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Global Climate Change DigestArchives of the
Global Climate Change Digest

A Guide to Information on Greenhouse Gases and Ozone Depletion
Published July 1988 through June 1999

FROM VOLUME 7, NUMBER 9, SEPTEMBER 1994

REPORTS... ENERGY: POLICY


Item #d94sep55

Saving Energy in U.S. Transportation, U.S. Office Technol. Policy, 276 pp., Sep. 1994. 30-page summary no charge (202-224-8996); full report $17 (stock no. 052-003-01376-2) from Superintendent of Documents, POB 371954, Pittsburgh PA 15250 (tel: 202-783-3238; fax: 202-512-2250).

Personal travel in light vehicles, which currently consumes over 50% of transportation energy, should be the focus of transportation energy policy. Recommends measures that would move the artificially low pricing of vehicle travel closer to true costs, such as congestion road pricing and phasing out free parking.


Item #d94sep56

The Next Efficiency Revolution: Creating a Sustainable Materials Economy (Worldwatch Paper 121), J.E. Young, A. Sachs, 58 pp., Sep. 1994, $5 (Worldwatch).

More waste is produced and environmental damage done in pre-consumer industries of primary materials extraction and processing than by all the world's municipal waste combined. Five materials--paper, steel, aluminum, plastics and container glass--account for 31% of U.S. manufacturing energy use. A sustainable materials economy will require redesigning products, a renaissance in secondary materials industries, and a decline in reliance on virgin materials.


Item #d94sep57

Sustainable Energy Systems: Technologies to Reduce CO2 Emission, Aug. 1994, $17. Dept. Sci., Technol. & Soc., Univ. Utrecht, 3584 CH Utrecht, Neth.

Developed countries could reduce emissions by 80% by the year 2050 by implementing existing techniques and developing opportunities that have so far received little attention. Possible approaches discussed include energy efficiency, improved conversion technologies, improvement of "material efficiency," renewable sources, and CO2 storage. (See Intl. Environ. Rptr., p. 723, Sep. 7.)


Item #d94sep58

Powering the Future: Blueprint for a Sustainable Electricity Industry (Worldwatch Paper 119), C. Flavin, N. Lenssen, 74 pp., June 1994, $5 (Worldwatch).

New technologies and a more competitive market will severely shake the electric power industry in the next few years. A two-tiered approach for reform is suggested. For generation and transmission at the wholesale level, an open, competitive market that figures in environmental costs would work best. At the distribution level, a competitive market in electricity services (including electricity and efficient power-using devices) would be more effective.


Item #d94sep59

Does Price Matter? The Importance of Cheap Electricity for the Economy, M.P. Mills (Mills, McCarthy Inc.), 35 pp., Sep. 1994 (Western Fuels Assoc.).

Concludes that price does matter; people and businesses prefer cheap electricity. Competitive forces and progress in technologies drive prices down, and cheap electricity is anti-inflationary and consistent with environmental and social goals. The pursuit of demand side management and alternative energy programs should continue, but should not increase electricity costs.


Item #d94sep60

Meeting the Climate Change Challenge. Reducing Greenhouse Gases by More Efficient Use of Fossil Fuels, U.S. Dept. Energy, 32 pp., Apr. 1994. Contact R.L. Kane, Off. Fossil Energy (FE-4), U.S. DOE, 1000 Independence Ave. SW, Washington DC 20585.

Outlines the climate-related activities of the Office of Fossil Energy, including proposed clean coal technology programs in China and Eastern Europe. Gives details, and contact persons, for programs on expanded methane recovery from coal mines, commercialization of fuel cells, high efficiency gas-fired and coal-fired power systems, and CO2 recovery, reuse and disposal.


Item #d94sep61

Solar Energy: Lessons from the Pacific Island Experience (Tech. Paper 244), A. Liebenthal, S. Mathur, H. Wade, 72 pp., May 1994, $7.95 (World Bank).

In remote Pacific island villages, solar photovoltaic systems are supplying reliable power at costs lower than those of more commonly used diesel systems, and they appear promising for small-scale applications in developing countries. Their success depends on the technology, training of maintenance personnel, good fee collection systems, and careful financial management.


Item #d94sep62

Fossil Fuels in a Changing Climate, Greenpeace, Apr. 1994. Greenpeace, 1436 U St. NW, Washington DC 20009 (202-462-1177).

By the year 2030, more than half the world's energy consumption could be met by renewable sources of energy if governments committed themselves to those sources. This would result in a CO2 emissions reduction of 52%.


Item #d94sep63

The Challenge of Climate Change--Policy Options for Canada (No. 112-93), 11 pp., Mar. 1994. Contact Conference Board of Canada, 255 Smyth Rd., Ottawa ON K1H 8M7, Can.

Concludes that a carbon tax applied to the sale of fossil fuels is a cost-effective way to reduce CO2 emissions, particularly when supplemented by a reduction in other taxes or an increase in government spending on environmental initiatives. Also recommends a tradeable emissions permit system based on federally set targets.


Item #d94sep64

U.S. Energy 1994: The 8th Annual Assessment of United States Energy Policy, June 1994. U.S. Energy Assoc. (USEA), 1620 Eye St. NW, Washington DC 20006 (202-331-0415).

Recommends strategically assessing the U.S. Department of Energy's research and development budget, simplifying environmental regulations, and relying on the market to select energy technologies. Summarizes the status of all major types of domestic power production.


Item #d94sep65

Power Failure, Environ. Defense Fund (EDF) and Natural Resour. Defense Council, 1994, no charge. Order from EDF, 275 Park Ave. S, New York NY 10010 (212-505-2100); 1616 P St. NW, Washington DC 20036 (202-387-3500).

Concludes that the World Bank has largely failed to comply with its own policies on environmental efficiency. Only two of 46 recent loans were based on, or supported development of, integrated energy strategies. However, the report gives the World Bank high grades for efforts to improve energy efficiency through pricing reform. Recommends a climate change policy that evaluates greenhouse gas impacts of each energy lending project.


Item #d94sep66

Final Report of the Spring Meeting of the CSG/ERC [Council of State Governments, Eastern Regional Conference] Energy and Environment Committee, 74 pp., Jan. 1994. Order from CSG/ERC, 5 World Trade Ctr., S. 9241, New York NY 10048 (tel: 212-912-0128; fax: 212-912-0549).

Sponsored by CSG/ERC and the Québec National Assembly (May 1993, Québec City) to explore Québec's energy, environmental and native affairs policies and how these programs relate to the issue of hydropower. The report contains transcribed presentations of several officials.


Item #d94sep67

Burning the Bridge to Clean Energy, Citizen's Utility Board, June 1994. Contact CUB, POB 6345, Portland OR 97205 (tel: 503-227-1984; fax: 503-274-2956).

Electric utilities in the Pacific Northwest are rapidly building natural-gas power plants, increasing fossil fuel use and diverting their investments away from conservation and renewables. The 22 gas-fired plants now under construction could increase the region's CO2 emissions by 8.5%


Item #d94sep68

Leadership in Energy Efficiency: A Comparison of the U.S. Versus the Other Major Industrialized Countries, EOP Group Inc., 54 pp., Oct. 1993. Prepared for the Global Climate Coalition (GCC), 1331 Pennsylvania Ave. NW, S. 1500-N. Tower, Washington DC 20004 (202-637-3158).

Compares past trends and current levels of energy efficiency in the G-7 countries, challenging the conventional wisdom that the U.S. is relatively energy inefficient. For example, over the past two decades the U.S. has achieved a 30% improvement in the use of energy per unit GDP, significantly greater than most other industrialized countries, and comparable to that of Japan.


Item #d94sep69

Energy Efficiency and Conservation in the Developing World, 104 pp., Mar. 1993, $7.95 (World Bank).

Reviews the World Bank's participation in energy projects and discusses its strategies to promote energy efficiency. Four factors that account for differences in efficiency between industrial and developing countries are energy pricing policies, control of energy supply enterprises, protection of energy-using industries from competition, and barriers to the productive functioning of markets.


Item #d94sep70

Assessing the Hidden Costs of Fossil Fuels, 4 pp., 1993, single copies free with SASE (UCS).

Air pollution is but one of many problems that can be attributed to fossil fuels, which account for 85% of current U.S. fuel use. The hidden costs, which the producers do not pay, include human health problems from air pollution and environmental degradation from global warming. Suggests changes in the way energy is priced to remedy the situation.

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