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newsclips -- CARB Newsclips for February 15, 2017.

Posted: 15 Feb 2017 16:08:16
CARB Newsclips for February 15, 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.


Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS). The California Air Resources
Board staff has posted a report on credit transfer activity for
the Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS). This includes recent credit
volumes transferred, credit prices and trends through January
2017. Monthly:



DEQ verdict: Cap and trade won't dent Oregon's economy. Cap and
trade, set to become a big issue in the unfolding Oregon
legislative session, got a warm review from the state's
Department of Environmental Quality today. In a 75-page study,
the DEQ concluded that cap and trade "offers a flexible,
cost-effective mechanism for assuring (greenhouse gas)

Renewable Fuel Standard. The Ontario government is committed to
reducing greenhouse gases by 15% by 2020, 27% by 2030 and 80% by
2050 relative to 1990 levels. These reductions are legislated in
the Ministry of the Environment and Climate Change’s (“Ministry”)
new Climate Change Mitigation and Low Carbon Economy Act (“Act”).
Under the Act, funds raised from Ontario’s cap and trade program…


European commission issues 'final warning' to UK over air
pollution breaches. UK is one of five countries persistently
contravening legal nitrogen dioxide levels with pollution from
factories and vehicles. Britain has been sent a final warning to
comply with EU air pollution limits for nitrogen dioxide (NO2) or
face a case at the European court of justice.


LA leader fights to boost Porter Ranch health study, says gas
leak settlement ‘ignores’ community.  Los Angeles City Councilman
Mitchell Englander on Tuesday demanded that air quality regulars
increase the amount of money for a health study included in the
$8.5 million settlement of a lawsuit filed against Southern
California Gas Co. over a massive methane leak at its Aliso
Canyon storage facility above Porter Ranch.


Sea ice around Antarctica hits record low, preliminary U.S. data
show. Sea ice around Antarctica has shrunk to the smallest annual
extent on record after years of resisting a trend of man-made
global warming, preliminary U.S. satellite data showed on
Tuesday. Ice floating around the frozen continent usually melts
to its smallest for the year around the end of February, the
southern hemisphere summer, before expanding again as the autumn
chill sets in.

Scientists have just detected a major change to the Earth’s
oceans linked to a warming climate. A large research synthesis,
published in one of the world’s most influential scientific
journals, has detected a decline in the amount of dissolved
oxygen in oceans around the world — a long-predicted result of
climate change that could have severe consequences for marine
organisms if it continues.

Oroville Is a Warning for California Dams, as Climate Change Adds
Stress. The St. Francis Dam was a proud symbol of California’s
engineering might and elaborate water system — until just before
midnight on March 12, 1928, when it collapsed, killing more than
400 people in a devastating wall of water. Ever since, the state
has had a reputation of diligent inspections as it has built the
largest network of major public dams in the nation.

Trump's vow to scrap the Paris climate change accord faces
skepticism from corporations, GOP moderates. Trashing the Paris
Agreement made for a great campaign prop at Donald Trump’s
rallies, where the climate change accord was portrayed as a
product of the out-of-touch, insufferable elites that Trump
pledged to sweep from power. Now the landmark agreement, signed
under President Obama, is fast becoming a nuisance for President
Trump’s White House. http://www.latimes.com/politics/ 

Greenhouse Gas Emissions Dropped 2.2% in 2015, EPA Says.
Greenhouse gas emissions in the US declined by 2.2 percent
between 2014 and 2015, according to EPA data, which finds the
nation produced 6,586.2 million metric tons of carbon dioxide
equivalent in 2015. In its annual draft greenhouse gas report,
the EPA said total emissions of climate change-causing gases
decreased in 2015 after increasing slightly in 2014 (0.9 percent)
and 2013 (2.2 percent).


MEPs approve overhaul of EU carbon emissions trading scheme.
European parliament accused of failing in its commitment to Paris
climate deal with compromise measures to reduce emissions. An
overhaul of a trading scheme to cut carbon emissions by European
industries has been approved in a knife-edge vote by MEPs,
although environmental campaigners have been quick to denounce
the legislation for not going far enough.

Climate change panel urges delay in Oregon forest policy
decisions. The equivalent of about 9.7 billion tons of carbon
dioxide are stored in Oregon's forests, which is roughly 150
times more than the state's annual emissions. The Oregon Global
Warming Commission is studying how climate change and human
intervention affect forest carbon storage.

Utilities see demise of climate rule, still cut CO2. Electric
companies continue to plan to reduce carbon emissions, even as
U.S. EPA's Clean Power Plan seems doomed under the Trump
administration. That was the message from conservative
regulators, a power provider that spans red and blue states, a
Fortune 100 business, and an investment analyst speaking to state
electricity regulators at a meeting in…

Would erasing national monuments unravel climate protections? 
When President Obama proclaimed 5,000 miles of Atlantic Ocean off
the New England coast a national monument, the threat of climate
change played a key role in his reasoning. Now Republicans are
planning to pare back the 1906 Antiquities Act that gives the
president and Congress unilateral power to preserve…

Possible science adviser called climate science a 'cult' The
front-runner to be President Trump's science adviser once called
climate scientists a "glassy-eyed cult." William Happer, a
physicist at Princeton University, met with Trump last month and
has expressed interest in the job. Happer's views of climate
change advocates have many observers worried.


State water board opts to extend drought regulations. The
California State Water Resources Control Board voted unanimously
last week to extend statewide emergency drought regulations,
despite historic amounts of rainfall across the state this rain
year. The current regulations, scheduled to expire on Feb. 28,
were extended an additional 270 days, to Nov. 5.


EPA working on GOP-ordered study of drilling. EPA is preparing
another study on the effects of oil and gas drilling, but this
one was ordered by a Republican Congress.
Congress included the money — $3 million — in the omnibus
spending bill passed in December 2015. Congress ordered that the
study focus on drilling in the Appalachian Basin, which includes
the Marcellus and Utica shale formations.


Greening the commute: AC Transit to nearly double hydrogen fuel
cell fleet. AC Transit will be nearly doubling its hydrogen fuel
cell bus fleet thanks largely to an $8.5 million grant from the
California Air Resources Board, agency officials said Tuesday. AC
Transit will receive 10 new hydrogen fuel cell electric buses as
part of its participation in the nascent Fuel Cell Electric Bus
Commercialization Consortium…








Electric car boom spurs investor scramble for cobalt. Investors
are buying up physical cobalt anticipating that shortages of the
metal, a key component of lithium-ion batteries used in
electrical cars, will spur prices to their highest levels since
the 2008 financial crisis. Prices for cobalt metal have climbed
nearly 50 percent since September to five-year peaks around $19 a
lb. as stricter emissions controls…

Why Toyota Only Sold One Prius in China Last December. If you’re
reading this in China and you bought a Prius in December,
congratulations -- you were the only one. 
While Toyota Motor Corp.’s iconic gas-electric hybrid car
continues to sell in other markets almost two decades after the
first one was sold in Japan in late 1997, Chinese consumers have
never warmed to the Prius, a mainstay of the U.S. green-car
movement. This past year, sales almost completely flatlined, even
as China’s cities continue to battle smog issues.

In America's Heartland, A Power Company Leads Charge For Electric
Cars. In the world of electric cars, there's a chicken-and-egg
problem: More people might buy electric vehicles, or EVs, if they
were confident there would always be a charger nearby. And
businesses might install more chargers if there were more EVs on
the road. Now, utilities are stepping forward to solve this
problem, and not just in California or the Northeast.

18 electric vehicle charging stations installed at LAX parking
structure 7. Los Angeles International Airport officials
announced Tuesday that 18 “level 2” electric vehicle charging
stations have been installed in Parking Structure 7. LAX now has
a total of 81 level 2 charging stations, with another eight
chargers at the LAX FlyAway bus terminal in Van Nuys.

The fascinating evolution of the electric car. The potential of
electric cars seems to be higher now than ever before.
Traditional automakers including General Motors, Volkswagen,
Daimler AG, and others are all investing heavily in electric
vehicles. And Tesla, of course, has built its entire business off
of battery powered cars. But electric automobiles are nothing
new. http://www.businessinsider.com/electric-car-history-2017-2 

New Electric Vehicle Charging Stations Unveiled in San Diego
County. There are new places where residents can charge an
electric vehicle, the mayor and other local leaders announced
Wednesday. Mayor Kevin Faulconer said the new stations are part
of the Climate Action Plan adopted in December to slash
greenhouse gas emission by 2035. Part of that effort includes
unveiling new charging stations like the one in Ocean Beach and
other areas.

Smart to become electric car brand in US, Canada. Smart is about
to become an electric car brand, at least as far as the United
States and Canada are concerned. The head of the Smart and
Mercedes-Benz brands in the U.S., Dietmar Exler, confirmed in a
letter sent to dealerships on February 13 that Smart will no
longer offer models…

European electric and plug-in hybrid sales for Jan-Dec 2016. The
Renault Zoe closed out 2016 as the best-selling electric car in
Europe. While the Nissan Leaf continues to lead in worldwide
sales, the smaller electric car from Nissan's alliance partner
has remained on top in its home market. These consistent
performances have cemented the Renault-Nissan Alliance's position
as the world leader in battery-electric cars.


A Texas-sized debate over wind farms and military readiness. 
Since the mid-1960s, pilots at Sheppard Air Force Base have made
supersonic training flights over the Texas Red River Valley, a
region sufficiently remote that mostly cattle ranchers and oil
riggers caught sight of the small planes known as "white rockets"
as they streaked across the horizon. But North Texas has changed
over a half-century.


Grant funding for water efficiency projects. The Resource
Conservation District of Tehama County is hosting a series of
technical workshops to help agricultural landowners apply for the
CDFA’s 2017 State Water Efficiency and Enhancement Program —
SWEEP — grant funding. To serve as a guide, the following project
types are eligible for funding and address the required
greenhouse gas emissions…

EPA Veterans Mobilize to Defend Agency's Work, Bracing for
Trump's Impact.  Former employees of the Environmental Protection
Agency, who typically steer clear of politics, have begun
advocating to support the work in Trump's crosshairs. Retired and
former employees of the Environmental Protection Agency are
banding together in rare activism to defend colleagues still
working for the agency…

Utilities vote to close Navajo coal plant at end of 2019. The
utilities that own the Navajo Generating Station coal-fired power
plant near Page are tired of overpaying for power and decided
Monday to close the plant when their lease expires at the end of
2019. To run that long, the utility owners need to work out an
arrangement with the Navajo Nation, which owns the land, to
decommission the plant after the lease expires. 


When Canadian Scientists Were Muzzled by Their Government. Less
than a month into the Trump presidency, and the forecast for
science seems ominous. Scientists at federal agencies have been
hit with gag orders preventing them from communicating their
findings, or in some cases, attending scientific conferences.
Social media accounts and websites have been censored, and at
least one agency was asked to identify personnel who worked on
climate policies.

Tesla and California are driving electric car industry. It was
nearly a year ago when Elon Musk, basking in the adulation of
several dozen screaming fans, took the stage in Southern
California to unveil his company’s newest electric car, the sleek
Tesla Model 3 sedan. “You will not be able to buy a better car
for $35,000,” he promised, “even with no options.” It was a bold
assertion coming from an entrepreneur whose company leads a
still-fledgling industry with consistently sluggish sales.

More water, but still more controls. California’s water
regulators just can’t give up their control of our lawn watering
and shower times, despite a federal analysis showing that most of
the state is no longer in drought. Even as Gov. Jerry Brown
declared a state of emergency for 50 counties last month due to
flooding, erosion and mud flows, and the snowpack in the Sierra
Nevada is nearly twice average levels…


US judge greenlights initial $1.2bn VW consumer settlement deal
for 3-liter engines. The deal offers financial, as well as
buy-back and trade-in, compensation for owners of some 78,000
Volkswagens affected by the Dieselgate scandal. The German
carmaker has now settled most of its US consumer claims. German
carmaker Volkswagen struck a landmark compensation deal Tuesday
after a…

Will blazing a low-carbon path pay off for California? President
Trump has made it clear he intends to dismantle the Obama
administration’s policies for reducing U.S. greenhouse gas
emissions. But California Governor Jerry Brown has declared that
his state – which would be the sixth-largest economy in the world
if it was an independent nation – will not waver from its
decade-long push to fight climate change.

In high sierras, remnants of ice age tell a tale of future
climate. Aaron Putnam sits stop a boulder high in the Sierras of
central California, banging away with hammer and chisel to chip
out a sample of ice age history. Each hunk of rock is a piece of
a vast puzzle: How did our climate system behave the last time it
warmed up like it's doing today? Dressed in a baseball cap,
protective goggles, gray hiking slacks…

'The blob' of abnormal conditions boosted Western US ozone
levels. An unusually warm patch of seawater off the West Coast in
late 2014 and 2015, nicknamed "the blob," had cascading effects
up and down the coast. Its sphere of influence was centered on
the marine environment but extended to weather on land. A
University of Washington Bothell study now shows that this strong
offshore pattern also influenced air quality.

Tesla: Market Cap Rises To 88 Percent Of Ford’s $49 Billion. Ford
stock has fallen 23 percent from 2015-2017, and now sits at
$12.65 per share. Tesla stock is on the rise, approaching an all
time high, at about $281 right now. This accounts for a market
share of $43 billion for the electric startup, compared to Ford’s
$49 billion. Tesla made a little over 80,000 cars last year and
has sold about 191,000 vehicles to date.

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

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