Congressional Research Service Reports - 41 Matching Results

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Environmental Protection Issues in the 108th Congress

Description: The 108th Congress has acted on a variety of disparate environmental measures; some of these represent proposals or issues that had been under consideration in the 107th Congress and earlier. Environmental issues considered by Congress tend to fall into several major categories: (1) funding issues — whether funding levels are adequate and focused on appropriate priorities; (2) expanding, renewing, or refocusing specific environment programs; (3) environmental issues that are important “subsets” of other major areas of concern, such as energy, defense, or transportation programs; and more recently, (4) terrorism and infrastructure protection in areas such as wastewater and chemical facilities.
Date: February 24, 2003
Creator: Fletcher, Susan R. & Isler, Margaret M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Nanotechnology and Environmental, Health, and Safety: Issues for Consideration

Description: This report identifies the potential environmental, health, and safety opportunities and challenges of nanotechnology; explains the importance of addressing nanotechnology EHS concerns; identifies and discusses nanotechnology EHS issues; and summarizes options for Congressional action, including the nanotechnology EHS-related provisions of selected legislation. The report also includes two appendices.
Date: February 9, 2009
Creator: Sargent, John F., Jr.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Open Ocean Aquaculture

Description: 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.
Date: February 12, 2008
Creator: Upton, Harold F. & Buck, Eugene H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

EPA's Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) Program: Highlights of Proposed Changes and Impacts on Agriculture

Description: In August 1999 the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed regulations to clarify and strengthen the Total Maximum Daily Load (TMDL) program under section 303(d) of the Clean Water Act. Section 303(d) requires states to identify surface waters for which wastewater discharge limits are not stringent enough to achieve water quality standards and to allocate further required pollutant reductions among sources in order to attain those standards. This report discusses the major changes in EPA's proposals, compared with existing regulatory program requirements, and potential impacts on agriculture and forestry sources, which have been controversial.
Date: February 3, 2000
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Climate Change Legislation in the 109th Congress

Description: Climate change and greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are a continuing issue in the 109th Congress. Bills directly addressing climate change issues range from those focused primarily on climate change research to comprehensive emissions cap-and-trade programs. Additional bills focus on GHG reporting and registries, or on power plant emissions of carbon dioxide, as part of wider controls on pollutant emissions. The bills vary in their approaches to climate change issues. This report briefly discusses the basic concepts on which these bills are based and compares major provisions of the bills in each of the following categories: climate change research, technology deployment, GHG reporting and registries, and emissions reduction programs.
Date: February 22, 2006
Creator: Yacobucci, Brent D.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Biotechnology in Animal Agriculture: Status and Current Issues

Description: This report describes several scientifically emerging animal biotechnologies that are raising a variety of questions concerning risks to humans, animals, and the environment, as well as ethical concerns. The report examines applications of the technologies and discusses major issues that may arise.
Date: February 11, 2009
Creator: Becker, Geoffrey S. & Cowan, Tadlock
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Endangered Species Act (ESA) in the 11th Congress: Conflicting Values and Difficult Choices

Description: This report discusses U.S. policy toward global climate change, which evolved from a "study only" to a more "study and action" orientation in 1992 with ratification of the U.N. Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).
Date: February 25, 2009
Creator: Buck, Eugene H.; Corn, M. L.; Sheikh, Pervaze A.; Meltz, Robert & Alexander, Kristina
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Clean Air Act Issues in the 109th Congress

Description: This report provides background and analysis on several issues related to the Clean Air Act, including: Clear Skies / Multi-Pollutant Legislation, Mercury from Power Plants, New Source Review (NSR), MTBE and Ethanol, Ozone Nonattainment Area Deadlines, and Conformity of Transportation Plans and SIPs. It also discusses the most recent developments.
Date: February 22, 2005
Creator: McCarthy, James E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Environmental Protection Agency: Highlights of the President's FY2007 Request

Description: Title II of the Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act for FY2006 (P.L. 109-54, H.R. 2361) provides $7.73 billion for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), subject to an across-the-board rescission of 0.476%. Section 439 of Title IV indicates that the rescission is to be applied proportionately among each account, program, project, and activity specified in the law, accompanying reports, and the President’s budget request. The total FY2006 EPA appropriation includes an additional $80 million in unobligated funds “rescinded” from past appropriations, as noted in the following table. P.L. 109-54 provides more funding for EPA than the Administration’s FY2006 request of $7.52 billion, but less than the FY2005 appropriation of $8.03 billion.
Date: February 21, 2006
Creator: Bearden, David M. & Esworthy, Robert
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Global Climate Change

Description: This report discusses the effect of human activities on global climate change. Human activities, particularly burning of fossil fuels, have increased atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) and other trace gases, including chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs), methane, and nitrous oxide.
Date: February 25, 2003
Creator: Justus, John R. & Fletcher, Susan R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Clean Air Act Issues in the 109th Congress

Description: The courts and the executive branch face major decisions on clean air issues in 2006, with Congress more likely playing an oversight role. One focus is EPA's Jan. 17 2006 proposal to strengthen air quality standards for fine particles, which are estimated to cause tens of thousands of premature deaths annually. Whether the proposal is supported by the available science and what impact its implementation would have have likely issues of concern. Other issues of continuing interest are EPA's 2005 decisions limiting interstate transport of air pollution and establishing cap-and-trade systems for emissions from coal-fired power plants, and the agency's proposed changes to New Source Review.
Date: February 10, 2006
Creator: McCarthy, James E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Clean Air Act Issues in the 107th Congress

Description: In the 107th Congress, the most prominent air quality issue has been whether state and federal regulations designed to protect air quality are having a negative impact on energy production, and, if so, whether legislation should be enacted to reform such regulations. The early discussion focused primarily on California, but with the release of the Administration’s energy policy recommendations in May 2001 and subsequent congressional action, attention shifted to issues more national in scope.
Date: February 4, 2003
Creator: McCarthy, James E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Clean Water Act Issues in the 106th Congress

Description: In the 106th Congress, no comprehensive activity on reauthorizing the Clean Water Act occurred, although a number of individual clean water bills were enacted. Other issues have been debated recently, such as reforming the law to provide regulatory relief for industry, states and cities, and individual landowners. The debate over many of these issues highlights differing views of the Act and its implementation by some who seek to strengthen existing requirements and others who believe that costs and benefits should be more carefully weighed before additional control programs are mandated.
Date: February 23, 2001
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Agriculture Biotechnology: Background and Recent Issues

Description: This report discusses issues regarding the impacts of GE crops on the environment and food safety, and whether GE foods should be specially labeled. Underlying these issues is the question of whether U.S. regulation and oversight of biotechnology—with responsibilities spread primarily among the U.S.
Date: February 13, 2009
Creator: Cowan, Tadlock & Becker, Geoffrey S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The National Environment Policy Act: Streamlining NEPA

Description: This report discusses elements of National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) relevant to streamlining, issues associated with determining project delays attributed to NEPA, common streamlining methods, and recently proposed and enacted legislative and administrative streamlining activities.
Date: February 8, 2006
Creator: Luther, Linda G
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The National Environment Policy Act: Streamlining NEPA

Description: This report discusses elements of National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) relevant to streamlining, issues associated with determining project delays attributed to NEPA, common streamlining methods, and recently proposed and enacted legislative and administrative streamlining activities.
Date: February 13, 2006
Creator: Luther, Linda G
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The National Environmental Policy Act: Streamlining NEPA

Description: This report discusses elements of the National Environmental Policy Act of 1969 (NEPA; 42 U.S.C. §§ 4321, et seq.) relevant to streamlining, issues associated with determining project delays attributed to NEPA, common streamlining methods, and recently proposed and enacted legislative and administrative streamlining activities.
Date: February 13, 2006
Creator: Luther, Linda
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Environmental Streamlining Provisions in the Transportation Equity Act for the 21st Century: Status of Implementation

Description: This report describes the environmental documents required for highway projects, discusses the average amount of time to complete this documentation, summarizes the environmental streamlining provisions under TEA-21, and examines administrative and legislative actions taken to implement these requirements.
Date: February 6, 2003
Creator: Bearden, David M. & Luther, Linda G.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

National Environmental Education Act of 1990: Overview, Implementation, and Reauthorization Issues

Description: This report presents an overview of the National Environmental Education Act of 1990, discusses appropriations, examines Environmental Protection Agency (EPA's) implementation of the act, and analyzes potential issues for reauthorization that may be considered in the 109th Congress.
Date: February 27, 2006
Creator: Bearden, David M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department