You try to do a good thing, but someone always has to come around and say there's a down side. In this case, the good thing is AB 32, also known as California's greenhouse gas emission reduction law, and the potential down side is one that could generate a lot of bad publicity.
Getting a thumbs up from the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is priceless – just ask Toyota. It's right up there with the Tesla Model S gaining support from Consumer Reports in the wake of four fires.
The average fuel economy of new cars sold in the US is going back up after dropping for a couple of months. The University of Michigan Transportation Research Institute (UMTRI) calculated a 24.8 mpg average for new light-duty vehicles sold in the US during November 2013. That's not as high as the 24.9 reported in August, but the numbers have been coming back up. The November rating was up 0.1 mpg from October.
Oil companies and other supporters of the fossil fuel status quo have been using a study by Boston Consulting Group (BCG) to attack California's landmark clean energy bill AB32, particularly the bill's Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS). Oil companies have been particularly irate that the LCFS requires them to reduce carbon pollution from gasoline and diesel 10 percent by 2020. But when the BCG report was roundly criticized, the Big Oil tried to come to the rescue. Now, an independent panel of scie
The US Environmental Protection Agency has granted a waiver to California's vehicle emissions standards, according to a statement released by the California Clean Cars Campaign. The campaign coalition supports California's comprehensive Clean Cars Program, which is targeted at reducing vehicle-related smog, particle pollution and greenhouse gas emissions, and includes a zero emission vehicle standard.
Climate change was barely mentioned during October presidential debates, but that doesn't mean the public doesn't care. After all, climate change affected Hurricane Sandy, and that got some media coverage. Some analysts say climate change is just part of historic weather patterns that humans have little say over but most scientists say humans play a big part in the matter, in part through our increasing consumption of fossil fuels.
Volkswagen AG announced this week that it will spend more than $55 billion over the next four years reducing carbon emissions from both its vehicles and factories, as the German automaker looks to increase sales by boosting its credibility as an environmentally friendly vehicle maker. You can see the beginnings of this plan in the company's Chattanooga plant, which we visited late last year.
Federal judge Lawrence J. O'Neill of the U.S. District Court in Fresno has stopped implementation of a California law that favors fuel producers with lower greenhouse gas emissions as part of the production process. The New York Times reports the judge has ruled that the regulation is an over-reach on California's part, one that attempts to regulate what goes on outside the borders of the state (it "unconstitutionally discriminates against out-of-state producers").
Way back in 2003, New Delhi, India converted 90,000 buses, taxis and auto-rickshaws to compressed natural gas (CNG). It was an ambitious program for its day, and perhaps too ambitious for its own good. A recently released study by the University of British Columbia found that the 5,000 auto-rickshaws using 2-stroke engines that were converted to CNG exhibited only minor reductions in emissions. Even worse, the types of emissions that affect climate change actually increased after the conversion.
The so called Climate Bill, formally referred to as the American Power Act (read it in PDF), contains a wealth of information that could impact the environment, transportation, offshore drilling, clean coal and so much more. Senators John Kerry (D-MA) and Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) presented the bill yesterday with hopes of passing it by the end of the year. Reuters prepared a rundown of some emissions and transportation-related aspects contained in the bill:
Ever since the idea of carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) was first proposed, everyone from politicians to Big Oil lobbyists have spoken of the technology as already up and running successfully and ready for large scale implementation. Well, a new report in the Journal of Petroleum Science and Engineering thinks that CCS' success is anything but a sure thing.
The U.S. media's political lens is focused pretty heavily on the health care debate right now, but that doesn't mean other items of interest aren't happening in Washington, D.C. For example, debate over the EPA's endangerment finding that found that greenhouse gases (GHGs), including those from on-road vehicles, threaten the public health and welfare of the American people is far from over.
Last spring, the EPA ruled that it could regulate CO2 and five other greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act because they are could be harmful to the health of humans. Automakers quickly responded by saying they hoped the finding wouldn't stop efforts to find a nationwide regulatory environment for emissions. In December, the EPA announced that, indeed:
To the surprise of many, the vast majority of the automakers that sell their wares here in the United States welcomed the EPA's decision earlier in the year that carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases are damaging to the environment and should therefore be regulated. That has plenty to do with the desire for a single national fuel mileage standard. But transportation certainly isn't the only way we generate greenhouse gases as a society.
The saga of California's greenhouse gas waiver has come to an end with the EPA deciding that the state can indeed enforce its own GHG emissions standards for new motor vehicles. This means that, at least between now (with current model year vehicles) and when the 2012 MY vehicles arrive, California and the 13 states (and D.C.) that have adopted its rules will use the stricter emission standards to regulate vehicles. In the EPA's statement on the decision, it says it used "the law and science as
When I started posting here way back in 2006, one of the very first stories I wrote was about the state of California filing a lawsuit against six of the largest automakers over the damage caused by greenhouse gas emissions. The original premise was that the emissions from cars were a public nuisance that cost the state billions of dollars to deal with. Of course, the real root cause of the suit had to do with the state's struggles to regulate emissions of greenhouse gases. At the time, the stat
Finally. The United States Environmental Protection Agency has today ruled that six greenhouse gases, including carbon dioxide, are harmful to the health of humans and will therefore be listed amongst the other pollutants that can be regulated by the Clean Air Act. According to the official report, greenhouse gases have, among other things, the following impacts:
The nation's Corporate Average Fuel Economy standards will swell to 27.3 miles-per-gallon by 2011. That's the word coming out of Washington, where the U.S. Department of Transportation is expected to bump the fleet fuel economy standards for the first time in more than a quarter-century.