Events

Solving The Energy Efficiency Puzzle

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New report recommends ways that California can encourage more private financing of energy efficiency retrofits

Much of our efforts to reduce carbon emissions involves fairly complicated and advanced technologies.  Whether it’s solar panels, batteries, flywheels, or fuel cells, these technologies have typically required public support to bring them to scale at a reasonable price, along with significant regulatory or legal reforms to accommodate these new ways of doing old things, […]

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Nevada Governor Sandoval on Obama’s Short List of Supreme Court Candidates

Governor Brian Sandoval

How Would a Justice Sandoval Vote on Environmental Issues?

Multiple news sources reported Wednesday that the Obama Administration has floated the first identified candidate the President is considering nominating to the U.S. Supreme Court to replace Justice Antonin Scalia, who died unexpectedly earlier this month.  That candidate is a most intriguing and unconventional one: Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval–a Republican. Sandoval, 52, received his law […]

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California Coastal Commissioners Fire Executive Director Charles Lester

Personnel Dispute is Commission's Biggest Political Controversy in Over a Decade

Following months of public controversy and a marathon 10 1/2 hour hearing Wednesday in Morro Bay, a closely-divided California Coastal Commission voted to fire its Executive Director, Charles Lester.  The Commission vote to remove Lester was 7-5. Lester, who as Executive Director has led the Commission staff for the past 4 1/2 years, is the […]

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Public Prosecutors Zero In on SoCal Gas, Porter Ranch Disaster

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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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Sacramento Lunch Briefing On Low-Carbon Biofuel Policies For California

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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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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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A Moveable Climate Feast?

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Paris and the future politics of climate change

Back in 1920s Paris, an unknown writer named Ernest Hemingway hung out in the local cafes with other aspiring artists.  It was an odd group, featuring communists like Pablo Picasso, fascists like Ezra Pound, and right-wingers like Gertrude Stein.  But they helped each other, promoting their work and ultimately producing a generation of famous artists […]

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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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Emmett Institute updates from the Climate Conference

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UCLA faculty and students participating in COP21/CMP11

For two weeks starting today, negotiators gather in Paris for the annual climate-change meetings – officially, the 21st Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, and the 11th Meeting of the Parties to the Kyoto Protocol (COP 21/CMP11). The meeting is located in a sprawling conference center at the edge […]

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