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newsclips -- Newsclips for November 28, 2011. Posted: 28 Nov 2011 15:17:23
California Air Resources Board News Clips for November 28, 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 EU agency: air pollution costs exceed $134 billion. Air pollution isn't just harmful—it's expensive, resulting in health care and environmental costs of more than euro100 billion ($130 billion) in 2009, the European Union's environment agency said Thursday. The energy sector had the highest pollution costs, followed by manufacturing and production processes, according to the report by the European Environment Agency. Posted. http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5i0asuwnsl3GVO0Akyyc4NzEe8P6g?docId=dfe766c31b52462691890580949131e2 http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/eu-agency-says-air-pollution-cost-europe-102-billion-169-billion-in-2009/2011/11/24/gIQAiTVhrN_story.html http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_19406047?IADID=Search-www.insidebayarea.com-www.insidebayarea.com http://www.contracostatimes.com/ci_19406047 EPA sued over unenforced ozone standards. President Obama's refusal to let his environmental chief strengthen the nation's smog standards has prompted an environmental group to sue the government to implement milder ozone standards that were adopted in 2008 but never enforced. "Even though we don't think (the 2008 standard is) strict enough, it's better than what's currently being done," James Tutchton, lawyer for WildEarth Guardians, said Friday. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/11/26/MN481M4AAG.DTL&type=printable Cruise ships may hurt S.F. air quality during Cup. Cruise ships won't race against the current during the America's Cup. But they'll sail into San Francisco at the same time as the event - and that worries environmentalists. As many as 80 ships dock along the Embarcadero each year, allowing passengers to hop out, sightsee and hop back on. Running the engines in the meantime traditionally means hours of burning through diesel fuel. To combat air pollution, a machine at Pier 27 has been feeding electricity from the city to those vessels since October 2010Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2011/11/27/BAV41M2701.DTL&tsp=1 Modesto area residents should check air quality before burning. Residential wood burning can pump dangerous levels of soot, ash, dust and other particulate matter into the valley's already poor air. To reduce the pollution, each day the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control District issues one of two wood-burning forecasts: "Wood Burning Prohibited" on days the air and weather conditions are poor, and "Please Burn Cleanly" on days the risk is lower. On "Burning Prohibited" days, all wood burning is banned — including in fireplaces, outdoor chimneys and fire pits. Posted. http://www.modbee.com/2011/11/27/v-print/1964932/modesto-area-residents-should.html BY SUBSCRIPTION CLIMATE CHANGE Divergent views signal tough climate talks ahead. Durban, South Africa (AP) -- With heat-trapping carbon at record levels in the atmosphere, U.N. climate negotiations opened Monday with pressure building to salvage the only treaty limiting greenhouse gas emissions. The U.S., Europe and the developing countries laid out diverging positions at the outset, signaling tough talks ahead even as South African President Jacob Zuma called for national interests to be laid aside "for a common good and benefit of all humanity." Posted. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/A/AF_CLIMATE_CONFERENCE?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT&CTIME=2011-11-28-12-35-04 http://www.sacbee.com/2011/11/28/v-print/4084262/climate-negotiations-open-focus.html http://www.vcstar.com/news/2011/nov/28/climate-negotiations-open-focus-on-emissions/ http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_19424348?IADID=Search-www.insidebayarea.com-www.insidebayarea.com UN Emissions Board Proposes to Address Coal Rule ‘Shortcomings’. The United Nations board overseeing the world’s biggest greenhouse gas-offsetting market promised to address “shortcomings” in rules that allow coal generators to claim emission credits for improving plant efficiency. The so-called methodology, which provides rules that govern the volume of credits such projects may earn, “contains a number of shortcomings, in particular related to baseline methodology procedure, the continued use of which may lead to the registration of projects that would overestimate greenhouse gas emission reductions,” …Posted. http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-11-28/un-emissions-board-proposes-to-address-coal-rule-shortcomings-.html At Meeting on Climate Change, Urgent Issues but Low Expectations. Washington — With intensifying climate disasters and global economic turmoil as the backdrop, delegates from 194 nations will gather in Durban, South Africa, starting Monday to try to advance, if only incrementally, the world’s response to dangerous climate change. To those who have followed the negotiations of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change over their nearly 20-year history, the conflicts and controversies to be taken up in Durban are monotonously familiar: …Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/28/science/earth/nations-meet-to-address-problems-of-climate-change.html?_r=1&adxnnl=1&adxnnlx=1322501796-MWSiTwEK ePfnBCvx53DHA&pagewanted=print Another Try for a Global Climate Effort. With intensifying climate disasters and global economic turmoil as the backdrop, delegates from 194 nations gather in Durban, South Africa, this week to try to advance, if only incrementally, the world’s response to dangerous climate change. To those who have followed the negotiations of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change over their nearly 20-year history, the conflicts and controversies to be taken up in Durban are monotonously familiar …Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/28/business/global/28iht-RBOG-CLIMATE28.html?scp=6&sq=climate%20change&st=cse A Change of Heart on Investing in the Climate. When State Street Global Advisors, the investment management arm of State Street Corp., offered its first “high-quality green bond strategy” last month, it gave institutional investors a chance to hold segregated accounts that invest in fixed income instruments raising financing for projects meant to battle climate change. The move followed that of Nikko Asset Management of Japan, which in March announced that it had raised $640 million for its Nikko AM World Bank Green Funds, the first fund dedicated to investing in green bonds issued by the World Bank. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/28/business/global/28iht-RBOG-BONDS28.html?scp=5&sq=climate%20change&st=cse U.N.: Wilder weather on the way. People around the planet should prepare for "unprecedented extreme weather," according to a report released Friday by top international scientists and disaster experts. Earth's recent wild weather is likely just a sneak peek, the report warns, as rising global temperatures cook the oceans and atmosphere into a frenzy. "We need to be worried," one of the study's lead authors tells the Associated Press. "And our response needs to anticipate disasters and reduce risk before they happen rather than wait until after they happen and clean up afterward. ... Risk has already increased dramatically." Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/11/28/4084189/un-wilder-weather-on-the-way.html Questions, answers on climate negotiations. Some questions and answers about the climate talks being held in South Africa's eastern city of Durban that opened Monday and close on Dec. 9. --- Q: Who is meeting in Durban? A: Negotiators from the European Union and 191 countries making climate change policy under the auspices of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Thousands of activists and experts are there to observe, advise and protest. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/11/28/4084282/questions-answers-on-climate-negotiations.html http://www.washingtonpost.com/world/africa/questions-answers-as-climate-negotiations-get-under-way-in-south-africa/2011/11/28/gIQAiCQs4N_story.html http://www.modbee.com/2011/11/28/1965282/questions-answers-on-climate-negotiations.html#ixzz1f1PL1yuO BY SUBSCRIPTION Pope calls for responsible, credible climate deal. Vatican City -- Pope Benedict XVI called Sunday for delegates attending this week's U.N. climate change conference in South Africa to craft a responsible and credible deal to cut greenhouse gases that takes into account the needs of the poor. Some 25,000 government officials, lobbyists and scientists are expected to attend the two-week conference that opens Monday in Durban. The immediate focus is the pending expiration of the Kyoto Protocol, the 1997 agreement requiring 37 industrialized countries to slash carbon emissions to 5 percent below 1990 levels by 2012. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/11/27/v-print/4082397/pope-calls-for-responsible-credible.html U.S. Says Goal of $30 Billion in Climate Aid Within Reach. Rich countries are set deliver $30 billion in short-term climate change-financing and remain committed to find $100 billion a year by 2020, a U.S. State Department official said. The U.S.’s “fast-start” funds for fiscal 2011 totaled $3.1 billion, up from $2 billion a year earlier, Jonathan Pershing, deputy special envoy for climate change, told reporters today at United Nations-led climate negotiations in Durban, South Africa. The U.S., the largest historical greenhouse-gas emitter, has promised to pay its “fair share” of $30 billion from 2010 to 2012. Posted. http://www.businessweek.com/news/2011-11-28/u-s-says-goal-of-30-billion-in-climate-aid-within-reach.html FUELS Methane emissions not an issue for rice industry. Conversations with the governor's economic development advisers about a proposed bio-fuel plant in Colusa alarmed some city officials about what they thought could be potentially devastating air regulations coming toward the rice industry. But Paul Buttner, environmental affairs manager for the California Rice Commission, said methane emission targets that are part of the Global Warming Solutions Act (Assembly Bill 32), are not an issue for the rice industry. Posted. http://www.colusa-sun-herald.com/news/rice-7622-industry-buttner.html California Poised to Modify Fuel Standard to Account for High-Carbon Feedstocks. The California Air Resources Board on Dec. 16 will consider a series of amendments to the state's landmark low-carbon fuel standard, including a provision to better account for the use of crude oil derived from energy-intensive sources like Canada's oil sands. The revisions, proposed by CARB in October, aim to refine and strengthen the regulation, the agency said. Posted. http://www.bna.com/california-poised-modify-n12884904527/ VEHICLES GM's Volt Woes Cast Shadow on E-Cars. Detroit—For the past several years, the federal government has spent hundreds of millions of dollars promoting the development of electric cars. Now regulators are investigating whether the big battery packs used by one of them pose a safety risk in the event of an accident. Last week, U.S. auto-safety officials opened an investigation into General Motors Co.'s Chevrolet Volt after two crash tests of the electric car caused its battery to spark or catch fire. Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970203935604577064663206681538.html BY SUBSCRIPTION http://content.usatoday.com/communities/driveon/post/2011/11/gm-offering-loaner-cars-to-worried-chevrolet-volt-owners/1 http://www.washingtonpost.com/business/technology/government-investigates-battery-fires-in-volt-chevys-electric-car-gm-says-no-undue-risk/2011/11/26/gIQAThFTyN_story.html http://www.businessweek.com/news/2011-11-28/gm-says-it-will-work-with-nhtsa-on-possible-changes-to-volt.html Toyota unveils high-tech concept car ahead of show. Tokyo -- Toyota's president unveiled a futuristic concept car resembling a giant smartphone to demonstrate how Japan's top automaker is trying to take the lead in technology at the upcoming Tokyo auto show. Toyota Motor Corp. will also be showing an electric vehicle, set for launch next year, and a tiny version of the hit Prius gas-electric hybrid at the Tokyo Motor Show, which opens to the public this weekend. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/11/28/v-print/4083679/toyota-unveils-high-tech-concept.html GREEN ENERGY Crunch Time Is Coming for U.K.'s Green Commitment. Britain has some big decisions to make on energy, and environmentalists say the answers that politicians come up with in the next few months will determine whether the country follows through on its promises of strong action against global warming. A series of important questions about investment in renewable energy, efficiency and nuclear generation are up for discussion as the government and energy companies plan how to replace a generation of power plants that are nearing retirement. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2011/11/28/business/global/28iht-RBOG-BRITAIN28.html?scp=3&sq=green%20energy&st=cse For vets returning to US, green energy jobs await. Ben Noland served in the U.S. Marine Corps for eight years, then spent 18 months looking for a job. "I've probably put my resume in to 300 places in the past year," the 33-year-old Kenton resident said. "The farthest I've ever got was a phone interview." Noland finally landed a job installing solar panels at Tipping Point Renewable Energy, a Columbus-based solar power company that is hiring only military veterans for its installation crews at a time when unemployment among former service members is outpacing that of civilians. Posted. http://www.google.com/hostednews/ap/article/ALeqM5hlf84LydL04QP0qjwY2hF0hqxHiQ?docId=37df820eea904698800d4d4f9b017ff9 http://www.fresnobee.com/2011/11/26/2628169/for-vets-returning-to-us-green.html#storylink=misearch http://www.nctimes.com/news/national/for-vets-returning-to-us-green-energy-jobs-await/article_b149b435-072f-53da-b0ce-6105f8ce1a29.html China set to surpass U.S. in solar installation. With European solar markets in decline, the industry is looking for the next hot solar region. Even with political troubles in the U.S., companies still see America as a good long-term bet. (And let's remember, Europe's slowdown doesn't mean the region is going to stop being a major player.) But analysts now see the Asia Pacific solar market as the Next Big Thing, driven largely by growing domestic demand in China. For the first time this year, China may surpass the U.S. market, according to analysis from NDP Solarbuzz. Posted. http://www.grist.org/solar-power/2011-11-23-chinas-2011-solar-installs-may-surpass-americas-first-time Study: Californians must make big shift to electric power to meet long-term energy goals. California must be fully electrified 40 years from now with residents driving only electric cars and plugging them into a grid powered by carbon-free power plants if the state is to meet its most far-reaching climate goals, according to a new study. Not only will electricity be carbon-free, California will need a whole lot more of it to make up for the loss of gasoline, natural gas and coal. Posted. http://www.miamiherald.com/2011/11/25/2518894/study-californians-must-make-big.html MISCELLANEOUS Thanksgiving dinner's carbon footprint. As if you needed another reason to feel guilty about chowing down on Thanksgiving each year, consider this: researchers at the University of Manchester in England figure that a turkey-n-trimmings feast for eight produces approximately 44 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions. About 60 percent of that planet-warming gas comes from the life cycle of the turkey, alone. And that doesn't include drinks. Leave it to the Brits to rain on our traditions. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/11/28/v-print/4084040/thanksgiving-dinners-carbon-footprint.html Companies give GOP, regulators, different messages. Large and small companies have told Republican-led congressional committees what the party wants to hear: dire predictions of plant closings and layoffs if the Obama administration succeeds with plans to further curb air and water pollution. But their message to financial regulators and investors conveys less gloom and certainty. The administration itself has clouded the picture by withdrawing or postponing some of the environmental initiatives that industry labeled as being among the most onerous. Posted. http://www.recordnet.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20111125/A_NEWS/111129942&cid=sitesearch Environmental programs fall victim to budget cuts. When lightning ignited a wildfire near Idaho's Sun Valley in 2007, environmental regulators used monitoring gear to gauge the health effects for those breathing in the Sawtooth Mountains' smoky, mile-high air. That equipment sits idle today after the Idaho Department of Environmental Quality was hit by $4 million in spending cuts, a quarter of its budget, since the recession began. Posted. http://www.nctimes.com/news/national/environmental-programs-fall-victim-to-budget-cuts/article_5ab1466f-5c19-5e20-a277-058b5e1aa3b3.html http://www.modbee.com/2011/11/26/1963253/environmental-programs-fall-victim.html BY SUBSCRIPTION OPINIONS The Non-Green Jobs Boom. Forget 'clean energy.' Oil and gas are boosting U.S. employment. So President Obama was right all along. Domestic energy production really is a path to prosperity and new job creation. His mistake was predicting that those new jobs would be "green," when the real employment boom is taking place in oil and gas. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reported recently that the U.S. jobless rate remains a dreadful 9%. But look more closely at the data and you can see which industries are bucking the jobless trend. Posted. http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10001424052970204190704577024510087261078.html BY SUBSCRIPTION Viewpoints: Give consumers the choice of clean car future. California, like the rest of the nation, is addicted to oil. Just like other addictions, heavy oil use comes with a heavy price – for our wallets, our health and our climate. The good news is that California and the federal government are taking bold steps to tackle these problems. They've signed automakers up for a plan to gradually improve fuel efficiency and reduce global warming emissions for cars and light trucks built between 2017 and 2025. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2011/11/25/v-print/4078657/give-consumers-the-choice-of-clean.html California must keep driving toward goal of 54.5 mpg. Since the 1960s California has led the nation on emission standards for passenger cars. The big driver has always been necessity. Despite tremendous progress, California continues to have the nation's worst air quality. Other states — and the federal government — have tended to follow California's lead. Posted. http://www.modbee.com/2011/11/27/1964496/keep-driving-toward-goal-of-545.html#ixzz1f1PzrGMx BY SUBSCRIPTION SAN BERNARDINO: Research cop-out? Communication lapses should not trump protecting children’s health. San Bernardino schools officials and Loma Linda University researchers should cooperate on a study of the hazards posed by a busy rail yard near a school. The school district needs to be a part of research that can provide better knowledge about the threat to students’ health on campus. Posted. http://www.pe.com/opinion/editorials-headlines/20111126-san-bernardino-research-cop-out.ece Another Climate Change report: hopelessness or ridicule? Another report about the changes coming to our region because of Climate Change says that we may get our unfair share of Invasive Species. I haven’t actually read this particular report yet (but I will) though it states what most other reports say about how Climate Change will affect our region. Besides more extreme weather, major disruptions to our economy and public health there are a host of Likely Changes coming. It can be daunting. Posted. http://www.examiner.com/environmental-news-in-rochester/another-climate-change-report-hopelessness-or-ridicule BLOGS On Our Radar: Global Climate Talks in Durban. Nearly 200 nations open a global conference on climate change, with industrialized countries arguing that big developing economies like China, India and Brazil must submit to emissions targets regardless of whether wealthier countries set global warming in motion. [Reuters] The United Nations says that one-quarter of the world’s land is badly degraded and that the trend must be reversed if a soaring global population is to be fed. [Huffington Post] Posted. http://green.blogs.nytimes.com/2011/11/28/on-our-radar-global-climate-talks-in-durban/?ref=science Most dire global warming forecasts unlikely, study finds. Significant, risky, global warming still projected. New research takes some of the most dire global warming projections off the table. A study published last week in the journal Science concludes that the more extreme climate change scenarios, which involve temperature increases of up to 10°F are implausible. Instead, the study finds, we are likely in the midst of a more manageable, but still potentially dangerous, shift in the planet’s climate. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/capital-weather-gang/post/most-dire-global-warming-forecasts-unlikely-study-finds/2011/11/27/gIQAz2er4N_blog.html CO2 sensitivity possibly less than most extreme projections. A new study in the journal Science suggests that the global climate may be less sensitive to carbon dioxide fluctuations than predicted by the most extreme projections, and maybe slightly less than the best estimates of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. Andreas Schmittner, a climate scientist at Oregon State University in Corvallis, Ore., and lead author on the new study, notes that, while man-made global warming is happening and …Posted. http://latimesblogs.latimes.com/greenspace/2011/11/co2-sensitivity-possibly-less-than-most-extreme-projections.html?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+GreenspaceEnvironmentBlog+%28Greenspace%29 Oakland aims to add more businesses to its “green certified” list. What do the Chabot Space and Science Center, PGAdesign, Red Oak Realty, The Tip Top Bike Shop, Mr. Sparkle Window Washers, and Baja Taqueria have in common? They are all “green” businesses in Oakland. Oakland is currently home to 138 green certified businesses—restaurants, stores and offices that meet county standards of energy efficiency, water conservation, recycling, and waste reduction, among other things. Posted. http://blog.sfgate.com/inoakland/2011/11/28/oakland-aims-to-add-more-businesses-to-its-%e2%80%9cgreen-certified%e2%80%9d-list/ CA, Capitol Republicans Lock Horns over Tailpipe Regs. For California Air Resources Board (ARB) chair Mary Nichols, pre-Thanksgiving prep meant responding to list of requests from Orange County Republican congressman Darrell Issa and his House Oversight and Government Reform Committee. As part of its continuing probe into how the newest Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) standards were set, the letter asked for information about how California came up with its vehicle emissions standards and what role state officials played in developing the newly announced federal fuel economy standard. Posted. http://blogs.kqed.org/climatewatch/2011/11/27/draft-congressional-committee-challenges-ca-right-to-regulate-vehicle-emissions/ Study finds no alternative to widespread switching of direct fuel uses to electricity to meet 2050 California GHG targets; putting detail in climate wedges. Technically feasible levels of energy efficiency and decarbonized energy supply alone will not be sufficient to reduce greenhouse gas emissions 80% below 1990 levels by 2050, according to a detailed modeling of the California economy performed by a team from Energy and Environmental Economics, the Monterey Institute of International Studies, University of California, Berkeley and Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2011/11/williams-20111127.html