California high-speed rail looks to renewable resources for electricity supply

In “Trains prove their worth in helping improve air,” I offered, “In the final analysis if the growth in passenger train ridership is to continue, then additional service will be necessary. ….Electrified California high-speed rail service, on the other hand, expected to break ground later this year, when built and operational, will provide a viable alternative to meet … Read more

Trains prove their worth in helping improve air

In “CATS: Decline in smog-forming emissions from California cars a bright spot,” I credited improvement in state motor vehicle smog-forming emissions to “initiatives such as the state’s Smog Check and other programs.” California’s Smog Check Program, by the way, went into effect in 1984. Moreover, noted in “Planning for a Better Future: California 2025: 2010 Update,” a Public Policy … Read more

CATS: Decline in smog-forming emissions from California cars a bright spot

Number seven in the Clean Air Technologies Series. In a 1952 “Key Events in the History of Air Quality in California” entry, the California Air Resources Board (ARB) revealed, “Dr. Arie Haagen-Smit discovered the nature and causes of photochemical smog. He determines that nitrogen oxides and hydrocarbons in the presence of ultraviolet radiation from the sun forms smog (a … Read more

Beyond Oil/Sierra Club ‘Smart Choices, Less Traffic’ report gives transit the green light

By the time the mid-20th century rolled around, the American streetcar had seen far better days. But for this inspiring institution, it was neither the end of the road nor the end of the American electric street railway story. Yes, the near-total disappearance of the once-mighty and utilitarian trolley network is sad, but it’s also profound, though … Read more

EPA, Valley Air District PM 2.5 standards separate and unequal

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on Dec. 14, 2012 announced it had adopted a national ambient air quality standard for annual fine particle pollution (particulate matter pollution 2.5 micrometers in diameter or PM 2.5) of 12 micrograms per cubic meter of air. On Thurs., Dec. 20, 2012, almost one week later, California’s San Joaquin … Read more

CATS: A solar array for every home? Why not?

Number six in the Clean Air Technologies Series. Every winter in America, it seems someone loses power to the home. Now add to this that about half this nation’s electricity production alone is via the burning of coal. In putting two-and-two together doesn’t it make sense that when such extreme conditions become present, losing power … Read more