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First QER Will Focus on Transmission and Distribution Infrastructure
Today, President Obama signed a Memorandum directing his Administration to conduct a Quadrennial Energy Review (QER).? This first QER will focus on the development of a comprehensive strategy for the infrastructure involved in transporting, transmitting, and delivering energy. The QER will be developed through robust interagency dialogue and engagement of external stakeholders and will help to build on the Nation's progress toward greater energy and climate security.?
Building on the foundation provided in the President's Blueprint for a Secure Energy Future and his Climate Action Plan, this QER will study the opportunities and challenges that our energy infrastructure faces as a result of transformations in energy supply, markets, and use; issues of aging and capacity; impacts of climate change; and cyber and physical threats.? The QER will provide rigorous analysis in a focused, actionable document for policymakers across all sectors.
The development of the QER will include broad outreach, including to the private sector; state, local and tribal governments; labor and other non-governmental organizations; and the academic community.? The QER will be conducted by an interagency task force that is co-chaired by the leaders of the White House Domestic Policy Council and Office of Science and Technology Policy, and includes representation from all relevant executive departments and agencies.? The Department of Energy will play a key role in providing analytical support to the QER.
As the Presidential Memorandum outlines, the QER will provide an integrated view of, and recommendations for, Federal energy policy in the context of economic, environmental, occupational, security, and health and safety priorities; review the adequacy of existing executive and legislative activities and recommend additional executive and legislative actions as appropriate; assess and recommend priorities for research, development, and demonstration programs to support key goals; and identify analytical tools and data needed to support further policy development and implementation.
Since President Obama took office, domestic oil production has increased more than 50 percent and natural gas production is now the highest it has ever been. Today, America is not just leading the world in energy production but it is also leading the world in energy innovation: Investments in research, development, and deployment have more than doubled the renewable electricity that we generate from wind and solar, even as the prices of those technologies continue to drop, and advances in energy efficiency are making our energy system cleaner, cheaper, and more reliable.? All this change tests an aging infrastructure that must keep pace both with the transformations in energy supply, climate change and security.? In this context, the QER will help U.S. policymakers across all sectors make decisions based on unbiased data and rigorous analysis.
MEMORANDUM FOR THE HEADS OF EXECUTIVE DEPARTMENTS AND AGENCIES
SUBJECT: Establishing a Quadrennial Energy Review
Affordable, clean, and secure energy and energy services are essential for improving U.S. economic productivity, enhancing our quality of life, protecting our environment, and ensuring our Nation's security. Achieving these goals requires a comprehensive and integrated energy strategy resulting from interagency dialogue and active engagement of external stakeholders. To help the Federal Government better meet this responsibility, I am directing the undertaking of a Quadrennial Energy Review.
The initial focus for the Quadrennial Energy Review will be our Nation's infrastructure for transporting, transmitting, and delivering energy. Our current infrastructure is increasingly challenged by transformations in energy supply, markets, and patterns of end use; issues of aging and capacity; impacts of climate change; and cyber and physical threats. Any vulnerability in this infrastructure may be exacerbated by the increasing interdependencies of energy systems with water, telecommunications, transportation, and emergency response systems. The first Quadrennial Energy Review Report will serve as a roadmap to help address these challenges.
The Department of Energy has a broad role in energy policy development and the largest role in implementing the Federal Government's energy research and development portfolio. Many other executive departments and agencies also play key roles in developing and implementing policies governing energy resources and consumption, as well as associated environmental impacts. In addition, non-Federal actors are crucial contributors to energy policies. Because most energy and related infrastructure is owned by private entities, investment by and engagement of the private sector is necessary to develop and implement effective policies. State and local policies; the views of nongovernmental, environmental, faith-based, labor, and other social organizations; and contributions from the academic and non-profit sectors are also critical to the development and implementation of effective energy policies.
An interagency Quadrennial Energy Review Task Force, which includes members from all relevant executive departments and agencies (agencies), will develop an integrated review of energy policy that integrates all of these perspectives. It will build on the foundation provided in my Administration's Blueprint for a Secure Energy Future of March 30, 2011, and Climate Action Plan released on June 25, 2013. The Task Force will offer recommendations on what additional actions it believes would be appropriate. These may include recommendations on additional executive or legislative actions to address the energy challenges and opportunities facing the Nation.
Therefore, by the authority vested in me as President by the Constitution and the laws of the United States of America, I hereby direct the following:
Section 1. Establishing the Quadrennial Energy Review Task Force. (a) There is established the Quadrennial Energy Review Task Force (Task Force), to be co-chaired by the Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy and the Director of the Domestic Policy Council, which shall include the heads of each of the following, or their designated representatives:
(i) the Department of State;
(ii) the Department of the Treasury;
(iii) the Department of Defense;
(iv) the Department of the Interior;
(v) the Department of Agriculture;
(vi) the Department of Commerce;
(vii) the Department of Labor;
(viii) the Department of Health and Human Services;
(ix) the Department of Housing and Urban Development;
(x) the Department of Transportation;
(xi) the Department of Energy;
(xii) the Department of Veterans Affairs;
(xiii) the Department of Homeland Security;
(xiv) the Office of Management and Budget;
(xv) the National Economic Council;
(xvi) the National Security Staff;
(xvii) the Council on Environmental Quality;
(xviii) the Council of Economic Advisers;
(xix) the Environmental Protection Agency;
(xx) the Small Business Administration;
(xxi) the Army Corps of Engineers;
(xxii) the National Science Foundation; and
(xxiii) such agencies and offices as the President may designate.
(b) The Co-Chairs may invite independent regulatory agencies with energy-related responsibilities, including the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, to participate in the Task Force, as determined to be appropriate by those agencies.
(c) The Co-Chairs shall regularly convene and preside at meetings of the Task Force and shall determine its agenda. Under the direction of the Co-Chairs, the Task Force shall:
(i) gather ideas and advice from State and local governments, tribes, large and small businesses, universities, national laboratories, nongovernmental and labor organizations, consumers, and other stakeholders and interested parties; and
(ii) coordinate the efforts of agencies and offices related to the development of the Quadrennial Energy Review Report, as described in sections 1 and 2 of this memorandum.
(d) The Secretary of Energy shall provide support to the Task Force, including support for coordination activities related to the preparation of the Quadrennial Energy Review Report, policy analysis and modeling, and stakeholder engagement.
(e) The Task Force shall submit a Quadrennial Energy Review Report to the President every 4 years beginning with a report delivered by January 31, 2015. Intermediate reports and other material may be prepared by the Task Force as required by the President.
Sec. 2. The Quadrennial Energy Review Report. The Task Force shall establish integrated guidance to strengthen U.S. energy policy. Building on the Blueprint for a Secure Energy Future and the Climate Action Plan, and taking into consideration applicable laws and regulations, the Task Force shall prepare a Quadrennial Energy Review Report that:
(a) provides an integrated view of, and recommendations for, Federal energy policy in the context of economic, environmental, occupational, security, and health and safety priorities, with attention in the first report given to the challenges facing the Nation's energy infrastructures;
(b) reviews the adequacy, with respect to energy policy, of existing executive and legislative actions, and recommends additional executive and legislative actions as appropriate;
(c) assesses and recommends priorities for research, development, and demonstration programs to support key energy-innovation goals; and
(d) identifies analytical tools and data needed to support further policy development and implementation.
Sec. 3. Outreach. In order to gather information and recommendations and to provide for a transparent process in developing the Quadrennial Energy Review Report, the Task Force shall engage with State and local governments, tribes, large and small businesses, universities, national laboratories, nongovernmental and labor organizations, and other stakeholders and interested parties. The Task Force shall develop an integrated outreach strategy that relies on both traditional meetings and the use of information technology.
Sec. 4. General Provisions. (a) This memorandum shall be implemented consistent with applicable law and subject to the availability of appropriations.
(b) Nothing in this memorandum shall be construed to impair or otherwise affect:
(i) the authority granted by law to any agency, or the head thereof; or
(ii) the functions of the Director of the Office of Management and Budget relating to budgetary, administrative, or legislative proposals.
(c) Nothing in this memorandum shall be construed to require the disclosure of confidential business information or trade secrets, classified information, law enforcement sensitive information, or other information that must be protected in the interest of national security or public safety.
(d) This memorandum is not intended to, and does not, create any right or benefit, substantive or procedural, enforceable at law or in equity by any party against the United States, its departments, agencies, or entities, its officers, employees, or agents, or any other person.
(e) The Director of the Office of Science and Technology Policy is authorized and directed to publish this memorandum in the Federal Register.
[Chris Faraone speculates that Mein Kampf has become an e-book hit because you] don't have to go to a store and ask for it. You don't have to conspicuously pull it out on the commuter train-it can be neatly hidden by a Kindle cover. An e-book means that now a reader can curiously turn over the rock that is “Mein Kampf” and see what's wriggling underneath, and seemingly no one need ever know. But as Richard Lea points out in The Guardian, “The privacy electronic readers are availing themselves of isn't exactly private. The person opposite you on the tube may not know you're following der F?hrer on your Kindle, but Amazon sure as hell does.” ?Enjoy your illusions of privacy until your “recommendations” scare the crap out of you.
Al Roker tells Rush Limbaugh to "Stuff It", by ProgLegs
Man arrested with 48 bombs: NRA member & ex-College Republican, by Daisy Cutter
Bill Nye explains Why, by jamess
Such a possibility and the treatment meted out to him at the hands of FBI has once again united people vehemently calling for reforms in the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act (CFA).
One of the leading proponent of reforms in this act is Congresswoman Zoe Lofgren who tried to reach consensus on the failed “Aaron' Law” bill; this bill was sought when the Internet prodigy, Aaron Swartz, ?committed suicide when threatened for 50+ years in prison for releasing the academic articles from a pay-walled database.
"Some of my teammates were leaving because of pressure from their families and business associates. My dreams of basketball diplomacy was quickly falling apart. I had been drinking. It's not an excuse but by the time the interview happened I was upset. I was overwhelmed. It's not an excuse, it's just the truth."
He added, "At this point, I should know better than to make political statements. I'm truly sorry."
Since 2011, part of the popular online forum Reddit has grown into an active marketplace for assault rifles, high-capacity magazines, and other powerful firearms, according to an investigation by Mother Jones. In the last six months alone there have been more than 1,000 listings posted by more than 400 Redditors on the GunsForSale subreddit, one of thousands of niche communities on the sprawling discussion site. Not only has Reddit allowed a gun market to thrive, it has also literally put its stamp on it: Gun purchases brokered through the site have included nearly 100 AR-15s engraved with Reddit's alien logo, which was used on the assault rifles with explicit permission from the company-while it was owned by media giant Cond? Nast-according to email correspondence obtained by Mother Jones.
A total of 311 U.S. and international environmental and clean energy groups said yesterday that, while they respect the climate change work of Dr. James Hansen and three of his academic colleagues, they take strong exception to the notion that nuclear power is the solution to global warming.