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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for October 9, 2013.

Posted: 09 Oct 2013 12:01:44
ARB Newsclips for October 9, 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.


Pa. citizens group targets gas drilling pollution. A community
group in northeastern Pennsylvania aims to reduce Marcellus Shale
gas drilling air pollution by seeking dialogue with the industry.
Breathe Easy Susquehanna County says in a release that they aim
to protect regional air quality and health, and will promote
respectful dialogue with the industry to seek the lowest possible
levels of air pollution. Posted. 


Crowd voices anger over Vernon battery recycler. At a meeting
called by lawmakers, the crowd calls for officials to shut down
Exide Technologies over dangerously high emissions of lead and
arsenic. he speaker of California's Assembly and two state
senators took environmental regulators to task before an angry
crowd Tuesday over their failure to regulate a battery recycler
in Vernon whose emissions have been deemed a health risk to
hundreds of thousands of people. Posted.

Reports of strong gas odor in Richmond. Fire crews were
responding to an influx of calls about a strong gas odor
throughout west Richmond on Tuesday afternoon, fire officials
said. Around 2 p.m., the Richmond Fire Department started hearing
from callers, mostly from northwest Richmond, reporting a
gas-like odor, Fire Chief Michael Banks said. "We're sending
engine companies all over the place trying to deal with patients
who had some breathing difficulties," he said. Posted.

Salt plant taints air. The state has ordered a rock salt
processing plant in the Port of Coeymans to shut down because of
air pollution violations, including running the plant without a
state pollution permit. Scotwood Industries must cease plant
operations by Nov. 30 and pay a $4,500 fine, $3,000 of which will
be dropped if the Kansas-based company stops processing salt at
the port, under an agreement Monday with the state Department of
Environmental Conservation. Posted.

Michigan may reduce number of regulated chemicals. Michigan
officials may reduce significantly the number of chemicals
subject to air pollution limits. The Detroit News
(http://bit.ly/1fZKxug ) reports Wednesday that an advisory
committee has recommended cutting the number of regulated
chemicals from more than 1,200 to 756. That's a 37 percent
reduction. Posted.


AP Interview: Warsaw to lay climate deal basics. Poland's
environment minister says his challenge at next month's climate
conference will be to lay foundations for a new global emission
cuts deal. Marcin Korolec told The Associated Press that the
United Nations' COP19 conference in Warsaw will require "huge
work" in making some 200 participating nations agree on
conditions for a deal to be signed in 2015 in Paris. Posted.

Climate change solutions offer trillions in growth opportunities,
clean-tech guru Jigar Shah argues. Jigar Shah fundamentally
believes that the United States can innovate its way out of the
worst effects of climate change and unlock trillions of dollars
in the process by adopting new financial models in the clean
technology sector.At this time of fiscal austerity, the world
needs a new growth plan now more than ever, according to Shah,
the outspoken founder and former CEO of solar SunEdison...Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1059988575/print BY

More than 400 Dems press White House against greenhouse gas
rules. More than 400 Democrats from around the country are urging
the White House to reconsider U.S. EPA's proposal for regulating
greenhouse gas emissions from new power plants. The current and
former politicians wrote President Obama a letter today as part
of the CoalBlue Project, a group meant to boost and highlight
Democratic support for the coal industry. Posted.
http://www.eenews.net/greenwire/stories/1059988597/print BY


U.S. Refiners Export More Fuel Than Ever. U.S. refiners are
selling more fuel abroad than ever before, effectively exporting
the American energy boom to the four corners of the world. As
crude production soars in places like the Eagle Ford shale
formation in Texas, U.S. refiners along the Gulf Coast are
increasingly using local oil, which is less expensive than the
North Sea crude that European refiners use. That often means
diesel and other fuels made in the U.S. are a bargain abroad even
after adding the shipping costs. Posted.

Year after Gaspocalypse, Californians saving $32 million a day on
gas. On the one-year anniversary of the Gaspocalypse — the day
California gasoline prices set a record for the lower 48 states —
fuel here has fallen by 86 cents a gallon. A year ago, retail
gasoline prices in California averaged $4.67 a gallon, according
to GasBuddy.com. Only Alaska has had a higher average price,
briefly topping $4.68 in late July 2008, according to the gas
price information website. Posted.

EPA considers scaling back renewable fuel targets for 2014. U.S.
EPA would roll back both corn ethanol and advanced biofuel
targets for next year under draft proposals circulating among
stakeholders in the oil and biofuels industries. The agency is
considering a proposal that would require refiners to blend 13
billion gallons of conventional corn ethanol and 2.21 billion
ethanol-equivalent gallons of advanced biofuel into
petroleum-based gasoline next year, industry sources said.
Posted. http://www.eenews.net/greenwire/stories/1059988606/print


Tulsa's green fleet recognized in competition. Tulsa's green
fleet has placed among the top 50 cities in the country in a
government competition. Oklahoma's second-largest city came in at
No. 29 at the Green Fleet Conference in Phoenix. The competition
judged about 25 criteria, including the number of dedicated
alternative fuel and hybrid vehicles, the amount of alternative
fuels used each year and emissions reductions, among other
factors. Posted.

LAPD tests out new electric motorcycles.  Los Angeles Police
Chief Charlie Beck made a surprising entrance at the Los Angeles
Police Museum last month when he stealthily zipped into the
parking lot on a souped-up, racing-style, all-electric
An avid motocross racer, Beck parked the bike just yards away
from where retired police cars from the 1930s to 1950s now rest.

UPS Adding to Natural Gas Fueling Network, Adding More Tractors. 
UPS plans to invest approximately $50 million to build an
additional nine liquefied natural gas fueling stations, bringing
the total number of stations to 13. Four were announced in April,
and all should be operational by the end of 2014.  The enhanced
LNG fueling infrastructure will support the operation of
approximately 1,000 UPS LNG tractors that will displace more than
24 million gallons of diesel fuel annually.  Posted. 


India Increases Effort to Harness Biomass Energy.  The hulking
power plant set against the green countryside of Punjab state in
northwest India does not look like a source of renewable energy.
Yet filling its stockyard, instead of mounds of coal, are bales
of rice straw. Machines break up the heavy straw cubes as men
with pitchforks hoist fibrous mounds onto a conveyor belt leading
to the power plant. Posted.

Bypassing the Power Grid.  For nearly a century, wealthy
countries have relied on just one model of power distribution:
sending electricity over huge transmission grids from big
generating plants to customers in their homes, offices and
factories. That may be starting to change. Renewable-energy
technologies like solar and wind power, which in many countries
have begun to shake up the mix of energy sources, are now also
challenging the traditional distribution system. Posted.

Tweaks coming for solar subsidies.  A new law will eventually
overhaul how Californians pay for electricity and the state’s
expensive push into green energy sources such as wind and solar.
We won’t know any details for a year or so, after the California
Public Utilities Commission decides on a new rate design. My
guess is that regulators will tread carefully, so I don’t expect
any drastic changes. But there will be winners and losers.


In a Hot, Thirsty Energy Business, Water Is Prized. WITH so much
focus on carbon emitted from the nation’s power plants, another
environmental challenge related to electricity generation is
sometimes overlooked: the enormous amount of water needed to cool
the power-producing equipment. In the United States almost all
electric power plants, 90 percent, are thermoelectric plants,
which essentially create steam to generate electricity. Posted.

Nest hopes to reinvent smoke alarms like it did the thermostat.
The Silicon Valley start-up has announced the availability of
Nest Protect, its Internet-connected smoke alarm and carbon
monoxide detector. When a group of former Apple Inc. employees
announced that they had created a company called Nest to reinvent
the thermostat, Silicon Valley did a double take. Posted.

Yolo wins share of Rite Aid settlement. Rite Aid will pay Yolo
County $420,000 as part of a multimillion-dollar settlement over
claims that the drugstore chain illegally dumped pesticides,
bleach and other toxics that came from hundreds of its California
locations. The judgment, filed Sept. 24 in San Joaquin Superior
Court, settled a lawsuit filed in September by district attorneys
in San Joaquin, Los Angeles and Riverside counties. Posted.

Climate change is focus of workshop at UC Merced.  The California
Natural Resources Agency plans to discuss climate risks and
updates to state strategies during a meeting at UC Merced on
Thursday. The forum on CNRA’s proposed updates to the 2009
California Climate Adaptation Strategy is scheduled for 10a.m. to
3p.m. in the California Room at UC Merced, 5200 N. Lake Road. The
meeting is an open forum and is open to the public, according to
a press release. Posted.


On letters from climate-change deniers. A piece this weekend
debunking the claim that Congress and the president are exempted
from Obamacare has drawn a harsh reaction from some readers and
conservative bloggers. But their umbrage wasn't with the piece's
explanation of why letters making this claim do not get
published. Rather, they were upset by the statement that letters
"[saying] there's no sign humans have caused climate change" do
not get printed. Posted.

Letter: Pipeline project will energize jobs. In response to
Rebecca Tell's letter ("Pipeline that leads to global disaster,"
Sept. 27) regarding Keystone XL, a number of comprehensive
environmental studies issued by the U.S. Department of State and
many prominent climate scientists agree that Keystone XL would
have virtually no impact on global greenhouse gas emissions. The
latest State Department environmental impact statement

Earth Log: Take deep breath now: Soot season starts soon.  People
are getting a breather between dirty-air seasons right now in the
San Joaquin Valley — ozone is almost gone and soot hasn't quite
arrived.  Breathe deep, exhale. Repeat. Now consider what's to
come if we don't have at least several stormy weeks this winter. 
Soot, chemicals and other microscopic debris account for the
majority of premature deaths related to dirty air in the Valley.

Just past the hottest decade ever, it's clear the globe is still
warming.  What is it about the hottest decade in recorded history
that's so hard to understand? The first decade of this millennium
- 2001 to 2010 - was the warmest since measurements began 160
years ago. The earlier hottest decade was during the 1990s. And
the record-breaker before that? The 1980s. These are undisputed
facts. Nothing about this steady rise suggests our planet is
doing anything but warming. Posted. 

Climate Change: Uncertainty Is Not A Call For Inaction.  It is
possible that some climate models have overestimated short-term
climate change, but this is hardly an argument in favor of the
skeptics’ position.  Skepticism and uncertainty surrounding the
recent conclusions of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate
Change (IPCC) should not be a call for policy inaction.  Like its
previous installments this report is supposed to summarize the
findings of the literature on climate change. Posted. 


G.E.’s ‘Industrial Internet’ Goes Big.  The more General Electric
gets into its plan for an “Industrial Internet,” the bigger it
seems. On Wednesday, the company announced 14 more products that
combine industrial equipment, Internet-linked sensors and
software to monitor performance and analyze big streams of data.
G.E. had previously announced 10 similar industrial products.

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