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newsclips -- Newsclips for July 11, 2011.

Posted: 11 Jul 2011 12:50:16
California Air Resources Board News Clips for July 11, 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.


Biking On Busy Streets Linked To Heart Risks. When Ed Campaniello
chooses his biking route between his Mission District home and
job in downtown San Francisco, traffic is a top consideration.
And new research shows that's a smart move - not only because
fewer cars mean less of a chance of being hit, but because
polluting vehicles may give cyclists heart problems. The
42-year-old solar energy consultant said it makes sense.
Occasionally, he gets a funky taste in his mouth after riding
behind trucks and buses. Posted.

Qantas: Australia Carbon Tax To Increase Fares. Australia's tax
on carbon emissions will cost Qantas 110 million to 115 million
Australian dollars ($118 million to $123 million) for the 2013
financial year and lead to an increase in passenger fares, the
airline said Monday. The flagship Australian carrier is one of
the first of the nation's major companies to release details of
the financial impact of the tax, which will force the 500 worst
polluters to pay AU$23 for every ton of carbon they emit. Posted.

Clean Coal Group Spent $940,000 On 1Q Lobbying. The American
Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity, which represents industries
involved in coal-generated electricity, spent $940,000 in the
first quarter to lobby the federal government on legislation
related to the environment, according to a recent disclosure
report. Posted. 

How Dirty Is The Yellow School Bus? Air Pollution: Tailpipe
controls on buses don't clear the air inside bus cabins. As
iconic yellow buses transport children to and from school, their
diesel engines deliver big doses of air pollutants. In response,
school districts have started retrofitting their buses to cut
tailpipe emissions. Posted.

Critical List: Australia Will Tax Carbon; U.S. Cars Kill 32.5
Trillion Insects Each Year.  This is a carbon tax: Australia is
going to put a tax of $23 per metric ton on carbon emissions from
500 companies.  Hybrids and electric vehicles may no longer be
legally allowed to slink quietly down the street, surprising
pedestrians and dogs everywhere. The National Highway Traffic
Safety Administration is proposing a rule requiring that the
near-silent cars emit some sort of sound at low speeds.  Posted. 



Australia To Tax Nation's Worst Polluters.  Sydney—Australia will
force its 500 worst polluters to pay 23 Australian dollars ($25)
for every ton of carbon dioxide they emit, with the government
promising to compensate households hit with higher power bills
under a plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions unveiled Sunday. 
Prime Minister Julia Gillard sought to reassure wary Australians
that the deeply unpopular carbon tax will only cause a minority
of households to pay more and insisted it is critical to helping
the country lower its massive carbon emissions. Posted. 
AP Newsbreak

Free Cap-And-Trade System Beats Carbon Tax, Study Finds. As
governments try to figure out the best way to get carbon
polluters to invest in and produce cleaner energy, two scenarios
continue to come forward: cap and trade vs. carbon tax. A new
study from UC Merced and the University of New South Wales in
Australia suggests that a free and uninhibited cap-and-trade
system is the best way to go. Posted.


Alon: No Impact From Upset At Bakersfield Refinery. Houston -
Alon USA Energy (ALJ.N) said there was no impact on production
from upsets over the weekend
on a sulfur unit at its Bakersfield, California refinery. "Other
than a couple of trips on the sulfur unit, everything ran
perfectly fine for us in Bakersfield over the weekend," Chief
Operating Officer Joseph Israel said. "We are now converting
gasoil into CARB diesel and CARBOB gasoline for the
California/Bakersfield market in our Bakersfield refinery."

What Does The Volatile Past Of Natural Gas Tell Us About Its
Future?  In mid-2000, the chairman of Chesapeake Energy, a
beleaguered natural gas producer, was returning on the company's
jet to his headquarters in Oklahoma City, buoyed with optimism.
He was coming from a meeting with Calpine, a growing
California-based power company, and he was encouraged by what
he'd heard. Posted. 


As Green As Can Be: Nissan Tests Solar Charging For Leaf.
Yokohama, Japan -- Japanese automaker Nissan is testing a
super-green way to recharge its Leaf electric vehicle using solar
power, part of a broader drive to improve electricity storage
systems. Nissan's Leaf went on sale late last year, but the
automaker is looking ahead about five years, when aging Leaf
vehicles may offer alternative business opportunities in using
their lithium-ion batteries as a storage place for electricity.

AP Newsbreak:


Renault: Ties With Daimler Could Extend To Electric Vehicles.
FLINS, France (Dow Jones)--Renault SA's (RNO.FR) cooperation with
German premium auto maker Daimler AG (DAI.XE) could eventually be
extended to cover production of electric vehicles, the newly
appointed chief operating officer of the French car maker said
Monday. Carlos Tavares, speaking to journalists at an event where
users of electric vehicles related their experiences, said
cooperation between the two companies is developing at the pace
at which new projects are being agreed on. Posted.

Future Of Electric Cars Hinges On Better Batteries. Electric cars
are a game-changing technology with an Achilles’ heel — the
battery. Current batteries are expensive and have limited range,
making it hard to drive from San Jose to San Francisco and back
without stopping to recharge. Experts agree consumers will never
fully embrace electric vehicles until they can travel as far as a
gas-powered car on a single charge. Posted.

Eye On The Environment: Choosing Clean-Burning Car Reduces
Pollution. The California coast has always held the allure of
sunshine, beaches, jaw-dropping vistas and open roads. Nowhere is
this more intoxicating than the famous Ventura Highway, where
tourists hum a familiar tune and locals know the same throughway
can snarl with traffic and vehicle exhaust. Since the days of
tail-finned, chromed-out, choking-on-raw-gas-fumes,
lucky-if-you-get-10-mpg cars, California has cleaned up its act.

Midterm Review Of Mpg Goals Likely. The White House is likely to
require an interim review of eventual 2017-25 model year mpg
standards in response to automakers' doubts about future electric
vehicle sales…automakers have one unlikely ally -- the California
Air Resources Board, which says future sales of hybrids vehicles
are uncertain. Posted. 


Orient Green Power to Raise Capacity 38% on Wind-Energy Demand.
Orient Green Power Co., the first renewable-energy company to
list in India, plans to increase capacity by 38 percent as demand
for cleaner electricity grows. Operating capacity for wind-power
and biomass projects will rise to 342 megawatts in the financial
year through March 2012, the Chennai-based company said today in
an e-mailed statement. Posted.

Texas Aglow With Effort To Save The Incandescent Bulb. Irritated
with federal regulation, Republicans hope a state law will get
around a national mandate to replace old-fashioned bulbs with
more efficient lamps. It doesn't have the ring of "Remember the
Alamo," but a new battle cry has gone up in Texas: "Remember the
incandescent bulb." Texas has become the first state seeking to
skirt a federal law that phases out old-fashioned incandescent
light bulbs in favor of more efficient lamps — Posted.

Phoenix Light-Rail Station Is Cooled By The Sun.  Passengers
using a newly retrofitted light rail station in downtown Phoenix,
Arizona can press a button to be showered in cool air, powered by
solar energy and cold water from an efficient district cooling
system.  The system, which was inspired by similar installations
in Dubai, uses solar power to run fans that blow cool air. The
cool air itself comes from a system of chilled water that has
been running in Phoenix's business district since 2001.  Posted. 


San Joaquin Air District Seeks Funding For Projects.  The San
Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District is requesting
proposals for projects that demonstrate bold, innovative and
creative emission-reduction technologies as part of the
district's Technology Advancement Program. The district is
seeking technology demonstrations in the areas of renewable
energy, waste solutions and mobile sources to improve valley air
quality. Posted. 


The E.U. Has The Right Idea In Regulating Greenhouse Gases From
Airplanes.  AVIATION ACCOUNTS for only 2 or 3 percent of the
world greenhouse gas emissions contributing to climate change.
But that share is rising as air travel increases. So in 2012, the
European Union will bring airlines under its carbon cap,
requiring them to reduce their emissions by 5 percent over the
next decade or to pay for not doing so.  Europe, though, doesn’t
want to restrict the greenhouse gases planes produce only while
flying over E.U. nations.  Posted. 

An Aggressive Ruling on Clean Air. The Environmental Protection
Agency on Thursday issued a welcome and overdue rule compelling
power plants in 27 states and the District of Columbia to reduce
smokestack emissions that pollute the air and poison forests,
lakes and streams across the eastern United States. Posted. 

Word Choice Matters for Energy Policy. When President Barack
Obama speaks about the fuels of the future, his term of choice is
usually “clean energy.” At the “Twitter Town Hall” last week,
where people asked the president questions via Twitter, Mr. Obama
referred to “clean energy” five times. The only similar term he
used was “alternative energy,” once. Other descriptors, like
“renewable,” “sustainable” and “green,” were not mentioned.

Editorial: Roll Back Bulb Standards? Not A Bright Idea. Unless
sharper minds prevail, the U.S. House of Representatives today is
expected to eliminate lighting efficiency standards that former
President George W. Bush signed into law in 2007. Those standards
have helped usher in a new wave of super-efficient, power-saving
light bulbs by dimming the switch on incandescent ones, even
though those older bulbs remain popular among some Americans.

Will Obama Cave On Fuel Efficiency?  For more than two years,
President Barack Obama has talked tough about the need to bolster
fuel economy standards to reduce pollution and dependence on
foreign oil. Yet as Obama starts to mount a 2012 re-election
campaign, there are disturbing signs he may cave on fuel economy
standards to placate Detroit and improve his chances to win
Michigan and other states in the general election. Posted. 

Cap-And-Trade Could Spur Faster Cleantech Investment Than Carbon
Tax. I am painfully aware that the "cap-and-trade vs. carbon tax"
debate, which was never particularly useful, has now become
spectacularly pointless. Cap-and-trade is dead at the national
level and seems to be slowly dying at the state level. And a
carbon tax, despite the eternally brimming hopes of its many
apostles, still has no chance in hell. So it's a "unicorns vs.
bigfoot" kind of thing at this point.


Corporate Giants Add One Million Vehicles to National Clean
Fleets Partnership. In a clear case of high bar-setting, earlier
this year the U.S. Department of Energy kicked off its National
Clean Fleets Partnership with a select group of official
partners: AT&T, FedEx, PepsiCo, UPS and Verizon. The program aims
to reduce diesel and gasoline pollution from fleet vehicles and
with these global A-listers on board others were bound to follow.

When It Comes to Natural Gas Fracking, France Learns from U.S.
Mistakes. Last week, France became the first country to ban
hydraulic fracturing in gas and oil operations. Known as fracking
for short, the practice is associated with serious water
contamination issues, and a recent study by Cornell University
indicates that it may generate more greenhouse gas emissions than
coal mining due to the release of methane gas during the
operation. Posted. 

France Expands Nuclear Capabilities by Opening a Nuclear
Institute. Instead of abandoning nuclear power, France has opened
a nuclear energy institute. France currently generates 78 percent
of its electricity from nuclear power plants, the highest
percentage in the world. Posted. 

What a Difference Some Greens Make in Australian Carbon Politics.
The politics of carbon in Australia have been seriously difficult
and claimed a number of scalps along the way. Before the last
election Julia Gillard had promised there would be no carbon tax
after she herself rolled Kevin Rudd after his seriously changed
stance on carbon. Then, as elections can and do, she was left
with a minority government and needed the support of the Greens
and an Independent MP to retain power. Posted. 

Nissan And 4R Energy Develop New EV Charging System Combining
Solar And Li-Ion Batteries.  Nissan Motor Co., Ltd. and 4R Energy
Corporation, a joint venture established by Nissan and Sumitomo
Corporation in September 2010 to explore second-life applications
for automotive battery packs (earlier post), have developed a
charging system for electric vehicles that combines a solar power
generation system with high-capacity lithium-ion batteries.

Revisiting Historical Ocean Surface Temperatures.  Readers may
recall discussions of a paper by Thompson et al (2008) back in
May 2008. This paper demonstrated that there was very likely an
artifact in the sea surface temperature (SST) collation by the
Hadley Centre (HadSST2) around the end of the second world war
and for a few years subsequently, related to the different ways
ocean temperatures were taken by different fleets. Posted. 

Boston Consulting Group Says Evs Not Necessary To Meet 2020
Emissions Targets. Internal combustion engines (ICEs) are
improving rapidly and their ability to cut CO2 emissions at
lower-than-expected costs will continue to make them the auto
industry's dominant powertrain technology over the next decade.
According to new Boston Consulting Group report entitled,
"Powering Autos to 2020: The Era of the Electric Car?,"
automakers should be able to meet 2020 emissions targets mainly
by applying advanced technologies to conventional ICEs – they
won't be forced to resort to electric cars. Posted.

Plug In America Talks Electric Vehicles With The Air Force. Plug
In America's Kate Baker interviewed Lt. Col. Brian Rusler and
veteran Tim Goodrich of the United States Air Force regarding the
military branch's green energy plans. The Air Force has been
employing electric vehicles as early as 1997 with the use of
electric golf carts for personnel transport within the bases.
Posted. http://green.autoblog.com/

Repealing Light Bulb Efficiency Standards Would Cost Americans
$12.5 Billion. Since the idea was first put forth last fall, we
have been closely following the quest of U.S. Republicans to
repeal the energy efficiency standards for light bulbs.
Introduced by Representative Joe Barton (R-Texas), the Better Use
of Light Bulb (BULB) Act (HR 6144) would block parts of the 2007
energy law signed by George W. Bush that calls for phasing out
the inefficient incandescent light bulb. Posted.

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