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
Matt Garrington joined the Checks & Balances Project as the Deputy Director in March 2011, overseeing our western public lands energy program work. Over the last eleven years, Matt has been in western politics working to keep Colorado and the West a great place to live.
He started working on a grassroots campaign to protect our national forests in 1999, and later went on to be a campus organizer for the Colorado Public Interest Research Group. Matt worked on a successful 2002 campaign finance reform effort in Colorado. Between 2004 through 2005, Matt served as campaign manager, field director, and legislative aide for Colorado State Senate President Brandon Shaffer. Matt also directed the grassroots petition office for Environment Colorado's Amendment 37 campaign, which was the first-ever citizen-passed renewable electricity standard, requiring 10 percent of Colorado's energy to come from wind and solar power. Two years later, he would run a statewide field effort on a clean energy platform with labor and agricultural organizations to double Colorado's use of renewable energy to 20 percent by 2020.
Matt also directed Environment Colorado's preservation program, where he won successful campaigns to protect over 4 million acres of roadless areas in Colorado's national forests and to protect our land, water, and communities from oil and gas drilling and uranium pollution.
Garrington grew up in Loveland, Colorado and received his B.A. in Political Science with a minor in Economics and Music Performance at the University of Colorado at Denver. Matt is also board member and past president of the Colorado music nonprofit, Creative Music Works, where he won the "2008 Performing Arts Mastermind Award" from Westword magazine. He serves on the Advisory Board for CU Denver's Political Science Department. Matt lives in the Denver area with his wife Sara and two daughters, Evelyn and Roxanne.