Friday, March 7, 2008

Plug in to NRDC's Blog

Thursday, March 6, 2008

The Disinformation Campaign Continues: Utilities Say EEI Exaggerates Costs to Address Climate Change

According to Greenwire, eight utility executives, including PG & E, FPL, and Entergy, wrote Edison Electric Institute seeking changes in EEI's report on the cost of implementing pending   climate change legislative proposals.  "It appears that EEI has been circulating this material as an effort to scare senators from moving forward with the Lieberman-Warner legislation," Frank O'Donnell of Clean Air Watch wrote the Miami Herald in an e-mail. "In a polite, corporate way, the power execs appear to be wood-shedding EEI CEO Tom Kuhn" (John Dorschner, Miami Herald, March 6).

March 6, 2008 in Climate Change, Economics, Energy, Governance/Management | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Wednesday, March 5, 2008

Loan Program for Rural Power Plants Suspended on Climate Change Grounds

HT Bill Buzbee on UO envlawprofessor list - from Greenwire:

The federal government is suspending a major loan program for coal-fired power plants in rural communities, saying the uncertainties of climate change and rising construction costs make the loans too risky.

After issuing $1.3 billion in loans for new plant construction since 2001, none will be issued this year and likely none in 2009, James Newby, assistant administrator for the Rural Utilities Service, a branch of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, said Tuesday.

The program's suspension marks a dramatic reversal of a once-reliable source of new coal plant financing. It follows the announcement last month that several major banks will require plant developers to factor in climate change when seeking private funding (Greenwire, Feb. 4).

At the time of the suspension, at least four utilities had been lined up for loans totaling $1.3 billion - for projects in Kentucky, Illinois, Arkansas and Missouri. A project in Montana was denied funding last month. Two more were recently withdrawn: last October in Wyoming and earlier this week in Missouri (AP/International Herald Tribune, March 5)

March 5, 2008 in Climate Change, Economics, Energy, Governance/Management, Sustainability, US | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Pulitzer Prize Anyone??? Only if you write by March 12th

Well, no prize, but...You can become a Pulitzer Center Citizen Journalist!!! 


  • Read the corresponding coverage at Pulitzer’s website. Your article should draw on information from the Pulitzer Center articles; but you may also include include original reporting of your own or firsthand experiences. The goal is to provide fresh insight in a compellingly written article.
  • Share your perspective on the issue and write your best article at Helium by March 12th.

March 5, 2008 in Africa, Agriculture, Air Quality, Asia, Australia, Biodiversity, Cases, Climate Change, Constitutional Law, Economics, Energy, Environmental Assessment, EU, Forests/Timber, Governance/Management, International, Land Use, Law, Legislation, Mining, North America, Physical Science, Social Science, South America, Sustainability, Toxic and Hazardous Substances, US, Water Quality, Water Resources | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

By any measure, oil hits historic high price over $ 104

In 1980, when OPEC used its monopoly power to dramatically cut the supply of oil, oil prices reached an inflation-adjusted high between $ 90 and $ 103.  The wide variation reflects the difficulty in those times of establishing the market price of oil and the difficulty in choosing a way to adjust for inflation.  But now we don't need to worry about those details: oil prices are hitting historic levels.  Dow Jones Marketwatch

March 5, 2008 in Economics, Energy, Governance/Management, International, North America, Sustainability, US | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

Monday, March 3, 2008

Settled Science

Willamette University's March Dempsey lecture will feature Stephen H. Schneider of Stanford                    speDempsey_lectureaking on "Global Warming: Is the Science Settled        Enough for Policy?"   I understand that his answer is yes.  But I'll let you know more next week.

March 3, 2008 in Climate Change | Permalink | TrackBack (0)

SCOTUS commentary on Exxon Valdez argument

The SCOTUS blog commentary seems to track my view that SCOTUS will limit punitives. SCOTUS blog  The context in which the Supreme Court is deciding the case, maritime law, is interesting.  The court is acting as a common law court and developing common law rules.  So, in theory, it could write any rule, including one that follows State Farm.  But, if I understand the context correctly, due process still applies.  So even its common law rule will have to comport with State Farm.  Right? 

March 3, 2008 in Biodiversity, Cases, Constitutional Law, Economics, Energy, Governance/Management, International, Law, North America, Sustainability, US, Water Quality | Permalink | Comments (2) | TrackBack (0)

Sunday, March 2, 2008

Petition Filed Seeking CEQ Guidance on Climate Change Analyses Under NEPA

On Thursday, the International Center for Technology Assessment (ICTA), Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), and Sierra Club filed a formal legal petition with the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) seeking to assure that climate change analyses are included in all federal environmental review documents.  Petition The petition builds on the success of environmental groups in recent cases where federal courts found that climate change issues need to be considered during environmental impact review.  Rather than continue to address this on a piecemeal case by case basis, the petition seeks to create systematic review of climate change in NEPA documents.
Specifically, the petition requests CEQ:
  • Amend the definitions of "significantly" and "effects" as well as the provision on environmental consequences to assure NEPA implementing regulations require climate change effects be addressed in environmental assessments and environmental impact statements; and
  • Issue guidance to assure that climate change effects be addressed at each stage of the NEPA from categorical exclusions to the ROD.
  • Issue a handbook to guide agencies in this process

March 2, 2008 in Biodiversity, Climate Change, Environmental Assessment, Forests/Timber, Governance/Management, Law, Physical Science, Sustainability, US, Water Resources | Permalink | TrackBack (0)