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newsclips -- Newsclips for December 31, 2013 Posted: 31 Dec 2013 12:16:05
ARB Newsclips for December 31, 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. CAP AND TRADE California cap and trade cash rolls in for 2013–$$ to cover deficit NOT help environment. It was an important year for California’s ambitious efforts to limit greenhouse gases, one where the buying and trading of pollution credits brought in big money but left lingering questions about how the money should be spent. 2013 marked the first full year of the state’s cap and trade program, the combination of a gradually lowering carbon emissions cap combined with a clean-up-or-pay-up option for the industries affected. Posted. http://capoliticalnews.com/2013/12/31/california-cap-and-trade-cash-rolls-in-for-2013-to-cover-deficit-not-help-environment/ AIR POLLUTION Pollution Rising, Chinese Fear for Soil and Food. The farm-to-table process in China starts in villages like this one in the agricultural heartland. Food from the fields of Ge Songqing and her neighbors ends up in their kitchens or in the local market, and from there goes to other provinces. The foods are Chinese staples: rice, cabbage, carrots, turnips and sweet potatoes. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2013/12/31/world/asia/good-earth-no-more-soil-pollution-plagues-chinese-countryside.html?ref=science&_r=0 New Year’s Eve comes with Winter Spare the Air alert. New Year’s Eve will be another Winter Spare the Air day for the Bay Area, so those planning to pop open a bottle of champagne next to a roaring fire may have to settle for a few candles instead. The Bay Area Air Quality Management District issued the season’s 23rd Spare the Air alert – banning residential wood burning - because of continuing dry, stagnant weather that has allowed unhealthy particulate matter to accumulate close to the ground. Fireworks will still be shot off over the Bay because the Winter Spare the Air alert doesn’t apply to them. Posted. http://www.sfexaminer.com/sanfrancisco/new-years-eve-comes-with-winter-spare-the-air-alert/Content?oid=2662087 No Fireplace Fires on New Year's Eve, Air Quality Management District Says. Local residents thinking of a fireplace fire on New Year’s Eve are prohibited from doing so by the air pollution control agency for Orange County and major portions of Los Angeles, San Bernardino and Riverside counties. The South Coast Air Quality Management District on Monday issued a “no burn alert” for the region, which includes Temecula, for Tuesday, Dec. 31 due to predicted elevated fine particulate levels. Posted. http://temecula.patch.com/groups/politics-and-elections/p/no-fireplace-fires-on-new-years-eve-air-quality-management-district-says Wood burning ban called for New Year’s Eve. Saying that the high pressure system in the Bay Area is strengthening, to the detriment of air quality, the Bay Area Air Quality Management District is issuing the season’s twenty-third Winter Spare the Air Alert for Tuesday. The alert bans the burning of wood, manufactured fire logs or any other solid fuel both indoors and outdoors for 24 hours. “Wood smoke pollution is again building up in the Bay Area,” said Jack Broadbent, executive officer of the Air District. “While these conditions are in place, we appreciate the public’s help in reducing air pollution by not burning wood.” Posted. http://napavalleyregister.com/news/local/wood-burning-ban-called-for-new-year-s-eve/article_07df1aea-7195-11e3-8774-0019bb2963f4.html CLIMATE CHANGE How technology can halt climate change. In the 1890s, New York City was swamped — not by a storm but something smellier, horse manure. Horses, the primary mode of transportation, dropped more than a million pounds each day, causing a sanitation crisis. No one found a fix, and some estimated the streets would eventually be buried several feet deep. Then, "shift happened," says Harvard chemist Daniel Nocera. The automobile arrived, and almost overnight, it replaced horses and cleaned up the streets. Hailed as an environmental savior, it solved a seemingly insurmountable problem. Posted. http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/12/30/climate-change-technologies/4041931/ NY City greenhouse gas emissions drop 19 pct since 2005. New York City's greenhouse gas emissions have dropped by 19 percent since 2005, outgoing Mayor Michael Bloomberg said on Monday, putting the city nearly two-thirds of the way to meeting the goal that Bloomberg set five years ago. Bloomberg announced the progress report as he prepares to leave the mayor's office on Wednesday after 12 years in office. In the comprehensive climate change blueprint he launched in 2007, called PlaNYC 2030, Bloomberg set a goal to slash citywide emissions 30 percent by 2030 through a number of initiatives, such as requiring hybrid taxi cabs and retrofitting municipal buildings to make them more energy efficient. Posted. http://www.reuters.com/article/2013/12/30/us-newyorkcity-climate-idUSBRE9BT0QN20131230 DIESEL EMISSSION Ports, vessels get ready for new statewide regulation to lower emissions through shore power. When the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach adopted a groundbreaking plan seven years ago to clear the pollution spewed by operations at the nation’s busiest seaports, the move sparked a sea of changes for the industry. Among those changes, inspired by the San Pedro Bay Ports Clean Air Action Plan adopted in 2006, was one of the state’s most aggressive mandates toward significantly lowering ship emissions. Posted. http://www.dailynews.com/business/20131230/ports-vessels-get-ready-for-new-statewide-regulation-to-lower-emissions-through-shore-power FUELS UC Davis report finds LCFS compliance costs may rise rapidly; recommends offsetting measures. A recent report prepared by UC Davis researchers for the California Air Resources Board (ARB) found that compliance costs for the Low Carbon Fuels Standard (LCFS) may increase rapidly in the future if there are large differences in marginal costs between traditional fossil fuels and alternative, low-carbon-intensity fuels; or if there are capacity or technological constraints to deploying alternative fuels, particularly those with low-carbon intensity. In the absence of readily available, low CI fuel alternatives, the fuel market will adjust along two dimensions to maintain compliance with the LCFS: (i) increase the use of cheaper fuels below the Standard such as ethanol derived from corn starch and sugarcane; or (ii) increase fuel prices and reduce fuel consumption to a level where the Standard is technologically feasible. Posted. http://www.greencarcongress.com/2013/12/20131230-lcfs.html BLOGS Climate Change Worse Than We Thought, Likely To Be 'Catastrophic Rather Than Simply Dangerous'. Climate change may be far worse than scientists thought, causing global temperatures to rise by at least 4 degrees Celsius by 2100, or about 7.2 degrees Fahrenheit, according to a new study. The study, published in the journal Nature, takes a fresh look at clouds' effect on the planet, according to a report by The Guardian. The research found that as the planet heats, fewer sunlight-reflecting clouds form, causing temperatures to rise further in an upward spiral. Posted. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/12/31/climate-change-worse_n_4523828.html ELF is a sun-powered, egg-shaped trike. Ever hear of the ELF sun-powered tricycle that offers both pedal power and a solar-powered electric motor? We hadn't either (hat tip to Phillip A.), but it's finally getting a bit of attention from the likes of The Wall Street Journal, CNN and on A&E TV's Shipping Wars, where "Cowgirl Jennifer" Brennan delivered two ELFs to Iowa and Illinois. The photo gallery below shows off ELF details like battery range specs, info on the 60-watt PV solar panel, dual disc brakes and optional fiber carbon panels. Posted. http://green.autoblog.com/2013/12/31/elf-is-a-sun-powered-egg-shaped-trike/ New findings suggest EVs lose value quicker than gas-only autos. Electric cars may be great for saving money on gas, but a new report from Kelley Blue Book, commissioned by USA Today, shows that EVs might not be a great value option for their first owners. The study found that compared to gas-powered vehicles, EVs tend to lose significantly more of their value in the first five years of ownership, corroborating a study conducted in the UK, which we reported on earlier this month. The new Chevrolet Spark EV, for example, will only be worth 28-percent of its $28,305 sticker price after it's been on the road for five years, compared to its conventionally powered counterpart's 40 percent value retention. Posted. http://www.autoblog.com/2013/12/31/electric-cars-depreciate-quicker/ Spare-the-Air Days: How They Make the Call. The Bay Area is on a roll — not one to brag about, however. With at least two streaks in December, one lasting 11 days, this winter looks to shatter the record for the number of Spare-the-Air days, the longstanding campaign by regional air quality regulators to curb particulate air pollution by restricting wood-burning. Twenty-two are already in the books. That’s about double the number of actual days so far with unhealthy air. So how do they know when to “pull the trigger” and ask us to “spare the air”? The process starts with meteorologists at the the Bay Area Air Quality Management District, who look daily at the weather forecast and from that, try to handicap whether the nine-county Bay Area will exceed federal air pollution standards the following day. Posted. http://blogs.kqed.org/science/2013/12/30/spare-the-air-days-how-they-make-the-call/