How harmful are small, off-road engines?

December 23, 2019

On December 23, 2019 ECOS submitted a comment letter to the California Air Resource Board (CARB) regarding small off-road engines and their impacts on air quality. In our letter, we state:

We support the pursuit of alternatives and incentives to require the transition to zero emission technologies as soon as possible.

CARB research in 2018 found that long-term exposure to certain exhaust compounds emitted by gasoline powered lawn and garden equipment may increase cancer risk by up to 80 excess cases per one million operators exposed.

Click here to view the comment letter.

Click here to learn more about Small Off-Road Engines on the CARB site.

To keep up to date join this facebook group.

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Unforgettable Photos of Invisible Methane Leaks

December 12, 2019
By Jonah M. Kessel and Hiroko Tabuchi
The New York Times

To the naked eye, there is nothing out of the ordinary at the DCP Pegasus gas processing plant in West Texas, one of the thousands of installations in the vast Permian Basin that have transformed America into the largest oil and gas producer in the world.

But a highly specialized camera sees what the human eye cannot: a major release of methane, the main component of natural gas and a potent greenhouse gas that is helping to warm the planet at an alarming rate.

Two New York Times journalists detected this from a tiny plane, crammed with scientific equipment, circling above the oil and gas sites that dot the Permian, an oil field bigger than Kansas. In just a few hours, the plane’s instruments identified six sites with unusually high methane emissions.

Click here to keep reading and to view these astonishing images.

Image used for this post courtesy of Jeffrey Phillips via Flickr.

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Metropolitan Transportation Plan Update

On November 7, 2019, the Environmental Council of Sacramento (ECOS) submitted comments on the recently proposed update to our region’s Metropolitan Transportation Plan/Sustainable Communities Strategy (MTP/SCS). These comments were submitted via one letter solely from ECOS, and a joint letter from both ECOS and 350 Sacramento. Below is an excerpt from our comments, followed by links to PDFs of both letters.

The Sacramento Area Council of Governments (SACOG) has put forth a sophisticated Metropolitan Transportation Plan/Sustainable Communities Strategy (MTP/SCS), a regional plan that the region’s jurisdictions should follow. While this regional plan is not a strong as we feel it could be, the 2020 MTP/SCS is a viable strategy for the region to meet its regional greenhouse gas (GHG) reduction targets mandated by the California Air Resources Board (CARB) per Senate Bill 375 (2008).

The plan represents a reasonable compromise between what the region could accomplish if the political will existed, and the reality of much more expansive car-oriented, low-density growth that is actually being actively pursued by some of the region’s jurisdictions on the ground. ECOS would prefer a greater percentage of transportation investment to non-auto modes, and a much more compact land use footprint than proposed. The Sacramento region is not meeting its mandated GHG reduction targets because local jurisdictions are not complying with the strategy that SACOG has laid out for them, and the State must do more to ensure compliance of local authorities to our Sustainable Community Strategies, as well as to ensure the State’s own investments are aligned with its climate laws.

Click here to read the comment letter by ECOS on the MTP/SCS.

Click here to read the comment letter by ECOS and 350 Sacramento on the Climate Change section of the MTP/SCS, which was submitted separately.

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