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
Thomas P. Kimbis is the Vice President of Strategy and External Affairs at the Solar Energy Industries Association. Tom leads the development of long-term policies promoting solar energy and oversees expansion of SEIA's market research efforts. He provides legal services to SEIA as General Counsel. Tom also serves as the Chair for The Solar Foundation, a nonprofit promoting the increased use of solar energy through education and research. Tom has been working in renewable energy since 2000 including as Director of Market Transformation at the Solar Energy Technologies Program at the U.S. Department of Energy. In this role, Tom helped found the Solar America Initiative and the Solar America Cities program. He has a B.A. in Political Science / International Relations from Williams College (MA) and a J.D. from the University of Virginia.