What's New List Serve Post Display

What's New List Serve Post Display

Below is the List Serve Post you selected to display.
newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for June 17, 2013

Posted: 17 Jun 2013 14:30:28
ARB Newsclips for June 17, 2013. 

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.


Greenhouse gas credit prices soar. Investors may finally be
sensing some money-making opportunities in a state program meant
to combat climate change with the help of private market forces.
Changes announced this spring in the Regional Greenhouse Gas
Initiative program have sparked a surge of interest in the
program, which controls greenhouse gas emissions from power
plants through the sale of state-issued pollution credits. Begun
in early 2009, RGGI covers nine northeastern states and is the
first cap-and-trade climate change program in the nation. Posted.

Climate talk shifts from curbing CO2 to adapting.  Efforts to
curb global warming have quietly shifted as greenhouse gases
inexorably rise.  The conversation is no longer solely about how
to save the planet by cutting carbon emissions. It's becoming
more about how to save ourselves from the warming planet's wild
weather.  It was Mayor Michael Bloomberg's announcement last week
of an ambitious plan to stave off New York City's rising seas
with flood gates, levees and more that brought this transition
into full focus.  Posted. 


China announces new measures to curb air pollution.  China's
Cabinet has announced measures to curb the country's notorious
air pollution, one of the many environmental challenges facing
the country that are increasingly angering the public.  The broad
measures approved by the State Council include putting strict
controls in place for industries that produce large amounts of
waste and pollution, but it will likely be up to local
governments to work out the details.  In a meeting chaired by
Premier Li Keqiang, the State Council approved 10 "tough measures
to accomplish tough tasks," the council said in a statement on
its website late Friday.  Posted. 




BEAUMONT: Air district raps warehouse analysis. The city of
Beaumont should re-do an environmental report that greatly
underestimates air pollution and truck traffic that would be
generated by a 5 million-square-foot warehouse complex planned
near Highway 60, regional air quality officials say. The city
inappropriately relied on a 20-year-old environmental analysis
for the 284-acre project on the west side of Beaumont between
Highway 60 and Oak Valley Parkway, according to a June 4 letter
to the city from the South Coast Air Quality Management District.
The analysis originally was done for a plan that was mostly
housing, the letter says. Posted.

China Smog Measures Seen as Most Aggressive Yet by Deutsche Bank.
A Chinese government plan to fight air pollution announced last
week marks the country’s “most aggressive” push to address smog
to date, according to Deutsche Bank AG. The 10 measures, which
include stricter controls on coal-burning emissions and road
traffic, will push up the cost of burning the fuel, push energy
consumers to use cleaner energy sources and result in more
public-transport use, Ma Jun, Deutsche Bank’s chief economist for
Greater China in Hong Kong, wrote in a note today. Posted.

Speed Bump for Channel Cargo Ships? Two types of titans travel to
the Santa Barbara Channel by the thousands. One is the largest
mammal on earth: the endangered krill-eating, water-spouting blue
whale. The other is the behemoth, oil-burning, smoke-spewing
cargo ships that local environmentalists and air quality managers
have been lobbying for decades to rein in. Last year, county
officials say, cargo ships made about 2,200 trips through the
Channel on the 155-mile last leg of a long voyage from the
Pacific Rim to Long Beach and Los Angeles, burning oil the
consistency of asphalt in engines as big as a small power plant
and potentially risking the lives of whales frolicking in and
around the Channel, especially in the summer season. Posted.

Why Dwindling Snow—Thanks Largely to Climate Change—Might Dry Out
Los Angeles. While the national government remains slow to deal
with climate change, many cities have been moving ahead. Why the
difference? Well, cities tend to be more homogenous politically,
which makes any kind of decisive action easier to push through.
But the real reason is that city managers know that they will be
the first ones forced to deal with the likely consequences of
global warming: rising sea levels and flooding, deadly heat waves
and water struggles. Posted.

Obama fails to use National Environmental Policy Act despite
calls for climate change action. President Barack Obama has vowed
to tackle climate change in his second term, but so far has not
acted to strengthen a tool that does not require backing from
Congress – the National Environmental Policy Act. NEPA, a statute
that dates to the Nixon administration, calls on officials to
weigh whether projects such as highways, dams or oil drilling
could harm the environment. While it does not have the power to
block development, NEPA forces officials to consider the
environment before approving federal projects, and the White
House has proposed that climate change should rank high among
those concerns. Posted.


Countries taking action to deal with rising water. From Bangkok
to Miami, cities and coastal areas across the globe are already
building or planning defenses to protect millions of people and
key infrastructure from more powerful storm surges and other
effects of global warming. Some are planning cities that will
simply adapt to more water.
But climate-proofing a city or coastline is expensive, as shown
by New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s $20 billion plan to build
flood walls, levees and other defenses against rising seas.



Petaluma father and son to lobby for greenhouse-gas tax in
Washington. A Petaluma man and his son will walk the halls of
Congress later this month and meet with lawmakers to drum up
support for a greenhouse-gas tax and alternative energy choices.
Bruce Hagen, who works for Enphase Energy solar energy company in
Petaluma, and his son Riley, 23, are part of Citizens Climate
Lobby, a national grassroots lobbying group that is descending on
Congress this month to make a case for more clean energy. Posted.


ARB claims diesel engine controls reducing climate change impact
in California.  The project was led by Dr. Veerabhadran
Ramanathan of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the
University of California, San Diego, in conjunction with the U.S.
Department of Energy’s Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and
Pacific Northwest National Laboratory. The study estimated that
the black carbon reductions from air regulations also reduced
carbon dioxide emissions by 21 million metric tons annually.
That's equivalent to removing more than 4 million cars from
California's roads every year.  Posted. 


Key green light for California high-speed rail.  The California
High-Speed Rail Authority won approval Thursday from a federal
railroad oversight board to start construction this summer on the
first leg of what would be the nation's first bullet train.  The
ruling removes an important hurdle for the rail authority to
start construction of the $68 billion system in the Central
Valley. A ruling against the state could have caused substantial
delays and cost overruns for the project, which is under tight
federal construction deadlines to collect billions of dollars in
federal matching grants. Posted.


Obama’s Keystone Silence Is Driving Green-Activists Away. Wendy
Abrams’ opportunity came in the photo line. As she stepped up to
take her picture with President Barack Obama during a fundraiser
last month in Chicago, she made her pitch: How could a president
who vowed to tackle climate change possibly approve the Keystone
XL pipeline? Obama, she recalled, told her that environmental
activists are too focused on the $5.3 billion Keystone project
and promised she’d be pleased with his proposals on climate
change later this summer. Posted.

Sonoma wades into Keystone XL pipeline debate.  The Sonoma City
Council, which two weeks ago took a controversial stand in
support of an embattled oyster company in Marin County, is diving
head first again into a national debate that extends well outside
city limits. Mayor Ken Brown will seek council support Monday to
send an official letter to President Obama and U.S. Secretary of
State John Kerry asking them to deny permits for the Keystone XL
pipeline, which would convey oil products from Canada southward
to the Gulf of Mexico. Posted.

Fracking fuels water fights in nation's dry spots. The latest
domestic energy boom is sweeping through some of the nation's
driest pockets, drawing millions of gallons of water to unlock
oil and gas reserves from beneath the Earth's surface. Hydraulic
fracturing, or the drilling technique commonly known as fracking,
has been used for decades to blast huge volumes of water, fine
sand and chemicals into the ground to crack open valuable shale
formations. Posted.


Automakers Pressed to Sell No-Emission Cars to Reluctant Buyers.
Automakers are coming under increasing pressure to sell
zero-emission vehicles to U.S. consumers who haven’t shown much
interest in them, with more states following California’s lead in
setting sales targets. Nine states, including New York and New
Jersey, have adopted versions of California’s goal of having
electric, plug-in hybrid and hydrogen-powered models reach 15
percent of its new-car purchases by 2025. Automakers face fines
and potentially restrictions on sales for not reaching the
targets. One model made to meet the standards, Honda Motor Co.
(7267)’s plug-in electric Fit, had total U.S. sales of 83 through
May, according to market-researcher Autodata Corp. Posted.


Siemens Will Shut Solar Unit on $1 Billion Loss in Two Years.
Siemens AG (SIE) will close its solar power unit after struggling
to find a buyer following losses of at least 784 million euros
($1 billion) euros since 2011 amid Chief Executive Officer Peter
Loescher’s failed push into that business to expand renewable
energy offerings. The shutdown of the solar division will affect
about 280 workers at Europe’s biggest engineering company.
Siemens, based in Munich, will finish several solar projects and
the closure will cost a “double-digit million-euro” sum,
spokesman Torsten Wolf said via phone. Posted.

The power of uncertainty. A future without nuclear energy has
been on the drawing board for Southern California since a
radiation leak shut down San Onofre in January 2012. With the
recent announcement of the facility’s permanent retirement,
diverse architects of the state’s power grid are acting on those
plans. Utility executives last week resubmitted a previously
spurned application for a major new natural-gas plant on the
southern outskirts of San Diego, as engineers look to shore up
power supplies across an area larger than the state of Maryland.
Any solutions will have to navigate increasing technological
challenges and a complex landscape of environmental and
clean-energy mandates in California. Posted.

Solar-powered plane lands near Washington. A solar-powered plane
nearing the close of a cross-continental journey landed at Dulles
International Airport outside the nation's capital early Sunday,
only one short leg to New York remaining on a voyage that opened
in May. Solar Impulse's website said the aircraft with its
massive wings and thousands of photovoltaic cells "gracefully
touched down" at 12:15 a.m. EDT after 14 hours and four minutes
of flight from Cincinnati, Ohio, to Dulles in Washington's
Virginia suburbs. Posted.

Renewable power has costs that could raise Calif. electric rates.
 The managers of California's electric power system quickly
issued public assurances about avoiding summer blackouts when
Southern California Edison announced this month that it would
permanently close its troubled San Onofre nuclear plant.  It was
an easy call because they already knew that San Onofre, which has
generated about 5% of the state's electric power, wouldn't be
available this summer and had made plans to purchase power from
other sources.  Posted.


Bloomberg Plan Aims to Require Food Composting. Mayor Michael R.
Bloomberg, who has tried to curb soda consumption, ban smoking in
parks and encourage bike riding, is taking on a new cause:
requiring New Yorkers to separate their food scraps for
composting. Dozens of smaller cities, including San Francisco and
Seattle, have adopted rules that mandate recycling of food waste
from homes, but sanitation officials in New York had long
considered the city too dense and vertically structured for such
a policy to succeed. Posted.


Viewpoints: Sacramento can lead the way in response to climate
change. In my 12 years as a professional basketball player in the
NBA, I learned a lot about resilience. You lose a tough game one
night, and find a way to come back strong and win the next.
Resilience is a quality you have to develop with your team, and
as mayor of Sacramento, it's now a key priority for my city.
There is a new movement emerging in cities, towns, and counties
to become more resilient and able to bounce back from serious
disruptions and disasters. If you look at the past two years,
it's not hard to see why. Posted.

What to do about climate change.  The International Energy Agency
(IEA) last week warned that global carbon dioxide emissions in
2012 were the highest ever. Yet international climate
negotiations have floundered. Many Americans and their
representatives in Congress still doubt climate change is a
problem worth addressing. And as the developing world advances,
its peoples are polluting more to obtain higher standards of
living.  Forget for a moment the ideal or rational response;
what’s the bare minimum global leaders could do? The IEA had some
useful, if modest, suggestions.  Posted. 

State investments in clean tech a win-win.  America is the land
of free enterprise. But government investments in infrastructure
and technology have fueled private business growth since the dawn
of our republic: the interstate highway system, the Internet, and
advanced oil and gas drilling technologies all benefited from
strategic government investment.  In each case, the investments
addressed a societal need while also enabling private business
growth. Such investments are a win-win.  Posted. 

“Odd Couple” Unites to Facilitate California Fracking.  In one of
economic history’s rare moments of collaboration between labor
unions and Republican energy development entrepreneurs, this
unusual, but powerful alliance set California’ anti-business
Assembly and Senate super majority back on its heels.  In this
case, the rock-solid Democrat majority lost 12 of its Assembly
members to join 25 Republicans to defeat an anti-fracking (oil
and gas hydraulic fracking) bill that would have declared a
moratorium against the use of this process throughout the “Golden
State.” This defeat of the “greens” extremists is particularly
remarkable since the California alliance of the Sierra Club with
the “Air Resources Board” has been previously unstoppable. 

Plan Bay Area is an attack on a way of life.  Plan Bay Area will
fundamentally transform the 101 cities and nine counties into
urbanized, transit-oriented, high-rise developments. It is a
draconian, top-down, 25-year plan conceived by unelected
bureaucrats supposedly in response to a problem (reducing
greenhouse gas emissions) that will already be solved (per
California Air Resources Board) due to transportation
technologies such as more fuel-efficient cars, electric cars and
telecommuting.  The most unsettling parts of the plan deal with
imposition of unfunded mandates on cities and counties. It
subverts local control of land use and zoning decisions.  Posted.


Why Colorado’s Fire Losses, Even with Global Warming, Need Not Be
the ‘New Normal.’ As Coloradans grappled with the impact of the
state’s latest wildfire disaster, some writers were quick to call
this “the new normal” due to greenhouse-driven climate change.
Global warming is almost surely contributing to drought and heat
in ways that exacerbate fire risk, but the prime driver of losses
in these recent fires is a heavily subsidized burst of
development in zones of implicit fire danger. And assertions that
such losses are the new normal distract from glaring
opportunities to cut unnecessary (and costly) exposure to this
danger in the West, even as the grander task of curbing emissions
of greenhouse gases proceeds. Posted.

CAFE Rules: Only 1-3 percent of cars need to be electric by 2025.
 The advent of the electric car is upon us, but despite
implications to the contrary, don’t look to Uncle Sam to be as
much of a direct driver of this anticipated paradigm shift as
some may have previously supposed.  In other quarters, there has
been much talk of automakers needing to develop electrified cars
to help meet 2017-2025 Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE)
rules. These are part of federal regulations that stipulate
fleet-wide automaker averages of “54.5 mpg” (about low 40s on the
sticker) and greenhouse gas (tailpipe) emissions, but today it
was said only a small portion of super-efficient,
fleet-average-boosting cars will need to be all-electric. 

You want to ration my what?  When Stan Cox’s Losing Our Cool
questioned America’s fetish for air-conditioning in 2010, some
very nasty comments reached his inbox. But Cox, an agricultural
researcher at the Land Institute in Salina, Kan., is not one to
back down from saying what needs to be said.  Now he's poking
another cow most sacred: the free market. In his new book, Any
Way You Slice It: The Past, Present, and Future of Rationing, he
argues that environmental sanity might require something even
more dreadful than limiting consumption. Are you ready for this?
A sustainable world just might be one in which humans get equal
shares of what they need.  Posted. 

How climate change makes wildfires worse.  Last year, Colorado
suffered from a record-breaking wildfire season: More than 4,000
fires resulted in six deaths, the destruction of 648 buildings,
and a half a billion dollars in property damage. Still reeling,
Coloradans are once again fleeing in their thousands from a
string of drought-fueled fires.  So what role is climate change
playing in the worsening wildfires?  Posted. 

ARB What's New