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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for October 7, 2013.

Posted: 07 Oct 2013 13:04:46
ARB Newsclips for October 7, 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.


Mexico's carbon tax faces headwinds from energy revamp. Mexico's
plan to become the first major oil-producing emerging economy to
introduce a carbon tax has a problem: It clashes head-on with the
government's ambitions to lower the cost of electricity and boost
energy output. Aiming to raise up to $2 billion, the carbon tax
is part of a fiscal reform floated by President Enrique Pena
Nieto just as he pushes an energy plan to encourage billions of
dollars of investment in Mexico's flagging oil and gas industry.


China's capital to replace some coal-fired heating plants. China
will replace four coal-burning heating plants in the capital
Beijing with natural gas fired ones by the end of next year as it
steps up efforts to clean up pollution, the official Xinhua news
agency reported on Saturday. The report, citing the city's
Municipal Commission of Development and Reform, said the four
plants and some 40 other related projects would cost around 48
billion yuan ($8 billion) and cut sulphur dioxide emissions by
10,000 tonnes. Posted.

Fairfield blaze's smoke billows across Bay Area.  A grass fire
whipped by high winds east of Fairfield burned more than 1,000
acres Friday, sending so much ash and smoke across the Bay Area
that pollution regulators advised people as far away as San
Francisco and the Peninsula to avoid breathing the stuff.  The
blaze broke out around 12:15 p.m. south of Highway 12, snarling
traffic along Interstate 80 to the west. While the wildfire was
70 percent contained by the evening, officials said residents
should prepare for smoke-filled days ahead.  Posted. 

Bay Area air pollution agency eyes rule to benefit commuters. 
Air and transportation agencies will hold public workshops in
Oakland on Monday and San Ramon on Tuesday on a proposed rule to
benefit Bay Area commuters who use public transit, carpools, van
pools or bicycles to get to work.  The first workshop will be
held from 2 to 4 p.m. Monday at the Bort MetroCenter auditorium,
101 Eighth St., Oakland.  Another workshop will be held from 1 to
3 p.m. Tuesday at the San Ramon Community Center, Alcosta Room,
12501 Alcosta Blvd.  Posted. 

Cotton & agriculture: Ag part of Pinal air quality scrutiny.  The
Arizona Department of Environmental Quality is in the process of
determining who’s kicking up the most dust in Pinal County.  To
that end, the agency is taking an inventory of sources for a type
of pollution known as PM10, dust-size particles that can be
breathed and lead to respiratory illness — severe in some cases. 


U.S. Supreme Court again takes no action on climate change cases.
The U.S. Supreme Court Monday took no action for the second week
running over whether it plans to undertake a potentially
wide-ranging legal review of the Obama administration's first
wave of regulations aimed at tackling climate change. The nine
different petitions pending before the court, filed by states and
industry groups, were not mentioned in a list of cases the court
declined to hear on the first day of its new term. Posted.

Yosemite's largest ice mass is melting fast. Climate change is
taking a visible toll on Yosemite National Park, where the
largest ice-mass in the park is in a death spiral, geologists
say.  During an annual trek to the glacier deep in Yosemite's
backcountry last month, Greg Stock, the park's first full-time
geologist, found that Lyell Glacier had shrunk visibly since his
visit last year, continuing a trend that began more than a
century ago. Posted.

State Updates Clean Air Plan And Rules For Wood Stoves. The
Department of Ecology (Ecology) is updating the statewide rule
and plan for solid-fuel burning devices like wood stoves,
fireplaces, pellet stoves, and masonry heaters. The updates
reflect recent changes to state law, meet federal requirements
from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), and will help
improve air quality.  Washington’s clean air rules govern how air
pollution is managed. Posted.

Does the IPCC need to change how it works? It's been 25 years
since the nations of the world formed the Intergovernmental Panel
on Climate Change to assess the state of climate science. And,
like many 25-year-olds, the panel is now facing questions of its
identity and its future. Some are calling for the panel to change
its scope, moving from the "mega-reports" released every six
years to more targeted reports, such as the 2012 special report
the panel released on extreme weather events. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059988412/print BY


Sacramento-area school buses go high-tech. Within weeks, nearly
2,000 students boarding buses in the Folsom Cordova Unified
School District will be able to swipe a card over a bar-code
reader that is linked to GPS tracking. With that one action, the
students on any of the district’s 78 buses will enter a new age
of security tracking. Each swipe will tell the school district –
and, ultimately, inquiring parents – where and when a child got
on or off the school bus. Posted.

Grants offered to reduce bus emissions.  San Luis Obispo County
Air Pollution Control District has grant funds available for
school bus emission reduction projects.  Assembly Bill 923,
enacted in 2005, authorizes air districts in California to
collect $2 in motor vehicle registration fees to fund emission
reduction projects, an APCD spokeswoman said.  This year, a total
of $488,653 is available to replace or retrofit school buses in
San Luis Obispo County, the spokeswoman said.  Posted. 


Oil price gaming allegations may get another look. Legislators
pass a bill that would direct the state Energy Commission to
ferret out any fuel price manipulation. Gov. Jerry Brown hasn't
signed or taken a public position on the legislation.  California
drivers have suffered through dozens of unexpected gasoline-price
spikes over the last decade, and just about every incident has
spurred allegations of market manipulation and politicians'
demands for investigations. Posted.

Local fight rages in Maine over tar sands oil. A proposed
ordinance designed to block tar sands oil from being transported
to South Portland has set off a fiery debate over what impact it
will have on the community and the city's bustling waterfront.
Opponents of the thick, gooey oil derived from tar sands in
Canada fear a 236-mile underground pipeline that transports crude
oil from South Portland to Montreal could be used in reverse to
send tar sands oil from Canada through Maine. Posted.

U.S. poised to be world's largest producer by year's end – EIA.
The United States will emerge as the world's top producer of
petroleum products and natural gas this year, the federal
government is predicting. The Department of Energy's Energy
Information Administration put out the estimate in a report
issued Friday. By the end of 2013, the United States will produce
more hydrocarbons than any other nation, surpassing both Saudi
Arabia and Russia, and by a healthy margin, the agency says.
Posted. http://www.eenews.net/energywire/stories/1059988428/print

Coalition urges BLM to halt Calif. leases until studies are done.
A broad coalition of mostly environmental and public health
advocates today asked the Bureau of Land Management to cancel all
oil and natural gas lease sales on federal lands in the state
until after it has finished a broad analysis of the environmental
impacts of drilling and the use of hydraulic fracturing. In May,
BLM canceled all oil and gas leases in the state through the
fiscal 2013 budget year, which ended Tuesday. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/eenewspm/2013/10/04/stories/1059988404 BY


Chevron Richmond refinery pulls back the curtains year after
major fire. Chevron's Bay Area refinery opened its gates to the
public on Saturday for the first time since an August 2012 fire
that resulted in criminal charges and record fines. In its third
annual Community Tour Day -- which was not held last year because
of the accident -- the company sought to assure residents that it
had stepped up safety since corroded piping in its crude oil unit
leaked, causing a fire that sent 15,000 people to local
hospitals, many with respiratory complaints. Posted.


Ikea to sell solar panels in British stores, but U.S. must wait.
Within the next year, British shoppers will be able to waltz into
an Ikea Corp. store, home to Malm beds and Dinera plates, and buy
solar panels. But it might be a while longer before their
American counterparts will be able to do the same. The Swedish
home goods giant will offer photovoltaic solar panel packages in
its 17 British stores within the next 10 months. Posted.

Turning trash into gas helps planet, pocketbook. Two S.J.
landfills prepare to fire up power plants. When most San Joaquin
County residents take out the trash, they'll also soon be turning
on the lights across Northern California. Two major local
landfills - one private, the other operated by the county - are
within months of finishing new power plants that will take
harmful methane gas created by the decomposition of garbage and
convert it into electricity. Posted.

Federal boost for farms' renewal energy in doubt. Solar panels
are cropping up alongside corn on Timothy Ridgely's Illinois
farm. Irrigation equipment powered by the sun is pumping away on
Daniel Chin's third-generation Oregon potato farm. And manure is
being converted to electricity on an Ohio hog farm. Across rural
America, thousands of farms and small businesses are turning to
renewable energy to cut costs and boost their often uncertain
bottom lines…Posted.


Win prizes during Rideshare Week.  Commuters who pledge to
carpool or take transit to work next week stand to win gift cards
and other projects during 2013 Rideshare week.  Sponsored by
Commute Connection and the San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution
Control District, Rideshare Week is an effort to get cars off the
road and fight air pollution in San Joaquin, Stanislaus and
Merced counties.  Posted. 


Climate Changes and What Most People Really Want. Regarding your
editorial "Climate of Uncertainty" (Oct. 1): Fossil fuel will be
processed and burned until it is gone. Regarding your editorial
"Climate of Uncertainty" (Oct. 1): Fossil fuel will be processed
and burned until it is gone. In the meantime, no report, panel or
government is going to alter the profound reliance the world
economy has on numerous petroleum-based products, including the
defense sector's strategic dependence on them. Posted.

Schwarzenegger legacy: Environmental protection. In 2003, the
people of California were worried. They were worried about their
jobs, their families and their environment. The rolling blackouts
of that year caused many to wonder about our energy policy and
potential impacts on air quality of any new power plants. Voters
called for a new election. When Arnold Schwarzenegger stepped up
as a candidate, he provided a solid plan of action to address
these concerns. Posted.


As Others Struggle, New Hong Kong Biodiesel Plant Powers Ahead.
Biodiesel has faced a backlash in recent years, as critics charge
the industry with razing land and pushing up food costs. But as
its competitors struggle, one Hong Kong-based company is moving
ahead with a US$165 million plant that turns recycled cooking oil
into biodiesel, which it says could eventually power every
diesel-powered vehicle in this smog-addled city. Posted.

Using legos to explain carbon emissions to a child — or every
adult who doesn’t get it.  This short video is a simple
explanation of how humans have caused carbon emissions over the
last 260 years.  Unless we begin sharp reductions in carbon
emissions immediately, we will commit the world to more than 2
degrees C of warming.  Posted. 

Carbon Budget Message In IPCC Report Reveals Daunting Challenge.
Within the voluminous report from the U.N. Intergovernmental
Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) published on Sept. 27 is a
conclusion as sobering as any climate change warning to date. The
world is currently on track to emit enough greenhouse gases by
about 2040 to exceed the globally agreed upon temperature target
of 3.6°F (commonly referred to in international negotiations as
the 2°C target)…Posted.

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