The Week Ahead: A Look at Energy, Environmental Issues Republicans May Raise During Convention


With the Republican Convention getting under way in Tampa, Fla., Aug. 27, presidential candidate Mitt Romney’s energy and environmental views—while not expected to be high on the agenda—likely will be raised in a broader context as part of the economy.

Also, vice presidential pick Paul Ryan’s record on energy and the environment and what it may portend for the ticket going forward may be raised.

On the energy front, Romney released a plan last week based on a campaign goal of making North America energy independent by 2020. The plan largely focuses on fossil fuels, including expanding offshore oil and gas leasing and approval of the Keystone XL oil pipeline.
In what some observers say would spell trouble for the renewable energy industry, Romney’s plan calls for funding for clean energy projects to be left to the private sector.

Details of the energy plan are provided in an Aug. 23 World Climate Change Reportarticle,

Meanwhile, Ryan—a climate change science skeptic—may help shore up support from the Republican party’s conservative base. As covered in an Aug. 13 article, Romney, while governor of Massachusetts, supported limits on power plant greenhouse gas emissions. Both are seen to have largely the same energy views.

UNFCCC Negotiations to Be Held in Bangkok

A new round of informal pre-summit negotiations by the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change are set to begin Aug. 30 and run through Sept. 5 in Bangkok.

The negotiations were called for during the last set of talks in Bonn May 14-25, which were viewed as slow-paced and prolonged, with the gap between the negotiating stances of rich and poor countries widening.

However, as detailed in a May 25 article, delegates approved an outline of the agenda for constructing a universal treaty to reduce greenhouse gas emissions starting in 2020.

The informal talks are a lead-up to the UNFCCC Conference of Parties scheduled for Nov. 26-Dec. 7 in Doha, Qatar.

EPA Advisory Board to Review Draft Report

The Environmental Protection Agency's Science Advisory Board will hold a staff teleconference Aug. 31 to review an EPA draft report, Accounting Framework for Biogenic Carbon Dioxide Emissions From Stationary Sources. As detailed in a Jan. 27 article, during a meeting earlier this year on biogenic emissions, or carbon dioxide emissions from biomass-based fuels burned by industrial facilities, SAB recommended  that EPA consider alternate time scales and accounting methodologies. According to the panel, EPA's accounting framework relies too heavily on a regional approach and greenhouse gases other than carbon dioxide also should be considered.

Supply Chain Issues on Agenda

The Center for Strategic & International Studies will hold an event Aug. 28 in Washington, D.C., on "Creating a 21st Century Supply Chain." Tony Prophet, senior vice president of Hewlett-Packard , will give the keynote address on improving and greening supply chain performance.