Energy & Environment: Markey Wants Answers on Rare Earths
• Rep. Edward Markey, D-Mass., "is pressing the Obama administration for information about alleged Chinese restrictions on the export of rare earth minerals used in defense and energy technologies, warning of threats to U.S. interests," The Hill reports.
• "Three months after BP capped its runaway well in the Gulf of Mexico, the state of Louisiana is still building a chain of sand berms off its coast to block and capture oil even as federal officials and many scientists argue that the effort will prove pointless," the New York Times reports.
• An Idaho couple has "sued the state to stop the shipments by Imperial Oil and ConocoPhillips" to an oil sands site in Canada, "arguing that the" truck loads delivered there "would threaten the integrity of Idaho's historic portion of U.S. 12, as well as the safety of communities that depend on it as the main road in and out of the area," the Times also reports. "National environmental groups and climate change activists are supporting their efforts, seeing a broader opportunity to stall development of Canada's oil sands, which they denounce as a dirty source of energy. "
• "Combating climate change has long taken a back seat to coal production in West Virginia, but in the hard-fought House race in this state's 1st district, global warming hasn't even made it onto the bus," The Hill reports. "In interviews on Thursday, both the Democratic and Republican nominees for Congress voiced skepticism of the science behind global warming, and the Republican, David McKinley, flatly called concerns about climate change 'an attack on coal.'"
Biography provided by participant
Dr. Keith William Crane is Director of the RAND Corporation's Environment, Energy, and Economic Development Program. He works on issues pertaining to Ukraine and the other transition economies of Eastern Europe and the Commonwealth of Independent States, imported oil and U.S. national security, climate change, Iraq and the rest of the Middle East, and post-conflict nation building. He served on the Energy and Political and Economic Working Groups of U.S.-EU Partnership Committee for Ukraine chaired by Zbigniew Brzezinski and Volker Ruhe. He was a member of the Afghan Study Group in 2007 and in 2006 served on the Economy and Reconstruction Working Group for the Baker-Hamilton Iraq Study Group. In the fall of 2003, Crane served as an economic policy advisor to the Coalition Provisional Authority in Baghdad. Prior to rejoining RAND in February 2002, Crane was Chief Operating Officer and Director of Research at PlanEcon, Inc., a Washington, D.C.-based research and consulting firm focusing on Central and Eastern Europe and the former Soviet republics. During his tenure at PlanEcon, Crane provided analysis and economic forecasts used in over 100 major investments in the region. As part of his responsibilities, he was responsible for offices in Moscow, Sofia, and Warsaw. Crane writes extensively on transition issues and international economics in policy and academic journals and briefs high level decision makers.
Crane received his Ph.D. in economics from Indiana University in 1983. He was an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Economics at Georgetown University in 2001-2002 and in the George Mason University public policy program between 1998 and 2000. He has served as a faculty member of the RAND-UCLA Center for the Study of Soviet International Behavior and as a Fulbright Professor at the Central School of Planning and Statistics in Warsaw, Poland. Crane has lived for several years in Eastern Europe and is fluent in Hungarian and Polish.