March 2004 E-Newsletter

In This Issue:

 


GREENHOUSE GAS CAP-AND-TRADE BILL INTRODUCED IN CONGRESS

The Climate Stewardship Act, introduced on March 30 by U.S. Representatives Wayne Gilchrest (R-MD) and John W. Olver (D-MA), is the House companion of the bill introduced in the U.S. Senate by Senators Joseph I. Lieberman (D-CT) and John McCain (R-AZ) in 2003. Starting in 2010, the bill would cap greenhouse gas emissions of the electricity generation, transportation, industrial, and commercial economic sectors at the 2000 level, while providing for market-based trading of emission allowances.

 


REDUCING GREENHOUSE GASES: BALANCING POLICY AND POLITICS

A diverse group of business, government, and environmental leaders, brought together by the Aspen Institute and the Pew Center, has recommended a framework for a possible mandatory greenhouse gas reduction program for the United States. Starting with the premise that, if mandatory action is taken, climate policies should be environmentally effective, economical and fair, the participants reached consensus on a policy framework that is both effective and politically feasible. Read "A Climate Policy Framework: Balancing Policy and Politics."

 


CORAL REEF ECOSYSTEMS AT RISK

Coral reefs provide important resources and direct economic benefits to the large and growing human populations in low-latitude coastal zones. But development, over-fishing, and pollution have contributed to a global loss approaching 25% of these valuable ecosystems. This new report, "The Potential Contributions of Climate Change to Coral Reef Ecosystems," analyzes the current state of knowledge regarding coral reef communities and outlines the likely impacts of climate change to coral reef systems both in U.S. waters and around the world over the next century.

 


INNOVATIVE TECHNOLOGY POLICIES TO ADDRESS CLIMATE CHANGE

Widespread adoption of new technologies for electric power generation, transportation, industry, and consumer products is necessary to reduce the greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions that contribute to climate change. This new brief, "U.S. Technology and Innovation Policies to Address Climate Change," summarizes the role of technology in GHG mitigation strategies and the lessons learned from U.S. technology and innovation policies.

 


NEW CLIMATE CHANGE PROGRAMS AT THE STATE LEVEL

In the absence of action at the federal level, many states are taking the lead in curbing GHG emissions. For example:

  • Maryland passed a law requiring stricter energy efficiency standards for nine residential and commercial appliances.
     
  • Public benefit funds in 12 states announced the new Clean Energy States Alliance, to promote renewable and clean energy markets in the United States.
     
  • California State Treasurer announced the Green Wave Environmental Investment Initiative, and called on the state's two largest pension funds to invest in cutting-edge clean technologies and environmentally responsible companies.

Learn more about steps being taken at the state level.

 


UPCOMING REPORTS

"A Synthesis of Potential Climate Change Impacts on the United States"
Release: April 28, 2004

"U.S. Market Consequences of Global Climate Change"
Release: April 28, 2004