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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for December 2, 2013.

Posted: 02 Dec 2013 16:25:40
ARB Newsclips for December 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.


Australia Urged to Buy Carbon Credits for Cheaper Emission Curbs.
Buying carbon credits near record low prices in global markets
would cost-effectively ensure Australia meets its pledge to cut
emissions by 5 percent, an industry group told the nation’s new
government. Purchasing carbon credits from the UN’s Clean
Development Mechanism would give the government an insurance
policy if its plans for reducing emissions fall short…Posted.

Australia’s Pollution Plan Starts to Look Like Trading. 
Australia’s newly elected leaders, claiming a mandate to dump the
old government’s climate policies, would actually protect
programs the defeated Labor party was using to prepare for
emissions trading. Environment Minister Greg Hunt is working to
shield the agencies that monitor and regulate greenhouse gases
from cuts proposed for other climate units, according to a policy
paper he issued on Oct. 24. Posted.

Green for Green: The Buyers That Stand Behind Forest Carbon. It
might not be immediately apparent why insurance giant Allianz,
retailer Marks & Spencer, energy company Eneco, airline Qantas or
Brazilian cosmetics producer Natura Cosméticos would invest their
money in forest carbon offsets – sometimes from projects on the
other side of the world – but they do. Our most recent State of
the Forest Carbon Markets Report tracked 19.7 million tonnes of
forest carbon offsets that companies had purchased voluntarily.


U.S. environment chief to share air pollution lessons with China.
China can learn from U.S. struggles to reduce pollution as it
confronts recent high-profile incidents of poor air quality
paralyzing major cities, the top U.S. environmental regulator
said on Monday. Environmental Protection Agency Administrator
Gina McCarthy spoke ahead of a visit to Beijing, Shanghai and
other Chinese locations next week. "While I am all too well aware
of the severe air quality challenges that China now faces…Posted.

New car engines emit more harmful particles than predecessors
–study. New-generation petrol engines of passenger cars emit
about 1,000 times more particles, including carcinogens, than
traditional petrol engines, a study by German researchers showed.
Faced with strict CO2 limits, carmakers have downsized engines to
cut emissions and new gasoline direct injection (GDI) petrol
engines may be in almost all new petrol cars sold in Europe by
the end of the decade…Posted.

Shanghai Warns Children to Stay Indoors on Air Pollution. 
Shanghai warned children and the elderly to stay indoors as the
level of the most harmful pollutants exceeded more than 10 times
the level deemed safe by the World Health Organization.
The air pollution index in the nation’s commercial hub exceeded
300 as of 1:41 p.m., placing it in the “severe” range and the
highest of six levels, the Shanghai Environmental Monitoring
Center said on its website today. Posted.

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy to talk emissions in China.
Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy is
heading to China in hopes of strengthening air pollution and
climate change goals overseas. McCarthy, who told reporters the
trip is about "engagement" more than securing "commitments," said
the recently concluded United Nations climate negotiations in
Warsaw, Poland, and mounting public pressure in China to improve
air quality will serve as the backdrop. Posted.

Builders mount challenge to air-quality guidelines. The state
Supreme Court has agreed to hear a challenge by the building
industry to new air-quality guidelines for Bay Area construction
projects. But a lawyer for the Bay Area Air Quality Management
District said Tuesday's court order, which granted review on only
one of several issues raised by the California Building Industry
Association, will allow the guidelines to take effect for the
first time since the district adopted them in 2010. Posted.

APCD study to be reviewed at meeting.  Over the last year,
implementation has been under way of the San Luis Obispo County
Air Pollution Control District’s Rule 1001 that requires the
Off-Highway Vehicle Division of State the California Department
of Parks and Recreation to mitigate the silica dust coming from
its park on the Dunes.  Recently, APCD director Larry Allen told
the board of directors the State Parks Department has not been
complying with Rule 1001.  Posted. 

Green Desert: All signs point to climate change.  In the
immediate aftermath of the devastation of the Philippines by
Typhoon Haiyan, the media predictably ran to weather and other
scientific experts to ask what if any role climate change may
have played in the storm that killed more than 5,200 people and
left millions still homeless.  The first cautious answers were,
not much. Posted. 


Truckers offered good faith agreement. The California Air
Resources Board (CARB) announced that it will provide relief to
truckers working to meet state deadlines for upgrades to their
aging diesel fleets. The relief is detailed in a regulatory
advisory, which recognizes good faith efforts of a fleets to meet
upcoming compliance deadlines. The advisory also provides early
access to planned regulatory changes to be considered by the
board in April. Posted.

California’s Clean Diesel Program to Play Key Role in Lowering
Emissions.  Two highly successful air quality programs designed
to lower emissions from older diesel engines were included in a
major legislative package signed into law by Californian Gov.
Jerry Brown on Sept. 28.  “The $2 billion ten-year package
included continued funding for two major California clean diesel
programs — the Carl Moyer Memorial Air Quality Standards
Attainment Program and AB 923…Posted. 

Truckers protest outside Port of Oakland. Truck drivers and their
supporters picketed at the Port of Oakland on Wednesday over an
impending deadline to upgrade their trucks to meet clean air
standards and what they said were long wait times to pick up
loads. Television news footage showed Oakland police keeping
dozens of protesters away from the entrance to one of the port's
terminals in the morning. Posted.


Jerry Brown followed to events, heckled by California
environmentalists over fracking. Gov. Jerry Brown, who championed
environmental causes when he was governor before and made global
warming a focus of his current administration, has been targeted
in recent weeks by an increasingly vocal group of activists whose
animosity would once have appeared improbable. Environmentalists
frustrated with Brown’s permissiveness of hydraulic fracturing,
or fracking…Posted.

Idaho Power gets OK for WY coal plant project. Idaho Power Co.
can spend tens of millions to clean up its Wyoming coal-fired
power plant and expect ratepayers to cover the project's cost,
but regulators want quarterly updates on whether these
emission-control investments continue to make sense as federal
environmental rules change. Announced Monday by the Idaho Public
Utilities Commission…Posted.


Era of hydrogen fuel cell cars begins next year. The moment was
pure Schwarzenegger. In April 2004, California's then-governor
paraded before the press a specially equipped Toyota Highlander
that ran on hydrogen and spat nothing out the tailpipe but water.
Fuel cell cars, he said, would soon appear on California's roads,
helping the state wean itself off of oil and fight global
warming. Speaking to a pack of dignitaries and reporters at UC
Davis, he committed California to building up to 200 hydrogen
fueling stations by 2010…Posted.

Air agency pushing new-car plan for poor.  One longtime critic of
federal transportation spending once concluded that it would be
less expensive for the government to buy every new transit rider
a Jaguar XJ8 than it would be to build certain new rail systems.
Unfortunately, California officials may not have realized that
the idea of buying people new cars wasn’t a serious proposal as
much as a way to illustrate a point about excessive spending. The
California Air Resources Board is now embarking on a program that
would help poor people buy energy-efficient vehicles. Posted.


Student fossil-fuel divestment movement persists. The student
campaign to press colleges and universities to divest from fossil
fuels is entering a new phase, now that administrators at several
top schools have said no. Students say the refusals from schools
including Harvard, Brown and Cornell have been both a shock and a
motivation for the campaign, which is active at more than 200
schools. Posted.


Prying Loose the H from H20. Despite its grim associations with
bombs and zeppelin disasters, hydrogen remains handy stuff,
useful for oil refining and ammonia synthesis. It is also a
promising source of energy. The problem is that, to obtain it,
you need fossil fuel, which costs money and produces emissions.
If only we could find a better way to pry hydrogen loose from
oxygen, it would be as plentiful as water. Scientists at Stanford
University have taken a step in that direction by developing a
low-cost, sun-powered, corrosion-resistant "water splitter" made
of silicon and nickel. Posted.

Urban Schools Aim for Environmental Revolution. Nothing seemed
special about the plates from which students at a handful of
Miami schools devoured their meals for a few weeks last spring —
round, rigid and colorless, with four compartments for food and a
fifth in the center for a carton of milk. Looks, however, can be
deceiving: They were the vanguard of what could become an
environmental revolution in schools across the United States.

Clean energy company wins Tulsa startup contest.  CleanNG LLC,
whose invention could revolutionize compressed natural gas
vehicles, raced ahead of the competition to cross the finish line
as the $30,000 grand-prize winner of the Tulsa Community College
StartUp Cup. "It's really exciting for us, and I think this is
the cash we need to get over the hump and to start generating
sales and getting this business up and going," said Michael Tate,
co-founder and chief operations and communications officer with
CleanNG. Posted.

Dairy digesters convert cow manure into clean electricity. SMUD
enlists cows at two Galt dairies to produce more than just milk.
The typical dairy cow produces six to seven gallons of milk each
day. She also generates 120 pounds of manure and urine every day.
Now, with dairy digesters recently installed at two dairies in
Galt, neither product goes to waste. In fact, cow waste produces
electricity that keeps the milk in your refrigerator cold.


‘Climate Casino’: An Overview of Global Warming.  I’ve long
looked at global warming as a worthy topic that I should try to
wrap my mind around. Although I knew I needed to dig deeper, I
never truly understood why.  Until now. “The Climate Casino,” by
William Nordhaus, provided compelling answers to my unanswered
questions in a comprehensive and lucid way. It is a one-stop
source on global warming, seen through the prism of a brilliant

Letter: Carbon tax would help environment. Professor Natalie
Mahowald, who contributed to the recent Intergovernmental Panel
on Climate Change report, says, "We should focus on what
potential solutions to climate change would improve our lives in
other ways, and thus should be encouraged no matter what." A
simple carbon tax would put consumers in the position of choosing
the solutions they are willing to tolerate because it will save
them money by reducing their carbon costs. Posted.

Don’t light that fire.  The San Joaquin Valley Air Pollution
Control District says our air is so bad that we can’t burn wood
in our fireplaces in Stanislaus and San Joaquin counties. It’s
because of particulate matter, or stuff in the air, such as the
dust kicked up during the nut harvest. Most of it, though, comes
from wood smoke, and most of that comes from chimneys. Such
restrictions irritate a lot of people, especially those who
realize that similar restrictions don’t apply to Bay Area
residents whose fireplace pollution often blows over into the
valley. Posted.


Cal State San Bernadino adds FuelCell technology. A new
1.4-megawatt utility-owned fuel cell, provided by Danbury-based
FuelCell Energy, has started operation at Cal State University
San Bernardino. A Direct Fuel Cell DFC1500 power plant, a joint
project with Southern California Edison, has been integrated into
the campus’s central plant, generating electricity to the utility
grid with waste heat to the campus at no cost to the university.

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