Thursday, June 4, 2015

CA Passes Ambitious Energy Laws; Ikea Commits $1.13 Billion to Fight Climate Change

California passes ambitious laws on emissions and energy efficiency

More electricity from renewables, fewer gasoline-powered vehicles and lower power consumption by buildings mandated under ‘50-50-50’ agenda

Californian lawmakers want more renewables and fewer petroleum-powered vehicles on the roads by 2030.
Californian lawmakers want 50% of electricity from renewables and 50% less petroleum used on the roads by 2030. Photograph: David McNew/Getty Images

California lawmakers have passed a dozen ambitious environmental and energy bills setting high goals for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and petroleum use, and creating new standards for energy efficiency.

Dubbed the California climate leadership package, the 12 bills represent a Democratic-driven push in the Senate to advance an agenda of technological innovation and conservation that was put into play by an executive order by California Governor Jerry Brown in April. The package will next move to the assembly for debate.

One of the cornerstones of the program is SB 350, which calls for a “50-50-50” reduction in major areas of climate concern. It mandates a 50% reduction in petroleum use by vehicles by 2030, the equivalent of removing 36m cars and trucks from the road.

It also calls for 50% of the state’s electricity supply to be derived from renewable resources by that date, and 50% better energy efficiency in buildings through retrofits and upgrades.

“California has demonstrated our global climate leadership over the last decade,” said Senate president Kevin de Leon after the passage of SB 350. “These policies will further cement our leadership, further strengthen our economy and protect the health of our communities.”....    more here

IKEA Commits $1.13 Billion to Fight Climate Change and Invest in Renewable Energy

| June 4, 2015     EcoWatch

IKEA, a company known for its ready-to-assemble furniture, is also a leader in renewable energy and climate mitigation. The Swedish furniture giant today announced a massive $1.13 billion commitment to address the effects of global warming in developing countries.
IKEA is pledging $1.13 billion on renewable energy solutions, such as wind and solar, to support families and communities most impacted by climate change.
IKEA is pledging $1.13 billion on renewable energy solutions, such as wind and solar, to support families and communities most impacted by climate change.
According to an announcement, the generous measure was made to accelerate the transition to a low-carbon economy and to support the communities most at risk. The massive $1.13 billion total is made up of combined pledges from the IKEA Group and the IKEA Foundation, the philanthropic arm of the group. The majority of the commitment (around $560 million) will be invested in wind energy and around $110 million is expected to be invested in solar up to 2020.

“Climate change is one of the world’s biggest challenges and we need bold commitments and action to find a solution,” said Peter Agnefjäll, IKEA Group president and CEO. “That’s why we are going all in to transform our business, to ensure that it is fit for the future and we can have a positive impact. This includes going 100 percent for renewable energy, by investing in wind and solar, and converting all our lighting products to affordable LED bulbs, helping many millions of households to live a more sustainable life at home.”

IKEA said it’s on track to become energy independent, producing as much renewable energy as it consumes in its buildings. The company, which has invested around $1.7 billion in wind and solar since 2009, has also committed to owning and operating 314 offsite wind turbines and has installed 700,000 solar panels on its buildings.....    more here

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BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) — North Dakota regulators increased oil well inspections Wednesday because of flood threats and have told operators near the confluence of the Missouri and Yellowstone rivers to take precautions. Four nearby wells that have flooded in the past were being shut down as a precaution.

Forecasters said recent rains could cause the water level near Williston to exceed the flood stage of 22 feet by the weekend...... more here

By Jeff Barker    Baltimore Sun     June 3, 2015

The state Department of the Environment has denied, for now, a Houston-based company's application to permit crude oil to be shipped through its port of Baltimore terminal in Fairfield — a proposal that nearby residents say poses a safety threat.  ....     more here

Puget Sound Business Journal

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