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2007

Congressional Research Service Reports

Articles 1 - 10 of 10

Full-Text Articles in Political Science

Background And Legal Issues Related To Stem Cell Research, Jon O. Shimabukuro Jan 2007

Background And Legal Issues Related To Stem Cell Research, Jon O. Shimabukuro

Congressional Research Service Reports

In August 2001, President Bush announced that federal funds, with certain restrictions, may be used to conduct research on human embryonic stem cells. Federal research is limited to “the more than 60” existing stem cell lines that were derived (1) with the informed consent of the donors; (2) from excess embryos created solely for reproductive purposes; and (3) without any financial inducements to the donors. No federal funds may be used for the derivation or use of stem cell lines derived from newly destroyed embryos; the creation of any human embryos for research purposes; or cloning of human embryos for ...


Land Exchanges: Bureau Of Land Management Process And Issues, Carol Hardy Vincent Jan 2007

Land Exchanges: Bureau Of Land Management Process And Issues, Carol Hardy Vincent

Congressional Research Service Reports

The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) typically completes dozens of exchanges a year to acquire and dispose of land. The land exchange process generally has five phases: development of an exchange proposal, feasibility evaluation, processing and documentation (including appraisal), decision analysis and approval, and title transfer. Land exchanges have been controversial periodically, with concerns regarding the benefits to the public, determinations of market value, and contradictions in policies and procedures. In response, BLM has implemented changes to the appraisal and exchange processes. There remains a difference of opinion on the usefulness of land exchanges.


Climate Change: Science And Policy Implications, Jane A. Leggett Jan 2007

Climate Change: Science And Policy Implications, Jane A. Leggett

Congressional Research Service Reports

Almost all scientists agree that the Earth’s climate is changing, having warmed by 0.6 to 0.9° Celsius (1.1 to 1.6° Fahrenheit) since the Industrial Revolution. Science indicates that the Earth’s global average temperature is now approaching, or possibly has passed, the warmest experienced since human civilizations began to flourish about 12,000 years ago. During the 20th Century, some areas became wetter while others experienced more drought. Most climate scientists conclude that humans have induced a large part of the climate change since the 1970s. Although natural forces such as solar irradiance and volcanoes ...


Fuel Ethanol: Background And Public Policy Issues, Brent D. Yacobucci Jan 2007

Fuel Ethanol: Background And Public Policy Issues, Brent D. Yacobucci

Congressional Research Service Reports

Ethanol plays a key role in policy discussions about energy, agriculture, taxes, and the environment. In the United States it is mostly made from corn; in other countries it is often made from cane sugar. Fuel ethanol is generally blended in gasoline to reduce emissions, increase octane, and extend gasoline stocks. Recent high oil and gasoline prices have led to increased interest in alternatives to petroleum fuels for transportation. Further, concerns over climate change have raised interest in developing fuels with lower fuel-cycle greenhouse-gas emissions.

Supporters of ethanol argue that its use can lead to lower emissions of toxic and ...


The Advanced Technology Program, Wendy H. Schacht Jan 2007

The Advanced Technology Program, Wendy H. Schacht

Congressional Research Service Reports

The Advanced Technology Program (ATP) was created by P.L. 100-418, the Omnibus Trade and Competitiveness Act of 1988, to encourage public-private cooperation in the development of pre-competitive technologies with broad application across industries. Administered by the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), a laboratory of the Department of Commerce, this activity has been targeted for elimination as a means to cut federal spending. Since FY2000, the original Housepassed appropriation bills have not included funding for ATP. Many of the Administration’s budget requests have proposed termination of the program. However, ATP continues to be supported, although at levels ...


Science, Engineering, And Mathematics Education: Status And Issues, Christine M. Matthews Jan 2007

Science, Engineering, And Mathematics Education: Status And Issues, Christine M. Matthews

Congressional Research Service Reports

An important aspect of U.S. efforts to maintain and improve economic competitiveness is the existence of a capable scientific and technological workforce. A major concern of the 110th Congress may be regarding the future ability of the U.S. science and engineering base to generate the technological advances needed to maintain economic growth. Discussions have centered on the quality of science and mathematics education and training and on the scientific knowledge of those students entering other disciplines. Even students pursuing nonscientific and nonmathematical specialities are likely to require basic knowledge of scientific and technological applications for effective participation in ...


Pesticide Use And Water Quality: Are The Laws Complementary Or In Conflict?, Claudia Copeland Jan 2007

Pesticide Use And Water Quality: Are The Laws Complementary Or In Conflict?, Claudia Copeland

Congressional Research Service Reports

This report provides background on the emerging conflict over interpretation and implementation of the Federal Insecticide, Fungicide, and Rodenticide Act (FIFRA) and the Clean Water Act (CWA). For the more than 30 years since they were enacted, there has been little apparent conflict between them. But their relationship has recently been challenged in several arenas, including the federal courts and regulatory proceedings of the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). In this report, a brief discussion of the two laws is followed by a review of the major litigation of interest. EPA’s efforts to clarify its policy in this area, including ...


Stem Cell Research: Federal Research Funding And Oversight, Judith A. Johnson, Erin D. Williams Jan 2007

Stem Cell Research: Federal Research Funding And Oversight, Judith A. Johnson, Erin D. Williams

Congressional Research Service Reports

Embryonic stem cells have the ability to develop into virtually any cell in the body, and they may have the potential to treat medical conditions such as diabetes and Parkinson’s disease. In August 2001, President Bush announced that for the first time, federal funds would be used to support research on human embryonic stem cells, but funding would be limited to “existing stem cell lines.” NIH has established a registry of 78 human embryonic stem cell lines that are eligible for use in federally funded research, but only 21 cell lines are currently available. Scientists are concerned about the ...


National Science Foundation: Major Research Equipment And Facility Construction, Christine M. Matthews Jan 2007

National Science Foundation: Major Research Equipment And Facility Construction, Christine M. Matthews

Congressional Research Service Reports

The Major Research Equipment and Facilities Construction (MREFC) account of the National Science Foundation (NSF) supports the acquisition and construction of major research facilities and equipment that are to extend the boundaries of science, engineering, and technology. The facilities include telescopes, earth simulators, astronomical observatories, and mobile research platforms. Currently, the NSF provides approximately $1.0 billion annually in support of facilities and other infrastructure projects. While the NSF does not directly design or operate research facilities, it does have final responsibility for oversight and management. Questions have been raised by many in the scientific community concerning the adequacy of ...


The National Institute Of Standards And Technology: An Overview, Wendy H. Schacht Jan 2007

The National Institute Of Standards And Technology: An Overview, Wendy H. Schacht

Congressional Research Service Reports

The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has a mandate to increase the competitiveness of U.S. firms and provide the measurement, calibration, and quality assurance techniques that underpin U.S. commerce. Congressional debate has focused on the merits of NIST’s external R&D programs directed toward increased private sector commercialization, including the Advanced Technology Program (ATP) and the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP). The level of funding for internal research efforts has also been scrutinized by Congress. FY2006 appropriations legislation provided $752 million for NIST, an increase of 8.2% over FY2005 (after mandated rescissions) and financed ATP ...