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 Decade: 2000-2009
 Collection: Congressional Research Service Reports
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Global Climate Change: Three Policy Perspectives
This paper discusses the three different perspectives used to consider issues related to the 1992 U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change and the 1997 Kyoto Agreement. The perspectives are: the technological lens (that environmental problems are the result of misused or inappropriate technologies that can be improved); the economic lens (that environmental problems are the result of inappropriate pricing that can be fixed by representing environmental measures in market costs); and the ecological lens (that environmental problems are the result of disregard for the ecosystem and can be improved with education and "green" initiatives). The report discusses each approach and how it relates to policy creation.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Alternative Fuels and Advanced Technology Vehicles: Issues in Congress
This report provides an overview of current issues surrounding alternative fuels and advanced technology vehicles.
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.
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.
Rising Food Prices and Global Food Needs: The U.S. Response
This report discusses rising food prices that are having impacts across the world, but especially among poor people in the low-income developing countries. The report addresses several issues, such as: Why Are Food Prices Increasing? How Countries Have Responded? Food Aid Funding Shortfalls, and the U.S. Response to Food Aid Funding Shortfalls.
High Agricultural Commodity Prices: What Are the Issues?
This report examines the causes, consequences, and outlook for prices of the major U.S. program crops, and provides references for more detailed information.
Science, Technology, and American Diplomacy: Background and Issues for Congress
This report provides an overview of current U.S. international S&T policy; describes the role of the Department of State (DOS), the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP), the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and other federal agencies; and discusses possible policy options for Congress. It focuses on international science and technology diplomacy, where American leadership in science and technology is used as a diplomatic tool to enhance another country's development and to improve understanding by other nations of U.S. values and ways of doing business.
Climate Change: Costs and Benefits of S. 2191/S. 3036
This report examines six studies that project the costs of S. 2191 (S. 3036) to 2030 or 2050. It considers [1] the response of the economy to the technological challenges; [2] the ability to create a considerable amount of low-carbon generating capacity; [3] offsetts as a possible tool to reduce costs and buy time for the development of more efficient technologies; [4] the role of the Carbon Market Efficiency Board; [5] the effect of the Low Carbon Feul Standard; and [6] how the climate-related benefits function in a global context.
Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy (ARPA-E): Background, Status, and Selected Issues for Congress
This report provides an overview of Advanced Research Projects Agency - Energy (ARPA-E) design. The report discusses the legislative origins and policy debates prior to ARPA-E authorization and Bush administration response to ARPA-E authorization.
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.
What Is the “Farm Bill”?
This report provides definition of the farm bill (P.L. 110-246, Food, Conservation, and Energy Act of 2008) and information surrounding the bill.
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.
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.
South Florida Ecosystem Restoration and the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan
This report summarizes the Comprehensive Everglades Restoration Plan (CERP) and its implementation.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
Nanotechnology and U.S. Competitiveness: Issues and Options
This report reviews national nanotechnology research and development (R&D) investments, scientific papers, and patents as indicators of current U.S. scientific and technological competitiveness and potential indicators of future industrial competitiveness in nanotechnology products.
Transportation Fuel Taxes: Impacts of a Repeal or Moratorium
The report includes an introduction regarding the increase in crude oil and refined product prices and discusses the proposals to offset effects of higher crude oil prices and the impact on markets and prices.
Emission Allowance Allocation in a Cap-and-Trade Program: Options and Considerations
The first two sections of this report discuss the primary emission allowance distribution methods: auctions and no-cost distribution to covered sources. These sections examine the potential benefits and concerns of these allocation mechanisms. The final section identifies different options and policy considerations for Congress when determining to whom and for what purpose to distribute the value of the emission allowances.
Climate Change: Comparison of S. 2191 as Reported (now S. 3036) with Proposed Boxer Amendment
This report discusses S. 2191 (the Lieberman-Warner CLimate Security Act of 2008), which was reintroduced as S. 3036 with a deficit reduction amendment. In particular, it provides a comparison of five key differences between the bill and the proposed Boxer Amendment.
Revising the National Ambient Air Quality Standard for Lead
This report provides background on the National Ambient Air Quality Standard (NAAQS), the process used to establish the standards, the factors leading to the reduction in lead emissions, and the proposed changes to the lead standard, as well as information regarding the potential effects of any revision.