Congressional Research Service Reports - 94 Matching Results

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Environmental Equity

Description: More than 20 years of Federal pollution control programs notwithstanding, growing perception that minority and low-income communities remain at disproportionately high risk of exposure to toxic pollutants is focusing attention on "environmental equity" issues. Federal legislation has been introduced to ensure equal protection of environmental quality and public health. Equity legislation is opposed by people who are skeptical of its long-term prospects and believe that there is insufficient evidence of discrimination and that some inequities are inevitable in a free-market economy. Both sides agree there is a need to collect and analyze data on public health and exposure to environmental hazards and to compare health risks among racial and socio-economic groups.
Date: August 14, 1992
Creator: Schierow, Linda-Jo
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Deforestation: An Overview of Global Programs and Agreements

Description: In recent years, global environmental concerns have figured prominently on the American political agenda. In particular, tropical deforestation and its implications for global climate change and biological diversity loss have prompted public outcry. Concerns have since grown to include other forest types as well. The Congress has considered a variety of legislation to stem the tide of increasing deforestation and the United States has supported a number of bilateral and multilateral initiatives to assist other countries in managing their forest resources.
Date: October 21, 1992
Creator: Lyke, Julie & Fletcher, Susan R.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Endangered Species Act and Private Property

Description: If the 103rd Congress embarks upon an effort to reauthorize the Endangered Species Act (ESA), it will run into an old acquaintance: the property rights issue. As now written, the ESA has at least the potential to curtail property rights (whatever its actual impact as implemented may be). This report explores the legal repercussions of those impacts, especially whether they constitute takings of property under the fifth amendment of the U.S. Constitution.
Date: March 7, 1993
Creator: Meltz, Robert
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Air Quality: Impacts of Trip Reduction Programs on States and Affected Employers

Description: This report discusses employer trip reduction (ETR) programs, which would require large employers to implement certain transportation control measures as part of a national effort to combat air pollution, largely as a direct result of the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990.
Date: August 18, 1993
Creator: Flechtner, Maura K. & Mayer, Susan L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

A Directory of Some Interest Groups and Governmental Organizations Concerned With National Environmental Policies

Description: This report briefly describes selected associations that have demonstrated strong and continuous interest in environmental protection policies of the United States. It provides background information on some of the active participants in national policy discussions. The set of organizations abstracted for this report is not comprehensive; many groups necessarily have been omitted, often because they failed to respond to our request for information. An attempt was made to balance divergent political opinions and to include groups with different perspectives. All associations included in the report have nationwide membership, maintain an office in the vicinity of the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area, and actively seek to influence national (as opposed to international or regional) environmental policies. The financial information provided varies depending on what was available to CRS.
Date: September 21, 1993
Creator: Schierow, Linda-Jo
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Trade and Environment: Treatment in Recent Agreements--GATT and NAFTA

Description: This report reviews some of the concerns surrounding the environment work program and other environmental issues. It briefly describes work underway in the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), and current thinking underlying development of U.S. positions on trade and the environment in the GATT.
Date: February 24, 1994
Creator: Fletcher, Susan R. & Tiemann, Mary
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Market-Based Environmental Management: Issues in Implementation

Description: Increasingly, efforts to protect integral features of the natural environment that are essential to human well being face a double challenge. First, the magnitude of some conventional and emerging threats to environmental quality is growing, despite solid progress in controlling some causes. This is particularly the concern on a global scale in terms of atmospheric changes and loss of biological diversity. Second, easily-implemented uniform control methods using feasible technologies or other direct regulatory approaches are already in place for many pollution and resource management problems in the United States. Additional progress with so-called command and control policies can be expensive and disruptive, and thus counter productive to overall economic well being. This type of dilemma is common where environmental deterioration results from diffuse and complex causes inherent in technically-advanced high-consumption industrial societies such as the U.S. Solutions to these types of environmental problems are complicated by the diffuse benefits which obscures the net gains of additional controls that have concentrated and highly visible costs. Given this double bind, many policy analysts and academics have for years advocated more cost-effective and flexible approaches relying on market forces to further some environmental management objectives. Although market-based theory and practical environmental policy are still far apart, the incremental approach to environmental policymaking since the late seventies has resulted in some market-type innovations within traditional regulatory frameworks at all levels of government. The most prominent examples are the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) air emissions trading program and the recently enacted sulfur dioxide allowance trading program under the 1990 Clean Air Act Amendments.
Date: March 7, 1994
Creator: Moore, John L.; Blodgett, John E.; Copeland, Claudia; Gushee, David E.; Mayer, Susan L.; McCarthy, James E. et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

DOE Environmental Technology Department - A Fact Sheet

Description: The Department of Energy (DOE) established the Office of Technology Development in 1989 to develop faster and less expensive technical solutions to the Department's widespread environmental problems, primarily the legacy of decades of nuclear weapons production. Without new environmental technologies, DOE contends, some types of contamination may prove impossible to clean up. The Office of Technology Development, which is part of DOE's Environmental Management Program (EM), manages all stages of the development of new environmental restoration and waste management technologies, from basic research and development through final testing, demonstration and evaluation.
Date: March 11, 1994
Creator: Holt, Mark
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Implementing Acid Rain Legislation

Description: This report discusses the broad-ranging provisions in Title IV of The Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 (P.L. 101-549), which raise myriad implementation issues, particularly with respect to the system of tradable "allowances."
Date: November 15, 1994
Creator: Parker, Larry
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Clean Water Issues in the 104th Congress

Description: For the 104th Congress, reauthorization of the Clean Water Act would seem likely to be a priority, since the Act was last amended in 1987 and authorizations expired on September 30, 1990. But legislative prospects in the 104th Congress are uncertain. Clean water also was a priority for the 103rd Congress, but, in 1994, Congress ran out of time and did not act on comprehensive amendments. Many of the issues proved to be too complex and controversial to be resolved easily, while Congress also was considering a large agenda of environmental and other bills. Controversies arose in connection with issues specific to the Clean Water Act and a trio of regulatory relief issues that became barriers to a number of bills in the 103rd Congress.
Date: December 1, 1994
Creator: Copeland, Claudia
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Environmental Reauthorizations and Regulatory Reform: Recent Developments

Description: If general regulatory reform bills were enacted, debates on statute-specific reauthorizations could shift from regulatory reforms to the substantive regulatory requirements of each Act. In this case, regulatory reform could consist of proposals to modify statutory requirements to reduce costs to the private sector and State and local governments, to increase flexibility, and to reduce or compensate regulatory impacts on the value of private property. At issue would be a series of potential tradeoffs, for example among efficiency of environmental regulations, national consistency versus local flexibility, protection of private property rights, and degrees of health and environmental protection.
Date: December 19, 1994
Creator: Blodgett, John E.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Brownfields Program: Cleaning Up Urban Industrial Sites

Description: The Brownfields Economic Redevelopment Initiative is a pilot project to return idle or underused industrial and commercial facilities back to productive use, in situations where redevelopment is complicated by potential environmental contamination. The program is flexible, allowing cities to use a variety of approaches in utilizing grants of up to $200,000 to develop abandoned and underused sites, neighborhoods, and small regional areas. States and Indian tribes are eligible as well as local governments.
Date: April 3, 1995
Creator: Reisch, Mark
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Implementing Acid Rain Legislation

Description: This report discusses the broad-ranging provisions in Title IV of The Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990 (P.L. 101-549), which raise myriad implementation issues, particularly with respect to the system of tradable "allowances."
Date: April 5, 1995
Creator: Parker, Larry
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

California Air Quality FIP - A Fact Sheet

Description: On April 10, 1995, President Clinton signed P.L. 104-6, which contained a provision that rescinds the Federal air quality implementation plan (FIP) for the South Coast, Ventura, and Sacramento areas of California.(1) As a result, the FIP issued by EPA has no further force and effect, and California will continue pursuing approval of its own State implementation plan (SIP) in lieu of the FIP. Promulgation of the FIP was perceived by some within the State as having a detrimental effect on California's industries and economy resulting from costly and burdensome air pollution control measures contained in the plan.
Date: April 13, 1995
Creator: Mayer, Susan L.
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

Environmental Protection Agency FY1996 Appropriations: Analyses of House-Passed Riders

Description: On July 31, 1995, in passing H.R.2099, the VA-HUD-Independent Agencies Appropriation Bill for FY1996, the House approved numerous legislative riders, or provisions in bill language, which would prohibit EPA from spending FY1996 funds on a number of regulatory and enforcement activities. In passing H.R. 2099 on September 27, 1995, the Senate did not accept the House-passed riders but did include several other riders. On November 2, 1995, the House approved a motion to instruct the House conferees to strike the 17 major House-passed riders.
Date: November 3, 1995
Creator: Lee, Martin R.; Copeland, Claudia; Mayer, Susan L.; McCarthy, James E.; Schierow, Linda-Jo; Tiemann, Mary et al.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department