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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for November 1, 2012

Posted: 01 Nov 2012 14:49:19
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 


Carmeuse Lime fined for air violations in Chicago.  The U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency says a lime manufacturer will pay
a $350,000 fine to resolve air pollution violations at a Chicago
plant.  The consent decree announced on Wednesday also requires
Pittsburgh-based Carmeuse (KAR'-moos) Lime to spend $125,000 to
replace windows in homes near the plant. Posted. 

SAE International Book Details Onboard Diagnostics and
Measurement for Vehicles on Land, Sea and in the Air.  Direct
(OBM) and indirect (OBD) determination of emissions in
transportation is the focus of a book from SAE International. 
"Onboard Diagnostics and Measurement in the Automotive Industry,
Shipbuilding and Aircraft Construction" offers the reader a
state-of-the-art report on the recent developments on the
determination of emissions and the estimation of concentration of
pollutants in the exhaust pipe, using technologies such as
intelligent micro controllers, micro sensors and micro actuators
systems on board.  Posted.  

Moscow steps up war on congestion to boost business.  Chaos has
ruled on Moscow's roads since cars became more affordable after
the collapse of the Soviet Union two decades ago. Traffic often
grinds to a halt and drivers resort to double parking or block
pavements, making them impassable.  Until now, drivers have often
been able to bribe their way out of traffic or parking offences,
and many foreign investors cite the congestion and pollution
among the reasons they find Moscow an unattractive place to live
and work.  Posted 
Rules spark a slow burn. Wedged between walnut and olive orchards
off Alpine Road is a different kind of farmer - 69-year-old Dave
Smith, whose "crop" consists of towering piles of firewood. This
is where downed trees and orchard trimmings from across Stockton
find a new purpose, as they're stacked, seasoned and sold to
homeowners to provide heat and ambience during those long, gray
San Joaquin County winters. There's enough oak, elm and
eucalyptus on Smith's 3-acre lot to fill 500 pickups. Posted.


Sandy: Act of God or act of man?  Is global warming to blame for
Sandy the "Frankenstorm"? Pundits and politicians were arguing
about that even before the massive storm struck the Atlantic
coast; now that it has moved on, after killing 50, flooding the
New York subway system, ripping away chunks of New Jersey's
coastline and causing myriad other damage that will place Sandy
among the most expensive natural disasters in U.S. history, it's
a more pressing question.  Posted. 

Related articles:

Rule Tweaks May Dissuade California Carbon Bidders, RBC Says. 
Tweaks to the rules governing the California carbon market may
dissuade bidders in the state’s first auction next month, said a
trader at RBC Capital Markets.  California’s air resources board
on Aug. 17 suspended a rule requiring companies to pledge
annually that they haven’t engaged in “shuffling” electricity
resources to comply with state emissions limits. The board may
propose regulatory amendments by the middle of next year to
change supply of free allowances to factories at risk of shifting
their emissions to regions outside the state, according to a
Sept. 20 statement on the board’s website. The market starts Jan.
1.  “Here we are a month or two away from the market’s start and
we are relaxing the rules,” said Anthony D’Agostino, director of
emissions markets at RBC. “I don’t see where the demand for the
auction is going to come from. If they start changing rules, it
gives traders pause.”  Posted. 

California offset supply hit by strict rules: expert.  Suppliers
of offset credits to California's carbon emissions market will
only be able to meet a third of demand unless the state approves
more project types, a move that could drive up the cost of
complying with the scheme, an expert said Tuesday.  Companies
that have their carbon dioxide emissions capped under the
cap-and-trade scheme are allowed to use up to 200 million offset
credits this decade to meet their targets.  Posted. 

N.Y.'s Cuomo links storm, climate change.  Prominent climate
scientists were unwilling Wednesday to do what New York Gov.
Andrew Cuomo did: blame climate change for the devastating storm
known as Sandy that wreaked havoc along the Eastern Seaboard. 
They said, nevertheless, that the gargantuan storm might very
well have been made worse by the increased rainfall and sea level
rise that global warming has caused.  Posted. 

Sandy and Irene may be the new normal.  Nearly a year ago, Paul
Kirshen told Gov. Dannel P. Malloy's Two Storm Panel studying the
two disastrous weather events of that year to start preparing for
what is to come.  Kirshen, a professor of civil engineering at
the University of New Hampshire, is also an expert on climate
change.  Posted.  

Harris-Mann Climatology Predicts More 'Extreme' Weather. 
Harris-Mann Climatology, a long-range weather and commodity
forecasting service since 1991, continues to predict more extreme
weather across the globe for at least the next 25 years. Based
upon climatological history, it was discovered that the Earth’s
weather becomes more extreme about every 500 years. Posted. 

Expect storms like Hurricane Sandy with global warming.  Re
"Unthinkable devastation" (Page A1, Oct. 31): It is remarkable
that there has been no mention in the media of global warming,
yet the immensity of Hurricane Sandy has been acknowledged to be
the exceptionally warm waters off the Atlantic coast. Nor have
the presidential candidates mentioned it. Posted.

Long-Term Sea Level Rise In Washington, D.C. Could Have
Significant Impact.  The nation's capital is likely to face
flooding and infrastructure damage in both the short- and
long-term brought about by sea level rise (SLR), current trends
and predicted increases suggest. The rise is linked to thermal
expansion of the oceans and melting of global ice sheets as a
result of global warming, researchers say in a new study focused
on real-estate property and government infrastructure impacts in
Washington, D.C. Posted. 

Baseline Time Accounting Significantly Improves the Climate
Impact Assessment of Indirect Land Use Change (ILUC).  Indirect
land use models that forecast the global warming impact of
biofuels production incorporate time accounting in a very
simplistic way to allocate total carbon emitted from affected
land to the volume of fuel produced. The accuracy of accounting
for time in these models is severely limited by the currently
employed annualization approach… Posted. 

AGL Resources Reports Third Quarter 2012 Earnings.  AGL Resources
Inc. (NYSE: GAS) today reported third quarter 2012 net income of
$9 million, or $0.08 per basic and diluted share, compared to a
net loss of $3 million, or $(0.04) per basic and diluted share,
reported for the same period last year. Excluding merger-related
expenses of $0.01 per share in 2012 and $0.06 per share in 2011,
adjusted EPS was $0.09 for the third quarter of 2012 and $0.02
per diluted share for the third quarter of 2011. Posted. 

Nations fail to agree plan to protect seas around Antarctica. 
Major nations failed to reach agreement on Thursday to set up
huge marine protected areas off Antarctica under a plan to step
up conservation of creatures such as whales and penguins around
the frozen continent.  The 25-member Commission for the
Conservation of Antarctic Marine Living Resources (CCAMLR)
agreed, however, to hold a special session in Germany in July
2013 to try to break the deadlock after the Oct. 8-Nov. 1 meeting
in Hobart, Australia.   Posted. 


Air pollution from cargo equipment drops at Puget Sound ports. 
Over the past six years, air pollution from cargo-moving
equipment at Puget Sound ports has dropped significantly,
according to a report released this week by the Puget Sound Clean
Air Agency.  The emissions update showed a 16 percent drop in
diesel particulates, perhaps the most critical local pollutant,
said Andrew Green, director of air quality programs for the Puget
Sound Clean Air Agency.  These particulates are important because
they can cause cancer when inhaled and because they tend to be
most concentrated near emissions sources, such as truck exhausts.

Diesel is worse pollutant than gasoline, UC Berkeley study says. 
The hotly contested debate over whether gasoline or diesel
contributes more to smog continues with new findings from UC
Berkeley showing that diesel is worse than gasoline.  In a paper
published Oct. 22 in the journal Proceedings of the National
Academy of Sciences, researchers examined how both fuels
contributed to air pollution and found that diesel contributes
more to a primary component of smog.  Drew Gentner, lead author
of the paper and a graduate student in the campus department of
civil and environmental engineering, said researchers analyzed 52
total gas and diesel samples collected across California, took
field measurements of vehicular emissions at the Caldecott Tunnel
and looked at results from a 2010 field study conducted by the
Nexus of Air Quality and Climate Change that measured
contributions to air pollution in places like Bakersfield and
Pasadena.  Posted. 

No Money for High-Speed Rail.  The high-speed  rail is truly a
train to nowhere. It goes from Madera to Bakersfield with little
chance of getting any further, leaving the Central Valley torn up
and $6 billion wasted.  The rail authority, in effect, was in a
hurry to break ground in order to meet a federal deadline so they
could get their hands on $3.3 billion of stimulus money . I guess
the Central Valley seemed like an easy target. Then it all became
a slippery slope, because once they secured the federal money
under Proposition 1A—the High-Speed Rail Act—they could then
authorize $2.7 billion from California taxpayers. Okay. So let's
do some math. We still need over $60 billion more to finish the
project. That's the low-cost estimate. And our research shows,
there's no money coming in from the feds or private industry.
Without more money, it can't be completed and then it's just a
big wasteful project with taxpayers getting nothing but the bill.


Cohen disappointed with Delta Air Lines. U.S. Rep. Steve Cohen is
expressing frustration with Delta Air Lines after the company
decided not to restore its Memphis-to-Amsterdam flight next
summer. Cohen, a Memphis Democrat, says he has requested a
meeting with Delta to discuss its decision to eliminate the
Amsterdam flight.  A Delta spokesman tells The Commercial Appeal
that the airline scrapped the plan for seasonal service because
it wasn't going to be profitable with continuing high fuel prices
and weak passenger demand. Posted.

EPA grants 16 states clean gas waivers after Sandy.  The Obama
administration is temporarily waiving some Clean Air Act
requirements in 16 states and the District of Columbia to reduce
fuel disruptions from Superstorm Sandy.  Environmental Protection
Agency Administrator Lisa Jackson says in a letter to governors
that extreme circumstances related to Sandy will prevent enough
gasoline from reaching consumers. Posted.

EnerTech energy plant in Rialto closes.  A renewable energy plant
once touted as a cutting-edge facility that would bring jobs and
revenue to the city has closed. Atlanta-based EnerTech
Environmental Inc. will no longer turn biosolids into a coal
substitute at a landfill on the south edge of town. Geoff Berman,
a vice president of Los Angeles-based Development Specialists
Inc., which is working with EnerTech on a liquidation process,
said the company closed Oct. 5. "We have not determined what the
process is going to be for the liquidation of the plant," Berman
said. Posted.

Worthington Energy's I-1 Well on Continuous 24 Hour Production. 
Worthington Energy, Inc. (OTCBB: WGAS) ("Worthington" or the
"Company"), an energy company engaged in the acquisition,
exploration, development and drilling of oil and natural gas
properties, reports that the Company's I-1 Well is currently
operating on a continuous, unmanned, 24 hour production schedule.
 "I am pleased to report that we are once again operating on a 24
hour production schedule," stated Worthington Energy, Inc.
President & CEO, Mr. Tony Mason.  Posted.  

Face the Facts USA: Natural gas boom driven by fracking,
horizontal drilling.  Each day in the 100 days leading up to
Election Day, MercuryNews.com and Face the Facts USA will be
partnering to bring you one exhaustively researched and vetted,
non-partisan fact about a major issue facing our nation.  Posted.

Shell Sets Sights on Natural Gas to Fuel Growth.  As weak U.S.
gas prices drag down its earnings Royal Dutch Shell RDSB.LN
+2.33% is planning to bolster its profits by converting natural
gas into road fuels like diesel, which it can sell at much higher
prices.  Many energy companies are seeking to capitalize on low
U.S. natural gas prices by exporting the fuel to Asia or Europe
or burning it directly in specially converted trucks or buses. 


2013 Audi Allroad steers toward yuppies with an active lifestyle.
 If anecdotal evidence gleaned from trips through L.A.'s moneyed
coastal enclaves like Malibu, Pacific Palisades and Manhattan
Beach is any indication, there's a new automotive trend for the
outdoorsy yuppie. It's a station wagon.  Too culturally sensitive
to be caught in an SUV, yet ever mindful of the curbside erratum
that is the minivan, those with an active lifestyle or projection
thereof clearly seem to be finding solace in the 2013 Audi
Allroad.  Posted. 


W. Pa. duo uses solar, recycling to live off grid.  How great
would it be to have all the conveniences of modern life without
most of the bills -- or worries about power outages?  It may
sound too good to be true, but that's life for Ted and Kathy
Carns of Ligonier Township, who have managed to build a 21st
century success story of zero waste, astonishing inventiveness
and self-reliant living.  Posted. 

International Rafting Federation Delivers First Certified Carbon
Neutral World Sports Event with the Costa Rica 2011 World Rafting
Championships: How They Did It - A Model For the World.  The
organizers of the 2011 WRC realized they could successfully
deliver a first-ever Carbon Neutral event, with over 600
participating athletes from 35 countries in host country Costa
Rica. They contacted the Carbon Neutral Commission of EARTH
University to plan how to certify the seven day event. Event
certification efforts were led by Rafael Gallo, who has
transformed Rios Tropicales into Costa Rica’s top geotourism
adventure company and sustainability advocate – and owner/manager
of Costa Rica’s largest private native rainforest reserve for
carbon mitigation.  Posted. 

Vt. utility gets approval for solar project.  A Vermont utility
has received approval to start a solar project on the site of a
former coal-to-gas plant in Rutland.  The Rutland Herald reports
Green Mountain Power said Public Service Board approved the
project and that construction was to start "immediately."  The
project is the first one proposed under the utility's solar city
initiative, in which it has pledged to make Rutland the city with
the most solar capacity in the Northeast.  Posted.  

UPDATE 1-China launches trade probes on EU solar products.  China
said on Thursday that it would launch anti-dumping and
anti-subsidy investigations into imported European Union
solar-grade polysilicon, in the latest instance of tit-for-tat
trade tensions in the global solar industry.  The move comes as
the EU's executive body mulls duties targeting Chinese solar
producers, a probe launched in September after companies accused
Chinese rivals of "dumping", or deliberately selling products for
less abroad than at home.  Posted. 


Honolulu rail project up in the air, again.  For all those
visitors to Waikiki Beach who see Honolulu as a South Sea
paradise, Maeda Timson would like to invite them to climb into
her minivan and drive for a moment in her world.  She leaves her
home in this fast-growing suburb every morning at 6:20 for what
has become an hour and a half commute to her job as vice
president at Bank of Hawaii in downtown Honolulu.  Posted. 

U.S. Sunlight is Pleased to Announce A Break-Through in Attic
Moisture Management with the All Purpose Ventilator, Designed to
Actively Ventilate and Reduce Risk of Mold.  Contrary to popular
belief, a warm attic in the winter months is more harmful than
beneficial for the health and energy efficiency of a home. When
warm attic air collides with the cold underside of roof
sheathing, condensation is formed; the combination of
condensation and warm attic temperatures can cause numerous
problems for a home… Posted. 

Camfil Farr APC Unveils "Remembering Tree" Sculpture.  Camfil
Farr Air Pollution Control (APC) unveiled a unique art piece to
representatives, distributors and employees gathered for an
international sales meeting at the company's corporate
headquarters here.  Called "The Remembering Tree", the 30-ft
(9.14 m) tall steel sculpture has been designed and created by
metal artist Kelly Stevens, a production welder at the Jonesboro
plant.  Posted.


Will Climate Get Some Respect Now?  President Obama and Mitt
Romney seemed determined not to discuss climate change in this
campaign. So thanks to Hurricane Sandy for forcing the issue:
Isn’t it time to talk not only about weather, but also about
climate? It’s true, of course, that no single storm or drought
can be attributed to climate change. Atlantic hurricanes in the
Northeast go way back, as the catastrophic “snow hurricane” of
1804 attests. But many scientists believe that rising carbon
emissions could make extreme weather — like Sandy — more likely.


Shell Ends Alaska Offshore Drilling for the Year. Shell Oil had
its problems this year drilling off the Arctic coast of Alaska,
but on Wednesday it declared success on the final day of
operations for the season. (Only a brief autumn exploration
season is allowed by regulators because of ice flows.) Thick ice
delayed operations in the spring. Then, one of the drilling ships
dragged its anchors and nearly collided with the coast. And
finally an oil spill containment barge was damaged during
certification tests. Posted.

Afif El-Hasan: Tighter soot standards could save children.  As a
pediatrician, I take great joy in seeing my patients enjoying
exercise and healthy outdoor activities. However, some of my
patients may be denied even the most basic childhood rite of
trick-or-treating if the air quality is poor. For kids with
asthma, unhealthy air days are filled with caution.  Parents must
check the local air quality forecast to determine whether it is
safe enough for their kids to go outside. While people tend to
worry more about pollution during summer ozone episodes, there
can be spikes of soot pollution on cool fall and winter days
also. Checking air quality is a daily necessity for many,
especially here in Southern California, which experiences some of
the worst air quality in the country.  Posted. 

World’s ‘cleanest coal-fueled power plant’ is a climate
bait-and-switch.  A few years back, Robert Redford narrated a
documentary, Fighting Goliath, that told the epic Texas tale of
how a coalition of ranchers, environmentalists, and others banded
together in the mid-2000s against a giant power company’s plans
to build 11 coal plants that would have belched pollution across
the state. The film includes scenes of billowing smoke, militant
big-city Texas mayors, and protesters carrying signs crying, “No
more coal.” One farmer tells an interviewer, “’Til this thing
came about, I always looked the other way when I saw an
environmentalist.”  Posted. 


Climate Change and Its Influence On Investing: A New Perspective.
 Welcome and thank you for allowing me to share some of my views
on climate change's influence on investing: most particularly,
the opportunities which I believe it creates for economic gain. 
How many of you take climate change into consideration in your
investment decisions?  My goal, today, is to convince you that
climate change needs to be considered. And to show that
investment decisions should be driven by science, and the basic
needs of life.  My talk will first speak to climate change; give
you some examples of why science should drive investment decision
making; then point out why the basic needs of life should be
considered; concluding with some specific examples of potential
investments.  Posted. 

Electric Car Sales Increase 228 Percent.  Automakers operate on a
different calendar, in which the 2012 model year recently came to
a close.  As my colleague, Luke Tonachel, explains, this was the
year of the green car, with record new fleet fuel efficiency, a
55 percent increase in hybrid sales, and more than a three-fold
increase in plug-in electric car sales.  The last of those three
records might come as a surprise to some, given the prevalence of
stories pronouncing the electric car dead on arrival.  While it’s
true that plug-in electric car sales still represent a very small
fraction of total auto sales, model year 2012 saw about 38,000
Americans buying plug-in cars.*  That’s a 228 percent increase
over model year 2011.*  Not bad for a new technology, introduced
as the country recovers from the worst economic downturn since
the Great Depression.  Posted. 

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