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Item #d96oct129

Mandates for Japanese industry: Japan's Ministry of International Trade and Industry this summer announced plans to mandate energy-efficiency improvements in its manufacturing and power generation industries. Details of emission targets, aimed at reducing CO2 emissions 1% annually until the year 2000, will be developed by the end of the year. (See Chem. Eng. News, p. 16, Aug. 5, 1996.) In July, an Environment Agency panel released a report recommending a carbon tax to accomplish emission stabilization by the year 2000. (See Global Environ. Change Rep., pp. 3-4, July 26, 1996.)

Item #d96oct130

U.K. environmental accounts: The Office for National Statistics released a pilot set of environmental accounts based on 1993 data which relate pollution generated to economic activity in various sectors. For instance, the U.K. electricity industry produced 25% of CO2 emissions but contributed only 1.5% of the gross domestic product. The final version of the accounts will be posted on the Internet this winter. (See New Scientist, p. 11, Sep. 7, 1996; Intl. Environ. Rptr., p. 841, Sep. 18; or contact Off. Natl. Statistics, Great George St., London SW1P 3AQ, tel: 44 171 270 6159, fax: 44 171 270 6190.)

Item #d96oct131

U.K. science cuts: A panel of top scientists released UK National Strategy for Global Environmental Research, which proposes a new national committee to coordinate Britain's contribution to international research. The report is a response to the government's withdrawal of funds from two major research programs: the Terrestrial Initiative in Global Environmental Research (TIGER), and the national contribution to the Joint Global Ocean Flux Study (JGOFS). (See New Scientist, p. 9, Sep. 14, 1996.)

Item #d96oct132

BSE crisis and CO2: A recent study concludes that Britain's cattle crisis could help the country cut its greenhouse gas emissions. As cattle are slaughtered, the methane they generate will decline, and land now used for feed crops will become available to grow trees. (See Reports/General Interest, this GLOBAL CLIMATE CHANGE DIGEST issue--Oct.-Nov. 1996, and New Scientist, p. 5, Aug. 31, 1996.)

Item #d96oct133

"Wirth: State's Worthy Warrior," B. Hileman, Chem. Eng. News, pp. 23-25, Sep. 16, 1996. An interview with Timothy E. Wirth, the U.S. State Department's undersecretary for global affairs. Much of the discussion involves the U.S. stance on climate change and the need for binding targets for emission reductions.

Item #d96oct134

"DOE's Biomass Project to Fuel Rural Economy," pp. 5, 7, USEA Update, Oct. 1996 (U.S. Energy Assoc., 1620 Eye St. NW #1000, Washington DC 20006). The Department of Energy announced the first cost-shared cooperative R&D agreement to grow energy feedstock willows to generate renewable electricity. The $14 million award went to Niagara Mohawk Power Corporation in upper New York State for the Salix Consortium, representing of over 25 corporations, associations, academic institutions and utilities. The initiative could provide new opportunities for farmers and landowners in rural America.

Item #d96oct135

"Statoil Begins Underwater CO2 Disposal," Global Environ. Change Rep., p. 7, Sep. 13, 1996. The Norwegian state oil company Statoil has begun the first large scale experiment in sequestering CO2 into undersea aquifers under the North Sea. Natural gas produced there contains almost 10% CO2, and it is cheaper for Statoil to sequester the CO2 than to pay the carbon tax that would otherwise be due.

Item #d96oct136

"Environment Game Gives Taste of Treaties," S. Nadis, Nature, p. 661, Aug. 22, 1996. A game invented by scientists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology suggests approaches for more effective negotiation of environmental treaties. For instance, it shows the importance of having professional mediators, and of informal discussions before attempting to conclude agreements.

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