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newsclips -- ARB Newsclips for January 18, 2017.

Posted: 18 Jan 2017 13:54:26
ARB Newsclips for January 18, 2017. 

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.


Tax cuts over carbon pricing up to province, Justin Trudeau says.
PM says steering new revenue toward 'vulnerable,' as promised
earlier, isn't his decision. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau says
he'll leave it up to the New Brunswick government to decide
whether to cut other taxes to make up for a carbon-pricing system
likely to be announced this year.


AQMD proposes ban on toxic hydrofluoric acid at South Bay
refineries. In a stunning move that relieved and surprised local
activists, the region’s air pollution watchdog plans to seek a
ban on a highly toxic acid used at oil refineries in Torrance and
Wilmington, the Daily Breeze has learned. Susan Nakamura, acting
assistant deputy executive officer with the South Coast Air
Quality Management District, said a series of safety “mishaps”
that have plagued the PBF Energy-owned refinery…

Colorado Springs wrestles with sulfur dioxide pollution from
central coal-fired power plant. Colorado’s pretty second city,
aiming to play up its “city for champions” role as a base for
Olympians, faces intensifying friction over foul air from an
80-year-old, coal-fired municipal power plant that pumps out
sulfur dioxide. It is an example of lingering air pollution
problems that the Clean Air Act…

Clean air advocates detail 19-point plan to attack Utah's
pollution problem. Advocates are recommending a 19-point proposal
to Utah leaders if they want to get serious about conquering the
state's nagging pollution problem, including an outright ban on
all two-stroke gas-powered lawn equipment, statewide emissions
testing for vehicles and tighter industry controls.

Australia should invest in coal power to reduce emissions,
minister says. Economists and energy analysts question
environmental and economic case for Matt Canavan’s coal push.
Research touted by the resources minister that reportedly
suggests Australia can rely on coal to meet emissions reduction
has been attacked by experts and appears to have been

EPA reports decrease in toxic releases. The amount of toxic
chemicals being released into the air by industrial facilities
has been cut in half since 2005, according to a report released
Thursday by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The Toxics
Release Inventory report, which is based on data from more than
21,800 facilities nationwide, shows a 56 percent decrease in the
release of toxic air emissions from 2005 to 2015, including an 8
percent decrease between 2014 and 2015.

EPA, Sierra Club reach deal in monitoring suit. U.S. EPA has
worked out a tentative deal to end a Sierra Club lawsuit
challenging changes to air quality monitoring regulations put in
place last year. Under a proposed settlement scheduled to be
formally released tomorrow for public comment, the Sierra Club
would drop the suit after EPA issues two "nonbinding guidance
documents" intended to bolster public access and notification


California finishes safety review of wells after blowout.  A
California natural gas storage facility where a blowout spewed
methane for nearly four months has completed a safety review
required to resume operations, though it might never return to
full capacity, state officials said Tuesday. The Southern
California Gas Co. facility at Aliso Canyon has been crippled
more than a year since the blowout discovered in October 2015
drove 8,000 families…




For third-straight time, Earth sets hottest year record. Earth
sizzled to a third-straight record hot year in 2016, government
scientists said Wednesday. They mostly blame man-made global
warming with help from a natural El Nino, which has since
disappeared. Measuring global temperatures in slightly different
ways, NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric
Administration announced that last year passed 2015 as the
hottest year on record.







Study finds global warming could steal postcard-perfect days.
Global warming is going to steal away some of those
postcard-perfect weather days in the future, according to a
first-of-its-kind projection of nice weather. On average, Earth
will have 10 fewer days of mild and mostly dry weather by the end
of the century, the researchers estimate.


Interior nominee Zinke disputes Trump on climate change. Donald
Trump's choice to head the Interior Department on Tuesday
rejected the president-elect's claim that climate change is a
hoax, saying it is indisputable that environmental changes are
affecting the world's temperature and human activity is a major
reason. "I don't believe it's a hoax," Rep. Ryan Zinke told the
Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee at his confirmation






Trump Denies Climate Change, But Majority Of Americans Favor
Environmental Laws. President-elect Donald Trump has denied
climate change exists, but the majority of Americans say
environmental regulations are worth the cost, a recent Pew
Research Center survey found. Fifty-nine percent of Americans say
stronger environmental laws and regulations are worth it…

Indigenous Canadians face a crisis as climate change eats away
island home. Rising sea levels mean that Lennox Island has lost
more than 400 acres in just a few generations. Now its First
Nations community wonders if it has a future. His hands tucked
tightly in the pockets of his jeans; Gilbert Sark nodded at the
ice-covered bay stretched out before him.

Number of 'perfect' days diminishes with climate change. The
perfect weather day could happen less often in the future. The
mild weather most people prefer, sunny with temperatures between
64 and 86 degrees Fahrenheit, will yield to more extreme weather
in many parts of the globe, according to a new study published
today. The study, published in the journal Climatic Change, found
that the global number of mild weather days could decline by up
to 13 percent…

Obama admin says there's no 'consensus' on carbon levels. The
number 350 resonates with climate activists but not the feds. To
many global warming experts, 350 parts per million — the
atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide beyond which climate
advocates and researchers say the levels endanger the planet — is
common lingo, and its meaning is widely accepted. Not so to the
federal government.

Trump is the 'worst' for climate change — scientist. Climate
scientist Michael Mann sees President-elect Donald Trump's
surprising election win as the "worst possible scenario" for
climate change. In a recent interview, Mann, a professor at
Pennsylvania State University, spoke about the possible impacts
of the incoming administration on climate action. He described
the situation as bleak.

Human impact on climate change up for debate — Pruitt. Scott
Pruitt, President-elect Donald Trump's choice to lead U.S. EPA,
faced a barrage of questions from Democrats at his confirmation
hearing today before the Senate Environment and Public Works
Committee. The Oklahoma Republican attorney general is an
aggressive critic of EPA, often leading litigation against the
agency over its regulations…

Global warming 'on the table' at U.N. — Haley. South Carolina
Gov. Nikki Haley (R), President-elect Donald Trump’s pick for
U.N. ambassador, is on Capitol Hill today for her confirmation
hearing. Photo courtesy of C-SPAN. South Carolina Gov. Nikki
Haley (R) today said that she would bring fresh perspective to
the United Nations and that climate change issues would remain…


California’s tough water regulations likely to remain in place.
Despite a wet winter that has much of California emerging from
drought, state officials are showing no sign that they’ll ease up
on water regulations imposed on cities and towns over the past
three years. Staffers at the State Water Resources Control Board
sent a proposal Tuesday to the agency’s governing board
recommending renewal of emergency drought mandates…


Judge lets federal flaring rules take effect during lawsuit. New
nationwide rules to curtail the practice of burning off excess
natural gas from oil and gas wells on federal land took effect as
scheduled Tuesday after a judge said he saw no urgent reason to
block them while a lawsuit moves ahead. U.S. District Judge Scott
Skavdahl in Casper said Monday that he couldn't immediately
conclude the Interior Department had overstepped its authority
with the rules…

Army plans Dakota Access oil pipeline environmental study. The
Army has started the process of launching a full environmental
study of the $3.8 billion Dakota Access pipeline's disputed
crossing of the Missouri River in North Dakota, though a federal
judge could stop the effort. The Army published a notice
Wednesday of its intent to prepare an environmental impact
statement on the Lake Oahe crossing.

Trump Interior nominee would consider more drilling on federal
land. Representative Ryan Zinke of Montana, President-elect
Donald Trump's nominee for secretary of Interior, on Tuesday said
he would consider an expansion of energy drilling and mining on
federal lands but would ensure sensitive areas remain protected.
The former Navy SEAL sought to outline a measured approach to the
job of managing America’s national parks, forests and tribal


Trump may reverse auto emissions rules, but don't expect other
nations to follow. Other countries have no intention of rolling
back their emission limits. This means that any changes Trump
makes in the US could be offset by laws elsewhere. With
auto-industry lobbyists pushing to have the Trump Administration
roll back current and future emission and fuel-economy rules,
automakers clearly see the new U.S. regime as more friendly to
the needs of business.


VW will appeal court order to buy back customer's diesel car.
Volkswagen says it will appeal a court ruling that it must buy
back a German customer's diesel car rigged to cheat on emissions
tests. Nicolai Laude, a VW spokesman, said Wednesday that the
company expects the verdict by the court in Hildesheim in
northern Germany to be overturned. Volkswagen noted that other
courts had reached opposite decisions in previous cases.


Italy rejects Germany's emissions allegations against Fiat
Chrysler. Tests conducted on Fiat Chrysler vehicles show they are
compliant with regulations and contain no emissions defeat
devices as alleged by Germany, Italy's transport ministry said in
a statement on Monday.

Italy Says Tests Show Fiat 500X Cars Meet Emissions Rules. The
Italian transportation ministry says its tests show that Fiat
500X cars meet emissions rules, despite German contentions that
the cars contain so-called defeat devices meant to cheat
emissions tests. A ministry statement Monday says it carried out
the necessary checks and sent a detailed report to Germany
indicating the model "meets the existing regulations" on
emissions testing.

French target Renault, Brits query Fiat, over diesel emissions.
The past week has not been a particularly pleasant one for
advocates of diesel cars. Volkswagen agreed to plead guilty to
criminal counts related to its diesel-emissions cheating and pay
$4.3 billion in fines, while U.S. prosecutors arrested one of the
company's executives and indicted five more. Fiat Chrysler was
accused by the EPA of using software in its diesel vehicles that
violates the Clean Air Act…

U.K. to test Jeep model after U.S. emissions accusations. The
U.K. said on Monday it will carry out tests on the Jeep Grand
Cherokee model following U.S. accusations that Fiat Chrysler
Automobiles mislead regulators on diesel car emissions. "We have
instructed our market surveillance unit to undertake testing on
one of these vehicles at the earliest opportunity," a spokesman
at the Department for Transport said.

Ram and Jeep diesel emissions allegations spur class action
lawsuits. U.S. and Canadian firms seek compensation for owners
after EPA issues violation notice. This shouldn't come as a
surprise. Last week, the EPA issued a notice of violation to FCA
after it determined that Jeep and Ram installed eight undisclosed
auxiliary emissions control devices on diesel vehicles. Since
then US law firm Heninger Garrison Davis, LLC and Canadian firm
Sotos LLP have launched class action suits…

Emissions cheating goes global: France and Britain also
investigating automakers. With US headlines about the latest on
emissions cheating from Volkswagen, and now an investigation of
Fiat Chrysler, the past week has not been a great one for diesel
cars. Now, two automakers are subject to diesel investigations in
Europe. The past week has not been a particularly pleasant one
for advocates of diesel cars.


Renewables trade groups, enviros at odds over Perry.
Environmentalists and clean energy groups disagree over
President-elect Donald Trump's pick to lead the Energy Department
ahead of tomorrow's confirmation hearing before the Senate Energy
and Natural Resources Committee. While the wind industry's
largest lobbying group is voicing support for the nominee, former
Texas Gov. Rick Perry (R)…


Trump pick to lead EPA has spotty state environmental record.
When President-elect Donald Trump's choice to head the U.S.
Environmental Protection Agency first took office as Oklahoma's
attorney general, he disbanded the unit responsible for
protecting the state's natural resources. Instead, Scott Pruitt
reassigned his staff to focus on filing lawsuits against the
federal agency he's now selected to lead.

Why the EPA nominee wants to be a political wrecking ball. When
new presidents come to the White House, the pendulum of federal
environmental action tends to swing, and under Donald Trump it
may take an unusually wide shift – seen especially in passing
responsibility to the states. State empowerment stands out like
no other theme as a guiding light for Scott Pruitt, who faces a
confirmation hearing today…


California Upgrades Environmental Justice Tool. CalEnviroScreen
looks at a number of different factors to identify neighborhoods
that have significant impacts from pollution and other factors.
The online map looks at 8,000 census tracks and gauges pollution,
public health conditions and environmental quality. Red indicates
a higher risk rate, while a green color represents lower risk.


California has gone from drought to deluge, but our woes aren't
over yet. To the editor: California’s current bountiful rainfall
is a welcome but uncertain reprieve. Weather is becoming less
predictable and more disruptive all around the world, validating
the warnings of climate scientists. Its basic physics, they
explain: more atmospheric CO2 means a warmer planet. These and
other disturbances from global warming can no longer be ignored.

Cap and trade déjà vu. Wynne government appears to be making the
same mistakes the Liberals did with their disastrous Green Energy
Act. If you doubt carbon dioxide (CO2) is a dangerous pollutant,
you probably think the $156 Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne claims
her new cap and trade policy will cost your family this year in
direct charges for gasoline and natural gas home heating, is a

The Delusional War on Warmth. For decades now, global warming
scaremongers have been stealing energy from the environment using
windmills, solar collectors and biofuels, force-fed by carbon
taxes and emission trading schemes. Their delusional dream is to
cool the globe. However, there has been no global warming for
nearly 20 years. Right now, the great ice sheets are growing
thicker and record snow…


Legislative Update: Cap-and-Trade to Get a Hearing. Two
Democratic Assemblymembers got the ball rolling on settling the
future of California’s cap-and-trade program by introducing A.B.
151 yesterday. The bill would authorize the California Air
Resources Board “to utilize a market-based compliance mechanism”
to reduce greenhouse gases after 2020, when the current Global
Warming Solutions Act expires.

Engaging Indigenous Peoples on Environmental Justice at the UN
Permanent Forum. At the EPA, we see providing meaningful
engagement for our most vulnerable and underserved communities as
a fundamental part of fulfilling our mission to protect this
country’s environmental quality and public health. This work
includes engagement with federally recognized tribes and
indigenous people.

Record Year for Environmental Enforcement. The U.S. Department of
Justice’s Environment and Natural Resources Division has
announced one of its most successful years in its history of over
a century, including the highest recoveries in environmental
enforcement and the highest criminal penalties handed down in
individual vessel pollution and wildlife trafficking cases.

EPA Not Backing Down On 2025 Emissions Standards. Only a week
prior to President-elect Donald Trump’s inauguration, the
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has now set vehicle
emissions standards that should remain in place until 2025. The
standards are based on the National Highway Traffic Safety
Administration’s (NHTSA) current fuel economy regulations.

Decoded microbial metabolism explains biofuel yield. To unravel
how intricate waste biomass converts to biofuels, a Cornell
professor studied the bacterium Clostridium acetobutylicum to
decipher its metabolism. Understanding the bacterium’s
sugar-processing complexities may lead to improved biofuel
yields. “It is recognized for over a century that Clostridium
acetobutylicum [a soil bacterium] is a viable biofuel producer.

New Streamlined Process Could Hold Promise for Making Biofuel. A
dozen glass cylinders containing a potential payload of bright
green algae are widely exposed to hundreds of multi-colored
lights that offer all the natural hues of sunlight. The small
LEDs dim and brighten to imitate the constantly changing
conditions of the outdoors. In order to further simulate a
virtual cloud that passes overhead, chillers start and nudge the
algae a little cooler.

Another Potential Global Killer Is Approaching the Tipping Point.
And we have no one else to blame but ourselves. For over 7
decades, we have been protecting ourselves from disease-causing
bacteria by taking antibiotic drugs. But because everything
changes, and even bacteria learn to evolve, it’s not surprising
that over time, what were once effective in fighting infection…

Collaboration on Drought Resilience is Delivering Results for
America’s Communities and Economy.  Over the past year, we have
seen alarming mass tree mortality in California, the development
of severe drought conditions in New England and the Southeast,
and dropping water tables in regions throughout the United
States. The five-year Western drought and recent droughts in
other states threaten our communities, our farms, our freshwater

On Climate Change, Even States in Forefront Are Falling Short. Is
there a more environmentally conscious state than California? It
has been at the forefront of climate policy for decades — from
demanding stringent fuel economy and emissions standards to
wholeheartedly embracing renewable energy from the sun and wind.

California is in a drought emergency.
Visit www.SaveOurH2O.org for water conservation tips.

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