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newsclips -- Newsclips for August 2, 2013

Posted: 02 Aug 2013 10:53:08
ARB Newsclips for August 2, 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.


Climate Change Policy and the Importance of Getting it Right in
California.  Why should sub-national climate policies exist?  In
the case  of California’s Global Warming Solutions Act (AB 32),
the answer flows directly from the very nature of the problem —
global climate change, the ultimate global commons problem. 
Greenhouse gases (GHGs) uniformly mix in the atmosphere. 
Therefore, any jurisdiction taking action — whether a nation, a
state, or a city — will incur the costs of its actions, but the
benefits of its actions (reduced risk of climate change damages)
will be distributed globally.  Posted. 

California calling: Australia isn't alone on carbon action. 
Australia will not be linking its emissions trading scheme to
California any time soon. But Australia will have to increase its
emissions reduction targets to between 15-25 per cent below 2000
levels by 2020, following climate action by the European Union,
US, Canada, and China.  At a public seminar hosted by Grattan
Institute earlier this week, the chairman of the California Air
Resources Board destroyed two myths. Mary Nichols, one of Time
Magazine’s 100 most influential people, demonstrated that the
world is moving on climate change and that cap-and-trade
emissions trading schemes are well and truly alive.  Posted. 


Chevron's Richmond refinery pays $192,000 in air pollution
penalties.  The Chevron oil refinery in Richmond has agreed to
pay $192,000 in fines to settle 19 air quality violations that
occurred over a two-year period and are unrelated to the big fire
at the plant on Aug. 6 last year.  The infractions covered a
range of problems, from inadequate record keeping and maintenance
to excessive emissions from plant flares, according to the Bay
Area Air Quality Management District.  Posted. 



Wildfires top Californians’ climate-change fears, survey shows. 
California residents’ No. 1 fear about climate change is that it
will cause more severe wildfires, according to a survey released
Wednesday, July 31.  A majority of residents also say state
government should act right away to reduce greenhouse gas
emissions, rather than wait until the economy improves, found the
report by the Public Policy Institute of California, a
nonpartisan research group based in San Francisco.  Posted. 

APCD won’t apply permanent monitors fee to temporary sites.  A
$4,080 fee for oversight of two permanent air pollution monitors
will not be applied to 22 temporary monitors that track dust from
the Oceano Dunes State Vehicular Recreation Area.  An article
about the San Luis Obispo County Air Pollution Control District’s
proposed Rule 302 published in the July 19 issue incorrectly
indicated the $4,080 fee would be assessed on the temporary
monitors.  Posted. 

Houseplants Natural filters for indoor air pollution.  We all
know the air outdoors is not without pollution but how many of us
really think about air pollution indoors?  According to the book
“How to Grow Fresh Air” by Dr. B.C. Wolverton, it is becoming
more and more of a concern as the newer, “greener” houses are
being built to reduce fuel and energy consumption by adding more
insulation, caulking, weather stripping, etc.  Posted. 


Sediment behind dams creates greenhouse gas 'hot spots,' study
finds.  Hydroelectric dams may be known as a relatively clean and
low-cost energy source, but a new study says that the sediment
trapped behind them makes them hot spots for greenhouse gas
emissions.  A team of European scientists found that methane,
which is produced by organic matter in the sediment that collects
behind the impoundments, bubbles up through the water and
contributes more of the greenhouse gases driving climate change
than previously thought.  Posted. 

Study: Hotter temperatures lead to hotter tempers.  As the world
gets warmer, people are more likely to get hot under the collar,
scientists say. A massive new study finds that aggressive acts
like committing violent crimes and waging war become more likely
with each added degree.  Researchers analyzed 60 studies on
historic empire collapses, recent wars, violent crime rates in
the United States, lab simulations that tested police decisions
on when to shoot and even cases where pitchers threw deliberately
at batters in baseball.  Posted. 

Other related stories:



Report: Climate change and California's rising sea levels.  More
Californians than ever say the state should take action
immediately on climate change, according to a new poll from the
Public Policy Institute of California.  Many of those surveyed
believe the effects of climate change are already here, with a
quarter of Californians saying their biggest weather worry is
flooding or rising seas. Scientists studying sea level rising are
working hard to get the rest of society to pay more attention to
the issue.  Posted. 


Calif. issues statement clarifying renewable diesel questions. 
California Air Resources Board and the State Water Resources
Control Board issued a joint statement July 31 to clarify
questions raised over the status of renewable diesel, including
storing the biomass-based diesel in underground storage tanks. 
“We consider renewable diesel to be a ‘drop-in’ fuel that can be
blended with conventional CARB diesel in any amount and used with
existing infrastructure and diesel engines,” the statement said. 


How a company found a business in measuring leaking methane.  A
few weeks ago, a strange-looking vehicle could be seen meandering
through the natural gas wells and compressor stations in
Bakersfield, Calif.  The car, a Toyota SUV outfitted with
instruments by the Santa Clara, Calif., company Picarro Inc.,
looked a bit odd. It had a 12-foot rod attached to its front that
stuck straight into the air and another smaller rod mounted on
its top. As the car drove past the oil and gas fields, the front
rod swept through the air. It was "sniffing" for methane, a
potent greenhouse gas with a warming potential about 25 times
greater than carbon dioxide.  BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY.  Posted. 

NY manufacturer to make fuel from Crayola castoffs.  All those
markers being bought up for the new school year will eventually
run dry, but a Niagara Falls company says that doesn't have to be
the end of their usefulness.  The company, JBI Inc., announced a
deal with Crayola this week to take in the castoffs from schools
and the crayon-maker and convert them to fuel.  Posted. 


State high-speed rail seeks to reassure on safety.  California
high-speed rail officials sought Thursday to reassure the public
about safety in the wake of deadly European train crashes this
summer.  An eight-car train that crashed in northern Spain last
week, killing 79 passengers, was not operating on a system like
the one planned for California, and it was not part of the
country's high-speed rail network, members of the board that
oversees the California project said at their meeting Thursday. 


Sonoma Clean Power board maps out agency's future.  With five
newly seated city representatives, an expanded board of directors
for Sonoma County’s startup public power agency got to work
Thursday, reviewing a preliminary first-year budget and a
timeline geared toward a power purchase deal, plus various
staffing and financial decisions looming over the next four
months.  Posted. 


1980 Century City smog.  Oct. 1, 1980: The towers of Century City
peek through the murk at 4:15 p.m. in aerial photo looking toward
the northwest.  Staff writer Ted Thackrey Jr. reported in the
next morning’s Los Angeles Times:  Smog set a new record for the
year in Southern California Wednesday, but the Air Quality
Management District said it could have been a lot worse.  Posted.

Interactive web app lets users map forest carbon emissions
activities.  A new online portal for monitoring, reporting and
verifying (MRV) carbon emissions allows researchers and
practitioners to better manage forest inventories, its creators
say.  The Forest Carbon Database (FCDB) can be used to share
measurements of carbon pools — reservoirs with the capacity to
store and release carbon, the chemical basis of all known life
and climate warming gases.  Posted. 

Cap and Trade board game explains California's greenhouse gas
reduction plan.  California’s cap and trade program creates a
market place to buy and sell the rights to pollute. The system
sounds simple, but there are some complex rules that must be
followed. San Francisco Public Press have taken it upon
themselves to break it all down and simplify what cap and trade
means and how it really works. And what better way to simplify a
complex system than turn it into a board game?  Posted. 


Two Climate Analysts Fault Gas Leaks, but Not as a Big Warming
Threat.  Two prominent analysts of human-driven global warming
have offered fresh criticisms of the way Anthony Ingraffea, a
Cornell University engineering professor, has been portraying the
contribution of natural gas leaks to climate change.  The
researchers are Raymond Pierrehumbert, a climate scientist at the
University of Chicago, and Richard A. Muller, a physics professor
at the University of California, Berkeley who is best known of
late for his research corroborating the extent of recent climate
warming.  Posted. 

Don’t let the mustache fool you: That’s just an unregulated cab. 
They’ve been around since 2010, but over the last year,
“ridesharing” services such as Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar have
established themselves as serious transportation players in major
American cities. But the road has been a bumpy one — and so far,
this part of the “sharing economy” looks less like an altruistic
act, and more like a shadow service industry with few consumer or
worker protections.  Posted. 

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