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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for March 16, 2012 Posted: 16 Mar 2012 15:31:34
ARB Newsclips for March 16, 2012. 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 COACHELLA: Truck stop settles county, state environmental claims. Owners of a Coachella truck stop agreed to pay $1.2 million to settle a lawsuit by Riverside County and the state over environmental violations, Attorney General Kamala D. Harris and Riverside District Attorney Paul Zellerbach announced Thursday. TravelCenters, an Ohio-based company with 10 locations in California, was sued in 2007 by then-District Attorney Rod Pacheco regarding a number of violations stemming from improper storage and oversight of fuel at the Coachella truck stop. The state joined the lawsuit the following year. Posted. http://www.pe.com/local-news/breaking-news-headlines/20120315-coachella-truck-stop-settles-county-state-environmental-claims.ece http://www.modbee.com/2012/03/16/2115575/truck-stop-paying-1m-to-settle.html http://www.dailynews.com/ci_20188659/truck-stop-paying-1m-settle-fuel-storage-suit?IADID=Search-www.dailynews.com-www.dailynews.com http://www.contracostatimes.com/ci_20188659/truck-stop-paying-1m-settle-fuel-storage-suit?IADID=Search-www.contracostatimes.com-www.contracostatimes.com http://www.fresnobee.com/2012/03/16/2763206/truck-stop-paying-1m-to-settle.html#storylink=misearch DEP says Pa. plant's pollution upgrades likely OK. State Department of Environmental Protection officials say they'll likely issue a permit for pollution control equipment that will keep a western Pennsylvania power plant operating—and 265 workers employed. The Tribune-Democrat of Johnstown ( http://bit.ly/xMPqkD) says DEP officials announced those plans at a meeting Wednesday at a school auditorium near the Homer City Generating Station, the state's second-largest coal-fired power plant. Posted. http://www.dailynews.com/ci_20179728/dep-says-pa-plants-pollution-upgrades-likely-ok?IADID=Search-www.dailynews.com-www.dailynews.com http://www.insidebayarea.com/ci_20179728/dep-says-pa-plants-pollution-upgrades-likely-ok?IADID=Search-www.insidebayarea.com-www.insidebayarea.com http://www.contracostatimes.com/ci_20179728/dep-says-pa-plants-pollution-upgrades-likely-ok?IADID=Search-www.contracostatimes.com-www.contracostatimes.com CLIMATE CHANGE O.E.C.D. Warns of Ever-Higher Greenhouse Gas Emissions. Global greenhouse gas emissions could rise 50 percent by 2050 without more ambitious climate policies, as fossil fuels continue to dominate the energy mix, the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development said Thursday. “Unless the global energy mix changes, fossil fuels will supply about 85 percent of energy demand in 2050, implying a 50 percent increase in greenhouse gas emissions and worsening urban air pollution,” the Paris-based O.E.C.D. said in its environment outlook to 2050. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/16/business/energy-environment/oecd-warns-of-ever-higher-greenhouse-gas-emissions.html?_r=1&scp=2&sq=air%20pollution&st=cse Cap and trade programs do not provide sufficient incentives for innovation: research. Cap and trade programs to reduce emissions do not inherently provide incentives to induce the private sector to develop innovative technologies to address climate change, according to a new study in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. In fact, said author Margaret Taylor, a researcher at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab) who conducted the study while an assistant professor at the University of California, Posted. http://www.physorg.com/news/2012-03-1057ap-sufficient-incentives.html FUELS EPA regs could hamper oil, natural gas production, report says. Despite rhetoric to the contrary, the Obama administration is poised to deal a major blow to U.S. oil and natural gas, a leading industry group charged Thursday. Domestic production of both fuels could plummet if proposed Environmental Protection Agency regulations, designed to limit emissions from well sites, go into effect later this year, according to an extensive new study commissioned by the American Petroleum Institute. Posted. http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2012/mar/15/epa-regulations-hamper-oil-gas-production-report/ Energy, Pain At The Pump. When the President and Prime Minister of Great Britain announced the releasing of strategic oil reserves for this coming summer brings to light the blatant disregard that the oil industry and our own government has for the general public. Ever since the mid 1970's the United States has had numerous opportunities to develop, manufacture and produce affordable automobiles using alternate fuel sources. Hydrogen fuel cells and natural gas are just a few alternatives that could have been incorporated into auto manufacturing…Posted. http://www.examiner.com/political-buzz-in-tampa-bay/energy-pain-at-the-pump VEHICLES San Diego judge tentatively OKs Honda settlement over hybrid vehicles’ fuel economy claims. A judge tentatively approved a settlement to give owners of Honda Civic hybrids up to $200 cash over claims that the cars’ fuel economy was inflated, casting aside arguments that a motorist’s victory in small claims court entitled them to a larger award. Superior Court Judge Timothy Taylor said the essence of a settlement is compromise. “No doubt plaintiffs would have loved to have gotten more;…Posted. http://www.toledoblade.com/Automotive/2012/03/16/San-Diego-judge-tentatively-OKs-Honda-settlement-over-hybrid-vehicles-fuel-economy-claims.html Judge to weigh Honda settlement over gas mileage. A Southern California woman who challenged the legal status quo with a victory in small claims court against Honda Motor Co. will be back in court before another judge to address the automaker's inflated claims about fuel economy in its Civic hybrids. This time, Heather Peters wants to derail a class-action settlement between the Japanese company and owners of about 200,000 of its cars, spanning from model years 2003 to 2009. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2012/mar/16/judge-to-weigh-honda-settlement-over-gas-mileage/ Mexico agrees to cap auto exports to Brazil. Mexico has agreed to cap auto exports to Brazil at $1.45 billion per year to avoid a Brazilian threat to slap import tariffs on Mexican cars. The moves comes after weeks of talks that reflected Brazil's concern over a spike in auto imports in 2011.Mexican Economy Secretary Bruno Ferrari said Thursday his country is satisfied with the deal, even though it represents a cut from the $2 billion in light vehicles Mexico exported to Brazil in 2011. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2012/mar/15/mexico-agrees-to-cap-auto-exports-to-brazil/ LaSorda: Fisker Karma shut down to protect itself during magazine's test. Fisker Automotive's new CEO said a Karma luxury sedan owned by Consumer Reports shut itself down during testing to protect itself. "The Karma performed exactly as it was designed to," Tom LaSorda said in a letter sent to customers. "The onboard diagnostics detected a fault and entered a protection mode that shut the car down to protect other components. We are sorry for the inconvenience this caused the customer." Posted. http://www.autonews.com/article/20120315/OEM05/120319927#ixzz1pIbfjBuV GREEN ENERGY Obama Defends Energy Policy, Hitting Back at Presidential Candidates. In what has become a weekly ritual, President Obama on Thursday defended his administration’s energy policy, in the face of relentlessly rising gasoline prices, to an American public that believes he can do more to ease the pain at the pump. Mr. Obama cycled through now-familiar themes, promoting his record of increased domestic oil and gas production; stricter fuel-efficiency standards for cars and trucks; and investments in alternative sources of energy, like biofuels, wind and solar power. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2012/03/16/us/politics/obama-defends-energy-policy.html?scp=9&sq=fuels&st=cse#h http://www.recordnet.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20120315/A_NEWS/120319930&cid=sitesearch MISCELLANEOUS First big piece of 'Electric Highway' gets juice. Central Point, Ore. -- Electric car owners riding along Oregon's Interstate 5 don't have to worry about running out of juice on the open road. The first major stretch of what's been dubbed an "Electric Highway" on the West Coast from Canada to Mexico went operational Friday with the opening of a series of fast-charging stations along 160 miles of the interstate. The eight stations stretch from the California border north to the Oregon city of Cottage Grove and are located at gas stations, restaurants and motels just off I-5, the nation's second-busiest interstate. One station is at an inn that was once a stage coach stop. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2012/03/16/v-print/4343387/first-big-piece-of-electric-highway.html Officials take second swing at grant money for highway project. Four months after losing out on key federal grant money for widening the Highway 101/Highway 23 interchange, officials from Ventura County are trying again. Thousand Oaks and county transportation officials plan to submit a grant application for $19.5 million by the end of the week, said Jay Spurgin, Thousand Oaks' public works director. Spurgin traveled with others from the city and the Ventura County Transportation Commission to Washington, D.C., last week. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/2012/mar/15/officials-take-second-swing-at-grant-money-for/ It's Time to Reconsider Energy Subsidies. Our country is in the midst of a great debate on how to reduce our national debt. This is an important discussion for all of us to have. As part of this conversation, we should carefully examine the subsidies for different forms of energy production -- fossil fuels and renewables. All of us understand that the subsidy game can be a slippery slope, and it is important to set clear standards for when subsidies make sense and when they do not. As a rule, there are three things we should consider before putting subsidies in place: Posted. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/steve-westly/its-time-to-reconsider-en_b_1340885.html BLOGS What’s going to kill us in 2050? Air pollution — and lots of it. Air pollution tends to get wildly underrated as a public health concern. Everyone knows malaria is deadly. Or that access to clean water is a problem. And yet, in the next few decades, air pollution will kill far more people than both of those things combined, according to a new report. On Wednesday, the OECD released its “Environmental Outlook to 2050,” which contained a few spots of cheery news. Posted. http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/ezra-klein/post/whats-going-to-kill-us-in-2050-air-pollution--and-lots-of-it/2012/03/15/gIQAgiDgES_blog.html Study finds that environmental impact of corn-ethanol E85 is 23% to 33% higher than that of gasoline; environmental problem-shifting. When 12 different environmental impacts and the regional differences among 19-corn growing states are taken into consideration, E85 (85% ethanol, 15% gasoline) blends made with corn ethanol from dry mills show a worse total environmental impact than gasoline, according to a new study by a team from the Universities of Minnesota, Troyes (France), and California, Santa Barbara. In a paper published in the ACS journal Environmental Science & Technology …Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2012/03/yang-20120316.html AAA adds plug-in vehicle charging stations to TripTik map services. AAA is getting ready for the EV era. After announcing roadside charging assistance for electric vehicles last summer, the company announced today that it is going to add charging station locations to its TripTik services, either online or with an app. It's all part of the brand's history of helping drivers, as the press release helpfully points out. 100 years ago, AAA made sure to note where the gas stations were on customer maps. Posted. http://green.autoblog.com/2012/03/16/aaa-adds-plug-in-vehicle-charging-stations-to-triptik-map-servic/