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Rep. Hutchinson December 2011 Environmental Synopsis

Rep. Hutchinson December 2011 Environmental Synopsis

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Published by: PAHouseGOP on Dec 19, 2011
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A Legislative Service Agency of the Pennsylvania General Assembly
The Chairman’s Corner
Rep. Scott E. Hutchinson, Chairman
(continued on page 8)
December 2011Vol. 12, No. 12PublishedMonthly
In This Issue…
The Chairman’s Corner...........................p. 1
Notes From the Director ........................p. 2
Research Briefs ...................................p. 3-6
Is the U. S. Military Greening?
54.5 in 2025
Reading the “Tree Leaves”
 Using Recycling to Create Jobs
On The Horizon ......................................p. 7
oint Legislative
Air and WaterPollution Control and
he end of another year is fast approaching. It seemsan opportune time to take a look back at 2011 andreflect on some of the issues to come before the JointLegislative Air and Water Pollution Control and ConservationCommittee (Committee) this year.Some issues have been dealt with while others remain tobe pursued. The Committee takes its description as a “legisla-tive service agency” very seriously. It is our goal to gather information, provide advice,and solve problems not only for our own Committee members, but also for other mem-bers of the General Assembly, including the rank and file, who seek outour help to help them deal with a variety of issues of concern to Penn-sylvanians.The Committee is unique in its structure and in its ability to respondto members’ concerns. Unlike some other legislative service agencies,the Committee was established by individual statute for very specificpurposes and functions. Many of the issues it undertakes are driven byits members, in response to locally-initiated issues that often have astatewide impact, rather than taking a broad-brush approach affectinglarge-scale governmental issues of a general nature. The Committee’srecord of integrity and exemplary service to all legislative members iswell known and continues to this day, despite ever-shrinking resources.Most recently, on December 6, the House passed a resolution(House Resolution 70) introduced by Committee member Rep. JulieHarhart of the Lehigh Valley to require the PA Department of Trans-portation to conduct a study of the waste product created from slatequarrying to determine if slate waste could be used as a component inhighway construction and civil engineering projects. Slate quarrying isan important industry in Rep. Harhart’s area.This is an issue the Committee worked on going back several years, helping togather information, bring together stakeholders to discuss the issue and develop thelanguage for the resolution. The results of the study could prove beneficial for theindustry, for recycling and reuse purposes, and for highway construction.
 ______________________________________________ Two reports speak to the oil and naturalgas industry’s efforts to reduce greenhousegases and to the impact of a national cleanenergy standard ______________________________________________ 
ccording to a study by the American Pe-troleum Institute (API), U.S. based oil andnatural gas companies invested $71 billionin clean energy technologies between 2000 and 2010,more than the federal government during the sametime period. The study found the oil and natural gasindustry was already making significant investmentsto mitigate the effects of greenhouse gas emissionswithout Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) regu-lations or congressionalmandates.According to thestudy,
“Key Investments inGreenhouse Gas MitigationTechnologies from 2000Through 2010 by Energy  Firms, Other Industry and the Federal Government” 
,the federal government invested $43 billion in cleanenergy technologies between 2000 and 2010, whileother industries combined invested $74 billion. Thestudy finds that it is important that the public is madeaware of the actions the oil and natural gas industry istaking to establish environmental standards on theirown without federal regulation or action by Congress.Substituting cleaner fuels such as ethanol, cogen-eration heat and power, as well as reducing flaring andfugitive emissions and making other efficiency im-provements reduced the oil and natural gas industry’sgreenhouse gas emissions by 55.9 million metric tonsof carbon dioxide equivalent between 2008 and 2009,according to the study. This reduction is the equiva-lent of taking 11 million cars off the road.Although the industry is making emissions reduc-tions without federal regulations, EPA must proposenew source performance standards and emissionsguidelines for greenhouse gas emissions from pe-troleum refineries by December 15, 2011 as part of a2010 court settlement with some states and environ-mental organizations. The new source performancestandards are technology-based emission controlsissued under Section 111 of the Clean Air Act andwould apply to new and modified facilities. The emis-sions guidelines would apply to existing facilities. Thefinal rule is due by November 15, 2012.EPA has twice missed court deadlines to proposesimilar greenhouse gas limits on power plants, andthe API and the NationalPetrochemical and Refin-ers Association have askedthe agency to postponeproposing the refinery ruleuntil 2012. This would al-low the EPA more time toconsider emissions datarecently submitted to theagency by the industry. At the same time, another report, the
“Analysisof Impacts of a Clean Energy Standard “ 
, found thata mandated federal clean energy standard wouldincrease electricity costs nationally by almost 30percent, according to an Energy Information Admin-istration (EIA) study. The report, released October 2,2011 found that a clean energy standard (CES) wouldincrease household electricity bills by $211 in 2035and lead to a reduction in the gross domestic productof $127 billion in the same time period. The reportalso found that a CES would cause nationwide manu-facturing employment to decline by one million jobs in2025.The API report is available at:http://www.api.org/ ehs/climate/new/upload/2011_api_ghg_investment.pdf.The EIA study is available at: http://tinyurl.com67a-ox2u.
 Please Note: The information and opinions expressed in the Research Brief articles do not necessarily represent theopinions or positions of the Joint Legislative Air and Water Pollution Control and Conservation Committee, nor those of the Pennsylvania General Assembly.
Military Embracing GreenTechnology
-Tony M. Guerrieri, Research Analyst
he U.S. military is the country’s largestsingle consumer of energy, using more than375,000 barrels of oil a day. In 2008, energycost the military about $17.9 billion. A report by thePew Charitable Trusts details the armed services pushfor greener bases, supply chains and more renewableenergy and technology for soldiers in battle.According to the report,
“From Barracks to the Bat-tlefield: Clean Energy Innovation and America’s Armed  Forces” 
, the U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) hasbecome an active participant in green projects. Itfinds that DOD clean energy investments surged from$400 million in 2006 to $1.2 billion in 2009, and theyare projected to top $10 billion a year by 2030.The Pentagon’s continued support of greenerenergy is a potential game changer because of itsenormity. The military spends more than $400 billionon goods and services every year. And, the Pentagonhas spawned a range of modern technologies, fromthe Internet, to the GPS capability now commonlyfound in cars, and the microwave oven.The report finds that DOD’s major energy challeng-es include risks associated with transporting liquidfuels to the battlefield, growing oil price volatility, theimpact of fuel dependence on operational effective-ness, the fragility of energy supplies and compliancewith federal energy policies.The DOD has set a target of obtaining 25 percentof its energy from renewable sources by 2025. In all,the military has more than 450 projects involving wind,geothermal, biomass and solar energy, the reportnoted. Those projects helped the military draw 9.6percent of its power from renewable sources.The Pew report documents how every servicebranch is participating in green energy procurementand research in three key areas: vehicle development;advanced biofuels and energy management, includingenergy storage; and building efficiency.
 _________________________________________________ The Defense Department’s target:25 percent of its energy from renewablesources by 2025 _________________________________________________ 
Vehicle Efficiency:Liquid petroleum fuels accountfor approximately three-quarters ($11 billion) of DOD’s$15 billion annual energy bill. DOD spending to har-ness clean energy technologies for air, land and seavehicles is projected to grow to $2.25 billion annuallyby 2015. To achieve its goal of increasing efficiencyand reducing fuel consumption on ships by 15 percentbetween 2010 and 2020, the Navy is using hybrid elec-tric technologies, improving hull coatings and usingmore efficient materials. A hybrid electric drive sys-tem will be tested on the USS Truxtun, a guided-mis-sile destroyer, and is expected to save 8,500 barrels offuel annually.Advanced Biofuels:DOD has set ambitiousgoals and is taking concrete steps to utilize advancedbiofuels. The Air Force intends to use biofuels for 50percent of its domestic aviation needs by 2016. TheNavy plans to demonstrate a “Great Green Fleet” and,along with the Marines, plans to use alternative en-ergy sources to meet 50 percent of its energy require-ments across operational platforms by 2020.
Each month, the committee’s staffresearches and prepares a number of “briefs” onseveral topics relevant to the Joint ConservationCommittee’s mission.Very often, these briefs include references to reportsand further research on the topics so that readersmay pursue issues on their own.

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