Tag Archive for 'GSA'

Tom Ewing’s Environmental Update

*  GSA – General Services Administration – will hold an in-person meeting and a teleconference/web meeting of the Green Building Advisory Committee which works with the Office of Federal High-Performance Buildings.  Date: May 28.  Register in advance.  This is important stuff: The Committee is made up of experts in buildings—including architects, material suppliers, construction contractors, environment, health, security, and transportation—who work to accelerate the transformation of the Federal building portfolio to sustainable technologies and practices.  These federal standards are frequently adopted by state and local energy boards and planners.  The web meeting will focus on findings from GSA’s recent evaluation of work required by the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act.  GSA will present its evaluation and a draft set of recommendations regarding systems that “will be most likely to encourage a comprehensive and environmentally sound approach’’ to the certification of high-performance federal buildings.
*  The Department of Commerce National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) meets June 4 and 5 in Maryland.  The Committee provides advice on Smart Grid standards, priorities, and gaps, on the overall direction, status, and health of the Smart Grid industry, and on the direction of Smart Grid research and standards activities.  The June agenda (tentative) covers discussion of the draft NIST Framework and Roadmap for Smart Grid Interoperability Standards, Release 4.0.  The meeting will update NIST’s Smart Grid activities and the intersections with Cyber-Physical Systems program activities.
*  Ya wanna know what people are interested in, and not interested in?  A few weeks ago I referenced that DOI-Fish and Wildlife are reviewing the endangered species status of the gray wolf (Canis lupus).  Wolves have fans.  “To remove wildlife from the endangered list is to sign their death warrant,” wrote in Patricia R.  Whoa!  So far: 29,382 wolf comments to the docket, which doesn’t close until May 14!  And I know there are quite a few robo-call letters sent by bots with their electronic carbon paper.  But compare that to the number of comments sent regarding the Department of Agriculture’s revisions to Dietary Guidelines for Americans (uh, that is, people…): 217.   “I have a friend who lost over 80 pounds in the past year by following a ketogenic diet. This transformed their health and their life for the better,” writes Kim M.  Yeah, whatever (get yer pronouns right …).  Wolves are tough, mysterious, edgy, in the shadows.  All us fat people… jus’ clickin’ around that ol’ Internet… waiting for the updated iteration of Big Gubmint’s doughnut consumption guidelines.  (I like sprinkles and jelly but not chocolate ((at least on donuts))!) *:)) laughing
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Tom Ewing’s Environmental Update

*  EPA announced the next step in its eventual classification of counties and metro areas that do not meet the 2015 ozone (O3) standard.  Recall the standard was changed, from 0.075 ppm to 0.070 ppm, in October 2015.  In November, EPA released the list of US counties declared in attainment
or “unclassifiable,” i.e., there’s no consistent local air quality data, common in rural and wilderness area.  Last week, EPA presented the counties it judges to be non-attainment, meaning those counties will continue to face air pollution control regs, largely affecting vehicles, industries, and power plants.  In the spring, EPA will present final declarations including how nonattainment areas are classified– a ranking from “marginal” to “extreme.”  Classification is critical: it establishes the compounded controls required by the Clean Air Act to assure further pollution reductions.  These classifications impact economic development in big ways.

*  GSA’s Green Building Advisory Committee holds a teleconference/web meeting next month.  The Advisory Committee provides independent policy advice and recommendations to GSA’s Office of Federal High-Performance Buildings.  Members include a broad range of stakeholders including senior officials from Federal agencies and leading green building experts from state, local, private, non-governmental, and academic sectors.  This meeting will likely provide important indicators regarding upcoming trends and directions, particularly regarding regular reviews of private sector efficiency standards and mandatory revisions to building codes.

* The US House Subcommittee on Energy holds a hearing this week entitled “DOE Modernization: Advancing DOE’s Mission for National, Economic, and Energy Security of the United States.” The hearing will examine plans for modernizing and realigning the Department of Energy (DOE). It will provide Representatives with information to help assess what is necessary to ensure effective execution of DOE’s core missions—national security, energy and economic security, environmental cleanup, and the scientific and technological innovation to support those missions.

Tom Ewing
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tewing@regulatoryclarity.com-379-5526 voice/text