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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for July 14, 2014. Posted: 14 Jul 2014 16:22:17
ARB Newsclips for July 14, 2014. 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. AIR POLLUTION Beijing to enforce use of clean coal in anti-pollution drive. China's capital city, Beijing, will enforce the use of cleaner low-sulphur coal from Aug. 1 in a bid to tackle the soaring levels of air pollution that frequently clog the country's major cities, the official Xinhua media agency said on Saturday. Beijing will implement strict controls and targets for airborne sulphur from coal, Xinhua said, citing the Beijing Municipal Administration of Quality and Technology Supervision. Posted. http://in.reuters.com/article/2014/07/12/us-china-pollution-idINKBN0FH0BJ20140712 LA Smog: the battle against air pollution. When we see photos of Beijing shrouded in a veil of thick smog, we’re horrified. How can the Chinese live with such terrible air pollution? One answer is: Americans did. Back in the 1950s and '60s, people in Los Angeles breathed some of the dirtiest air in the world. Los Angeles still has smog, of course, but it’s not nearly as bad as it used to be. How did the city get its act together? Posted. http://www.marketplace.org/topics/sustainability/we-used-be-china/la-smog-battle-against-air-pollution Women led air pollution protests from the start. Ask Jeff Slade if his mother was a “typical housewife” and he’ll say, “There was nothing typical about my mother.” Karenlin Madoff will tell you the same about her mom. She wasn’t a housewife, she was “a force of nature.” Both Madoff’s and Slade’s mothers were clean air activists in the 1960s, when “clean air activist” wasn’t really a thing. But those 1960s “housewives” had plenty of sisterly company in the cause. Posted. http://www.marketplace.org/topics/sustainability/we-used-be-china/women-led-air-pollution-protests-start CLIMATE CHANGE Texas, Leader in Greenhouse Gases, Stands Vulnerable to Their Effects. As Republicans promote the state’s economic “miracle,” many climate scientists from Texas say prosperity has come at a steep price. With its dependence on an energy industry that relies on extracting fossil fuels, scientists say Texas has become a large contributor to greenhouse gas emissions as well as more vulnerable to its consequences. Texas emits more greenhouse gases than any other state, according to federal data. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/13/us/texas-leader-in-greenhouse-gases-stands-vulnerable-to-their-effects.html Australian Winemakers Respond to Climate Shift. The young Australian vintner Nick Glaetzer’s winemaking-steeped family thought he was crazy when he abandoned the Barossa Valley — the hot, dry region that is home to the country’s world-famous big, brassy shiraz. Trampling over the family’s century-old grape-growing roots on the Australian mainland, Mr. Glaetzer headed south to the tiny island state of Tasmania to strike out on his own and prove to the naysayers there was a successful future in cooler-climate wines. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/15/business/energy-environment/australian-winemakers-adjusting-to-climate-shift.html?ref=earth Democratic bill would slow California's effort to curb climate change. Political-economic fights at the Capitol never really end. They just morph into new incarnations. Take, for example, the eight-year battle among industry, environmentalists and the administrations of Govs. Arnold Schwarzenegger and successor Jerry Brown over how to deal with threats of global warming. Posted. http://www.latimes.com/business/la-fi-capitol-business-beat-20140714-story.html Experts discuss climate change at Nimbus fish hatchery. The California Department of Fish and Wildlife is hosting a third presentation on the effects of climate change on salmon and steelhead trout in the American River. Kevin Shaffer, fisheries branch program manager, will discuss the potential effects of climate change on salmon and steelhead runs in the American River. Whitney Albright, a climate associate…Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2014/07/12/6551985/experts-discuss-climate-change.html#storylink=cpy Genes Help Plants Handle Rising CO2 Levels. Biologists in the U.S. have identified the genetic machinery that tells a plant how to respond to more carbon dioxide caused by the burning of fossil fuels. Four genes from three different gene families together control the density of stomata, or breathing pores, on the foliage of the healthy plant. As carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere rise, plants respond and make fewer stomata. Posted. http://www.vcstar.com/news/state/genes-help-plants-handle-rising-co2-levels_12633617 How researchers unearthed the saga of a tiny fern that may have saved the planet. This may come as a shock, but only 55 million years ago, our planet had no polar ice caps; in fact, it nearly became a steamy, runaway greenhouse world, with CO2 levels exceeding 2,500 ppm. Then, all of a sudden, something intervened, causing a shift. Atmospheric carbon dioxide began to drop, steadily generating today's world, with ice caps at both poles. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1060002785/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY Former Reagan official predicts Republican skeptics will be 'mummed' by climate change. Senior GOP statesman George Shultz urged Republicans on Friday to be proactive on climate change, calling it an "obvious risk" to the economy and national security. The former secretary of State for President Reagan says that rising temperatures could be addressed through an inexpensive "insurance policy," similar to Reagan's support for restrictions on gases that degraded the ozone layer in the 1970s and '80s. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1060002783/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY To a business-centered climate group, economics can drive environmental change. Wearing a blue-and-white pinstriped button-down shirt, staring through crisp silver glasses and sitting at the head of a dark conference room table on K Street, Jeff Erikson played the role of teacher rather than CEO as he explained his audaciously lofty goal -- cut carbon emissions by billion-ton chunks as rapidly as possible. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1060002791/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY High-resolution climate model finds man's impact on drop in Australian rainfall. Climate change is starkly visible in some parts of the world. The Alaskan permafrost, for example, is melting rapidly due to rising temperatures. But temperature is only part of the story; rainfall patterns are also expected to change and these shifts are harder to pinpoint. Except in Australia, that is, which is the driest continent on Earth. Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1060002769/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY DIESEL EMISSIONS Has the U.S. SmartWay Program Helped Retreading? Fleets with 21 or more trailers operating in California found themselves in a bit of a bad spot back in 2010. That’s when the California Air Resources Board’s Tractor-Trailer Greenhouse Gas regulation became effective. The regulation required, among other things, that trailers be fitted with low-rolling-resistance tires. Posted. http://www.truckinginfo.com/channel/equipment/article/story/2014/07/has-the-u-s-smartway-program-helped-retreading.aspx CARB offers free compliance classes in July, August. Truck owners and others in the freight industry have an opportunity to learn California emissions enforcement techniques, maintenance on emissions devices and other information during a series of upcoming courses run by the state’s Air Resources Board. A course dealing with CARB’s Truck and Bus Rule will be accessible remotely to anyone with Internet capabilities. Posted. http://www.landlinemag.com/Story.aspx?StoryID=27320#.U8QHXYUvAk8 FUELS Is Ethanol Causing Food Disruption and Contributing to Climate Change? If you are a socially responsible investor, you may want to rethink any commitment you have to ethanol and its use as a fuel supplement, oxygenate, and climate change solution. The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) reports that U.S production of ethanol (the predominate biofuel in use) is the highest it has been since Jan. 2012. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/Is-Ethanol-Causing-Food-Disruption-and-5617311.php Divestment in fossil fuels: symbolism and hypocrisy. A group called Fossil Free UC wants regents to divest UC's endowment fund of all fossil-fuel holdings. "As one of the leading public institutions in the world, we have the privilege and the responsibility to take action where we can influence change," Fossil Free explains on its website. This is the global-warming movement at its most honest - its goal is not change, which requires sacrifice in a plugged-in age. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/Divestment-in-fossil-fuels-symbolism-and-5616036.php VEHICLES Chinese officials will buy more electric cars. At least 30 percent of newly purchased government cars will be electric and other types of "new energy vehicles," China's official news agency reported Sunday, as the country attempts to tackle air pollution and encourage the electric car market. A joint plan from five government ministries and departments calls for about a third of cars bought for state use from 2014 to 2016 to rely on clean energy…Posted. http://hosted.ap.org/dynamic/stories/A/AS_CHINA_ELECTRIC_VEHICLES?SITE=AP&SECTION=HOME&TEMPLATE=DEFAULT Smart electric cars to measure air pollution. British scientists are using smart electric vehicles fitted with specialised air monitoring sensors to measure the city pollution levels. The University of Leicester researchers have designed and installed special sensors into electric vehicles (EVs) that can measure pollutant concentrations around the city. Posted. http://www.business-standard.com/article/pti-stories/smart-electric-cars-to-measure-air-pollution-114071300466_1.html GREEN ENERGY Geothermal: The Other Alternative Energy. With a growing movement to adopt more sustainable energy solutions, investors may be interested in knowing that geothermal fields produce just one-sixth of the carbon dioxide that a clean natural-gas-fueled power plant produces, and this energy production is seen by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as the most efficient, clean, and cost effective for temperature control. Posted. http://www.sfgate.com/default/article/Geothermal-The-Other-Alternative-Energy-5617077.php Big-name companies urge utilities to produce more renewable energy. To meet their sustainability goals, 12 large American companies signed onto a set of buyers' principles last week calling on utilities to expand and streamline opportunities for renewable energy procurement. The companies, including Bloomberg, General Motors Co., Sprint, Wal-Mart and Mars, are looking to engage with energy suppliers…Posted. http://www.eenews.net/climatewire/stories/1060002786/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY MISCELLANEOUS Orcem plans ‘green’ cement plant on Mare Island. Orcem signed a 65-year lease for that part of the 34.3-acre terminal, the former home of a General Mills flour processing facility. This project has an investment budget of $50 million and will involve 140,000 hours of union labor, according to Orcem President Stephen Bryan. Once California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) certification is obtained, construction is set to run 18 months, positioning the plant for commissioning in the second quarter of 2016. Posted. http://www.northbaybusinessjournal.com/94091/orcem-plans-green-cement-plant-on-mare-island/ Industry cooperation key as EPA targets carcinogen in dry cleaning. U.S. EPA scientists believe at least 330,000 Americans may be exposed to the toxic chemical trichloroethylene at degreasing facilities and dry cleaning businesses but must work with industry first because forcing companies to stop using the chemical could be costly and take years, according to one of the agency's top officials. Trichloroethylene, or TCE, has been classified as a human carcinogen …Posted. http://www.eenews.net/greenwire/stories/1060002816/print BY SUBSCRIPTION ONLY OPINIONS Fighting Climate Change With Trade. The United States, the European Union, China and 11 other governments began trade negotiations this week to eliminate tariffs on solar panels, wind turbines, water-treatment equipment and other environmental goods. If they are able to reach an agreement, it could reduce the cost of equipment needed to address climate change and help increase American exports. Posted. http://www.nytimes.com/2014/07/13/opinion/sunday/negotiations-to-end-tariffs-on-environmental-goods.html?_r=0 Editorial: Hefty overwatering fines would make clear California is in a drought. We’ve all seen an overwatered lawn: water flowing over the sidewalk and into the gutter. We shake our heads and ask: Don’t they know we’re in the middle of a severe drought? Some cities have strict rules for people who waste water. Others have imposed mandatory cutbacks. But violators don’t face serious consequences. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2014/07/14/6550879/editorial-hefty-overwatering-fines.html#storylink=cpy Global warming: worsening California's fires and droughts? Re "Extreme fire season burns cash" (Page A1, July 13): By July 6, Cal Fire had already spent $13.9 million battling wildfires, with one of the longest and most difficult fire seasons anticipated to come. About 80 percent of California is already under extreme drought conditions. It's natural to wonder whether these worsening fire and drought conditions are connected to climate change, and what we can expect in the future. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2014/07/14/6553218/is-global-warming-worsening-californias.html#storylink=cpy Another View: Busting water conservation myths. As a solution for California’s complex water challenges, conserving water to get more from every drop stands out for its great potential and the misconceptions around it. A recent op-ed column, “Putting two myths about the state’s drought to rest”, repeated three misstatements about conservation that are often used to delay implementing strategies for more efficient water use. Posted. http://www.sacbee.com/2014/07/13/6548166/another-view-busting-water-conservation.html John M. Crisp: A local climate-change laboratory with global implications. If you were looking for a place to contemplate global climate change in a microcosm - climate change writ small - you could do worse than to consider my humble corner of the world. In some respects, this area is a laboratory for the competing climate and energy tensions that are developing worldwide, pointing toward catastrophes that appear to be more or less inevitable. Posted. http://www.fresnobee.com/2014/07/14/4024066/john-m-crisp-a-local-climate-change.html BLOGS Thanks to the fracking boom, we’re wasting more money than ever on fossil fuel subsidies. You probably know that the U.S. government subsidizes fossil fuel production. But here’s something you probably don’t know: Those subsidies have recently increased dramatically. According to a report released last week by Oil Change International, “Federal fossil fuel production and exploration subsidies in the United States have risen by 45 percent since President Obama took office in 2009…Posted. http://grist.org/climate-energy/thanks-to-the-fracking-boom-were-wasting-more-money-than-ever-on-fossil-fuel-subsidies/ The Plants In This Garden Tell You When The Air Is Dirty. What if you could look at the plants in your garden in order to learn if the air around you is clean or dirty? At the National Center for Atmospheric Research, scientists have planted a garden that does just that. Posted. http://www.kunc.org/post/plants-garden-tell-you-when-air-dirty Cadillac ELR getting massive discounts, some up to $14,000. Well, that didn't go as planned. General Motors had marketed the Cadillac ELR extended-range plug-in as a premium version of the Chevrolet Volt with some Caddy refinements. Now, it looks like that premium, at least from a price standpoint, is shrinking. Shoppers in a number of states are reporting that GM and its dealers are discounting the ELR in order to move more off dealer lots. Posted. http://green.autoblog.com/2014/07/14/cadillac-elr-is-getting-massive-discounts/ City Of Santa Clarita Planning To Implement More Electric Car Charging Stations. "The city is expecting one fast-fill electric vehicle charging station located within easy access to Interstate 5 within the next 6 months. This station is made possible through a grant with the State California Energy Commission," said Evan Thomason, spokesman for the City of Santa Clarita officials are expected to establish the community's first city-funded electric vehicle charging station by January 2015. Posted. http://hometownstation.com/santa-clarita-news/environment/city-santa-clarita-planning-implement-more-electric-car-charging California is in a drought emergency. Visit www.SaveOurH2O.org for water conservation tips.