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U.N. Convention on the Law of the Sea: Living Resources Provisions

Description: The United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea (LOS Convention) was agreed to in 1982, but the United States never became a signatory nation. In the 111th Congress, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, at her confirmation hearing before the Senate Committee on Foreign Affairs on January 13, 2009, acknowledged that U.S. accession to the LOS Convention would be an Obama Administration priority. This report describes provisions of the LOS Convention relating to living marine resources and discusses how these provisions comport with current U.S. marine policy.
Date: June 22, 2009
Creator: Buck, Eugene H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Estimates of Carbon Mitigation Potential from Agricultural and Forestry Activities

Description: Numerous theoretical and empirical studies estimate the greenhouse gas (GHG) mitigation potential of farm and forestry activities, and suggest that the potential for carbon uptake in agricultural soils and forest lands is much greater than current rates. Following a discussion of the estimated current emissions and carbon sequestration by the agricultural and forestry sectors, this report presents a brief overview of the available estimates from USDA and EPA carbon mitigation studies, and then discusses some of the limitations of the available data and modeling results. This report is organized into four parts, including a brief overview of the agriculture and forestry sectors within the broader climate change debate, as well as various data and information on potential for carbon storage and mitigation from farming and forestry activities.
Date: June 19, 2009
Creator: Johnson, Renée; Gorte, Ross W.; Yacobucci, Brent D. & Schnepf, Randy
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

U.S. Tree Planting for Carbon Sequestration

Description: This report briefly discusses one of the widely discussed options for domestic carbon dioxide offsets: tree planting. Two terms are generally used for tree planting: reforestation, for planting trees in areas recently cleared of forest through timber harvesting or natural disaster; and afforestation, for planting trees on sites that have long been cleared of forests, such as crop, pasture, and brush lands.
Date: May 4, 2009
Creator: Gorte, Ross W.
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: April 2, 2009
Creator: Buck, Eugene H. & Folger, Peter
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Lands Managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the Forest Service (FS): Issues for the lllth Congress

Description: This report discusses actions that Congress is considering, which could affect the various uses and management of federal lands administered by the Bureau of Land Management and the Forest Service, such as: legislation, administrative or regulatory proposals, and litigation and judicial decisions. Issue areas include onshore energy resources, administration of hardrock mining, wildfire protection, management of wild horses and burros, designation of the National Landscape Conservation System, wilderness designation, management of national forest roadless areas, and Forest Service implementation of the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).
Date: February 20, 2009
Creator: Gorte, Ross W.; Hardy Vincent, Carol; Alexander, Kristina & Humphries, Marc
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Forest Fire/Wildfire Protection

Description: This report provides historical background on wildfires, and describes concerns about the wildland-urban interface and about forest and rangeland health. The report discusses fuel management, fire control, and fire effects. The report then examines federal, state, and landowner roles and responsibilities in protecting lands and resources from wildfires, and concludes by discussing current issues for federal wildfire management.
Date: January 29, 2009
Creator: Gorte, Ross W.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Endangered Species Act (ESA) Issues Regarding Columbia Basin Salmon and Steelhead

Description: The construction and operation of the Federal Columbia River Power System (FCRPS) have reduced salmon and steelhead populations in the Columbia Basin. This report discusses the federal regulation of this system under the Endangered Species Act (ESA).
Date: January 26, 2009
Creator: Alexander, Kristina & Buck, Eugene H.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Brief Summaries of Federal Animal Protection Statutes

Description: This report contains summaries of federal animal protection statutes, listed alphabetically. It does not include treaties, although it does include statutes enacted to implement treaties. It includes statutes concerning animals that are not entirely, or not at all, animal protection statutes. For example, it includes a statute authorizing the eradication of predators, because one of the statute's purposes is to protect domestic and "game" animals; and it includes statutes to conserve fish, although their ultimate purpose may not be for the fishes' benefit. It also includes statutes that allow the disabled to use service animals, and even includes statutes aimed at acts of animal rights advocates (the Animal Enterprise Protection Act of 1992, and the Recreational Hunting Safety and Preservation Act of 1994).
Date: December 18, 2008
Creator: Cohen, Henry
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Measuring and Monitoring Carbon in the Agricultural and Forestry Sectors

Description: Proposals to reduce emissions of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases often include the use of forestry and agricultural practices and lands for carbon sequestration. However, uncertainty about the accuracy of measuring carbon from these activities has led some to question this potential. Basic approaches for measuring forest and agricultural carbon include on-site measurement; indirect measurement from off-site tools; and estimation using models or inferences. Because of challenges associated with balancing the cost and accuracy of these measurement tools, any practicable system for measuring forest and agricultural carbon might require a mix of these approaches.
Date: October 6, 2008
Creator: Gorte, Ross W. & Johnson, Renée
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Conservation Reserve Program: Status and Current Issues

Description: 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.
Date: September 11, 2008
Creator: Cowan, Tadlock
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Heritage Areas: Background, Proposals, and Current Issues

Description: This report focuses on heritage areas designated by Congress and related issues and legislation. Over more than two decades, Congress has established 40 National Heritage Areas (NHAs) to commemorate, conserve, and promote areas that include important natural, scenic, historic, cultural, and recreational resources.
Date: September 5, 2008
Creator: Vincent, Carol Hardy & Whiteman, David L.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Specialty Metal Provision and the Berry Amendment: Issues for Congress

Description: This report examines the specialty metal provision which was originally part of the Berry Amendment; the potential oversight issues for Congress, and options that Congress may wish to consider. The debate over the specialty metal provision may also renew interest in the debate over the viability of other domestic source restrictions. There is congressional interest in the specialty metal provision because: (1) the specialty metal restriction affects major defense contractors who produce components for commercial airplanes; (2) some prime defense contractors as well as subcontractors on the second, third, and fourth tiers have stated that they were unable to comply with the Berry Amendment specialty metal requirement; (3) DOD has authorized the use of waivers to purchase non-compliant items (non-compliant specialty metal are metal that do not meet the 100% domestic source requirement of the Berry Amendment); and (4) the long-term impact of the specialty metal provision on the costs of defense equipment and programs, particularly on the requirement that weapon system components be certified as made in the United States.
Date: September 2, 2008
Creator: Grasso, Valerie Bailey
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Lands Managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the Forest Service (FS): Issues for the 110th Congress

Description: The report starts out with a brief overview and analysis of Bureau of Land Management (BLM). Other issues discussed briefly include roadless areas in the National Forest System, national forest planning, national forest county payments, BLM land sales, and grazing management.
Date: August 27, 2008
Creator: Gorte, Ross W.; Vincent, Carol Hardy; Humphries, Marc & Alexander, Kristina
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Disaster Tax Relief for the Midwest

Description: The Midwestern Disaster Tax Relief Act of 2008 is intended to assist with the recovery from the severe weather that affected the Midwest during the summer of 2008. The Jobs, Energy, Families, and Disaster Relief Act of 2008 includes some similar provisions, but these are not limited to the Midwest disaster. The disaster relief in the three bills is similar to that provided to assist with the recovery from the 2005 hurricanes and the 2007 Kansas tornadoes. This report broadly discusses the disaster relief provisions in other relevant legislation.
Date: August 20, 2008
Creator: Lunder, Erika
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

The Specialty Metal Provision and the Berry Amendment: Issues for Congress

Description: This report examines the specialty metal provision which was originally part of the Berry Amendment; the potential oversight issues for Congress, and options that Congress may wish to consider. The debate over the specialty metal provision may also renew interest in the debate over the viability of other domestic source restrictions. There is congressional interest in the specialty metal provision because: (1) the specialty metal restriction affects major defense contractors who produce components for commercial airplanes; (2) some prime defense contractors as well as subcontractors on the second, third, and fourth tiers have stated that they were unable to comply with the Berry Amendment specialty metal requirement; (3) the Department of Defense (DOD) has authorized the use of waivers to purchase non-compliant items (non-compliant specialty metal are metal that do not meet the 100% domestic source requirement of the Berry Amendment); and (4) the long-term impact of the specialty metal provision on the costs of defense equipment and programs, particularly on the requirement that weapon system components be certified as made in the United States.
Date: May 14, 2008
Creator: Grasso, Valerie Bailey
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Lands Managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the Forest Service (FS): Issues for the 110th Congress

Description: The missions of the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the Forest Service (FS) are similar, and many issues, programs, and policies affect both agencies. This report focuses on several issues affecting both agencies’ lands that are likely to be of interest to the 110th Congress, including energy resources, hardrock mining, FS roadless areas, wild horses and burros, wilderness, wildfire protection, and others.
Date: May 9, 2008
Creator: Gorte, Ross W.; Vincent, Carol H.; Humphries, Marc & Alexander, Kristina
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Conservation Reserve Program: Status and Current Issues

Description: 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.
Date: January 3, 2008
Creator: Cowan, Tadlock
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Federal Lands Managed by the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and the Forest Service (FS): Issues for the 110th Congress

Description: This report discusses actions the 110th Congress is considering that affect the various uses and management of federal lands administered by the Bureau of Land Management and the Forest Service. These actions include legislation, administrative or regulatory proposals, and litigation and judicial decisions. Issues areas include access to energy resources on federal lands, especially implementation of the Energy Policy Act of 2005; development of hardrock minerals; roadless area management and protection; management, protection, and disposal of wild horses and burros; wilderness designation and management; and wildfire management and protection. Many of these issues have been of interest to Congress and the nation for decades.
Date: October 26, 2007
Creator: Gorte, Ross W.; Vincent, Carol H.; Humphries, Marc & Alexander, Kristina
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Renewable Energy Policy in the 2007 Farm Bill

Description: This report provides a summary of major legislative proposals for change in the farm bill energy title (Title IX) and compares current law with energy provisions from the recently approved House 2007 farm bill.
Date: October 1, 2007
Creator: Schnepf, Randy
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department