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 Decade: 2000-2009
 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
Smart Grid Provisions in H.R. 6, 110th Congress
This report provides an overview of Smart Grid, a distribution system that allows for flow of information from a customer's meter in two directions. It discusses both regulatory and technological barriers that have limited the implementation of Smart Grid technology.
U.S. Food and Agricultural Imports: Safeguards and Selected Issues
The report provides background information in the increase of food and agricultural imports and federal oversight responsibilities. It discusses international trade considerations, import refusals by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS), administration, and legislative proposals.
Climate Change: The EU Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) Enters Kyoto Compliance
This report discusses the development in global warming as a global issue. Topics include issues that have arisen regarding the ETS and considerations for cap-and-trade.
Sugar Policy and the 2007 Farm Bill
This report discusses the sugar policy which is designed to guarantee the price received by sugar crop growers and processors and to operate at “no cost” to the U.S. Treasury.
Managing Electronic Waste: An Analysis of State E-Waste Legislation
This report discusses the e-waste management law that has been enacted by 14 states. The report provides an overview of enacted state legislation. it also discusses issues leading to state action, and common provisions of state e-waste laws.
Federal Research and Development Funding: FY2008
This report discusses the U.S. research and development (R&D) enterprise, and its support for federal R&D activities.
Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies (THUD): FY2008 Appropriations
This report discusses the current legislative status of the appropriations bill, its scope, major issues, funding levels, and related legislative activity.
Conservation and the 2007 Farm Bill
This report introduces some of the issues that are influencing the development of a conservation title. It then reviews major provisions passed by both chambers, followed by some of the alternative conservation proposals that were offered. An appendix compares current law with the conservation provisions, as passed by both chambers, in more detail.
Energy Policy Reform and Revitalization Act of 2007, Title VII of H.R. 3221: Summary and Discussion of Oil and Gas Provisions
This report discusses the energy development reform and energy production from public lands.
Africa Command: U.S. Strategic Interests and the Role of the U.S. Military in Africa
This report provides a broad overview of U.S. strategic interests in Africa and the role of U.S. military efforts on the continent as they pertain to the creation of AFRICOM. Although the command is still in the early stages of its development, a discussion of AFRICOM’s mission, its coordination with other government agencies, and its basing and manpower requirements is included.
Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies: FY2008 Appropriations
This report is a guide to one of the regular appropriations bills that Congress considers each year. It is designed to supplement the information provided by the House and Senate Subcommittees on Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies. It summarizes the status of the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies appropriations bill, its scope, major issues, funding levels, and related congressional activity, and is updated as events warrant. The report lists the key CRS staff relevant to the issues covered and related CRS products.
Air Quality: Multi-Pollutant Legislation in the 110th Congress
This report discusses air pollutants (petroleum, natural gas, and coal), which account for about two-thirds of U.S. electricity generation. These gases include several pollutants that directly pose risks to human health and welfare. The report also discusses the utilities that are subject to an array of environmental regulations.
The Strategic Petroleum Reserve: History, Perspectives, and Issues
This report discusses the Strategic Petroleum Reserve (SPR) in the Energy Policy and Conservation Act (EPCA, P.L. 94-163), which is intended to help prevent a repetition of the economic dislocation caused by the 1973-1974 Arab oil embargo.
Fluoride in Drinking Water: A Review of Fluoridation and Regulation Issues
This report discusses the potential benefits and adverse effects associated with the fluoridation of drinking water supplies. It also discusses the regulation of fluoride in drinking water to protect against adverse health effects from exposure to higher levels of fluoride, and it reviews the status of federal efforts to update the health risk assessment for fluoride and the drinking water standard for fluoride.
The National Environmental Policy Act: Background and Implementation
This report discusses the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA) including its history, its provisions, and the evolution of its implementation; it also provides an overview of how agencies implement NEPA's requirements.
Clean Air Issues in the 110th Congress: Climate Change, Air Quality Standards, and Oversight
This report provides a brief overview of the climate change issue as well as other Clean Air Act issues of interest in the 110th Congress.
Carbon Capture and Sequestration (CCS)
This report discusses carbon capture and sequestration (CSS), but not other types of carbon sequestration activities whereby CO2 is removed from the atmosphere and stored in vegetation, soils, or oceans.
Imports of Canadian Waste
This report provides background information on the history of Canadian waste imports, reviews congressional developments, and discusses issues raised by the voluntary agreement and legislation.
Fishery, Aquaculture, and Marine Mammal Legislation in the 110th Congress
This report discusses the federal laws and regulations that guide the management resources in open ocean and near-shore coastal areas.
Polar Bears: Listing Under the Endangered Species Act
This report discusses the protection of polar bears under the Endangered Species Act and how they are affected by climate change, contaminants, and subsistence and sport hunting.
The Endangered Species Act (ESA) in the 110th Congress: Conflicting Values and Difficult Choices
This report will identify and discuss oversight issues and legislation introduced in the 110th Congress to address specific concerns related to how ESA is implemented and how endangered species are managed, and will be updated periodically to reflect legislative action.
Coast Guard Deepwater Acquisition Programs: Background, Oversight Issues, and Options for Congress
This report discusses issues for Congress in 2008, which include but are not necessarily limited to the Coast Guard's overall management of Deepwater acquisition, the status of certain Deepwater acquisition programs, and the so-called revolving door issue.
Greenhouse Gas Emission Drivers: Population, Economic Development and Growth, and Energy Use
This report examines the interrelationships of the variables regarding the debate on climate change to explore their implications for policies that address the problem. The three variables underpinning the debates and justified response to the issue are: the magnitude and rates of change of (1) population growth, (2) incomes, and (3) intensity of greenhouse gas emissions relative to economic activities.
International Illegal Trade in Wildlife: Threats and U.S. Policy
This report focuses on the international trade in terrestrial fauna, largely excluding trade in illegal plants, including timber, and fish.
Wildfire Funding
This report briefly describes the three categories of federal programs for wildfire protection: [1] protection of the federal lands managed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service (FS), and by the U.S. Department of the Interior, whose wildfire programs are coordinated by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM); [2] assistance for state and local governments and communities in protecting nonfederal lands; [3] support for fire research, fire facilities, and improvements in forest health. The last section of this report discusses the impact of high and rising wildfire costs.
Regulation of Energy Derivatives
This report analyzes the development of regulation for energy derivatives (financial contracts whose value is linked to changes in the price of some energy product). Regulation may be needed [1] to help prevent abusive trading and price manipulation, and [2] to help prevent the failure of a large derivatives dealer which could trigger disruptions of supplies and prices in oil and gas markets.
South Florida Ecosystem Restoration and the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan
This report summarizes the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) and its implementation.
China's Currency: A Summary of the Economic Issues
This report summarizes China's economic issues and its currency manipulation, intended to make its exports cheaper and imports into China more expensive than they would be under free market conditions.
Mad Cow Disease and U.S. Beef Trade
This report discusses the international beef market and U.S. efforts to regain foreign markets that banned U.S. beef when a Canadian-born cow in Washington state tested positive for bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE) in December 2003.
Conservation Reserve Program: Status and Current Issues
This report discusses the Conservation Reserve Program (CRP) enacted in 1985, which provides payments to farmers to take highly erodible or environmentally-sensitive cropland out of production for ten years or more to conserve soil and water resources.
Horse Slaughter Prevention Bills and Issues
This report discusses the bills and issues regarding horses that are slaughtered for human food. Debate revolves around the acceptability of horse slaughter, and how to care for and/or humanely dispose of horses if they no longer become human food.
Comprehensive Nuclear-Test-Ban Treaty: Background and Current Developments
This report addresses nuclear weapon issues in the annual National Defense Authorization Act and the Energy and Water Development Appropriations Act. Congress is considering the Stockpile Stewardship Program (listed as Weapons Activities), which seeks to maintain nuclear weapons without testing.
China-U.S. Trade Issues
This report provides an overview of U.S.-China economic relations, surveys major trade disputes, and lists major legislation in the 110th that seeks to address these issues.
Oil Spills in U.S. Coastal Waters: Background, Governance, and Issues for Congress
This report focuses on oil spills in U.S. coastal waters. The first section highlights background issues, including oil spill statistics and potential environmental impacts. The second section discusses the legal framework that governs oil spill prevention and response. The third section examines the threat of future oil spills in coastal waters and whether response personnel are prepared to respond to a major spill. The final section highlights recent legislative activity.
AIDS in Africa
This report discusses the AIDS issues in Africa and the Bush administration call to double U.S. international funding for AIDS.
Cruise Ship Pollution: Background, Laws and Regulations, and Key Issues
This report describes the several types of waste streams that cruise ships may discharge and emit. It identifies the complex body of international and domestic laws that address pollution from cruise ships. It then describes federal and state legislative activity concerning cruise ships in Alaskan waters and activities in a few other states, as well as current industry initiatives to manage cruise ship pollution.
Active Military Sonar and Marine Mammals: Events and References
This report summarizes legal and political events related to active sonar and marine mammals since 1994. The report discusses the deployment of active sonar by the U.S. Navy and its potential impacts on marine mammals has been an ongoing issue of intense debate; regulatory, legislative, and judicial activity; and international concern.
Open Ocean Aquaculture
This report discusses four general areas related to open ocean aquaculture: (1) operational and business-related challenges; (2) potential economic impacts; (3) potential environmental impacts; and (4) the legal and regulatory environment. It summarizes recent executive and legislative branch actions.
Pesticide Registration and Tolerance Fees: An Overview
This report provides a historical overview of federal authority regarding pesticide fees, including the amount of fee revenues collected over time, and summarizes the key elements of the Pesticide Registration Improvement Act (PRIA) and the revisions reflected in PRIA 2.
Environmental Activities of the U.S. Coast Guard
This report discusses the U.S. Coast Guard's (USCG's) environmental activities, which focus on the prevention of oil spills and pollution.
Agricultural Credit: Farm Bill Issues
This report discusses agricultural credit, which makes or guarantees loans to farmers who cannot qualify at other lenders, and the Farm Credit System (FCS), which is a network of borrower-owned lending institutions operating as a government-sponsored enterprise.
U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea: Living Resources Provisions
This report describes provisions of the Law of the Sea (LOS) Convention relating to living marine resources and discusses how these provisions comport with current U.S. marine policy.
The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES): Background and Issues
This report provides background information on the structure of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES), the enforcement of CITES in the United States, and implementing issues related to CITES.
Specialty Crops: 2007 Farm Bill Issues
The report discusses the farm bill policies governing U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs on marketing, which include crop insurance and disaster assistance, protection against pests and diseases, export promotion, and domestic food assistance.
Recreation on Federal Lands
This report discusses recreation in federal lands that covers approximately 653 million acres of federally-owned land in the United States. This preservation/use dichotomy, while varying among agencies, is a focal point for debate over recreation on federal lands.
National Park Management
This report discusses issues in National Park management. These issues include: the centennial initiative, maintenance backlog, wild and scenic rivers, and security.
Pipeline Safety and Security: Federal Programs
This report discusses the United States pipeline networks and their security. The 109th Congress passed the Pipeline Safety Improvement Act of 2006 (P.L. 109-468) to improve pipeline safety and security practices, and to reauthorize the federal Office of Pipeline Safety.
Superfund Taxes or General Revenues: Future Funding Issues for the Superfund Program
This report discusses the role of dedicated taxes and other sources of revenue in funding the Hazardous Substance Superfund Trust Fund.
Organic Agriculture in the United States: Program and Policy Issues
This report discusses the law governing U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) programs whose purpose is to give consumers confidence in the legitimacy of products sold as organic, and permit legal action against those who use the term fraudulently.
WTO Dispute Settlement: Status of U.S. Compliance in Pending Cases
This report provides a summary of the status of U.S. compliance efforts in pending World Trade Organization (WTO) disputes that have resulted in adverse rulings against the United States. The report begins with an overview of WTO dispute settlement procedures, focusing on the compliance phase of the process, followed by a discussion of U.S. laws relating to WTO dispute proceedings. The report then lists pending WTO disputes in the compliance phase, with a brief discussion of major issues and the U.S. compliance history in each.