[Date Prev][Date Next][Thread Prev][Thread Next][Date Index][Thread Index]
NFC: Fw: River Policy Update, Week of May 14, 2001
NFC President www.nativefish.org
check out our email list at nfc-owner at actwin_com
Visit out Adopt A Tank , Exotics Removal, and Breeders Club Programs at
--------- Forwarded message ----------
From: American Rivers <action at action_amrivers.org>
To: robertrice at juno_com
Date: Wed, 16 May 2001 17:17:57 -0400 (EST)
Subject: River Policy Update, Week of May 14, 2001
To read the River Policy Update online, visit American Rivers' Online
Newsroom at www.americanrivers.org/policyupdates/default.htm and
click on "River Policy Update."
American Rivers' Policy Update
Week of May 14, 2001
IN THIS WEEK'S UPDATE:
* Pacific salmon
* Water management
* EPA budget cuts
* Bush environmental nominations
* Water pollution
* Congressional calendar
* Take action
Field hearing on energy, drought, and salmon
The House Resources Water and Power Subcommittee will hold a field
hearing this Saturday in Tacoma, Wash. The hearing will focus on the
effect of the Northwest drought and Western electricity problems on
energy prices, energy-intensive industries, and the effect of the
energy crunch and drought on endangered Columbia and Snake River
salmon. Topics likely to emerge include the Bonneville Power
Administration's (BPA) policies on selling power to Direct Service
Industries such as aluminum smelters, the effect of this year's dam
operations on imperiled wild salmon and what alternatives and
opportunities for mitigation exist, future BPA power rates, and a
request by BPA to borrow $2 billion from the federal government to
build new transmission lines and improve its power generating
Among the expected witnesses are representatives of the BPA, the
Northwest Power Planning Council, the Public Power Council (an
organization of publicly-owned utilities), the Tacoma Public
Utilities District, the Columbia River Intertribal Fish Commission,
the Northwest Energy Coalition, Birmingham Steel, and a fisheries
The hearing will be held at 9 a.m. Saturday, May 19 in the City
Council Chambers on the first floor of the Municipal Bldg. in Tacoma,
Mark up of Thompson salmon bill expected this week
The House Resources Committee will mark up several bills this
Wednesday, including H.R. 1157, introduced March 21 by Rep. Mike
Thompson (D-CA). The bill has not had hearing or markup, but it is
nearly identical to legislation that the House passed last session.
The bill would provide authorization for $200 million for the next
three years to help "naturally produced" Pacific salmon stocks,
including steelhead and sea-run cutthroat trout. $170 million would
be equally divided among Alaska, Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and
California, with $30 million going to tribal governments. The bill
would fund a variety of habitat restoration and salmon monitoring
projects. States would be required to match the federal grants, and
would only be eligible to receive funding if they refrained from
cutting existing salmon habitat restoration programs. The bill is
similar to the existing Pacific Coastal Salmon Recovery Fund, but
would increase funding for the eligible states and would make Idaho
eligible to receive funding
The markup will begin at 10 a.m. Wednesday, May 16 in 1324 Longworth
House Office Building.
Bureau of Reclamation Water Management and Little Sandy River
The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will meet for
markup on several pieces of legislation on Wednesday and may take
action on S. 238. The bill sponsored by Sens. Wyden and Smith of
Oregon, would direct the Bureau of Reclamation to conduct a
feasibility study on how to improve water management in the Malheur,
Owyhee, Powder, and Burnt river basins in eastern Oregon. All four
rivers are tributaries of the Snake, and poor management practices
have contributed to high water temperatures and water pollution that
have degraded habitat for both resident fish populations and
endangered Snake River salmon and steelhead. The bill would be a
first step to allowing the Bureau of Reclamation to partner with
local watershed councils to upgrade irrigation systems and create
wetlands to act as pollutant filters. S. 238 would not authorize
studies, not construction, of how such upgrades might benefit both
the environment and the local economy.
The Energy and Natural Resources Committee may also act on S. 254,
also introduced by Sens. Wyden and Smith. The bill would authorize
$10 million for environmental restoration in the Little Sandy River
in Oregon and expand the watershed management unit that protects
Portland's drinking water supply.
The markup will be held at 9:30 am Wednesday, May 16 in 366 Dirksen
Senate Office Building.
EPA BUDGET CUTS
The House Science Committee Subcommittee on Environment, Technology,
and Standards is holding a hearing this week on budget cuts proposed
by the Bush administration for the Environmental Protection Agency.
The administration proposed $7.3 billion for EPA in fiscal 2002,
which is $500 million less than the EPA was appropriated last year.
In particular, Members are expected to question an administration
proposal to cut the EPA's research and development budget at the same
time that the president is emphasizing the need for "sound science"
to guide environmental policy. Questions have also been raised
regarding cuts in EPA funding to enforce environmental laws.
The hearing will be held at 9:30 a.m., Thursday, May 17, in 2325
Rayburn House Office Building.
BUSH ENVIRONMENTAL NOMINATIONS
The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will hold a hearing
this week on President Bush's nominations for the Federal Energy
Regulatory Commission (FERC), Interior Department, and the
Department of Energy (DOE).
FERC: The committee will consider the nominations of Henry Wood III
of Texas and Nora Mead Brownell of Pennsylvania. It has been rumored
that Wood, currently the chairman of the Public Utility Commission of
Texas, would be Bush's choice to be FERC chairman if confirmed.
Interior: J. Steven Griles has been nominated to serve as deputy
Interior secretary. He worked for Interior under President Reagan
and Interior Secretary James Watt. More recently Griles has worked
as a lobbyist on mining, oil, and gas issues.
DOE: The committee will consider the nominations of Jessie Hill
Roberson to be assistant secretary for environmental management and
Lee Sarah Liberman to be general counsel.
The hearing will be held at 9:30 a.m. Wednesday, May 16 in 366
Dirksen Senate Office Building. (In conjunction with markup
discussed in "Water Management" section above.)
EPA: The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee will hold a
hearing for three high-ranking positions at EPA and the Council on
Environmental Quality (CEQ). The nominees include attorney James
Connaughton for likely CEQ chair, attorney Linda Fisher, a former
Vice President at Montesanto, for deputy administrator at EPA,
attorney Jeffrey Holmstead for assistant administrator for air and
radiation, and acting assistant administrator Steven Johnson for
assistant administrator for toxic substances.
The hearing is scheduled for 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, May 17 in 628
House Hearing on Animal Feedlot Rule
The House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Water
Resources and the Environment will hold a hearing on a delayed
Clinton administration rule designed to reduce water pollution from
large confined animal feeding operations (CAFOs). EPA Administrator
Christie Whitman extended the hearing period on the rule by 75 days,
until July 30. The rule would regulate operations on CAFOs to in
order to limit water pollution that results from poor maintenance of
animal waste lagoons and improperly designed storage structures.
Polluted runoff from CAFOs can contribute to algae blooms that kill
fish and other aquatic organisms. The rule has received criticism
from both industry and environmentalists as being too arduous or
exempting too many farms, respectively.
The hearing will be at 2 p.m., Wednesday, May 16 at 2167 Rayburn
House Office Building.
Markup of various bills, including Thompson salmon bill. 10 a.m.
Wednesday, May 16 in 1324 Longworth House Office Building.
Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Subcommittee on
Hearing on Concentrated Animal Feedlot Operation rule. 2 p.m.,
Wednesday, May 16 at 2167 Rayburn House Office Building.
Science Committee Subcommittee on Environment, Technology, and
Hearing on EPA budget cuts. 9:30 a.m., Thursday, May 17, in 2325
Rayburn House Office Building.
Appropriations Committee Subcommittee on Commerce-Justice-State-
Hearing on National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, 10 a.m.
Thursday, May 17, in H-309 of the Capitol.
Resources Water and Power Subcommittee
Hearing on Drought Management and Energy Availability in the Pacific
Update. 9 a.m. Saturday, May 19 in the City Council Chambers on the
first floor of the Municipal Bldg. in Tacoma, Wash.
Energy and Natural Resources Committee
Markup and FERC, DOI, and DOE confirmation hearings. 9:30 am
Wednesday, May 16 in 366 Dirksen Senate Office Building.
Environment and Public Works Committee
EPA confirmation hearings. 9:30 a.m. on Thursday, May 17 in 628
Dirksen Senate Office Building.
Follow the latest American Rivers' Action Alerts and Press Releases!
Take action to help save America's Rivers. Visit
American Rivers currently has a number of job openings. See our
employment page for the following opportunities:
* Conservation Assistant for Dam Removal Program
* Online Community Manager
* Conservation Assistant-Outreach
* Organizer/Outreach Specialist-Missouri River Campaign
Contact Michael Garrity, Conservation Assistant, at 202-347-7550.
Legislative information taken from sources including: Environment and
Energy Daily, Greenwire, Congressional Green Sheets, and members of
the American Rivers conservation staff.
Thank you robertrice at juno_com for helping to protect and
restore America's rivers.
To contact American Rivers, send an email to Rebecca
Sherman at outreach at amrivers_org or call 202-347-7550.
Join the nation's online river community at
www.americanrivers.org for free online resources, toolkits,
and ways to unite with other activists on your important
issues. AOL Keyword: American Rivers
To unsubscribe from this distribution list, reply to this
email (action at action_amrivers.org) and include "remove" in the subject