Congressional Research Service Reports - 342 Matching Results

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A Clean Air Option: Cash for Clunkers

Description: The Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 encourage states to pursue market-based approaches to improve air quality. An Accelerated Vehicle Retirement (AVR) program, commonly referred to as "Cash for Clunkers," is designed to provide an economic incentive for the owners of highly polluting vehicles to retire their automobiles permanently from use and to provide greater flexibility for private industry to reduce emissions by sponsoring such a program. The implementation of AVR programs can be controversial. This report discusses the AVR program debate and includes information on completed AVR pilot projects in selected states.
Date: September 16, 1996
Creator: Bearden, David M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

EPA's Tier 2 Proposal for Stricter Vehicle Emission Standards: A Fact Sheet

Description: The Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 established "Tier 1" standards to limit tailpipe emissions from new motor vehicles, and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is required to determine if more stringent requirements are needed to attain or maintain National Ambient Air Quality Standards. EPA also must assess the availability and cost-effectiveness of technologies necessary to control emissions. In a report submitted to Congress in August 1998, EPA concluded that tougher standards are necessary and that essential technologies are available and cost-effective
Date: June 24, 1999
Creator: Bearden, David M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Exemptions from Environmental Law for the Department of Defense

Description: Whether broader expansions from federal environmental laws are needed to preserve military readiness has been an issue. Questions have been raised as to whether environmental requirements have limited military training activities to the point that readiness would be compromised. The potential impacts of broader exemptions on environmental quality have raised additional questions. Although certain exemptions the Department of Defense (DOD) first requested in FY2003 have been enacted into law, Congress has opposed others. From FY2003 to FY2008, DOD requested exemptions from the Clean Air Act, Solid Waste Disposal Act, and Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act. To date, Congress has not enacted these three latter exceptions. The Administration's FY2009 defense authorization bill does not include these exemptions.
Date: May 1, 2008
Creator: Bearden, David M.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Clean Coal Technology Program: Current Prospects

Description: The Clean Coal Technology (CCT) program, started in the 1980's and funded generously in the early 1990's, has completed most of its surviving projects and has not funded any new ones since 1994. However, President Bush’s FY2002 budget outline proposed spending $2 billion over 10 years on a restructured CCT program. It is not clear what kind of projects would be included in the new program.
Date: April 6, 2001
Creator: Behrens, Carl E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Global Climate Change: U.S. Greenhouse Gas Emissions - Status, Trends, and Projections

Description: This report reviews U.S. emissions of greenhouse gases in the contexts both of domestic policy and of international obligations and proposals. On October 15, 1992, the United States ratified the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC), which entered into force on March 21, 1994. This committed the United States to “national policies” to limit “its anthropogenic emissions of greenhouse gases,” with a voluntary goal of returning “emissions of carbon dioxide [CO2] and other greenhouse gases [methane (CH4), nitrous oxide (N2O), hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), perfluorocarbons (PFCs), and sulfur hexafluoride (SF6)]” at the “end of the decade” to “their 1990 levels.”
Date: August 15, 2003
Creator: Blodgett, John E. & Parker, Larry
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Air Quality: EPA's Proposed New Ozone and Particulate Matter Standards

Description: This report discusses the contentious issue of enforcing stringent national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS) for ozone and particulate matter (PM), the opponents of which decry as harmful to the economy. The report discusses actions undertaken by the EPA, President Clinton's support of the NAAQSs, and the criticisms of opponents.
Date: June 27, 1997
Creator: Blodgett, John E.; Parker, Larry & McCarthy, James E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Air Quality Standards: The Decisionmaking Process

Description: The decisions by the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in 1997 to revise the National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for ozone and particulate matter refocused attention on the criteria and the process by which these decisions are made Tracing the steps of the decision pieces, this report identifies the statutory criteria established by the Congress and summarizes the administrative procedures the Agency follows in setting these standards and in reviewing them every 5 years.
Date: June 24, 1998
Creator: Blodgett, John E.; Parker, Larry & McCarthy, James E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Is Biopower Carbon Neutral?

Description: This report discusses some factors taken into account when considering whether biopower is carbon neutral. It does not discuss carbon accounting for other bioenergy pathways.
Date: February 19, 2015
Creator: Bracmort, Kelsi
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Is Biopower Carbon Neutral?

Description: This report assesses the variables involved in determining whether or not biopower (i.e., electricity generated from biomass) is a carbon-neutral alternative to fossil fuels as a way to help meet meet U.S. energy demands and reduce U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. It includes information about the biomass carbon cycle, GHG accounting for biopower production, recent developments affecting the assessment, and overview of whether or not it can be considered carbon neutral, and legislative implications.
Date: July 6, 2011
Creator: Bracmort, Kelsi
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Is Biopower Carbon Neutral?

Description: This report assesses the variables involved in determining whether or not biopower (i.e., electricity generated from biomass) is a carbon-neutral alternative to fossil fuels as a way to help meet meet U.S. energy demands and reduce U.S. greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. It includes information about the biomass carbon cycle, GHG accounting for biopower production, recent developments affecting the assessment, and overview of whether or not it can be considered carbon neutral, and legislative implications.
Date: January 25, 2011
Creator: Bracmort, Kelsi
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Geoengineering: Governance and Technology Policy

Description: This report is intended as a primer on the policy issues, science, and governance of geoengineering technologies. The report will first set the policy parameters under which geoengineering technologies may be considered. It will then describe selected technologies in detail and discuss their status. The third section provides a discussion of possible approaches to governmental involvement in, and oversight of, geoengineering, including a summary of domestic and international instruments and institutions that may affect geoengineering projects.
Date: November 26, 2013
Creator: Bracmort, Kelsi & Lattanzio, Richard K.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Biochar: Examination of an Emerging Concept to Mitigate Climate Change

Description: Biochar is a charcoal produced under high temperatures using crop residues, animal manure, or any type of organic waste material. Depending on the feedstock, biochar may look similar to potting soil or to a charred substance. The combined production and use of biochar is considered a carbon-negative process, meaning that it removes carbon from the atmosphere. This report briefly describes biochar, its potential advantages and disadvantages, legislative support, and research and development activities underway in the United States.
Date: May 24, 2010
Creator: Bracmort, Kelsi S.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Geoengineering: Governance and Technology Policy

Description: This report is intended as a primer on the policy issues, science, and governance of geoengineering technologies. The report will first set the policy parameters under which geoengineering technologies may be considered. It will then describe selected technologies in detail and discuss their status. The third section provides a discussion of possible approaches to governmental involvement in, and oversight of, geoengineering, including a summary of domestic and international instruments and institutions that may affect geoengineering projects.
Date: August 16, 2010
Creator: Bracmort, Kelsi; Lattanzio, Richard K. & Barbour, Emily C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Geoengineering: Governance and Technology Policy

Description: This report is intended as a primer on the policy issues, science, and governance of geoengineering technologies. The report will first set the policy parameters under which geoengineering technologies may be considered. It will then describe selected technologies in detail and discuss their status. The third section provides a discussion of possible approaches to governmental involvement in, and oversight of, geoengineering, including a summary of domestic and international instruments and institutions that may affect geoengineering projects.
Date: January 10, 2011
Creator: Bracmort, Kelsi; Lattanzio, Richard K. & Barbour, Emily C.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Methane Capture: Options for Greenhouse Gas Emission Reduction

Description: This report discusses legislative alternatives for addressing methane capture, sources of methane, opportunities and challenges for methane capture, and current federal programs that support methane recovery.
Date: September 17, 2009
Creator: Bracmort, Kelsi; Ramseur, Jonathan L.; McCarthy, James E.; Folger, Peter & Marples, Donald J.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Acoustic Thermometry of Ocean Climate: Marine Mammal Issues

Description: After global warming became a concern in the mid-1950s, researchers proposed measuring deep ocean temperatures to reveal any significant trends in core ocean warming. Acoustic thermometry can detect changes in ocean temperature by receiving low-frequency sounds transmitted across an ocean basin because the speed of sound is proportional to water temperature. Acoustic Thermometry of Ocean Climate, or ATOC, is an international program involving 11 institutions in seven nations. It is designed as a 30-month "proof-of-concept" project to provide data on possible global climate change, with funding provided by the U.S. Department of Defense. A debate has arisen over ATOC's impact on marine mammals versus the benefits of better global warming information derived from ATOC. This report dicusses the ATOC program and related concerns.
Date: May 12, 1995
Creator: Buck, Eugene H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Ocean Acidification

Description: This report discusses the increasing concern, within the scientific community, that rising levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere could detrimentally alter marine ecosystems. The report discusses how ocean acidification happens, its possible outcomes, as well as natural and human responses that could possibly limit or reduce the rate of the process.
Date: May 27, 2010
Creator: Buck, Eugene H. & Folger, Peter
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Ocean Acidification

Description: This report discusses the increasing concern, within the scientific community, that rising levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere could detrimentally alter marine ecosystems. The report discusses how ocean acidification happens, its possible outcomes, as well as natural and human responses that could possibly limit or reduce the rate of the process.
Date: May 27, 2009
Creator: Buck, Eugene H. & Folger, Peter
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department