Trump Administration Budget Proposal Terrible for Sustainability
The Trump administration's full budget proposal for fiscal year 2018, released on May 23, is little changed from the initial budget outline released on March 16. Despite widespread concern from both political parties in Congress, government advisers, and the private sector, over the highly questionable items included in the "skinny budget," the administration has dug in on dismantling vital environmental, scientific, and social programs. "Although the administration frames their proposals as beneficial to taxpayers and job creation, these cuts would reduce the economy's long-term productivity and harm public health," said EESI Executive Director Carol Werner.
USDA Loan Awards Will Reduce Energy Costs for Rural America
Home energy efficiency improvements will get a boost thanks to the loans announced today, May 10, by USDA's Rural Utilities Service for the new Rural Energy Savings Program (RESP). These loans will result in reduced energy costs for many rural households across the country.
Trump Administration Climate Rollback Is Wrong on Many Levels
The White House announced today, March 28, that it is retracting the Clean Power Plan, the Obama Administration's signature climate policy. The Clean Power Plan would have represented the first-ever federal limits on carbon emission from power plants, which represent 40 percent of all energy-related greenhouse gas emissions in the United States. Carol Werner, EESI's Executive Director, gave a statement.
EESI Earns Perfect Rating from Charity Navigator
Charity Navigator, America’s leading nonprofit evaluator, has released its most recent evaluation of the Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI), and EESI once again earned the highest designation: Four Star Charity! Beyond earning its place as a Four Star Charity, EESI earned—for the first time ever—100 out of the 100 points possible in both categories considered by Charity Navigator: financial health and accountability and transparency.
Marrakech Action Proclamation Reaffirms Global Climate Deal
Meeting in Marrakech, Morocco, representatives from 196 countries and the European Union have reaffirmed their commitment to the Paris Climate Agreement, which calls on the world's nations to keep global warming significantly below 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit). "We call for the highest political commitment to combat climate change, as a matter of urgent priority," states the proclamation. "Now is not the time to fall back," says EESI Executive Director Carol Werner. "In all likelihood, 2016 will, unfortunately, be the hottest year ever recorded, beating 2015 and 2014. The Arctic was 20 degrees Celsius (36 F) warmer than average for October, and its sea ice coverage was at a record low for the month. Unless countries set more ambitious targets to reduce their greenhouse gas emissions, global temperatures will increase by more than 2 degrees Celsius by the end of the century, which would have devastating environmental consequences."
Huge Step Taken to Combat Climate Change
The Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI) salutes the decision of the 197 members of the Montreal Protocol to phase-out hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs), which have a major warming impact on the climate. This momentous decision was reached today in Kigali, Rwanda, during the 28th meeting of the parties to the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer. HFC use is expected to peak by 2028 at the latest and then gradually decrease until HFCs are 85 percent phased out in all countries by 2047 (developed countries, such as the United States, must act sooner, with their use of HFCs peaking in 2019).
Record-Fast Ratification of Paris Agreement Shows Global Solidarity and Resolve
The Paris Agreement, which calls on the world's nations to keep global warming significantly below 2 degrees Celsius (3.6 degrees Fahrenheit), will enter into force in the first week of November. Participating countries, including the United States, have submitted written pledges to cut their greenhouse gas emissions, by transitioning to cleaner energy sources and by promoting energy efficiency.
USDA Announces New No-Interest Efficiency Loan Program for Rural Utilities
The Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI) welcomes the announcement of the U.S. Department of Agriculture's new Rural Energy Savings Program (RESP), which was published in today's Federal Register. The now-operational program represents a major milestone for EESI's exhaustive and ongoing efforts in these policy areas, from the inception of RESP and the "Help My House" on-bill financing program in South Carolina to more recent work in Iowa, Michigan and other states.
EESI Moves 100% of Stock Holdings to Socially Responsible Funds
The Environmental and Energy Study Institute (EESI), a not-for-profit organization dedicated to promoting environmentally sustainable societies, will complete moving its stock holdings to socially responsible funds by December 2016. Half of EESI's holdings are already in such funds. EESI's commitment extends beyond mere avoidance of companies whose policies conflict with our mission statement: it emphasizes a positive search for companies that are in line with our organizational values and vision. In particular, EESI will preferentially invest in companies that have demonstrated a commitment to environmental stewardship, energy efficiency, and clean renewable energy; EESI will also divest from companies that extract energy from fossil fuels.
New Rules Limiting Methane Leakages Will Play Key Role in Slowing Climate Change
On April 29, the Environmental Protection Agency released its final rules to reduce dangerous methane leakages from new and modified sources in the oil and gas industry. The new standards should prevent 510,000 short tons of methane emissions in 2025 (that is the equivalent of 11 million metric tons of carbon dioxide, or taking 2.3 million cars off the road). The new rules should save Americans $690 million in 2025 by reducing methane and toxic pollution (that is 30 percent more than the $530 million the rules will cost to implement in 2025).