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 21, 2013.

Posted: 21 Jun 2013 11:30:38
ARB Newsclips for June 21, 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.


Obama Raises the Cost of Carbon Emissions 60 Percent. The U.S.
Department of Energy’s new efficiency standards for microwave
ovens aren’t exactly a sizzling read. Amid the dry, technical
language it’s easy to miss the significance of a few passages
that the Obama administration tucked into the obscure regulation
without consulting anyone. They amount to a sweeping change in
the way the U.S. measures the effects of carbon emissions and
will reverberate well beyond the kitchen. Posted.


As Beijing air pollution worsens, some American expats clear out.
Business opportunities abound in China, but some U.S. executives
working in the capital say the health of their families is more
important. After nearly two decades in Beijing, David Wolf knew
it was time for a change when his 11-year-old son, Aaron,
somberly asked him, "Dad, when you were growing up, did you ever
have PE outdoors?" Wolf had grown up in smog-choked Los Angeles
in the 1970s, but even that wasn't nearly as bad as Beijing
today. Posted.

Indonesia plans air tactic as Singapore haze worsens. Air
pollution in Singapore soared to record heights for a third
consecutive day, as Indonesia prepared planes and helicopters
Friday to battle raging fires blamed for hazardous levels of
smoky haze in three countries. The blazes in peat swamp forests
on Indonesia's Sumatra island have sent massive plumes of smog
across the sea to neighboring Singapore and Malaysia, both of
which are growing impatient with Indonesia's response to the
problem that occurs nearly every year. Posted.


Science review prompts concerns about another delay for ozone
standard. U.S. EPA is currently "working to revise the schedule"
for its review of a new standard on ozone pollution, the agency
said, prompting concerns from environmentalists that the proposal
could come at least a year later than expected. Observers had
expected the agency to propose new national ambient air quality
standards, or NAAQS, before the end of this year and to finalize
them next year. The agency is expected to consider lowering the
current NAAQS for ozone -- a major component of smog -- from 75
parts per billion to between 60 ppb and 70 ppb. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/greenwire/stories/1059983290/print BY


New Obama climate plan may draw from panel's recommendations.
Clues about what to expect in a White House package of climate
measures expected within weeks might be found in a report given
to the president in March by a blue-chip team of scientists and
business leaders. The President's Council of Advisors on Science
and Technology (PCAST), led by President Barack Obama's chief
science adviser John Holdren, listed six major components that
should be central to the administration's second-term climate
change strategy. Posted.

May global temperature ties as third warmest on record. Last
month was among the hottest Mays in the 134-year global record,
tying with 1998 and 2005 as the third warmest. According to an
analysis released Thursday by the National Climatic Data Center,
May’s combined average temperature over global land and ocean
surfaces was 1.19°F above the 20th century average of 58.6°F. The
agency reported that regions experiencing record warmth included
north-central Siberia, west-central Australia…Posted.

Gov. urges nurses to help fight climate change.  Gov. Jerry Brown
on Thursday challenged his allies in the nation's largest nurses
union to look beyond their own immediate concerns and help
organize a movement to address global climate change.  The
Democratic governor enjoyed an enthusiastic reception from a
packed room of nurses wearing red shirts at the National Nurses
United conference in San Francisco. Posted. 

US energy tax provisions doing nothing to limit GHG emissions:
study. Current federal energy-tax provisions are doing almost
nothing to reduce US greenhouse-gas emissions, according to a US
Treasury Department-sponsored study released Thursday.  The
study, conducted by the National Research Council, found that
roughly $48 billion in energy-sector tax expenditures --
including oil and gas depletion allowances, production tax
credits for wind and other renewable energy sources and biofuels
provisions -- have had minimal impact.  Posted.

Obama aide promises support for Fla., other states threatened by
sea-level rise. At a conference that touched on everything from
the possible submergence of the Florida Keys to contaminated
drinking water wells, President Obama's principal environmental
adviser told south Florida officials yesterday that the "next
step" in the administration's efforts on climate change involves
supporting state and local governments. White House Council On
Environmental Quality chief Nancy Sutley did not say whether
additional money or…Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059983263/print BY

Drought is shifting to Four Corners region. The Southwest is
shaping up to become the new epicenter of drought this summer,
with impacts ranging from uncontrolled wildfires to poor winter
wheat yields. Overall, this spring saw a higher-than-average snow
cover, but sparse snowfall in May led to the third-lowest rate of
snow cover on record for that month, Deke Arndt, chief of the
climate monitoring branch at the National Climatic Data Center,
said during a teleconference yesterday. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059983241/print  BY

Climate change will fundamentally alter forests, agency says. The
21st century will see U.S. forests fundamentally altered by
climate change, both gradually and by more abrupt "disturbances"
like fires, insect outbreaks and floods, a new synthesis of
research by the Forest Service finds. "Our challenge is that our
perception is based on what we have seen in the past," said Dave
Cleaves, climate adviser for the Forest Service. "In the future,
we're looking towards a combination of stressors and disturbance
regime" for which there may be no precedent. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059983242/print BY


CARB: We’re stepping up truck enforcement at border, ports. 
Trucking companies are used to warning drivers about getting
approached at border towns by individuals with cash and offers to
haul special freight.  But a new effort by the California Air
Resources Board is warning them about a new form of illegal
activity centered on trucks at border towns and ports: illegal
dray offs.  In a news release, CARB said it is warning business
owners that trucks with freight originating from or heading to a
California port or rail facility must meet requirements of the
state’s Port Drayage Rule including registration with CARB as
drayage trucks.  Posted. 


EPA won't confirm fracking-pollution tie in Wyo. The U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency announced Thursday it is dropping
its longstanding plan to have independent scientists review its
finding that hydraulic fracturing may be linked to groundwater
pollution in central Wyoming. The EPA is standing by its
findings, but state officials will lead further investigation
into the pollution in the Pavillion area. The area has been a
focus of the debate over whether fracking can pollute groundwater
ever since the EPA's initial report came out in late 2011.


BP shuns advanced biofuels investment in EU. Oil major BP (BP.L:
Quote, Profile, Research) is directing investment in advanced
biofuels to the United States and South America due to
uncertainty about the European Union's future regulatory
environment, a senior executive said. "At the moment we are not
contemplating investing in second-generation cellulosic (ethanol)
in Europe simply for the reason that there is not enough
certainty on what the market conditions will be like," Phil New,
head of BP Biofuels, said in an interview. Posted.

What you need to know about ethanol in gas. Chances are you don't
pay too much attention to the stickers on the gas station pump
when you fill up your car except perhaps the one associated with
the octane rating you prefer. After all, the worst that could
happen are some relatively small differences in performance,
right? Not so, if you accidentally put E15, a blend of 15 percent
ethanol and 85 percent gasoline, in the majority of the cars on
the road today. Posted.

Food fight as chain restaurants push to end renewable fuel
standard. Chain restaurants have once again joined the renewable
fuel standard battle, supporting legislation to eliminate the
federal mandates. Yesterday, the National Council of Chain
Restaurants (NCCR) urged Congress to repeal the RFS, saying
government-imposed requirements for corn ethanol production have
significantly increased business costs for fast food chains.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059983247/print BY

Natural gas still 'stubbornly resistant to globalization' – IEA.
The world of natural gas is no economist's dream: For all of the
world's supply, it struggles to flow where it's wanted. That's
the picture emerging from the International Energy Agency's
latest outlook for natural gas, issued yesterday: a swelling
world stock of the stuff that leaves some regions oversupplied
and others hungry. "Gas remains the fuel of contradictions," IEA
Executive Director Maria van der Hoeven wrote in the report.”
Posted. http://www.eenews.net/energywire/stories/1059983240/print


Capitol Alert: Chevron Corp. taking political fire from both
right and left. It's been a rough week, politically speaking, for
Chevron, one of the state's oldest and largest corporations, as
it takes fire from the left and the right. Chevron, which has
been dodging political and legal bullets over a 2012 fire at its
refinery in Richmond, is under fire from farmers, especially
Republican farmers, over hefty political contributions to a group
that backs Democrat Leticia Perez in her state Senate battle with
Republican farmer Andy Vidak.  Posted.


Electric car maker Tesla unveils 90-second battery pack swap.
Tesla Motors Inc. on Thursday unveiled a system to swap battery
packs in its electric cars in about 90 seconds, a service Chief
Executive Elon Musk said will help overcome fears about their
driving range. The automaker will roll out the battery-swapping
stations later this year, beginning along the heavily-traveled
route between Los Angeles and San Francisco and then in the
Washington-to-Boston corridor. Posted.


Chinese City Proposes Vehicle Restrictions to Reduce Smog. One of
China’s most polluted cities has proposed to limit vehicle
ownership through a lottery, becoming the latest locality to do
so in the world’s largest auto market as air quality and traffic
congestion worsen. Shijiazhuang, the capital of steel-producing
Hebei province surrounding Beijing, will restrict the number of
new vehicles to 100,000 this year and limit households to owning
two cars, according to a Shijiazhuang Daily report posted on the
local government’s website yesterday. Posted.

Panel Adopts New Rules for Taxi of Tomorrow. One month after a
judge blocked the Bloomberg administration’s initial plans for a
near-uniform fleet of yellow cabs, the Taxi and Limousine
Commission on Thursday approved an adjusted set of rules in a bid
to introduce its Taxi of Tomorrow as scheduled this fall. The
vote, 7 to 1, is likely to prompt another deluge of litigation
from yellow taxi operators who have opposed the plan, which would
require nearly every cab to be a Nissan NV200. Posted.

Why Honda's Unloading Electric Cars for Cheap. When Honda Motor
(HMC) introduced its all-electric Fit EV in July 2012, it set a
modest goal of delivering 1,100 of the lease-only cars in two
years. Yet through May, the company had found just 176 takers for
the plug-in. Consumers didn’t leap to pay $389 a month for a
subcompact that can go only about 82 miles before it needs
recharging, especially when the gas-powered version gets 30 miles
a gallon…Posted.

Let’s Hope You’re Not Trying to Sell an Electric Car Anytime
Soon. In May 2012, the average trade-in value for a 2011 Nissan
Leaf was around $25,000. A year later, that same car’s value had
fallen to roughly $15,000. According to a new report from the
National Automobile Dealers Association (NADA), plug-in electric
vehicles such as the Chevy Volt and Nissan Leaf depreciate in
value at a rate much higher than traditional gas-powered cars, as
well as hybrids like the Toyota Prius. Posted.

Honda introduces Accord hybrid and plug-in in Japan; hybrid in US
in October.  Honda Motor Co., Ltd. has introduced the new Accord
Hybrid in Japan. Featuring the new Sport Hybrid i-MMD
(intelligent Multi-Mode Drive) powertrain, the Accord Hybrid
offers fuel economy of 30.0 km/L (70.6 mpg US, 3.33 L/100 km) on
the JC08 cycle. The company also introduced the Accord Plug-in
Hybrid, with fuel economy (gasoline plus electricity) of 70.4
km/L equivalent (165.6 mpg US, 1.42 L/100 km) on the JC08.

California Rep. Jeff Denham juggles national, local needs on
House rail panel. High-speed rail has dominated the
transportation debate in California in recent years, but the
state has other passenger and freight rail needs that have
received less attention, transportation experts say. Supporters
of rail investments may have a Washington ally in Rep. Jeff
Denham, R-Calif., chairman of the House Subcommittee on
Railroads, Pipelines and Hazardous Materials. Posted.


IEA head economist urges efficiency push in energy sectors. The
International Energy Agency's chief economist yesterday cautioned
against not taking energy efficiency policies seriously when
looking at how energy industries might lower their contribution
to global greenhouse gas emissions. Speaking at Columbia
University, IEA head economist Fatih Birol stressed that energy
industries are still the main culprit when it comes to carbon
levels in the atmosphere, contributing two-thirds of the planet's
output. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/energywire/stories/1059983217/print BY


Americans consider the environment in what they buy, survey
shows. More than half of Americans consider the effects on the
environment of products and services they buy, according to a new
national survey. “Consumer behavior has become an important way
Americans express their values and concerns, leading to new
products and services, creating and destroying markets, and
influencing the policies and actions of companies large and
small,” according to the report, Americans’ Actions to Limit
Global Warming April 2013…Posted.

UC Davis professor earns prestigious prize for environmental
work. UC Davis professor Daniel Sperling, one of the nation's
most influential transportation thinkers and policymakers, is the
recipient of the 2013 Blue Planet Prize, sometime called the
Nobel Prize for environmental science. The prize, presented by a
Japanese foundation, comes with $500,000 award. "I am deeply
honored to receive the Blue Planet Prize, and I share it with my
many brilliant and passionate collaborators," Sperling is quoted
in a university news release. Posted.

Scientists worry over dwindling tri-colored blackbird population
in California. The use of pesticides and other farming practices
are causing a dramatic decline in the population of what was once
one of the state's most populous bird species: the tricolored
blackbird. A recent estimate has pegged the population of the
small, dark and swift-moving birds at 260,000. That's down from
400,000 birds counted in 2008, according to an Audubon California
survey. Posted.


COLUMN-Study opens new cracks in scientific front on climate
change: Gerard Wynn. A major recent study has put the cat among
the pigeons on climate change, challenging the size of the
problem in the near-term and the role of a recent slowdown in
warming. The paper, published in the journal Nature Geoscience in
May, involved scientists from 14 institutions and calculated that
more extreme climate change was now less likely, after taking
into account slower warming in the past decade. Posted.

Don't waste tax dollars on uncertain high-speed rail plan. 
Monday's editorial ("Denham errs with HSR comments")
mischaracterized my position regarding rail funding. But that
doesn't change the fact the California high-speed rail project is
no longer what voters approved in 2008. These stimulus dollars
were meant for shovel-ready projects, and to date not one shovel
has been turned.  Posted. 

Why such hysteria over fracking? Studies have shown repeatedly
that fracking is fundamentally safe. It creates jobs and cuts
dependence on foreign oil. So why is there still such backlash?
Is hydraulic fracturing — used for more than 60 years to produce
oil and natural gas — safe? The "safe fracking" question has been
asked and answered many times over by government regulators,
scientists and other technical experts, and they have concluded
that hydraulic fracturing is a fundamentally safe technology.

State needs safeguards on fracking. Before fracking becomes a
major industry in the California, the last remaining bill
providing some oversight should be passed. Less than a month ago,
there were several major bills to provide oversight of hydraulic
fracturing in California. Most of them died in their respective
houses, and now only one is left. The Legislature should pass the
remaining bill, SB 4, and Gov. Jerry Brown should sign it into
law. Posted.


With Incentives, There Is New Hope for Smith Electric’s Truck
Plant in the Bronx. On a late fall day in 2011, politicians
gathered in the South Bronx to celebrate the startling news that
Smith Electric Vehicles would open a 90,000-square-foot plant
near Hunts Point to assemble electric delivery trucks. “Today is
an amazing day in God’s country,” said Borough President Rubén
Díaz Jr. The plan was for Smith to begin production in the second
quarter of 2012. Posted.

Friday rant: Change we can’t believe in edition.  This is about
you. I will be brief.  But first a word about Obama. He’s taking
some further action to help curb climate change. That’s good. But
about a week ago there was a quote in the paper from an
administration official about how when the president talks about
climate, the little insta-reaction dial-o-meters (measuring how
people are reacting in real time to the speech) “plummet.”

California’s “ABAG Ghettos” Much of what you hear about
California’s leading edge environmental legislation deals with
the impact of the new-in-2013 “cap and trade” levies on
manufacturing and utilities, the refusal to exploit the Monterrey
shale and off shore oil and gas deposits, the rush toward
electric cars and solar power, and the relation to fleeing
employers. This posting will deal with the emerging picture of
what it will do to people living in the San Francisco Bay Area.

ARB What's New