(October 30, 2011)
After delays and political pressures, the EPA is being given “more time to forge the first-ever plan to regulate carbon dioxide from power plants, the country’s single biggest source of greenhouse gases.” Several green groups and states have sued the EPA to issue the carbon rules, but are now negotiating on the deadline for the plan.
(October 26, 2011)
New York Times
The world’s largest commercial farm project producing microalgae for biofuel is planned for central Malaysia next year. The algae will feed on carbon dioxide from nearby industrial facilities and use the waste water of nearby mills as fertilizer. To date, most projects that are investigating deriving biofuels for microalgae are small, pilot, or demonstration projects.
(October 19, 2011)
Jackson Hole News and Guide
(October 17, 2011)
While roads of all kind take energy to build, there is a branch of environmental science that is looking at road construction and the energy requirements of creating and using different types of paving materials. Paving components, application methods, and surface textures all play into the amount of energy that a road takes to create and maintain, and over the lifetime of roads, small changes can potentially have large energy saving impacts.
Can forest management be used to sustain water-based ecosystem service in the face of climate change?
This study by Forest Service Scientists in North Carolina examines how forest management would affect stream flows under both extremely wet and extremely dry conditions predicted to occur as a result of climate change. Examined forest management prescriptions included clearcutting, converting one forest type to another, and no management. Results show that in all cases, changing land use alters streamflow, but “managing forests to offset the effects of climate change on streamflow is not a viable solution to protect water supplies from drought or flooding as temperatures rise.”
Environmental Protection Agency
The EPA has released a report outlining a framework to account for carbon dioxide emissions from plant-based industries. The study seeks to “identify methodological implications, and it recommends a framework to implement such a policy- or program-specific decision in a scientifically and technically rigorous manner”, which in turn can help to determine whether biomass energy industries are carbon neutral and should be regulated under Clean Air regulations.