Sunday, July 28, 2013

In Brief

Deposition of Air Pollutants Pollutes Water

Though our pollution control laws are structured around different media, such as air and water, pollutants can move around and have different effects to different degrees in different parts of the environment. The Government Accountability Office (GAO) describes in a report how deposition of air pollutants can affect water quality. In addition, it shows how the media-specific approach to pollution regulation makes it difficult for the Environmental Protection Agency to address this issue.

Coal Here to Stay

GAO published a study of changes coming to coal-fired electrical power generation. Though aging facilities and environmental regulations will be changing it, coal is expected to remain part of the American energy portfolio.

Coal energy is an issue that demonstrates that politics is local. President Obama has faced opposition from his own party for Congressmen and Senators that represent areas that benefit from burning coal for energy (see this article from The Daily Caller).

Senate Committee Hears Navy Energy Nominee

The Senate Armed Services Committee questioned retired Vice Admiral Dennis McGinn as a nominee for Assistant Secretary of the Navy for Energy, Installations and Environment. Naval alternative energy programs were one of the issues of concern.

Government Looks at Milage Fees

IW has posted several items about the dwindling Highway Trust Fund. One idea that has been floated for raising revenues for highways is to switch from fuel taxes to fees on miles driven. GAO studied the concept for Congress. It’s report includes a review of milage fee program in several countries and pilot programs in the United States.


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