Subject: Studies in the News 03-82 (December 12, 2003)

Studies in the News
Environment, Growth Management and Transportation Supplement

Contents This Week

   State sues EPA over greenhouse gases
   Lawsuit against EPA questioned
   State law and biodiversity
   Technology policy to deal with climate change
   Improving drinking water security
   Environmental goals
   Final report on Klamath fish
   Sacramento flood protection project
   Report of the marine life census.
   Ocean resources neglected
   EPA will not regulate sewage sludge
   Hazards from wastewater chemicals
   Water available through conservation
   State sues to restore Owens River
   Computer model of water resources
   Sustainablity of restored tidal marshes
   Tidal wetlands restoration and fish population
   Economic significance of rail capacity
   Southern California draft regional transportation plan
   Studies in the News, October 17, 2003
   Studies in the News, October 27, 2003
   Studies in the News, November 6, 2003
   Studies in the News, November 17, 2003
   Studies in the News, November 21, 2003
   Studies in the News, December 8, 2003
Introduction to Studies in the News

Studies in the News is a very current compilation of items significant to the Legislature and Governor's Office. It is created weekly by the State Library's Research Bureau to supplement the public policy debate in Californiaís Capitol. To help share the latest information with state policymakers, these reading lists are now being made accessible through the State Libraryís website. This week's list of current articles in various public policy areas is presented below.

Service to State Employees:

  • When available, the URL for the full text of each item is provided.

  • Items in the State Library collection can be checked out to state officials and staff.

  • Access to all materials listed will be provided by the State Information Reference Center, either by e-mail to or by calling 654-0261.

The following studies are currently on hand:



California v. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. U.S. Court of Appeals, District of Columbia. Petition for Review. October 23, 2003.

["Claiming California's environment and public health are at risk, Attorney General Bill Lockyer filed a legal challenge to force the Bush administration to regulate greenhouse gases that many scientists believe contribute to global warming. Lockyer was joined by 11 other states, several major cities and numerous environmental organizations that filed separate but similar actions. Their target is an August 28 decision by the federal Environmental Protection Agency to deny petitions filed by environmental groups seeking regulation of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases. The EPA said it lacked authority under the Clean Air Act." Sacramento Bee (October 24, 2003) A3.]

Petition. 4 p.

Press release. 1 p.

[Request #S9761]

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Attorneys General Versus the EPA. By Sally C. Pipes and Benjamin Zycher, Pacific Research Institute. (The Institute, San Francisco, California) December 2003. 20 p.

Full Text at:

["The Pacific Research Institute released a white paper questioning the motives and validity of a lawsuit by several state Attorneys General against the Environmental Protection Agency.... The white paper concludes that the lawsuit would have a devastating impact on the state of California.... Whatís more, the scientific foundation of the lawsuit is faulty." PRI press release (December 8, 2003) 1.]

[Request #S9762]

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Planning for Biodiversity: Authorities in State Land Use Law. By Linda K. Breggin, Environmental Law Institute, and others. (Defenders of Wildlife, Washington, DC) 2003. 113 p.

Full Text at:

["Land use decisions that result in habitat destruction, degradation, and fragmentation are the primary causes of biodiversity loss in the United States. Proper land use planning is, therefore, essential for the preservation of biodiversity in this country. A new study examines state laws that can be utilized to encourage biodiversity protection.... The report identifies authorities that can be employed by citizens and government officials to help integrate biodiversity and land use planning." Serconline (November 3, 2003) 1.]

[Request #S9763]

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U.S. Technology and Innovation Policies: Lessons for Climate Change. By John A. Alic, and others. Prepared for the Pew Center on Global Climate Change. (The Center, Arlington, Virginia) November 2003.

["A massive deployment of new technologies will be necessary to mitigate the harmful effects of global warming, according to a new report. The report states that achieving substantial reductions of the greenhouse gas carbon dioxide will require replacement or retrofitting of hundreds of electric power plants and tens of millions of motor vehicles. Additionally, upgrades will have to be made to hundreds of millions of household appliances, building systems and factory equipment." Greenwire (November 19, 2003)]

Press release. 1 p.

Report. 50 p.

[Request #S9764]

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Drinking Water: Experts' views on How Future Federal Funding Can best Be Spent to Improve Security. By the U.S. General Accounting Office. GAO-04-29. (The Office, Washington, DC) October 2003. 76 p.

Full Text at:

["GAO's expert panel cited distribution systems as among the most vulnerable physical components of a drinking water utility.... Experts further defined two overarching vulnerabilities: (1) a lack of information individual utilities need to identify their most serious threats; and (2) a lack of redundancy in vital system components, which increases the likelihood that an attack could render an entire utility inoperable."]

[Request #S9765]

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Governor's Environmental Goals and Policy Report (EGPR). By the Office of Planning and Research. (The Office, Sacramento, California) November 2003. 185 p.

["Based on this analysis of existing conditions and influences, the EGPR proposes several cross-cutting and integrated goals and policies for the State of California which will allow it to achieve the overarching goal of sustainable.... Sustainable development, in the context of this EGPR, relies on the full consideration of societal, economic and environmental issues in policy and decision making.... The goals, policies, and implementation measures contained in this report should not be viewed as a final statement or solution, but rather as the beginning of a new dialogue."]

[Request #S9566]

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Endangered and Threatened Fishes in the Klamath River Basin: Causes of Decline and Strategies for Recovery. By the Committee on Endangered and Threatened Fishes in the Klamath River Basin, National Research Council. (National Academies Press, Washington, DC) October 2003.

["After nearly two years of study, the National Research Council's scientific committee suggested a series of aggressive steps ranging from reviving long-drained lakes and wetlands to better controlling erosion from logging, restoring coldwater flows into tributaries, shuttering a hatchery and toppling dozens of dams. But the 12-member panel stuck by a controversial finding it first announced in an interim report last year: that, based on the scientific evidence, increased flows in the Klamath River and higher water levels in Oregon's Upper Klamath Lake are not justified to protect coho salmon in the river and the lake's two species of sucker fish." Los Angeles Times (October 22, 2003) B6.]

Press release. Various pagings.

Full Report. 450 p.

[Request #S9477]

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Corps of Engineers: Improved Analysis of Costs and Benefits Needed For Sacramento Flood Protection Project. By the U.S. General Accounting Office. GAO-04-30. (The Office, Washington, DC) October 2003. 48 p.

Full Text at:

["This report addresses ... why the costs have increased for the Common Features Project, the extent to which the Corps analyzed the likelihood of significant cost increases for the project and reported this information to Congress in a timely manner, and whether the Corps correctly estimated the economic benefits of the American River levee improvements."]

[Request #S9766]

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The Unknown Ocean: The Baseline Report of the Census of Marine Life Research Program. By Ronald K. O'Dor, Consortium for Oceanographic Research and Education. (The Consortium, Washington, DC) October 2003. 28 p.

Full Text at:

["Scientists around the world are conducting the most ambitious global census of marine life ever undertaken, and after only three years of their 10-year, $10 billion project, they can already see that thousands of ocean fish species and other sea-going animals and plants remain to be discovered... Outlining the findings of the first census report, Ronald O'Dor of Dalhousie University in Halifax, Canada, chief scientist for the census, said, 'The enormous diversity of marine life is not only a crucial indicator of the condition of our oceans, it is key to sustaining them in a healthy state.'" San Francisco Chronicle (October 24, 2003) A1.]

[Request #S9767]

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Exploration of the Seas: Voyage into the Unknown. By the Committee on Exploration of the Seas, National Research Council. (National Academies Press, Washington, DC) November 2003.

["Undiscovered foods, useful chemicals and drugs, and potential sources of energy may lie in wait in the least explored portion of Earth - the oceans.... In its report the committee said: 'It is difficult to predict what discoveries are still to come ... but it is clear that ocean exploration will improve the accuracy of our predictions of global climate change and produce new products that will benefit humanity.'... The panel said the program should be operated by an outside contractor that can receive funding from a variety of agencies and outside sources." San Francisco Chronicle (November 5, 2003) A5.]

Press release. 1 p.

Report. 228 p.

[Request #S9768]

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Standards for the Use or Disposal of Sewage Sludge: Decision Not to Regulate Dioxins in Land-Applied Sewage Sludge: Notice. IN: Federal Register, vol. 68, no. 206 (October 24, 2003) pp. 61084-61096.

["The Environmental Protection Agency will let farmers and others use sewage sludge as fertilizer without concern for the amount of dioxins, a class of organic chemicals that the agency's studies have shown pose a possible cancer risk in humans.... A National Research Council panel said last year the government was using outdated science to assess the health risks of the sewage sludge used as fertilizer. However, Geoffrey Grubbs, who heads the EPA Office of Water's science and technology program, said the decision to not regulate dioxin in land-applied sludge came after five years of peer-reviewed analysis and study." San Francisco Chronicle (October 18, 2003) A4.]

Press release. 1 p.
press release

Federal Register. 14 p.
Federal Register

[Request #S9769]

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Eliminating Hometown Hazards: Cutting Chemical Risks at Wastewater Treatment Facilities. By Carol Andress. (Environmental Defense, New York, New York) December 2003. 14 p.

Full Text at:

["A coalition of groups released a report contending that 19 million people in the United States face a major health threat in a terrorist attack or accident because they live near sewage treatment plants that use chlorine gas.... The report recommended that plants using chlorine gas switch to alternatives such as solid disinfectants or ultraviolet light to kill microorganisms." San Jose Mercury News (December 4, 2003) 1.]

[Request #S9770]

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Waste Not, Want Not: The Potential for Urban Water Conservation in California. By Peter H. Gleick, and others, Pacific Institute. (The Institute, Oakland, California) November 2003.

["Despite its relentless population growth, California can meet future water needs for at least the next 20 years by simply wasting less water in homes, businesses and government buildings, according to a new report....Current technologies that could add up to big water savings include fitting every home in the state with low-flow toilets, faucets and shower heads. Other measures include broader use of efficient residential and commercial washing machines and dishwashers, drip irrigation systems and precision sprinklers that shut off automatically when it starts raining. Also needed: tiered water rates statewide, so people have more incentive to conserve, he said, and water meters on every home." San Jose Mercury News (November 19, 2003) B2.]

Executive Summary 16 p.

Report. 165 p.

Appendices. Various pagings.

[Request #S9771]

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Sierra Club, et al. vs. Los Angeles Department of Water and Power, et al. Inyo County Superior Court. Cross-Complaint of California State Lands Commission and Department of Fish and Game; Petition for Writ of Mandate; Complaint for Declaratory Relief. S1CVCV01-29768. December 4, 2003. .

["Fed up with a series of delays, the state attorney general's office filed a lawsuit to force the Los Angeles Department of Water and Power to restore water to the Owens River, as required under a 6-year-old agreement to stop environmental damage to the surrounding countryside caused by the city's groundwater pumping.... DWP officials insist they are doing the best they can, given the vastness of the task of completing environmental documents required before restoration can get underway, and disputes with Inyo County officials nearly every step of the way." Los Angeles Times (December 5, 2003) B1.]

Press release. 1 p.

Complaint. 18 p.

[Request #S9772]

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A Strategic Review of CALSIM II and its Use for Water Planning, Management, and Operations in Central California. By A. Close and others. Prepared for the California Bay Delta Authority Science Program. (The Program, Oakland, California) December 4, 2003. 129 p.

Full Text at:

["The California Department of Water Resources and the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation have developed a computer model called CALSIM II that simulates much of the water resources infrastructure in the Central Valley of California and the Delta region.... The openness and availability of the model is admirable and very important given the numerous stakeholders who have interests in the management and allocation of water in the state.... As the primary State and Federal-sponsored model available for water operations and planning, CALSIM II is critical to the study of many technical and policy issues related to water supply reliability, environmental management and performance, water demands, economics, hydrology and climate, and regulatory compliance."]

[Request #S9782]

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"Will Restored Tidal Marshes Be Sustainable?" By Michelle Orr, and others. IN: San Francisco Estuary and Watershed Science, vol. 1, no. 1, art. 5 (October 2003) pp 1-35.

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["We assess whether or not restored marshes in the San Francisco Estuary are expected to be sustainable in light of future landscape scale geomorphic processes given typical restored marsh conditions. Our assessment is based on a review of the literature, appraisal of monitoring data for restored marshes, and application of vertical accretion modeling of organic and inorganic sedimentation."]

[Request #S9773]

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"Will Tidal Wetland Restoration Enhance Populations of Native Fishes?" By Larry R. Brown. IN: San Francisco Estuary Watershed Science, vol. 1, no. 1 (October 2003) pp. 1-44

Full Text at:

["Large scale adaptive management experiments appear to be the best available option for determining whether tidal wetlands will provide significant benefit to native fishes. Even if these experiments are unsuccessful at increasing native fish populations, the restored wetlands should benefit native birds, plants, and other organisms."]

[Request #S9774]

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OnTrac Trade Impact Study: National Economic Significance of Rail Capacity and Homeland Security on the Alameda Corridor East: Executive Summary. By Wally Baker, Economic and Public Policy Consulting, Los Angeles Economic Development Corporation. (The Corporation, Los Angeles, California) 2003. 13 p.

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["The primary goal of this study was to determine if the OnTrac rail project in Placentia, California is a project of national security and economic significance. An additional objective was to also determine the threat and economic impact of terrorism to the Southern California east/west bound rail trade corridor system including the OnTrac rail project."]

[Request #S9776]

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Destination 2030: Draft 2004 Regional Transportation Plan. By the Southern California Associations of Governments. (The Association, Los Angeles, California) November 2003. Various pagings.

Full Text at:

["The State budget crisis ... has directly resulted in the partial suspension of the Governorís California Traffic Congestion Relief Program (TCRP). This has not only jeopardized the timely implementation of critical transportation projects, but also has required SCAG to take a fresh look at its regional priorities and take a more pro-active role in securing future funding needs.... The proposed growth vision has been developed as follows: utilizing in-fill where appropriate to re-vitalize underutilized development sites; focusing growth along transit corridors and nodes; providing housing opportunities near major job centers; providing housing opportunities to match changing demographics; preserving natural open space, incorporating decentralized aviation strategy proposed in the Plan."]

[Request #S9777]

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[This section links to items in Studies in the News since the last Environmental Supplement.]


"Environment and Natural Resources." IN: Studies in the News, 03-68 (October 17, 2003)

Full Text at:

[Includes: "Board limits emissions from lawn mowers," "Sacramento foothill smog," "Coastal Commission report on border fence," "Hazard loss reduction research," and "Update of statewide water plan."]

[Request #S9778]

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"Environment and Natural Resources." IN: Studies in the News, 03-71 (October 27, 2003)

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[Includes: "Green buildings save money," "Imperial valley smog not from Mexico," "Population growth and sprawl," "San Francisco Bay ecological scorecard," and "Threats to Sierra water."]

[Request #S9779]

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"Environment and Natural Resources." IN: Studies in the News, 03-74 (November 6, 2003)

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[Includes: "Women bear the burden of environmental illnesses," and "Pesticides on produce."]

[Request #S9780]

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"Environment and Natural Resources." IN: Studies in the News, 03-76 (November 17, 2003)

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[Includes: "Safety of cloned products," "Climate change in California," "New dialogue for environmental policy," and "National wildlife refuges."]

[Request #S9781]

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"Environment and Natural Resources." IN: Studies in the News, 03-78 (November 21, 2003)

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[Includes: "Survey on marine and coastline issues," "Recommendations on environmental justice," and "National wildlife refuges."]

[Request #S9783]

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"Environment and Natural Resources." IN: Studies in the News, 03-80 (December 8, 2003)

Full Text at:

[Includes: "University-industry relationships in biotechnology," "Southern California environmental report card," "Appeals of fuel reduction activities," and "Causes of Klamath salmon kill."]

[Request #S9784]

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