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newsclips -- CARB Newsclips for March 10, 2017. Posted: 10 Mar 2017 13:47:18
CARB Newsclips for March 10, 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. CARB BUSINESS Please consider the following news release from the California Air Resources Board: http://www.arb.ca.gov/newsrel/newsrelease.php?id=900 The California Air Resources Board (CARB) invites you to participate in a public workshop on the Fiscal Year (FY) 2017-18 Funding Plan for Low Carbon Transportation Investments, Air Quality Improvement Program (AQIP), and the potential $25 million Volkswagen settlement funds for zero-emission vehicle (ZEV) aspects of vehicle replacement programs. The meeting will be held at the following time and place: Date: Thursday, April 6, 2017 Time: 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Place: Cal/EPA Headquarters Building Coastal Hearing Room, Second Floor 1001 I Street Sacramento, California 95814 A meeting notice for the workshop is posted at: https://www.arb.ca.gov/msprog/aqip/meetings/meetings.htm Staff at the California Air Resources Board (ARB) invites you to participate in a workshop on updates to Senate Bill 375 regional passenger vehicle greenhouse gas (GHG) emission reduction targets for California's Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPO). The workshops will be held at the locations and dates below, and will follow the same format and presentation. FRESNO: March 14, 2017 For more information on these workshops, visit the ARB SB 375 website and see the meeting notice at: https://www.arb.ca.gov/cc/sb375/meetings/meetings.htm On March 14, 2017, at 1:30 pm, the California Air Resources Board (CARB) staff is providing an online training webinar to discuss tool changes, clarifications, and guidance document updates for Electric Power Entities for 2016 data reported in 2017. The session will include a staff presentation and time for questions. Slides for the webinar will be posted at the following link prior to the start time: http://www.arb.ca.gov/cc/reporting/ghg-rep/guidance/guidance-training.htm The GHG reporting regulation and additional information are available here: http://www.arb.ca.gov/cc/reporting/ghg-rep/ghg-rep.htm Updated guidance documents will be posted prior to the webinar. In addition, updated Excel reporting workbooks for Electric Power Entities (EPE) will be posted prior to the webinar at the following link: https://www.ccdsupport.com/confluence/display/calhelp/Reporting+Form+Instructions#EPE One or more workshops/meetings have been scheduled and are now located in ARB's Workshop Calendar Please go to: http://www.arb.ca.gov/app/calendar/cur_evnt.php?type=workshops which links to meeting details, including: March 14, 2017: SB 375 Targets Update Workshop March 14, 2017. more info https://www.arb.ca.gov/cc/sb375/meetings/meetings.htm The California Air Resource Board has posted an updated Notice of Upcoming Low Carbon Fuel Standard Credits Release for Non-Metered Residential Electric Vehicle Charging. http://www.arb.ca.gov/fuels/lcfs/workgroups/elect/022217notice.pdf Request for Proposal (RFP): Data Monitoring, Collection, and Analysis for Projects Granted under Fiscal Year (FY) 2014-15 Air Quality Improvement Program (AQIP) and Low Carbon Transportation Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund (GGRF) Investments. The California Air Resources Board is seeking a contractor to monitor, collect, and analyze data for heavy-duty vehicle, off-road equipment, and bulk ship projects granted under AQIP and Low Carbon Transportation GGRF Investments, as identified in the fiscal year (FY) 14-15 Funding Plan approved by the Board in June 2014. The contractor shall collect and monitor vehicle and facility data, as applicable, such as vehicle specifications and performance data, as well as capital costs and operation and maintenance data for vehicles and facilities. RFP Information: The Data Monitoring, Collection, and Analysis for Projects Granted under FY 14-15 AQIP and Low Carbon Transportation GGRF Investments RFP advertisement is available at: https://caleprocure.ca.gov/pages/Events-BS3/event-search.aspx (Event ID 0000004538). In order to submit a response, please register on the Cal eProcure website at: https://caleprocure.ca.gov/pages/ The final date for the proposal submission is Friday, March 24, 2017, 3:00 p.m., Pacific Standard Time. AIR POLLUTION Under Pressure, Air District Says It’s Still Investigating Vallejo Fumes. Facing pressure from state legislators, Vallejo residents and environmentalists, local air regulators are reversing course and now say they are still trying to figure out what caused an unbearable odor that sickened scores of Vallejo residents and prompted a shelter-in-place order last September. https://ww2.kqed.org/news/2017/03/09/bay-area-air-district-baaqmd-says-it-is-still-investigating-vallejo-fumes/ Despite gains, Toronto’s air pollution still causing serious health problems. Toronto Public Health says that levels of major pollutants in the air have become stagnant after years of decline, with traffic emissions being the greatest source. The summer of 2016 was the first in Matthew Beaudry’s young life when fears of air pollution triggering his severe asthma didn’t stop him from playing outside. https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2017/03/10/despite-gains-torontos-air-pollution-still-causing-serious-health-problems.html CLIMATE CHANGE Fearing Trump threat to state emissions law, California lawmakers plan a fight. The Trump administration could move at any time to revoke California’s right to impose stricter auto emissions standards than the federal government does, and the state’s senators are already mounting a fight. Congressional sources are hearing conflicting information on whether and when the Environmental Protection Agency will revoke California’s waiver. http://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article137539733.html#storylink=cpy EPA chief: Carbon dioxide not primary cause of warming. The new chief of the Environmental Protection Agency said Thursday he does not believe that carbon dioxide is a primary contributor to global warming, a statement at odds with mainstream scientific consensus and his own agency. EPA Administrator Scott Pruitt said measuring the effect of human activity on the climate is "very challenging"… http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_PRUITT_GLOBAL_WARMING?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT OTHER RELATED STORIES https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2017/03/09/on-climate-change-scott-pruitt-contradicts-the-epas-own-website/?utm_term=.b5f208325786 http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/politics/2017/03/10/fact-check-scott-pruitt-climate-change-epa/99003010/ http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2017/mar/9/scott-pruitt-turns-epa-away-from-climate-change-ag/ http://www.seattletimes.com/nation-world/nation-politics/epa-chief-doubts-scientific-consensus-that-carbon-dioxide-is-behind-global-warming/ http://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/323312-sanders-rips-pruitt-over-co2-comments http://www.newsweek.com/scott-pruitt-global-warming-epa-carbon-emissions-565984 https://insideclimatenews.org/news/09032017/scott-pruitt-epa-donald-trump-climate-change-denial-co2-global-warming http://www.ibtimes.com/co2-climate-change-human-activity-causes-global-warming-science-shows-epas-scott-2505773 http://time.com/4696658/scott-pruitt-epa-carbon-climate-change/ Statoil to cut greenhouse emissions by a fifth by 2030. Norwegian oil and gas producer Statoil said on Thursday it aims to cut its annual carbon dioxide emissions by about a fifth from current levels by 2030 as part of global efforts to limit climate change. It set a goal of cutting 3 million tons of carbon dioxide by 2030 from its 2017 emissions and also said it planned to reduce emissions per barrel of oil produced… http://www.reuters.com/article/us-statoil-emissions-idUSKBN16G1KC G-20 Poised to Signal Retreat From Climate-Change Funding Pledge. Finance ministers for the U.S., China, Germany and other members of the Group of 20 economies may scale back a robust pledge for their governments to combat climate change, ceding efforts to the private sector. Citing “scarce public resources,” the ministers said they would encourage multilateral development banks to raise… https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-03-09/g-20-document-shows-governments-retreating-from-climate-funding What Slashing the EPA's Budget by One-Quarter Would Really Mean. The agency's funding would fall to its lowest point since the Ford administration, and climate change efforts, some little known, are expected to suffer deeply. The Trump Administration's proposed slashing of the Environmental Protection Agency's budget threatens to reduce the agency's resources to levels not seen since its formative days… https://insideclimatenews.org/news/09032017/environmental-protection-agency-scott-pruitt-donald-trump-climate-change Ocean Warming Has Surged Since 1992, Study Says. The world's oceans have warmed at twice the rate of previous decades and the extra heat has reached deeper waters, finds data stretching back to 1960. The rate of ocean warming has nearly doubled since 1992 compared with the previous three decades. And the warming has reached deeper waters, scientists reported Friday. https://insideclimatenews.org/news/10032017/global-warming-oceans-climate-change-noaa Earth's oceans are warming 13% faster than thought, and accelerating. Our new study improves estimates of the rate of ocean warming - a critical component of climate change. New research has convincingly quantified how much the Earth has warmed over the past 56 years. Human activities utilize fossil… https://www.theguardian.com/environment/climate-consensus-97-per-cent/2017/mar/10/earths-oceans-are-warming-13-faster-than-thought-and-accelerating Climate policy must protect children’s rights, UN panel hears. High level panel at the UN Human Rights Council hears that a child rights centred approach to climate change is “overdue”. Governments must do more to protect the human rights of children as they try to tackle climate change, representatives of the UN and its member states have told high-level panel in Geneva this week. http://www.climatechangenews.com/2017/03/10/climate-policy-must-protect-childrens-rights-un-panel-hears/ Proposed NOAA cuts would disarm coasts facing rising seas, scientists say. A proposed White House budget for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration could put coastal communities throughout the nation at a major disadvantage as they struggle to adapt to threats from sea-level rise, severe storms and other climate-related events, scientists and other experts said. http://www.watertowndailytimes.com/national/proposed-noaa-cuts-would-disarm-coasts-facing-rising-seas-scientists-say-20170310 U.S. void in climate pact helps China be a 'superpower'. A U.S. exit from the Paris Agreement on climate change would damage more than international relations. It would also cede a huge economic opportunity to China and other global competitors, according to a recent high-ranking Energy Department official. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1060051270/feed National Science Foundation climate research vulnerable to cuts. Democrats say they fear GOP lawmakers will gut the National Science Foundation's climate change research using new legislation passed into law this year. The bipartisan legislation enacted in January established a policy stating that the NSF must consider the intellectual merit of projects… http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/2017/03/10/stories/1060051272 GHGs dropping as renewables soar. Increased renewable energy generation led to a drop in greenhouse gas emissions in Australia, a new study says. In the last three months of 2016, the country's emissions fell by 3.57 million metric tons. The report states that the reduction — the largest since record-keeping began in 2001 — was a direct result of record-breaking hydropower and wind power… http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/2017/03/10/stories/1060051238 Bill calls for tapping federal data to boost building codes. Bipartisan House legislation would direct the Commerce Department to gather a "consistent, authoritative set of climate information" to prepare homes and infrastructure for extreme weather. Sponsored by Rep. Matt Cartwright (D-Pa.), H.R. 1464 attempts to bolster climate resilience by providing data on disaster forecasts and warming-related trends… http://www.eenews.net/greenwire/2017/03/10/stories/1060051295 DROUGHT When Is a Drought Over? A Wet California Wants to Know. The Hollywood Reservoir is nestled in a basin surrounded, usually, by dusty brown hillsides, broken up by the occasional dry wisp of shrubbery. Not these days. After yet another burst of rain the other day, the hills were transformed into lush fields of knee-high grass, spotted with purple flowers. And the reservoir? As high as it has been in years. In Northern California, snow could be seen on top of Mount Diablo outside San Francisco last weekend. https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/10/us/california-drought-snowpack.html?_r=1 After near-record Northern California storms, signs of El Niño rise. If you don’t think California has seen enough rain this year, just wait. There may be more to come. Federal forecasters said Thursday that the chances of an El Niño developing by fall are on the rise — now between 50 and 55 percent —an outlook that could skew the odds in favor of yet another wet winter. http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/After-near-record-Northern-California-storms-is-10991042.php FUELS Tillerson has recused himself from Keystone pipeline issues: State Dept. U.S. Secretary of State Rex Tillerson has recused himself from issues related to TransCanada Corp's application for a permit for the Keystone XL pipeline, the State Department said in a letter on Thursday to the environmental group Greenpeace. "He has not worked on that matter at the Department of State… http://www.reuters.com/article/us-transcanada-keystone-tillerson-idUSKBN16G384 We're a little closer than before to a solar-fueled vehicle. Scientists are developing a practical method to convert water and sunshine into fuel — a key step in someday powering cars with the sun. Experts have long been experimenting with techniques to create solar fuels, which allow all the advantages of conventional fossil fuels along with the environmental benefits of renewable energy. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/2017/03/10/stories/1060051241 VW RECALL Volkswagen pleads guilty in US diesel emissions scandal. Volkswagen pleaded guilty Friday to conspiracy and obstruction of justice in a brazen scheme to get around U.S. pollution rules on nearly 600,000 diesel vehicles by using software to suppress emissions of nitrogen oxide during tests. The German automaker has agreed to pay $4.3 billion in civil and criminal penalties… http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_VOLKSWAGEN_EMISSIONS_SCANDAL?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT OTHER RELATED STORIES https://www.wsj.com/articles/volkswagen-pleads-guilty-to-criminal-charges-in-emissions-cheating-scandal-1489161238 http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2017/03/10/volkswagen-pleads-guilty-diesel-emissions-cheating-dieselgate/ http://www.cnbc.com/2017/03/10/volkswagen-to-plead-guilty-in-emissions-scandal-friday-lawyer.html The Latest: Judge to take time before VW sentence. Volkswagen has pleaded guilty in a scandal related to diesel emission tests, but a federal judge in Detroit wants more time to study the deal. Judge Sean Cox wasn't ready to immediately sentence VW on Friday. Instead, he says he wants to study the agreement negotiated… http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/U/US_VOLKSWAGEN_EMISSIONS_SCANDAL_THE_LATEST?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT GREEN ENERGY Wind Power Blows Through Nuclear, Coal as Costs Drop at Sea. Water and electric power plants don’t mix well naturally, unless you add some wind. Water tends to corrode and short out circuits. So what’s happening in the the renewable energy industry, where developers are putting jumbo-jet sized wind turbines into stormy seas, is at the very least an engineering miracle. https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-03-09/wind-power-blows-through-nuclear-coal-as-costs-plunge-at-sea West Coast Utility Regulators Reaffirm Clean Energy Commitment. This week, utility regulators from the West Coast reaffirmed a commitment made in 2006 to support efforts to reduce carbon pollution and expand the development of low-carbon technologies in the energy industry. http://solarindustrymag.com/west-coast-utility-regulators-reaffirm-clean-energy-commitment Regulators put a new value on N.Y.'s distributed energy. New York energy officials have said they want to bring legions of small clean-energy units onto the grid. They want these units to function just like power plants, but cut pollution and relieve congestion on the grid. But to make that real, they have to define the value of these values. Yesterday, they took a crack at it. http://www.eenews.net/energywire/2017/03/10/stories/1060051269 Clean energy programs vulnerable to Trump's budget ax. Budget cuts to the Department of Energy's renewable and efficiency programs could have a devastating impact, advocates said this week. The Trump administration won't release details of its fiscal 2018 budget until next week, but many stakeholders expect… http://www.eenews.net/greenwire/2017/03/10/stories/1060051297 MISCELLANEOUS House committee passes two EPA science bills. The House Science Committee on Thursday approved two bills to reform how the Environmental Protection Agency conducts scientific research. The committee, led by Chairman Lamar Smith (R-Texas), approved a bill requiring the EPA to publicly release scientific research it uses to write regulations. http://thehill.com/policy/energy-environment/323161-house-committee-passes-two-epa-science-bills OPINIONS This climate lawsuit could change everything. No wonder the Trump administration doesn’t want it going to trial. A groundbreaking climate lawsuit, brought against the federal government by 21 children, has been hailed by environmentalists as a bold new strategy to press for climate action in the United States. But the Trump administration, which has pledged to undo Barack Obama’s climate regulations, is doing its best to make sure the case doesn’t get far. https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/energy-environment/wp/2017/03/09/this-climate-lawsuit-could-change-everything-no-wonder-the-trump-administration-doesnt-want-it-going-to-trial/?utm_term=.81809aa6dd11 Trump’s Climate Views: Combative, Conflicting and Confusing. Scott Pruitt, the head of the Environmental Protection Agency, drew criticism on Thursday for saying that carbon dioxide was not a primary contributor to global warming, contradicting years of established science. But his boss, President Trump, has similarly raised doubts about the cause of global warming… https://www.nytimes.com/2017/03/10/climate/donald-trump-global-warming-views.html?_r=0 Angelenos want to fight climate change by building more livable neighborhoods. Our leaders need to get on board. To the editor: The issue isn’t that our state climate change goals are too ambitious — our regional and local governments just aren’t equipped for the challenge. (“California won't meet its climate change goals without a lot more housing density in its cities … http://www.latimes.com/opinion/readersreact/la-ol-le-climate-change-density-housing-20170310-story.html Gov. Brown, turn on our state beach showers. After a thankfully long, wet season, one of the last weekends of Southern California’s winter promises to be a warm and clear one, with temperatures even along the coast heading into the low 80s. That means lots of locals will head to the beaches Saturday and Sunday to reacquaint themselves with the Pacific Ocean at our back door. http://www.dailynews.com/opinion/20170309/gov-brown-turn-on-our-state-beach-showers Climate change denier leading the EPA? So long, fish. At long last, the whining voices of a mere "staggering majority" of scientists are being drowned out by a sensible non-scientist named Scott. This hero's full name is Scott Pruitt, and he's the new head of the Environmental Protection Agency. He made headlines Thursday by boldly stating that carbon dioxide emissions — which for decades… http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/huppke/ct-pruitt-epa-carbon-dioxide-huppke-20170310-story.html With deniers at the helm, we need responsible climate leadership in Texas and beyond. With the confirmation of Scott Pruitt to head the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the path ahead for our climate is clearer -- or perhaps dirtier -- than ever. With his reported ties to oil and gas corporations, Pruitt is set to defang the EPA in line with the 14 lawsuits he brought against the agency as Oklahoma attorney general. http://www.dallasnews.com/opinion/commentary/2017/03/10/need-climate-leadership-texas-beyond BLOGS Want to Gut Emission Rules? Prepare for War With California. The Golden State is ready for a fight—and it’s got a well-stocked arsenal. In its ongoing jihad against federal regulations, the Trump administration has indicated some interest in targeting the ones that attempt to fight climate change. First in its sights: a funky law that gives the state of California the right to make its own rules on automotive emissions. https://www.citylab.com/politics/2017/03/want-gut-emission-rules-prepare-war-california/519225/ Interview: preparing for climate and disaster migration. As sea levels rise, lands dry out, and disasters linked to natural hazards become more common, more and more people are going to be forced to move. Are we prepared? Atle Solberg: My name is Atle Solberg, I work for the Platform on Disaster Displacement. The objective of the Platform on Disaster Displacement is to follow-up on the work started… https://www.opendemocracy.net/beyondslavery/safepassages/atle-solberg/interview-preparing-for-climate-and-disaster-migration Now under attack, EPA’s work on climate change has been going on for decades. The Trump administration intends to roll back two pillars of the Obama administration’s climate policy – regulations to limit carbon emissions from vehicles and power plants. Under President Obama, the Environmental Protection Agency was central to these regulations. http://theconversation.com/now-under-attack-epas-work-on-climate-change-has-been-going-on-for-decades-74065 Toxic Priorities: Switching cleanup rules, state risks leaving homes contaminated. Struggling with what officials call the largest and most expensive toxic contamination in California history, embattled state regulators have changed the formula for assessing the level of lead-laced soil in residential areas—a move that could result in a significant number of homes falling off the priority cleanup list. https://calmatters.org/articles/toxic-priority-hed-here/?utm_source=CALmatters+Newsletter&utm_campaign=e96bd1b702-170308 California is in a drought emergency. Visit www.SaveOurH2O.org for water conservation tips.