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newsclips -- Newsclips for May 24, 2011. Posted: 24 May 2011 12:42:43
California Air Resources Board News Clips for May 24, 2011. 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. AIR POLLUTION EPA Hearing In Philly On Coal Plant Pollution. Philadelphia—Federal environmental officials are holding a public hearing in Philadelphia on proposed standards for toxic air pollution from power plants. The Environmental Protection Agency wants the public's input on rules to curb emissions of mercury, arsenic, lead, nickel, chromium and acid gases from coal plants. Posted. http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_18126717 http://www.contracostatimes.com/ci_18126717 http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/may/24/epa-hearing-in-philly-on-coal-plant-pollution/ Texas Lawyer Wants Foreign Pollution Addressed. Houston—A lawyer who previously represented the energy industry has filed a petition with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality seeking a relaxation of rules governing air-borne pollution that he says compel Texas businesses to pick up the tab for foreign polluters. Attorney Jed Anderson said states should not be forced to make deeper cuts in smog-forming emissions to meet federal limits because of wind-borne pollution from places such as Mexico. Posted. http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_18120239 State Working With Feds On National Car Pollution Standards. California has been at the forefront of toughening pollution standards for cars, due in part to its dirty air. Now state officials are working with federal agencies to align standards for the rest of the nation, improving fuel efficiency and tailpipe emissions. State regulations, also known as the Pavley law, set emissions standards for cars made from 2012 to 2016. Posted. http://californiawatch.org/dailyreport/state-working-feds-national-car-pollution-standards-10380 CLIMATE CHANGE Jobs and Savings Help Regional Carbon Market Survive GOP Attacks. New Hampshire, Delaware and Maine have decided to stay in RGGI for now, but New Jersey's exit is still possible. Efforts to unravel a regional carbon trading program have hit a wall in recent weeks after lawmakers in New Hampshire, Delaware and Maine moved to reaffirm their states' participation in the market. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/05/23/idUS62011457620110523 Getting Wise to the Owl, a Charismatic Sentry in Climate Change. For 19 years, the owl researcher Denver Holt has journeyed to Barrow, Alaska, each summer to map out the predator-prey relationship between the lemmings that crawl across the tundra and the white owls that hunt them from above. As he prepares for his 20th field season in the Arctic, he says that the snowy owl has a role to play in understanding ecological changes in one of the fastest changing places in the world. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/05/24/science/24owl.html?scp=4&sq=climate%20change&st=cse Calif. Appeals Decision Blocking Cap-And-Trade Plan. California regulators have appealed last week's court decision staying their cap-and-trade program for industrial greenhouse gas emissions. The state Air Resources Board (ARB) filed a notice of appeal with San Francisco's Superior Court yesterday. Environmental justice advocates had sued over a provision in the California Environmental Quality Act requiring state agencies to analyze the environmental consequences of their policies. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2011/05/24/14 Misguided Objection to Progressive Policy: The EJ Lawsuit Against Implementation of California’s AB 32 Climate Policy. On May 20th, San Francisco Superior Court Judge Ernest Goldsmith ruled that the California Air Resources Board had not adequately explained its choice of a market-based mechanism – a cap-and-trade system — to achieve approximately 20 percent of targeted emissions reductions by 2020 under Assembly Bill 32, the Global Warming Solutions Act of 2006. Posted. http://belfercenter.ksg.harvard.edu/analysis/stavins/?p=1090 Climate Commission Finds Climate Change Evidence 'Beyond Doubt' After calling the evidence for global warming "exceptionally strong and beyond doubt," the first big report from Australia's Climate Commission said actions this decade will determine its impact for the rest of the century. Designed to quell the political debate about the government's carbon tax, the report outlines the latest research on the impact of climate change on Australia. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/05/24/6 FUELS Chevron To Try Again To Upgrade Richmond Refinery. After Chevron's last attempt to upgrade its aging Richmond oil refinery bogged down in court, the company has decided to try again. Chevron Corp. on Monday reported that it will once again ask Richmond officials for permission to renovate the refinery, improving its ability to process high-sulfur crude oil. Richmond's City Council narrowly approved the upgrade in 2008, despite complaints from environmentalists that the changes could lead to more air pollution in a community that already had too much. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/05/24/BUVF1JJVEO.DTL&type=printable Ethanol Declines Most in More Than Week on Economic Concerns. Ethanol dropped for the first time in more than a week, falling with other energy commodities on signs of economic weakness that may curb fuel demand. The gasoline additive slumped as Greece stepped up austerity measures to keep pace with its deficit and after the Federal Reserve Bank of Chicago’s gauge of economic activity dropped below zero in April. Ethanol, concocted from corn in the U.S., is blended with gasoline to augment supply. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/g/a/2011/05/23/bloomberg1376-LLNY5M0YHQ0X01-6HDOJDJOKQF11Q4S7U4G60TFT5.DTL&type=printable BIOfuel From Algae Technologies Project Launched. A new international project is kicking off to produce biofuels from algae. The BIOfuel From Algae Technologies (BIOFAT) project is supported by nine partners based in seven countries and the goal is to show that ethanol, biodiesel and bioproducts call all be produced at large scale from algae. Posted. http://domesticfuel.com/2011/05/24/biofuel-from-algae-technologies-project-launched/ UK Lawmakers Give Green Light To Shale Gas Drilling, Highlight Vast Offshore Reserves. London — British lawmakers said Monday that shale gas resources in Britain should be developed to reduce the country’s reliance on imported supplies. A report from the cross-party Energy and Climate Change Committee released on Monday rejected calls for a moratorium on the controversial energy source amid concerns about its impact on public health and the environment. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/uk-lawmakers-give-green-light-to-shale-gas-drilling-highlight-vast-offshore-reserves/2011/05/23/AFvS509G_story.html http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/05/23/2399385/uk-lawmakers-green-light-shale.html#storylink=misearch http://www.modbee.com/2011/05/23/1700998/uk-lawmakers-green-light-shale.html http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_18122703 http://www.contracostatimes.com/ci_18122703 http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/may/23/uk-lawmakers-green-light-shale-gas-drilling/ Multi-Nation Partnership Develops Production Guidelines. The United States, China and 23 other nations agreed yesterday on the first-ever set of biofuel production guidelines. The policies, introduced by the Rome-based Global Bioenergy Partnership, suggest ways to produce and use biofuels and biomass in ways that do not add to climate change or affect food prices. Palm oil is one biofuel source that has grown especially popular in recent years. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2011/05/24/13 House GOP Accuses Obama Admin Of Deliberately Raising Gas Prices. House Oversight and Government Reform Chairman Darrell Issa (R-Calif.) today suggested that the Obama administration is intentionally trying to boost oil and gas prices as part of a concerted effort to force the green agenda that it was unable to achieve through its failed cap-and-trade effort. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2011/05/24/1 VEHICLES Ford Sees Chance To Woo Japanese Buyers. Ford sees a big chance to snatch buyers away from Japanese automakers battling production delays caused by the March earthquake and tsunami, and vehicles in the works could help deliver it growth in a long-difficult market. "The opportunities for Ford in Japan have never been greater," Ford Japan Chief Executive Tim Tucker said Tuesday of the products planned for Japan. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/may/24/ford-sees-chance-to-woo-japanese-02/ http://www.nctimes.com/business/article_51102aff-ba28-58c5-9fc9-4122eedc7ac2.html Chrysler To Pay Back U.S. On Tuesday As Fiat Hikes Stake. Chrysler Group LLC plans to pay off its remaining debt to the U.S. Treasury Department on Tuesday, clearing the way for partner Fiat SpA to increase its stake in the No. 3 U.S. automaker. Chrysler and Fiat CEO Sergio Marchionne said today Chrysler raised enough money in a debt offering to pay back the loans. Posted. http://www.autonews.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20110523/OEM/305239773/1306 GREEN ENERGY Greenstart: New Bay Area Tech Incubator Homing In On Green Technology. By some estimates, there are more than 100 tech incubators around the world, ranging from those affiliated with top universities to the fast-growing cluster of Bay Area venues like Y Combinator, 500 Startups and Plug and Play Tech Center. Joining the mix Tuesday is a San Francisco outfit called Greenstart. Like its peers, the "startup accelerator" aims to help entrepreneurs get their young companies off the ground. But Greenstart is focusing on just one slice of the technology pie: so-called "clean" tech. Posted. http://www.mercurynews.com/business/ci_18126512?source=rss&nclick_check=1 Wind Energy Industry Demands Bonneville Fix Problems Forcing Shut-Off Of NW Wind Generators. Grants Pass, Ore.—The wind energy industry demanded Monday that the Bonneville Power Administration fix problems that have forced the shut-off of Northwest wind generators while hydroelectric dams fill the grid with power produced from a heavy spring runoff. The complaints voiced by the American Wind Energy Association and U.S. Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., at a wind energy…Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/wind-energy-industry-demands-bonneville-fix-problems-forcing-shut-off-of-nw-wind-generators/2011/05/23/AFPFy09G_story.html http://www.modbee.com/2011/05/23/1700994/wind-industry-demands-nw-grid.html http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/05/23/2399383/wind-industry-demands-nw-grid.html#storylink=misearch http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_18122675?IADID=Search-www.insidebayarea.com-www.insidebayarea.com http://www.contracostatimes.com/ci_18122675 http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/may/23/wind-industry-demands-nw-grid-overload-solution/ http://www.nctimes.com/news/national/article_05a0692b-6c74-5fa6-a2f1-fc6d374bf3a5.html Siemens Executive Says Bipartisan Clean Energy Push Could Start With Efficiency Bill. With Congress bogged down over high gasoline prices, the head of U.S. operations for Siemens AG said proposals to increase energy efficiency are a "no-brainer" and a doable next step to advance U.S. energy policy. "It's thousand-dollar bills lying on the ground. People just need to bend over and pick them up," said Eric Spiegel, president and CEO of Siemens Corp., the U.S. arm of the Munich-based conglomerate. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/print/2011/05/24/2 FWS Wind Turbine Guidelines Ruffle Feathers Of Both Enviros And Industry. The Interior Department's draft guidelines for the responsible siting and operation of wind farms fail to protect at-risk species like the sage grouse and prairie chicken and could result in the deaths of more than a million birds a year within the next 20 years, a leading bird advocacy group says. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2011/05/24/11 Are Home LEDs Ready For Prime Time? Some might say this is the year of the LED. A slew of new light bulbs relying on light-emitting diodes have come out in recent weeks as manufacturers prepare to battle for residential customers drawn to efficiency but fed up with their other options. LED bulbs are being marketed -- at least in the residential space -- as replacements for energy-hungry incandescent lights and as pleasing, but still efficient alternatives to the curly compact fluorescents that consumers link with chilly blue tones and trace amounts of mercury content. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/Greenwire/print/2011/05/24/12 MISCELLANEOUS Has the Monorail's Future Finally Arrived? It's gaining traction as a solution in areas where mass-transit needs are surging. The train of the future may be turning a corner—but you'll have to look up to see it. Long hailed as a model for future public-transportation systems, monorails in reality have been largely written off as theme-park attractions—too slow and too small to serve as urban transit systems. Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052748703567404576292914218923744.html?mod=WSJ_business_LeftSecondHighlights Bay Toxic Fish Warnings Updated. In the first update to a 17-year-old guide on how safe it is to eat fish caught in San Francisco Bay, state health leaders have relaxed some warnings but caution that children and women of childbearing age should not eat perch, white sturgeon, shark or striped bass. Mercury and PCBs have rendered some of the Bay's most popular sport fish unsafe in any amount for children and woman younger than 45, according to the guidelines. And perch from San Francisco Bay are unsafe for anyone to eat, the guidelines say. Posted. http://www.contracostatimes.com/news/ci_18123623?source=rss&nclick_check=1 http://californiawatch.org/dailyreport/officials-warn-high-mercury-pcb-levels-some-sf-bay-fish-10410 UN Probes Japan Nuke Plant; More Melted Fuel Found. A major international mission to investigate Japan's flooded, radiation-leaking nuclear complex began Tuesday as new information suggested that nuclear fuel had mostly melted in two more reactors in the early days after the March 11 tsunami. That would mean that all three of the most troubled reactors at the plant have suffered partial meltdowns. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/may/24/un-opens-probe-into-japans-crippled-nuke-plant/ http://www.nctimes.com/news/national/article_61bf9e1b-6f1a-59ac-9d15-6d8a2d6a8c1b.html UK Outlines Plans For Green Bank. The British government outlined plans for the world's first state-backed green investment bank on Monday - a key plank of its pledge to transition the country into a low-carbon economy. Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg said the bank will open for business next April and will likely focus initially on investing in areas such as offshore wind, waste and non-domestic energy efficiency. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/may/23/uk-outlines-plans-for-green-bank/ OPINION WAYNE KIRKBRIDE: If It's Spring In Mother Lode, There Must Be Smoke. "I moved to the mountains to have fresh, clean air and I have to close my doors and windows on some days to keep the smoke out," said one newcomer to the Mother Lode. As much a part of the springtime ritual as bringing out patio furniture and having outdoor parties, so is the annual cleaning up the accumulation of leaves, pine needles and branches from fall and winter and burning the piles. Posted. http://www.modbee.com/2011/05/24/1701015/if-its-spring-in-mother-lode-there.html Let Hybrid Cars Save For Themselves. If you bought a hybrid vehicle thinking it would save you time and money on your daily commute, one of the favorite perks is about to end. Back in 2005, California began handing out 85,000 yellow stickers to owners of hybrid cars, as an incentive to boost purchases of fuel-efficient vehicles. Motorists with the stickers were allowed to drive solo in carpool lanes — which are found primarily in the Bay Area, Sacramento and other metro areas. Posted. http://www.modbee.com/2011/05/23/1701175/let-hybrid-cars-save-for-themselves.html Keep Calm and Carry On. Caution: It is vitally important not to make connections. When you see pictures of rubble like this week’s shots from Joplin, Missouri, you should not ask yourself: I wonder if this is somehow related to the huge tornado outbreak three weeks ago in Tuscaloosa, or the enormous outbreak a couple of weeks before that—together they comprised the most active April for tornadoes in our history. But that doesn’t mean a thing. Posted. http://action.350.org/signup_page/connections BLOGS Court Orders Majority of California's Climate Law to Proceed; Cap and Trade to Get Fresh Look. Last week, Judge Ernest Goldsmith of the San Francisco Superior Court ruled to keep the bulk of California’s climate law, AB 32, moving ahead without delay, and narrowed the scope of an ongoing dispute to one piece of the puzzle – California’s cap and trade program. The decision cleared up an outstanding question in a lawsuit challenging the California Air Resources Board’s approval of the AB 32 Scoping Plan, California’s groundbreaking blueprint to cut global warming pollution statewide. Posted. http://switchboard.nrdc.org/blogs/ajackson/bulk_of_californias_climate_la.html Fracking All Over The Place -In UK As Well. Fracking , that same word and process that inspires fear and loathing in the US, is under way in the UK. Apparently under the very hard rock of Lancashire is a lot of natural gas. But here’s the bother. The only way to get at it is to use a method called "hydraulic fracturing", or "fracking" for short. Posted. http://www.celsias.com/article/fracking-all-over-place-uk-well/ Clean Air is a Fundamental Right. Clean air is a fundamental right -- our lives depend on it. But air pollution threatens that right, and with it all of the little moments that make life special: blowing out candles on a birthday cake, spending a day outside with friends, or playing with our kids in the front yard. Recently, after more than a decade of delay, the Environmental Protection Agency proposed health protections that will ensure coal-fired power plants, some of the worst air polluters in the country, have to limit mercury and other toxic pollution that damages our health. Posted. http://www.care2.com/causes/environment/blog/clean-air-is-a-fundamental-right/ Climate Policy For Conservatives. Suppose you believe, as I do, in basic conservative principles (free enterprise and a market economy, limited government, and minimal change in established institutions that work well), but also acknowledge that anthropogenic climate change presents a sufficient danger that something needs to be done about it. Posted. http://www.grist.org/climate-policy/2011-05-24-climate-policy-for-conservatives Five Hot, Rockin’ Geothermal Companies. Like the natural gas sector, which has experienced an incredible boom due to new drilling techniques that allow companies to cost-effectively access unconventional gas, the geothermal sector is going through a renaissance that may open up a vast new set of resources. Traditional utility-scale geothermal, often called hydrothermal, utilizes hot water or direct steam beneath the earth to run a turbine and generate electricity. Posted. http://www.grist.org/cleantech/2011-05-23-five-hot-rockin-geothermal-companies Sunfire Acquiring Staxera To Support Development Of Technology To Generate Synthetic Fuels From Renewable Energy Sources, Water And CO2. Bremen, Germany-based SunFire is acquiring staxera, a developer and manufacturer of SOFC high-temperature fuel cells sited in Dresden, from Webasto, a supplier to the automotive industry. The acquisition will enable SunFire—the developer of a process to generate renewable fuels from CO2 and H2O ... Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2011/05/sunfire-20110523.html