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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for November 25, 2013

Posted: 25 Nov 2013 13:52:21
ARB Newsclips for November 25, 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.


California Sells Carbon Permits for $11.48 Each at Auction. 
California, the second-largest carbon-emitting state in the U.S.,
sold 16.6 million carbon allowances at auction for $11.48 each,
roughly in line with analysts’ expectations. Units of Chevron
Corp. (CVX), JPMorgan Chase & Co. (JPM), Morgan Stanley (MS) and
PG&E Corp. (PCG) were among the companies that qualified to buy
permits in the Nov. 19 auction, a report posted on the state Air
Resources Board’s website today showed. The agency doesn’t
disclose the names of winning bidders. The state received 1.82
offers for every permit put up for sale. Posted.

California Air Resources Board Announces Results of Carbon
Auction.  Ninety-six percent of the carbon allowances were bought
at auction by companies required to do so in order to meet
greenhouse gas reduction targets.  The price of each allowance
was $11.48, just 77 cents more than the minimum price allowed. 
Emily Reyna with Environmental Defense Fund says that’s not
necessarily bad.  “Opponents were saying that cost could be
upwards to $70 to $100 or more," says Reyna.  Posted. 


Analysis: U.S. air pollution authority faces Supreme Court tests.
 The U.S. government's authority to regulate air pollution
nationwide, often against the wishes of Republican-leaning
states, could face new curbs when the Supreme Court takes on two
high-stakes cases in coming months. The cases focus on the
broad-ranging power wielded by the Environmental Protection
Agency (EPA) under the landmark Clean Air Act, first enacted in
1970. Posted.

Spare the air alert issued for Bay Area.  Bay Area residents
seeking to escape the cold weather must use options other than
burning wood in their fireplace after the first Spare the Air
Alert of the winter season was issued on Monday.  The alert from
the Bay Area Air Quality Management District bans burning wood,
fire logs, pellets or other solid fuels in fireplaces,
woodstoves, outdoor fire pits or other devices. The alert is in
effect for 24 hours.  The air quality agency issues alerts when
the particulate matter in the air reaches an unhealthy level.
Particulate matter consists of fine particles in the air that can
be detrimental to a person's health.  Posted. 

Bay Area’s 1st Spare-The-Air Alert Of Season Issued For Monday. 
The first Spare the Air alert of the winter season has been
issued for Monday by the Bay Area Air Quality Management
District.  A cold weather pattern and lack of wind has allowed
air pollution to rise to a level that is considered unhealthy,
according to the BAAQMD.  The alert bans the burning of wood,
manufactured fire logs or other solid fuel, both inside and
outdoors, for 24 hours.  Homes without permanently installed
heating systems are exempt.  Posted.

Monday to be a no-burn day.  Air quality officials issued the
first winter Spare the Air Day banning indoor and outdoor wood
burning starting at 12:01 a.m. Monday.  Prompted by air pollution
levels, the ban prohibits the burning of wood, manufactured fire
logs or any other solid fuel, both indoors and outdoors for 24
hours.  Residents of homes without permanently installed heating
for whom wood stoves or fireplaces are the only source of heat
are exempt.  Posted. 

Newport Beach could get natural gas fire rings on two beaches. 
Newport Beach residents may soon be one step closer to roasting
marshmallows beachside over natural gas-burning fire rings.  On
Tuesday, the city staff plans to recommend that the City Council
approve participation in a pilot project with the South Coast Air
Quality Management District to install natural gas fire rings in
certain beach areas, while also removing some of the existing
wood-fueled fire rings.  Posted. 



Deals at Climate Meeting Advance Global Effort.  Two weeks of
United Nations climate talks ended Saturday with a pair of
last-minute deals keeping alive the hope that a global effort can
ward off a ruinous rise in temperatures.  Delegates agreed to the
broad outlines of a proposed system for pledging emissions cuts
and gave their support for a new treaty mechanism to tackle the
human cost of rising seas, floods, stronger storms and other
expected effects of global warming. Posted.


Whitehouse talks climate change with MLB, NBA, NFL.  U.S. Sen.
Sheldon Whitehouse is praising the NBA, NFL, Major League
Baseball and other professional sports organizations for taking
steps to address climate change. The Rhode Island Democrat met
with representatives from all the major sports organizations
Thursday to discuss what teams are doing to limit their carbon
emissions and encourage renewable energy. He says professional
sports take climate change seriously. Posted. 


Two sides emerge in emissions argument at CSUSB.  Slapping
tighter regulations on emissions from diesel-burning trucks might
not help the Coachella Valley or other regions across Southern
California create economically and environmentally sustainable
communities, but keeping schools away from major sources of
emissions, such as highways or railroad yards might.  Two very
different schools of thought emerged early at the Sustainable
Goods Movement Symposium, held Thursday and Friday at California
State University, San Bernardino’s Palm Desert campus. Posted. 

Port Of Oakland Truckers Association Votes Unanimously For
Wednesday Work Stoppage.  Port of Oakland Truckers Association
(POTA) members voted unanimously late Friday evening to stop work
at the port on Wednesday, November 27. They’ve met with city,
state and federal regulators, terminal managers, and Port of
Oakland officials many times since their August 19 work stoppage,
but have not made any gains on their demands. On November 13,
truckers met with Oakland Mayor Jean Quan, Deputy Mayor Sandré
Swanson, Port Executive Director Chris Lytle, as well as
California Air Resources Board (CARB) members, expecting to bring
offers of an extension from CARB or funding from the City and
Port, but were forced to return to their membership without any
offers to present.  Posted. 

Oakland, Calif., truckers authorize strike.  After meeting with
the California Air Resources Board and the Bay Area Air Quality
Management District on Nov. 13, the Port of Oakland Truckers
Association held a general membership meeting and “voted
unanimously for what amounts to a strike authorization if their
demands aren’t met.” (POTA press release).  While the truckers’
association was meeting with CARB, Mayor Jean Quan and Port of
Oakland Executive Director Chris Lytle at City Hall, over 70
truckers surrounded the downtown plaza in a deafening convoy,
honking their horns in support of their representatives. Posted. 

ARB offers relief to truckers on diesel rules.  The California
Air Resources Board announced on Nov. 14 it will provide relief
to truckers working to meet state deadlines for upgrades to aging
diesel fleets.  The relief is detailed in a regulatory advisory
that recognizes "good faith" efforts of fleets to meet upcoming
compliance deadlines.  The advisory also provides "early access"
to planned regulatory changes to be considered by the board in
April.  The move comes as larger fleets were required under the
Statewide Truck and Bus Regulation to complete the upgrade for
most of their trucks with diesel particulate filters by Jan. 1
and as smaller fleets are just beginning to undertake similar
actions.  Posted. 


Iowans worry about ethanol’s lost clout. For decades,
presidential candidates’ chances in Iowa were wounded if not
doomed unless they backed federal support for ethanol, a boon to
the state’s corn-growing economy. That rule of politics collapsed
resoundingly in the 2012 campaign when five of the six top
Republican candidates said it was time for such intervention in
the private market to end. Posted.

GM and U.S. Army expand fuel-cell collaboration.  Expanding on a
demonstration project in Hawaii, General Motors Co. and the U.S.
Army Tank Automotive Research, Development & Engineering Center
(TARDEC) will again collaborate on fuel-cell technology under a
new cooperative research and development agreement. The new
collaboration will focus on the testing of new hydrogen fuel-cell
materials and designs to evaluate their performance and
durability before assembling them into full-scale fuel-cell
propulsion systems. Currently, TARDEC is evaluating GM fuel-cell
vehicles in a Hawaii comprehensive demonstration; the technology
has possible military applications ranging from ground vehicles
to mobile generators. Posted. http://articles.sae.org/12508/ 

California Energy Commission to award up to $29.9M to hydrogen
refueling infrastructure projects.  The California Energy
Commission (CEC) will award up to $29.9 million to projects to
develop hydrogen refueling infrastructure in California
(PON-13-607).  The solicitation has two goals: 1) to develop
infrastructure necessary to dispense hydrogen transportation
fuel; and 2) to provide needed Operation and Maintenance (O&M)
funding to support hydrogen refueling operations prior to the
large—scale roll—out of Fuel Cell Vehicles (FCVs). CEC will
provide funding to construct, to upgrade, or to support hydrogen
refueling stations that expand the network of publicly accessible
hydrogen refueling stations to serve the current population of
FCVs and accommodate the planned large—scale roll—out of FCVs
beginning in 2015.  Posted. 


L.A. Auto Show drives new green-car market.  If there’s a
subliminal message hidden amid the flash and sizzle of this
year’s Los Angeles Auto Show, it’s this: Soccer moms and macho
guys can be green, too. Automakers are extending the
alternative-fuels market to buyers of family-friendly SUVs and
minivans as well as sports cars and large-format pickup trucks
preferred by male consumers. Posted.


Wind Energy Company to Pay $1 Million in Bird Deaths.  Duke
Energy agreed on Friday to pay $1 million in fines as part of the
Justice Department’s first criminal case against a wind power
company for the deaths of protected birds. A subsidiary of the
company, Duke Energy Renewables, pleaded guilty in Federal
District Court in Wyoming on Friday to violating the Migratory
Bird Treaty Act, a federal law that protects migratory birds. The
company was charged with killing 14 golden eagles and dozens of
other birds at two wind projects in Wyoming since 2009. Posted.


Starkville has largest solar array in Mississippi.  For years and
years the guys behind Synergetics were interested in solar power
but never pulled the trigger. The biggest hurdle: cost. It just
wasn't financially feasible for the Starkville-based information
technology company, which was founded in 1992 and employs almost
50 people. "We didn't want to be green for the sake of being
green," David Palmer, the company's 45-year-old CEO, said. "We
didn't want to be green if it didn't make sense." They took other
"green" steps. They recycled. They installed energy efficient
light fixtures. They changed the color of their corporate
headquarters' roof from black to white. Posted. 


Dan Morain: From an obscure panel, John Froines made a difference
in our lives.  The tribute was very low-key, fittingly held in a
small hearing room at the California Environmental Protection
Agency. No one knew about it, other than a few selected guests. 
John Froines, a chemist and retired UCLA professor of
environmental health, was the man of the hour. Froines’ name
might stir dim memories among some tiny number of people who
recall the turbulent 1960s. But this event was about Froines’
science and the impact it has had on our lives.  Posted. 


Climate Crisis: Who Will Act? The last-minute deal at the United
Nations Climate Conference in Warsaw keeps hopes for a
comprehensive successor agreement to the 1997 Kyoto protocol
alive. But let us be clear: Much more decisive action will be
needed if we are to stand any chance at fending off the dangers
of climate change. We now have just one more shot, next year in
Peru, to make more substantive progress toward a successor
agreement before the crucial 2015 Paris conference. Posted. 

EDITORIAL: Hits and misses.  Regulations to clean up the air will
not make much difference without enforcement. Inland residents,
especially, should welcome regulators’ efforts this week to
ensure that diesel trucks are complying with state emissions
Inspectors from the state Air Resources Board conducted spot
checks of trucks along Interstate 15 in Lake Elsinore on Tuesday.
The state’s 2008 rules require California truckers to phase in
cleaner diesel engines and retrofit old engines with exhaust
filters that cut down on pollution. The owners of about 50,000
trucks in the state’s smallest fleets — three trucks or less —
face a January deadline to comply with the standards. Posted.

Our View: Good news in the air over the Valley.  Many of our
region’s most vexing problems don’t get cured per se, but
sometimes we do see signs of progress. It’s important to
acknowledge the improved outlook on two fronts: Promising sign
No. 1 – better air. The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution Control
district believes it has met the federal one-hour ozone standard,
so the Valley should be relieved of the $29 million annual fine
that is paid primarily through higher vehicle registration fees.
It could take a year to learn whether the U.S. Environmental
Protection Agency will remove the penalty, but we think the
progress is worth applauding. For the first time on record, the
Valley did not record a violation of the one-hour ozone standard
during the warm months when the problem occurs.  Posted. 

To keep L.A. and Long Beach's ports trucking.  It takes 10,000
professional truck drivers to move all the goods that come into
the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach. And it's no wonder. Our
two ports handle 40% of all goods imported to the United States. 
A lot of the jobs generated by the ports, including those of
unionized longshoremen and railroad workers, pay good wages that
contribute to a solid middle class in the region. But many of the
truck drivers who serve the ports find themselves stuck at the
bottom of the economic ladder because of the way their employers
classify and exploit them.  Posted. 

Viewpoints: Making sure renewable energy produces clean energy. 
Californians can certainly brag about the state’s leading role in
deploying renewable energy from the sun and wind. In-state
renewable energy generation has spiked in the past few years,
prices have come down significantly, and we appear to be well on
our way to meeting the goal of 33 percent of our electricity from
renewable sources by 2020.  But will this renewable energy boom
actually mean cleaner air and less greenhouse gas pollution? Most
of us assume that renewable means clean. But the intermittent
nature of much of this power – since the sun doesn’t always shine
and the wind doesn’t always blow – may lead grid operators to
rely on more fossil fuel-based power to fill gaps in the
renewable sources.  Posted. 


U.S. Embassy Stocks Up on Air Purifiers.  Companies and
institutions employing foreigners in China are starting to
realize that to keep workers in the cities, they need to make
changes to the way they operate. Based on anecdotal evidence, air
pollution, more than anything else, is driving expatriate workers
away from China, or dissuading those outside China from taking
postings here. News reports of various rounds of “airpocalypse”
descending on Chinese cities have not helped. Posted.

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