violation of Proposition 13. The complaint asserts that AB 32 does not authorize the ARB to impose fees… http://www.foxandhoundsdaily.com/2017/01/appellate-court-hears-arguments-cap-trade-auction/ In California, a legal battle over carbon emission auctions (+video). An appeals court in Sacramento is set to hear a four-year-old legal challenge to California's emissions trading program. California Gov. Jerry Brown wants his state's cap-and-trade program to serve as a golden example of how industries can slash pollution. But business groups argue the billions the program has collected through auctions amount to an “illegal tax.” http://www.csmonitor.com/Environment/2017/0124/In-California-a-legal-battle-over-carbon-emission-auctions-video?cmpid=TW Governor Brown tries to leverage giant new cap-and-trade deal. Gov. Jerry Brown proposes a budget that eliminates a projected $2 billion deficit for the upcoming year. Brown wants the Legislature, where Democrats gained a two-thirds majority in both houses in the November election, to use that power to extend the cap-and-trade program beyond 2020. https://calnewseditor.wordpress.com/2017/01/24/governor-brown-tries-to-leverage-giant-new-cap-and-trade-deal/ Amid legal uncertainty, California agency proposes cap-and-trade expansion Dive Brief: •The California Air Resources Board (CARB) has proposed a plan that would raise the bar on the state’s efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. •CARB’s scoping plan calls for reducing GHGs 40% below 1990 levels by 2030, extending the state’s carbon dioxide cap and trade program to 2030, reducing GHGs from refineries by 20%... http://www.utilitydive.com/news/amid-legal-uncertainty-california-agency-proposes-cap-and-trade-expansion/434691/ California Appellate Court Hears Arguments in Cap-and-Trade Program Challenge. Court of Appeal Justices Appear Inclined to Reject Industry’s Constitutional Attack on State’s Cap-and-Trade Auction System. On Tuesday, the California Court of Appeal in Sacramento heard oral arguments in the most formidable legal challenge to the State of California’s ambitious, multifaceted efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. http://legal-planet.org/2017/01/25/california-appellate-court-hears-arguments-in-cap-and-trade-program-challenge/ Court weighs whether cap and trade is a fee or a tax — or 'neither'. Judges considering a challenge against California's landmark climate change laws asked pointed questions yesterday aimed at figuring out its status under the state's tax rules. California businesses argued in the 3rd District Court of Appeal that the state lacks authority to conduct auctions of greenhouse gas permits… http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/2017/01/25/stories/1060048949 AIR POLLUTION Judge protects Chevron's assets in $9.5B pollution fight. An Ontario judge last week protected Chevron Corp.'s Canadian assets from being seized; dealing a blow to Ecuadorean villagers who say the oil giant polluted their land. The ruling is the latest development in a 24-year-old legal battle between Chevron and Ecuadorean villagers that has played out in courtrooms around the globe. http://www.eenews.net/energywire/2017/01/25/stories/1060048908 CLIMATE CHANGE EU body: Climate change poses increasingly severe risks. The European Environment Agency says the continent is facing rising sea levels and more extreme weather, such as more frequent and more intense heat waves, flooding, droughts and storms because of climate change. The Copenhagen-based agency says that its assessment is based on the latest trends and projections on climate change and its impacts across Europe. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-01-25/exxon-praises-monumental-paris-agreement-in-signal-to-trump Trump’s Climate Stance Threatens to Worsen China Relations. President Donald Trump’s vow to pull back from climate-change efforts endangers one of the few areas where China and the U.S. have seen eye-to-eye, exacerbating tensions as he takes on more contentious subjects. “There is a long history of countries that struggle to get along, using the subject of the environment to continue talking and build good will… https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-01-24/trump-s-climate-stance-threatens-rare-common-ground-with-china?utm_source=Inside+Climate+News&utm_campaign=f3a8c5999d-Today_s_Climate12_10_2014&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_29c928ffb5-f3a8c5999d-327747457 California governor defiant in face of Trump agenda. Gov. Jerry Brown forcefully defended California's efforts to curb global warming, protect immigrants and expand health care, vowing in his State of the State address Tuesday to fight the Trump administration if it tries to roll back the state's accomplishments. "California is not turning back. Not now, not ever," he declared. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_CALIFORNIA_STATE_OF_STATE?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT OTHER RELATED STORIES https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2017/01/24/in-a-fiery-speech-california-gov-jerry-brown-defends-climate-action-and-attacks-alternative-facts/?utm_campaign=26dd190879-Today_s_Climate12_10_2014&utm_medium=email&utm_source=Inside Climate News&utm_term=.e51bec25de67 San Diego adopts urban forestry plan to boost tree canopy, slow climate change. Neighborhoods in San Diego, especially those in low-income and urban areas, would get significantly more trees under a five-year “urban forestry” plan the City Council unanimously approved on Tuesday. The proposal aims to help the city meet the goals of its ambitious climate action plan… http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/news/politics/sd-me-urban-forest-20170124-story.html Report: Climate Change Rules Boost Economy In Central Valley. A study finds that California's climate-friendly policies have created a $13 billion economic boost to the Central Valley's economy. The report, commissioned by the nonpartisan group Next 10, finds climate change policies in California have helped, not hurt, the region's economy. Next 10 founder Noel Perry said the study focused on three areas: the state's air pollution cap-and-trade credit program; the state's renewable energy goals… http://www.kpbs.org/news/2017/jan/25/states-climate-change-rules-boosting-economy-centr/ Silenced Federal Agencies Violating Their Own Policies. Tuesday marked a flurry of actions by the Trump administration that have cut off some federal scientists from the outside world. The news, reported by outlets including ProPublica, the Huffington Post, BuzzFeed and the Associated Press, centers around the Environmental Protection Agency and U.S. Department of Agriculture. http://www.climatecentral.org/news/silenced-federal-agencies-are-violating-their-own-policies-21105?utm_source=Inside+Climate+News&utm_campaign=26dd190879-Today_s_Climate12_10_2014&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_29c928ffb5-26dd190879-327747457 Donald Trump accused of breaking law by removing greenhouse gas emission data from US government website. Campaigners claim there is a legal requirement to publish information about carbon emissions. The Trump administration broke US law when it ordered information about carbon emissions to be removed from the Environmental Protection Agency’s website, a leading environmental campaigner has claimed. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/donald-trump-break-law-removing-greenhouse-gas-emission-data-us-government-website-epa-nationa-parks-a7545981.html Even before formal death knell, Clean Power Plan is history. The Clean Power Plan, as the world knows it, is dead. The Trump administration has vowed to reverse the U.S. EPA regulation meant to drive down carbon emissions from power plants. And although environmental advocates will fight that decision in the courts, the battle could rage on for years. During that time, many states may pursue their own climate strategies. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/2017/01/24/stories/1060048857 Staff told to 'stand down' on axing climate page. Trump administration officials appear to have walked back plans to scrub climate change references from U.S. EPA's website. "We've been told to stand down," an EPA employee told E&E News today. That new directive comes after staff were told yesterday to remove the agency's climate change page from its website, worrying climate change activists and sending data specialists scrambling to download files. http://www.eenews.net/greenwire/2017/01/25/stories/1060048975 Agency told to remove climate from website — report. The Trump administration has instructed U.S. EPA to get rid of mentions of climate change from its website, Reuters reported late yesterday. Communications staff were told to remove the agency's webpage on climate change, according to two unnamed EPA staff members. The move adds to concerns that a Trump administration will promote a denial of fundamental science within its agencies. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/2017/01/25/stories/1060048947 Tillerson's written responses on climate fail to satisfy Dems. Former Exxon Mobil Corp. CEO Rex Tillerson, President Trump's choice to lead the State Department, said at his confirmation hearing that climate change is real but provided vague answers on climate science and hazy replies about international climate negotiations. What the oilman told senators in writing only slightly clarified things. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/2017/01/25/stories/1060048942 DROUGHT ‘Snow drought’ ends for Mid-Atlantic ski resorts, and the cold returns. It finally snowed again in the Mid-Atlantic ski country. After a two-week hiatus, Old Man Winter returned, dropping almost half a foot in the most snow-favorable areas, like Canaan Valley, W.Va. Other notable locations were… https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/capital-weather-gang/wp/2017/01/25/snow-drought-ends-for-mid-atlantic-ski-resorts-and-the-cold-returns/?utm_term=.b1e9b67cd3f4 From drought to floods, California staggers from one state of emergency to the next. Despite rising flood waters across California this week, the state's water regulator is not ready to lift the drought-mandated water conservation ban just yet. When it rains, it pours. In drought- and wildfire-scarred California, it also snows, hails, and gusts. California Gov. Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency Monday in 50 out of California’s 58 counties… http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/2017/0125/From-drought-to-floods-California-staggers-from-one-state-of-emergency-to-the-next DIESEL ACTIVITIES San Pedro’s battleship upgrades from diesel to clean shore-side power. The Battleship Iowa tourist attraction has become the latest vessel to plug into electric shore-side power at the Port of Los Angeles. The upgrade was unveiled at a Monday morning news conference in San Pedro, where the World War II battleship has been a popular tourist draw since it arrived in 2012. The ship’s operational systems previously ran on a diesel generator. http://www.dailybreeze.com/business/20170123/san-pedros-battleship-upgrades-from-diesel-to-clean-shore-side-power FUELS Exxon Praises ‘Monumental’ Paris Agreement in Signal to Trump. Exxon Mobil Corp., the U.S. oil giant that’s facing investigations over what it knew and when about climate change, sees the Paris agreement to mitigate global warming as a “monumental” achievement, according to a top executive. The company supports the December 2015 Paris accord as a “very meaningful and constructive process,” William M. Colton, Exxon’s vice president for corporate strategic planning… https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-01-25/exxon-praises-monumental-paris-agreement-in-signal-to-trump California Agencies Report on Build-Out of Hydrogen Stations. The California Energy Commission (CEC) and California Air Resources Board (CARB) have released the annual Joint Agency Staff Report on A.B.8: 2016 Assessment of Time and Cost Needed to Attain 100 Hydrogen Refueling Stations in California. As reported, the analysis updates the time and cost assessments to design, permit… http://ngtnews.com/california-agencies-report-on-build-out-of-hydrogen-refueling-stations http://cafcp.org/blog/cec-and-arb-release-joint-staff-report-2017 ‘Huge’ coal-to-gas switch drives down EU power emissions. Europe’s power-sector CO2 emissions fell 4.5% in 2016 after a “huge” switch from coal- to gas-fired generation, according to new analysis. The figures are jointly published by the thinktanks Sandbag and Agora Energiewende today. They show coal generation across the EU falling by 94 terawatt hours (TWh), down 12% on a year earlier. Gas output was up 101TWh, a 20% increase (see chart, below). https://www.carbonbrief.org/huge-coal-gas-switch-drives-down-eu-emissions Enviros, now on the outs with White House, look to the courts. President Trump yesterday began making good on his promises to boost the oil and gas industry, signing memos reviving two controversial pipelines that have become the face of the climate movement and officially kicking off a war with environmentalists. Trump directed the State Department to expedite its approval of the Keystone XL oil pipeline that would connect Canadian oil sands with U.S. refineries. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/2017/01/25/stories/1060048946 GREEN ENERGY France issues record $7.5 billion in 'green bonds'. France has issued a record 7 billion euros ($7.5 billion) in so-called green treasury bonds, a boost to efforts to generate investment in clean energy. The French government celebrated the higher than expected demand for Tuesday's bond issue. President Francois Hollande called on others to follow France's example. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/E/EU_FRANCE_GREEN_BONDS?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT MISCELLANEOUS Trump admin orders EPA contract freeze and media blackout. The Trump administration has instituted what it described as a temporary media blackout at the Environmental Protection Agency and barred staff from awarding any new contracts or grants. Emails sent to EPA staff since President Donald Trump's inauguration on Friday and reviewed by The Associated Press detailed specific prohibitions banning press releases… http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/A/APFN_US__TRUMP_AGENCIES_CRACKDOWN?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT OTHER RELATED STORIES http://www.reuters.com/article/us-usa-trump-epa-idUSKBN15822X https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/federal-agencies-ordered-to-restrict-their-communications/2017/01/24/9daa6aa4-e26f-11e6-ba11-63c4b4fb5a63_story.html?utm_term=.63b705fe193e http://www.sfgate.com/news/politics/article/EPA-contract-freeze-media-blackout-leave-states-10882102.php http://www.desertsun.com/story/news/environment/2017/01/24/california-objects-trumps-freeze-epa-grants/97021102/ http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Gag-order-freeze-put-on-EPA-other-federal-10881372.php The Latest: National park’s climate tweets go viral. The Latest on President Donald Trump (all times local): Three climate-related tweets sent out by Badlands National Park have been deleted after they went viral on Twitter, sparking debate over whether the park was defying the Trump administration. The South Dakota park posted tweets Tuesday that accurately quoted climate science data… https://www.washingtonpost.com/business/the-latest-trump-repeats-unproven-claim-of-illegal-votes/2017/01/23/3235326c-e1da-11e6-a419-eefe8eff0835_story.html?utm_term=.ca2bcdef03db Closed-loop concept could be the future of sustainable animal farms. Dr. Eunsung Kan sees his concept of a closed-loop dairy farm, which reuses wastewater, emits zero waste and powers itself on manure, as the future of sustainable animal farming. Kan, a Texas A&M AgriLife Research chemical and environmental engineer in Stephenville, said his concept could change the way dairies, swine and poultry farms deal with manure… https://phys.org/news/2017-01-closed-loop-concept-future-sustainable-animal.html#jCp OPINIONS The end of California's drought is much closer after recent rain. Local reservoirs rising rapidly in response to the barrage of rain, but we still have a ways to go to overcome effects of drought. You know the answer already. No, the drought isn’t over in Southern California – even with this burst of insane amounts of rain the last five days, Alex Tardy, a National Weather Service meteorologist in San Diego, said Monday, Jan. 23. http://www.pe.com/articles/drought-823822-water-tardy.html The growing need for boardroom climate competency. Large institutional investors, concerned about portfolio risks stemming from the effects of global warming, are calling for climate-competent boards and directors as part of their fiduciary responsibility to preserve and enhance the long-term value of their investment assets. Despite the anticipated rollback of climate related governmental policies such as the… http://www.pionline.com/article/20170125/ONLINE/170129925/the-growing-need-for-boardroom-climate-competency Why California’s EPA waivers matter: The air we breathe. The reason that Congress, back in 1970, granted California authority to go beyond federal standards is that California had the worst air pollution in the nation. It had already taken aggressive action in 1967 under Gov. Ronald Reagan to address the persistent smog that was choking the Los Angeles Basin, regularly triggering red-flag alert days… http://www.foxandhoundsdaily.com/2017/01/californias-epa-waivers-matter-air-breathe/ Cap and Trade Nightmare. As Ontario rang in the New Year, the Liberal government’s cap-and-trade scheme came into play in the background, thus setting the stage for another crippling blow to the wallets of working class Ontarians, and Ontario’s economy. Canada ratified the Paris Agreement in October of 2016, officially setting plans in motion to combat climate change. http://www.brantfordexpositor.ca/ur/story/1223965 BLOGS Five Far Reaching Opportunities to Modernize California Natural Gas Policy. As he settles into his final two years as California’s longest-serving Governor, Jerry Brown has limited time to finalize his energy and climate policy legacy. Meanwhile, with a new crop of state legislators and two new appointees at the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC), California has a fresh set of actors… http://blogs.edf.org/energyexchange/2017/01/24/five-far-reaching-opportunities-to-modernize-california-natural-gas-policy/ Endangered Species: How Environmental Rollback Could Hit Forest Owners Hard. A few years back, the Yurok people of California started tapping carbon markets to save their forest; they’ve since raised millions from companies like Chevron, Tesoro, and Calpine Energy Services by doing so – and they’re not alone. In 2015, owners of farms and private forests across the country earned $63.2 million… http://www.ecosystemmarketplace.com/articles/endangered-species-environmental-rollback-hit-forest-owners-hard/ In California, the Future Is Still Electric. At every level, the state is ramping up for widespread electric vehicle adoption. And it’s ready to throw down with President Trump. No question about it: The next four years will darken U.S. action on climate change. In a meeting yesterday with automakers where he promised to roll back environmental regulations, President Donald Trump declared, “I am, to a large extent, an environmentalist.” http://www.citylab.com/commute/2017/01/in-california-the-future-is-still-electric/514199/ CDC Postpones Climate Change Conference: Is Trump Administration To Blame? The CDC postponed a summit, scheduled for February 2017, on climate change and its effects on public health. The event had been programmed before President Donald Trump's inauguration, but it was voluntarily delayed two days after his mandate. The president's administration never asked explicitly for this move. http://www.techtimes.com/articles/194195/20170125/cdc-postpones-climate-change-conference-is-trump-administration-to-blame.htm#sthash.rMeKtMvv.dpuf California is in a drought emergency. Visit www.SaveOurH2O.org for water conservation tips.