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
Mark Palmer's practice is concentrated in the biofuels, renewable energy, clean
tech, and public policy arenas, where he has a strong background in authorizations,
appropriations, and tax policy matters. Mr. Palmer's experience on Capitol Hill
and comprehensive knowledge of the legislative process and the mechanics of the
Executive Branch, uniquely qualify him to advise clients on legislation and policy
strategy, coalition building, and project execution through practical problem
Mr. Palmer formerly worked in the Office of the Secretary at the U.S. Department
of Agriculture (USDA), where he served the Farm Service Agency (FSA) as a Senior
Advisor and was Director of the Office of External Affairs. While at USDA, Mr.
Palmer coordinated agriculture and energy policy messaging for FSA with the
White House, presented Agency policies and represented Secretary Vilsack on
Capitol Hill, and formulated the Agency's legislative program with the Office of the
Secretary. He also developed complex legislative and communications strategies,
such as the 2008 Farm Bill implementation, and provided specialized advice to
congressional committees in both the Senate and the House. In addition, Mr.
Palmer was responsible for developing and executing key policy objectives and
analyzing legislation affecting program operations in support of USDA goals.
Prior to his work at USDA, Mr. Palmer was Chief Policy Advisor to the Chair of
the House Committee on Small Business, Representative Nydia M. Velázquez
(D-NY-12); a Legislative Assistant to Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL); the Special
Projects Liaison to Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), and held senior policy
positions with the National Corn Growers Association and the American Soybean