Archive for February, 2009

Web resources:

Institute for Local Government

Web page provides information on the California Climate Action Network specific for local governments: cities and counties. Includes links to best practices for preparing for climate change; a report exploring climate policy at the local level; and more.

The Pacific Northwest Climate CIGnal
Issue #16, Winter 2009
Climate Impacts Group, University of Washington

“In this Issue
1.    Pacific Northwest climate outlook
2.    Pacific Northwest streamflow forecast updates
3.    The Washington Climate Change Impacts Assessment conference (2.12.09) and other meetings
4.    CIG researcher Philip Mote to head the Oregon Climate Change Research Institute
5.    Greenhouse gas emissions increase in US
6.    Recent U.S. Climate Change Synthesis and Assessment reports
7.    Frequently asked questions about climate models
8.    Recent CIG publications”


Democrats Pen Principles for Climate-Change Bills
Senate Panel Sets Goal of Creating Cap-and-Trade System


Ecologists report quantifiable measures of nature’s services to humans (02/02/2009)

Growing Optimism for U.S. Climate Change Bill (02/02/2009)

CLIMATE: Post-Kyoto talks in House’s spotlight (02/02/2009)

SOCIETY: Activists push for carbon tax to ease health and poverty-related issues (01/30/2009)

Climate Change’s Impact On Invasive Plants In Western US May Create Restoration Opportunities (01/30/2009)


“A new study by researchers at Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs has found that global climate change may lead to the retreat of some invasive plant species in the western United States, which could create unprecedented ecological restoration opportunities across millions of acres throughout America. At the same time, global warming may enable other invasive plants to spread more widely.”

Barker: Senators support logging as stimulus (01/26/2009)

ENERGY POLICY:  New USDA chief pushes for expanded biofuels support in stimulus (01/26/2009)

Global Warming: Tree Deaths Have Doubled Across The Western U.S. (01/25/2009)

Warming Trends Alter Conservation (01/25/2009)
Experts Think Old Paradigm of Fixed Boundaries Will Not Work as Sea Levels Rise


Study Ties Tree Deaths To Change in Climate (01/23/2009)


Clyburn Leads Charge For Rural Stimulus (01/08/2009)


Forest Carbon in the United States: Opportunities and Options for Private Lands

“Whether our private forests accumulate carbon, release carbon, or are lost entirely as carbon sinks will be a major determinant of how quickly and cost-effectively the U.S. can reduce carbon dioxide emissions. Amounts of forest carbon sequestration are falling. Since 1990, U.S. forests have stored less carbon each year because of conversion and unsustainable harvest.

“This report describes management approaches on private forests that will lead to lasting net increases in carbon stocks. It also identifies causes of forest carbon loss, proposes ways to develop a domestic forest carbon market, and outlines the principles of forest carbon accounting.”

An Assessment of Biomass Harvesting Guidelines
Forest Guild


“A new report by the Forest Guild, An Assessment of Biomass Harvesting Guidelines, is the first comprehensive review of these biomass harvesting guidelines. The report provides recommendations to ensure that new guidelines promote sustainable use of biomass from forests.”

“‘New interest in woody biomass is a double-edged sword,’ says Dr. Zander Evans, Forest Guild Research Director and the report’s author. ‘If harvested sustainably, biomass can meet some of our energy needs and leave our forests healthier than they are now. However, without appropriate guidance, biomass harvests can seriously degrade our forests.’”

Climate Policy at the Local Level: A Survey of California’s Cities and Counties
By Ellen Hanak, Louise Bedsworth, Sarah Swanbeck, and Joanna Malaczynski
Public Policy Institute of California


“California has taken center stage in national and international efforts to fight global warming. This survey of over 300 of the state’s cities and counties puts the spotlight on the role California’s local governments are playing. It finds that there is already considerable local involvement in activities related to climate change. However, many efforts are still focused on municipal operations and facilities, rather than on the broader community. Better information on successful programs and funding sources, and greater clarity in state law on conformity with the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA) will help further local efforts.”


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