California

Public Prosecutors Zero In on SoCal Gas, Porter Ranch Disaster

Aliso Canyon

California Attorney General, L.A. District Attorney File New Enforcement Prosecutions

The massive leak from Southern California Gas Company’s Aliso Canyon natural gas field in northwestern Los Angeles County was discovered on October 23rd of last year and, more than three months later, shows no sign of abating.  Public prosecutors have pretty clearly lost patience with SoCal gas and its ineffective remediation efforts to date.  This […]

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Lessons from Aliso Canyon, Part I

Equipment and machinery is seen on a ridge above a natural gas well known as SS25 in Southern California Gas Company's vast Aliso Canyon facility. Pressure on the company has been mounting as residents of nearby Porter Ranch deal with the odor resulting from a leak at the well which was discovered on October 23. 12/14/2015

Regulation of the Oil and Gas Sector

Since October 23, 2015, a leak in a natural gas well has been releasing methane gas near the Porter Ranch neighborhood of Los Angeles. Although methane is invisible and odorless, gas companies add odorants to alert people to leaks, and it is these additives, usually mercaptans, that experts believe are causing the physical effects suffered by […]

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The Future of the Diablo Canyon Nuclear Plant

Diablo Canyon

A group of scientists, philanthropists, and self-identified conservationists weighs in.

The role that nuclear power could or should play in helping to mitigate greenhouse gas emissions is worthy of serious debate, but the latest nuclear-related front-page story in the San Francisco Chronicle is a head-scratcher. Above the fold, the headline reads “Nuclear plant’s surprise backers,” followed by the following subheading: “Environmentalists push for Diablo Canyon […]

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Sacramento Lunch Briefing On Low-Carbon Biofuel Policies For California

Planting Fuels Cover

Free event in the State Capitol on Friday, January 22nd

As California commits itself to reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the transportation sector, what role will biofuels play as a petroleum alternative? And how can California ensure that more low-carbon biofuels are produced in-state, especially given the competition from cheap oil and cheap international biofuel? State officials and biofuel producers will address these questions at […]

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How do we move past the yuck factor in potable water reuse?

Source: green-mom.com

This post draws on two recently published articles (here and here) by an international group of collaborators: Christian Binz, Sasha Harris-Lovett, Bernhard Truffer, David Sedlak, and myself, courtesy of the ReNUWIt program.   Potable water reuse is increasingly seen as a potential way to help ease urban water supply challenges. Potable reuse is as it sounds […]

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California Supreme Court Hands Air District, Environmentalists Qualified Win

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Justices' Unanimous Opinion Addresses Key "Scope of CEQA" Issue

In a closely-watched case, the California Supreme Court today issued a unanimous decision on the scope of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), California’s most important and heavily-litigated environmental statute.  That decision is unlikely to fully satisfy either side in the litigation, though over the long-term it would seem to favor local regulators and their […]

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Climate Actions For Governor Jerry Brown’s Final Term

Climate Actions Report Cover

New report on how California's executive branch agencies can build on climate progress to date

In Paris this month, much of the talk related to California’s successful efforts to date in reducing carbon emissions while growing the economy.  Certainly the state has made significant progress in areas like renewable energy and electric vehicles, and Governor Brown and his administration deserve a lot of credit. But more progress will be needed […]

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California-Led “Under 2 MOU” Agreement Gaining Steam In Paris

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Subnationals commit to aggressive climate goals today at signing ceremony at U.S. Ambassador's residence

What started as a series of informal conversations about a year ago among Governor Brown, his senior staff, and a few world leaders, has turned into a veritable global movement.  The “Under 2 MOU,” which I blogged about on Thursday, just bumped its total from 57 signatories last week to 80 today, with each representing […]

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We’ll Always Have Paris — Or Will We?

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Some skepticism from an attendee about what can transpire there

Along with the UCLA Law crew of Ann, Ted, Cara, and Alex, plus six law students, I’ll be attending the UN climate change negotiations in Paris next week, primarily to highlight California’s effort to achieve a strong subnational agreement on greenhouse gas reductions. The “Under 2 MOU” is an impressive commitment by diverse subnational entities, […]

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Planting Biofuels in California

Planting Fuels Cover

New report on ways to boost in-state production of low-carbon biofuels, plus December 14th webinar

When we think of ways to reduce emissions from petroleum-based transportation fuels, electric vehicles get much of the headlines. Battery electric transportation certainly offers a viable, long-term alternative to petroleum fuels. But we’re still a few years away from an affordable, mass-market electric vehicle, and battery technology may be decades away, if ever, from being […]

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