Wednesday, January 15, 2014

WIMS Environmental HotSheet 1/15/14

<> Risky Business Co-Chairs Announce Members of U.S. Climate Risk Committee - The co-chairs of the national Risky Business initiative announced the members of a Risk Committee who will oversee an analysis of the economic risks of climate change in the United States. Risk Committee members will join Risky Business co-chairs Michael Bloomberg, Hank Paulson, and Tom Steyer, who also sit on the Risk Committee and are the founding partners of the initiative.

·   Official Statements from Members of the U.S. Climate Risk Committee

<> Boxer, Whitehouse, and Senate Colleagues Kick Off New Initiative to "Wake Up Congress" on Climate Change- During a press conference today, Senators Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Chairman of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee, and Sheldon Whitehouse (D-RI), announced the members of a newly formed Senate Climate Action Task Force and discussed their plans to take action on climate change.

<> Sen. Murkowski Urges President to Lift Crude Oil Export Ban - Rising Domestic Production Creates Opportunities to Expand Energy Trade WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) today sent a letter to President Obama urging him to lift the prohibition on exporting crude oil produced in the United States. Doing so, Murkowski wrote, will allow American producers to access global markets, which will boost production, protect 

<> New Report Recommends Methods for Investing in Transportation During Economic Downturns- A new report from the National Research Council's Transportation Research Board provides guidance for federal and state officials on the best ways to use stimulus funds for. . .

<> UN climate chief calls for tripling of clean energy investment-

Source: Guardian - The United Nations climate chief has urged global financial institutions to triple their investments in clean energy to reach the $1 trillion a year mark that would help avert a climate catastrophe.

<> Congress Advances Health and Environment Safeguards, but Spending Measure Still Carries Unwise Limits on Climate and Energy Efficiency -

WASHINGTON (January 14, 2014) –  Congress has moved forward on a catch-all spending bill that restores some needed funding for health and environment safeguards the American people depend on, while also advancing misguided provisions on climate and energy that deserve to be stricken in subsequent budgets.

·   Sierra Club Statement on Omnibus Appropriations Bill

<> The Costs and Consequences of Clean Air Act Regulation of CO2 from Power Plants- Resources for the Future discussion paper. . .

<> Subcommittee Advances Bipartisan Electricity Security and Affordability Act - WASHINGTON, DC – The Subcommittee on Energy and Power today advanced H.R. 3826, the Electricity Security and Affordability Act, authored by subcommittee Chairman Ed Whitfield (R-KY) and Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV). The bipartisan, bicameral legislation provides a reasonable alternative to EPA's proposed greenhouse gas standards for new power plants and the. . .

<> Farm Bureau Delegates Set Public Policy Positions for 2014- Voting delegates to the American Farm Bureau Federation's 95th annual meeting today approved resolutions that will provide the organization with authority from its grassroots members to push Congress toward the goal line on unfinished issues like the farm bill and ag labor.

<> Vitter: Administration Fails to Implement President's Signature Environmental Legislation- Sen. David Vitter (R-La.), top Republican on the Environment and Public Works Committee, sent a letter to President Barack Obama regarding the Administration's failure to fully implement the Mercury Export Ban Act of 2008, which was sponsored by then-Senator Barack Obama (D-Ill).

<> January and February PSERC Webinars on CERTS Research- January 13, 2014January and February PSERC Webinars on CERTS Research The Power System Engineering Research Center (PSERC) is offering a free, public webinar series based on past and ongoing research coordinated by the Consortium for Electric Reliability Technology Solutions (CERTS) with funding provided by the Department of Energy. The webinars will run through April

<> Improved Regulations to Protect Human Research Subjects Would Reduce Burden on IRBs While Better Protecting Study Participants-

Proposed updates to federal regulations that protect human research subjects need additional clarification when applied to the social and behavioral sciences, says a new report from the National Research Council. The report reviews an Advance Notice of Proposed Rulemaking from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, issued in July 2011 to strengthen protection for. . .

<> Hansen puts out a call for help in testimony by pipeline engineering experts and climate scientists wrt tar sands development consequences- There is a request from Lansing, Michigan, for expert assistance in trials of young protestors who blocked reconstruction of a pipeline that caused a major oil spill. They want to use the necessity defense, their actions being required to protect the environment and their own future.

<> Dow Chemical, Jones Lang LaSalle and Starwood Hotels & Resorts Sign On for Smart Energy Wins with EDF Climate Corps - Environmental Defense Fund (EDF)'s Climate Corps expands its scope to address the growing variety of smart energy needs for businesses and organizations nationwide

<> NRDC Study Shows More Than 1.8 Million Thermostats Containing 8 Tons of Mercury Need Safe Recycling In Illinois - CHICAGO (January 14, 2014) –There are more than 1.8 million thermostats containing eight tons of mercury in Illinois homes and buildings, according to a study by the Natural Resources Defense Council and Clean Water Fund, which are calling for  stronger state rules this year to speed up safe recycling of these  thermostats.

<> ACC's Plastics Division Forms New Plastics-to-Oil Technologies Alliance - ACC's Plastics Division views the new Alliance as a complement to its existing programs to increase plastics recovery and as part of a comprehensive strategy to reduce, reuse, recycle and recover plastics.

<> Major Investors Dump Pebble Mine, Time to Abandon Project Once and For All - Frances Beinecke, President of NRDC, New York City A few weeks ago, mining giant Rio Tinto said it was considering pulling out of the disastrous Pebble Mine proposed for Alaska's Bristol Bay. This came on the heels of the September announcement that Anglo American—the 50 percent owner of the Pebble Mine—was dumping the project. Mitsubishi had already walked away three. . .