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ENVIRONMENT COMMITTEE
Charlotte (NC) Mayor Patrick McCrory, Chair

June 16, 2008


Resolution #53: Supporting Full and Dedicated Funding of the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program calls on Congress and the Administration to appropriate full funding at the authorized level for the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program, while supporting higher authorization levels in future years. It also encourages Congress and the Administration to establish a dedicated funding mechanism for the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program.

Resolution #64: City Priorities for a Cap and Trade System creates a market for carbon through development of a fair and flexible national cap and trade system, supports a hard cap on greenhouse gas emissions that results in real reductions in greenhouse gas emissions consistent with the scientific consensus, or 80 percent reduction below 1990 levels by 2050. It opposes the inclusion of a “safety valve” provision, and instead supports alternative flexibility measures to help control costs, such as the use of offsets, supports an economy-wide cap, including upstream regulation of natural gas and transportation fuels in the recommended scope for a cap and trade system, and supports an accelerated schedule toward full auctioning of those emission allowances going to regulated entities. It also supports using revenues generated by a cap and trade program to recognize the important role that local governments play in climate protection by channeling some portion of funds generated directly to local governments in support of continued and expanded efforts to reduce emissions, including, but not limited to full funding of the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program; investment in economic and workforce development strategies that help to build an inclusive green economy which provides pathways into prosperity and expanded opportunity, particularly for low-income communities; clean energy, transit and alternative transportation infrastructure; low income assistance; and adaptation.

local governments play in climate protection by channeling some portion of funds generated directly to local governments in support of continued and expanded efforts to reduce emissions, including, but not limited to full funding of the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant program; investment in economic and workforce development strategies that help to build an inclusive green economy which provides pathways into prosperity and expanded opportunity, particularly for low-income communities; clean energy, transit and alternative transportation infrastructure; low income assistance; and adaptation.

Resolution #65: Climate Change Adaptation and Vulnerability Assessments urges Congress to pass climate change adaptation legislation that provides incentives to state and local governments to begin exploring the growing risks from climate change, conduct climate vulnerability assessments that identify the most important climate risks for a particular area or population, identify the response options and ways to implement them. It urges the Federal Government to develop methods and tools for studying climate change impacts on communities and integrating this information into state, regional, and local adaptation planning efforts.

Resolution #66: Calling on Congress to include Consumer Cost Protection Mechanisms in Greenhouse Gas Reduction Legislation calls on Congress to make consumer cost protection mechanisms a key component in any greenhouse gas reduction legislation that it considers; and that these mechanisms must provide for certainty as to the maximum level of allowance prices in a cap and trade system, and that this maximum level be based on expected availability of control technology; and that The U.S. Conference of Mayors withholds support for the Lieberman-Warner bill or similar bills until Congress commits to the development of an allowance allocation framework that protects consumers against high costs; including the free allocation of emissions allowances to municipally owned utilities.

Resolution #67: Calling on Congress to take Meaningful Steps to Ensure an Effective Greenhouse Gas Cap and Trade Program withholds support for the Lieberman-Warner cap and trade bill or similar bills until Congress commits funding for the development, testing and commercial operation of dedicated electric utility CO2 capture and storage projects that will be necessitated by this type of legislation; withholds support for the Lieberman-Warner cap and trade bill or similar bills until Congress commits funding for the development, testing and commercial operation of a dedicated CO2 transportation system to be built in areas beyond the current enhanced oil recovery zones that will be necessitated by this type of legislation; and that the legal liability for the risks associated with CO2 sequestration must be assumed by the federal government.

Resolution #68: Calling for Actions and Programs to Assist in Adaptation to the Water Resource Challenges Posed by Climate Change calls for partnerships between federal, state and local entities to improve current understanding of climate change impacts to water resources and water infrastructure. In addition, it asks for an increase of federal funding and investment in water research and information sharing in meeting the challengers of climate change impacts to water supplies in the future.

Resolution #69: The Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Security Act and Water Utilities calls attention to H.R. 5577, which would revoke the existing exemption for water utilities, requiring water utilities to use “inherently safer technology” when choosing chemicals to treat water. H.R. 5577 places regulatory burden on city-run water utilities, including regulatory directives from EPA, leading to shut down of water utility or water treatment plant, creating serious impairment of fire suppression, sanitation and public health efforts. The resolution urges the Congress to continue the exemption of water utilities from the Chemical Facility Anti-Terrorism Security Act of 2006 (CFATS) or if Congress would expand CFATS to cover water utilities, they should exempt water utilities from a mandate to use “inherently safer technologies,” and from any federal authority to shut down a chemical facility and requirements regarding the placement of chemical facilities near population centers.

ty and requirements regarding the placement of chemical facilities near population centers.

Resolution #70: Supporting Municipal Water Systems encourages cities to phase out, where feasible, government use of bottled water and promote the importance of municipal water.

Resolution #71: Importance Of Municipal Water And Sustainable Practices In Recycling recommends that mayors and municipal water systems seek to work in coalition with a broad range of interests to develop fair and equitable policies and rate structures to renew the nation’s water infrastructure, ensuring the safe and efficient treatment and distribution of water; and that The U.S. Conference of Mayors work in coalition to develop comprehensive policies and best practices that help drive sustainability across the spectrum of environmental imperatives from recycling to climate change.

Resolution #72: Water Trust Fund commends Congressman Blumenauer’s efforts to develop a Water Trust Fund legislative initiative, and calls on The U.S. Conference of Mayors to work with Congressman Blumenauer as this legislation is developed in areas such as funding, distribution and eligible activities to ensure that when enacted it can make an historic contribution to meeting the nation’s water infrastructure needs.

Resolution #73: Endorsing the Clean Water Restoration Act endorses and urges Members of Congress to support and pass in the 110th Congress the Clean Water Restoration Act of 2007 that would adopt a statutory definition of “waters of the United States” in the Clean Water Act, including deleting the word “navigable” from the Clean Water Act to clarify and statutory definition of U.S. waters should be established in the Act to protect the nation's waters from pollution and not just maintain navigability.

Resolution #74: Reauthorization of the Brownfields Law urges Congress to reauthorize the Brownfields Law and make changes to improve the law such as increased appropriation levels to a total of $600 million; increased EPA’s funding limit for cleanup of a single site to $2 million per site; creation of multi-purpose grants to be used for the full range of brownfield activities; creation of sustainable brownfield pilot projects; modify language to eliminate the difficulty in securing money for petroleum sites while eliminating the petroleum set-aside requirement; allowing cities to obtain grant funding for sites they’ve acquired prior to the last law’s enactment date; allowing nonprofits and community development agencies to be eligible to apply for brownfield grants; and exempt local governments from CERCLA liability if certain requirements are met.

Resolution #75: Preventing and Controlling Aquatic Invasive Species asks Congress to promptly enact the Coast Guard Authorization Act of 2008 and provide maximum funding for aquatic invasive species control and current prevention programs.

Resolution #76: Containment and Eradication of Non-Native Tree-Killing Insects and Diseases urges Congress to provide enhanced resources to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service’s Emerging Plant Pests Program in future appropriation bills; and calls on the USDA’s Emerging Plant Pests Program to provide expertise and resources to assist rural and urban communities in order to implement proactive programs to detect non-native insects and other pests and eradicate them before they become widespread threats to native trees.

Resolution #77: The USDA Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and Invasive Species Revolving Loan Fund urges increased funding of USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) program to control certain invasive species and endorses the Invasive Species Revolving Loan Fund to aid cities in their attempt to eliminate invasive species and replace damaged vegetation as a result of infestation or eradication measures.