Science & Technology
Braley to Testify Before Ways and Means Committee in Support of Adoption, Wind Energy Tax Credits PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Science & Technology
Written by Jeff Giertz   
Monday, 30 April 2012 10:09

Washington, DC – This morning, Thursday April 26th, 2012, Rep. Bruce Braley (IA-01) will testify before a House Ways and Means Committee hearing on expiring tax credits about the importance of extending the Adoption Tax Credit and the Production Tax Credit for wind energy.

 

Braley introduced legislation to extend the Adoption Tax Credit earlier this month.  More information is available at the following link: http://go.usa.gov/yo0

 

Braley has also pushed hard to pass a long-term extension of the Production Tax Credit for wind energy: http://go.usa.gov/yo8

 

TODAY, Thursday April 26th, 2012

 

Approx.                Braley Testifies Before House Ways and Means Committee

11:20am EDT      Testimony focuses on Adoption Tax Credit and Renewable Energy Production Tax Credit

Longworth House Office Building

Room 1100

Washington, DC

 

**LIVESTREAM AVAILABLE** The hearing will be live-streamed online at http://waysandmeans.house.gov

 

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Former NASA Scientists, Astronauts to Attend Heartland Institute Climate Conference PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Science & Technology
Written by Jim Lakely   
Wednesday, 18 April 2012 14:08

Signed Recent Letter Critical of NASA’s ‘Advocacy of an Extreme Position’ on Climate Science

Two Apollo-era astronauts and two prominent former NASA scientists will speak at The Heartland Institute’s Seventh International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC-7), taking place in Chicago on May 21–23. The four men were among 49 signatories to a March 28 letter to NASA and the Goddard Institute for Space Studies (GISS) urging the agencies to cease their “unbridled advocacy” of anthropogenic global warming. (Read the letter here.)

Dr. Harrison Schmitt, the first scientist and last man to walk on the moon in the Apollo 17 mission, and Apollo 7 lunar module pilot Walter Cunningham will talk about how NASA’s “unproven and unsupported remarks” on global warming damage the agency’s reputation.

The astronauts will be joined in the discussion by Harold Doiron, who worked for decades on vehicle stability and design at NASA, and Thomas Wysmuller, a meteorologist for the Royal Dutch Weather Bureau in Amsterdam and a long-time employee and consultant for NASA.

Register to attend the conference at this link.

Other confirmed speakers at ICCC-7 include:

Vaclav Klaus, president of the Czech Republic
Alan Carlin, U.S. EPA (retired)
Robert “Bob” Carter, James Cook University (Queensland, Australia)
Roger Helmer, MP, Britain
William “Bill” Gray, Colorado State University (emeritus)
Kenneth Haapala, Science and Environmental Policy Project
Tom Harris, International Climate Science Coalition
S. Fred Singer, University of Virginia (emeritus)
Willie Soon, astrophysicist
Leighton Steward, PlantsNeedCO2.org and CO2IsGreen.org
Brian Sussman, author, Climategate and Eco-Tyranny

Heartland will be joined by dozens of think tank cosponsors and hundreds of scientists who understand the need for a real debate about the causes, consequences, and policy implications of climate change. (See previous press release announcing the event here.)

What: Seventh International Conference on Climate Change (ICCC-7)

Theme: Real Science, Real Choices

Where: Hilton Chicago, 720 South Michigan Avenue, Chicago, IL

When: Monday, May 21 – Wednesday, May 23, 2012, immediately following the NATO Summit also taking place in Chicago, on May 19–21.

Media: Open to all media. Request press credentials here.

The conference will feature several keynote speeches and some 30 panel discussions, each featuring a moderator and two experts debating a particular issue or aspect of the climate change debate. Check out the ICCC-7 page often for regular updates on the conference.

Attendance Information

ICCC-7 is open to the public. Registration is required. More information is available at the conference Web site.

For more information about The Heartland Institute, visit our Web site or contact Jim Lakely at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 312/377-4000.

Get Twitter updates of the conference by following @HeartlandInst and the hashtag #ICCC7.

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Connect Iowa Unveils Innovative New Broadband Mapping Tool PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Science & Technology
Written by Jessica Ditto   
Wednesday, 18 April 2012 12:38

Interactive Map Offers Unique Tools to View Iowa’s Technology Landscape, Guide Expansion Efforts

Des Moines – Connect Iowa today unveiled an innovative new broadband mapping tool offering unmatched views of Iowa’s technology landscape.

The mapping tool, called My ConnectView, is a valuable tool for consumers, policy makers, Internet providers, and planning teams working to increase broadband access, adoption, and use in communities across the state and nation.

“My ConnectView is rich in information that will help our state make smart decisions on broadband expansion,” says Connect Iowa Program Manager Amy Kuhlers. “The maps and data layers also offer a powerful tool for economic development that will help inform decisions like where to build out new services and how to create cost-effective business solutions. But it’s a great resource for everyone. Folks at home can use My ConnectView to find which broadband services are available to consumers that they may have been previously been unaware of.”

My ConnectView, developed by Connected Nation, Connect Iowa’s parent organization, replaces the previous mapping tool and is faster and easier to use; features more interactive data layers and additional tools to explore data; and allows users to e-mail, print, and send feedback on custom maps.

By offering unprecedented views of unserved and underserved areas of Iowa, My ConnectView will help drive economic development planning centered around broadband technology expansion efforts in Iowa.

Connect Iowa has just completed its 5th round of broadband data updates to the National Telecommunications and Information Administration. The data, gathered as part of the State Broadband Initiative program, is used to populate the National Broadband Map. The new maps are online and can be accessed under the learn tab on the Connect Iowa website.

We urge citizens and providers to use the tool to help us verify the information presented and to contact us if they can't get access to broadband. Connect Iowa uses such feedback to ensure the maps are accurate and to reach out to providers and community leaders to promote broadband expansion into unserved and underserved areas of Iowa. For more information, please contact Connect Iowa Program Manager Amy Kuhlers at This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or 515-421-2561.

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About Connect Iowa: Connect Iowa is a subsidiary of Connected Nation and operates as a nonprofit in the state of Iowa to promote broadband access, adoption, and use. The Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) is leading the initiative to increase broadband Internet access throughout rural Iowa. Connect Iowa was commissioned by the state to work with all broadband providers in Iowa to create detailed maps of broadband coverage and develop a statewide plan for the deployment and adoption of broadband. For more information visit: www.connectiowa.org.

 
Grassley says anniversary of ANWR defeat and soaring gas prices emphasize need for domestic energy production PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Science & Technology
Written by Grassley Press   
Wednesday, 18 April 2012 12:34
WASHINGTON --- Senator Chuck Grassley said today that defeat of an amendment 10 years ago to allow more domestic energy production in Alaska was “enormously shortsighted” because today that oil would be driving down prices at the pump for consumers.

 

“It’s past time to take action to ramp up domestic production of traditional energy,” he said.  “In 2011, consumers spent a greater percentage of their household income on gasoline than any other year since 1981.  Affordable energy is a major economic issue.”

 

Grassley made his remarks on the 10-year anniversary of a Senate vote against legislation to open a tiny portion of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge – ANWR – to oil and gas development.  On April 18, 2002, the Democratic-controlled Senate defeated the domestic production initiative with many senators arguing that because it would take up to 10 years for the oil to reach the market ANWR was too far down the road to impact the energy supply or energy security.

 

“This missed opportunity should be a lesson.  We shouldn’t make the same mistakes again,” Grassley said.  “Greater domestic energy production would increase supply and help to lower prices.  It would create American jobs.  And it needs to start today.”

 

Grassley said the Obama administration has made things worse by restricting access to domestic energy sources.  “The President’s policies have prevented more oil production in the United States and resulted in higher prices, lost opportunities for job creation, and less energy security,” Grassley said.  “The President’s record contradicts his recent remarks that he’s for an all-of-the-above energy strategy.”

 

Citing Obama administration policies that restrict access to federal lands and permitting delays, regulatory threats to refiners, and the decision to deny the Keystone XL decision, Grassley said that by limiting domestic energy production, we have less supply and higher prices.

 

The complete text of Grassley’s statement today is below and includes comments made during the 2002 Senate debate about ANWR being ineffective because production would have taken 10 years.  Click here to watch the speech.

 

 

Floor Statement of U.S. Senator Chuck Grassley

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

 

Mr. President – Around the country, American consumers are paying near-record prices for gasoline at the pump.  The current average price for a gallon of gas is near $3.90 a gallon.  Since January 2009, the average price of a gallon of regular gasoline has more than doubled.  In 2011, consumers spent a greater percentage of their household income on gasoline than any other year since 1981.

 

Affordable energy is a major economic issue.  Paying nearly $4 for gas acts like a hidden tax and results in people having less money to spend on other things.  Rising energy prices also increase the cost of doing business for job creators and take away dollars that otherwise could go to hiring workers.

 

We should be doing everything possible to prevent these high energy prices.

 

The Senate had an opportunity ten years ago today to take action to increase our domestic oil supply.  Unfortunately, the Senate missed that opportunity.   Ten years ago today, the Senate considered an amendment offered by Senator Frank Murkowski to open a tiny portion of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil and gas development.  A vote on the cloture motion was rejected by the Democrat majority in the Senate on April 18, 2002.

 

During that debate, opponents argued that opening ANWR to development would never supply more than two percent of our nation’s oil demands.  They opposed it based on the belief that opening ANWR wouldn’t address the real problem, namely, our dependence on fossil fuels.  They said we needed to work toward a comprehensive approach.  Opening ANWR was also portrayed as a distraction from real solutions like conservation, alternative and renewable energy, and less environmentally sensitive fossil energy development.  Some even argued that fully-inflated or low-friction tires should be a larger part of our national energy policy.

 

I recognize the need for a comprehensive, balanced national energy policy.  I truly believe in an all-of–the-above approach that includes conservation, alternative and renewable energy, nuclear power and oil and gas development.  But the fact remains, we were talking about these policies as solutions to our energy problems in 2002, yet gas prices are still near $4 a gallon.

 

I listened to dozens of speakers who argued against opening ANWR because it wouldn’t address our near term energy needs.  They said it would take nearly ten years to get that oil to consumers.  Ten years ago we were told to forget about opening ANWR, because development was too far down the road to impact our energy supply or energy security.  Here a few quotes from my Democratic colleagues during that debate in April 2002:

 

·         “I oppose the proposal to drill in the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.  Drilling in ANWR will not create energy independence, even if we started drilling tomorrow, the first barrel of crude oil would not make it to the market for at least ten years.  So it would not affect our current energy needs.”

 

·         “The oil exploration in ANWR will not actually start producing oil for as many as 10 years.  Exploring and drilling for oil is not forward thinking.”

 

·         “That oil would not be available for 10 years.  This means drilling in ANWR would not provide any immediate energy relief for American families.”

 

·         “Developing ANWR is simply not a necessary component of a progressive energy policy for this country.  For a period starting at about 2012, we would see an increase in domestic production under ANWR, if ANWR was open to development.  So, development would not address the near-term prices or shortages with which people are faced.”

 

·         “When my colleagues come to the floor of the Senate and suggest to us that the crisis in the Middle East is a reason to drill in ANWR, that is a misleading argument because no oil will flow from ANWR until from seven to 10 years from now.  That means if you open the refuge today, you are not going to see oil until about 2012, maybe a couple years earlier.”

 

·         “Oil extracted from the wildlife refuge would not reach refineries for seven to 10 years.”

 

The defeat of the Murkowski amendment back in 2002 was enormously short-sighted.  If we had voted to open ANWR ten years ago, that oil would be driving down prices at the pump for consumers today.  Time after time opponents of domestic oil production have argued that because it won’t lower prices at the pump today, it’s not worth doing.  Does anyone wonder if the American people today wish that the Senate had opened ANWR ten years ago?

 

It is past time to take action to ramp up domestic production of traditional energy.  Greater domestic energy production would increase supply and help to lower prices, and it would create American jobs.

 

President Obama continues to push policies that contribute to higher gas prices, including restricting access to federal lands and permit delays, regulatory threats to refiners, and his decision to deny the Keystone XL decision.  By limiting domestic energy production, we have less supply and higher prices.  The Obama administration has made things worse by restricting access to domestic energy sources.  The President’s record contradicts his recent remarks that he’s for an all-of-the-above strategy.  His policies have prevented more oil production in the United States and resulted in higher prices, lost opportunities for job creation, and less energy security.  President Obama’s denial of the Keystone XL pipeline inhibits energy-related development that could create 20,000 jobs.

 

Greater domestic energy production would increase supply and help to lower prices, and it would create American jobs.  It’s time to take action.

 

Denying ANWR development ten years ago was a mistake.  The Senate missed an opportunity ten years ago that would have brought gas price relief to consumers now.  We shouldn’t make the same mistakes today.

 

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Quad City Company Assists ISU Students in the Installation of a New Green Roof PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Science & Technology
Written by Jake Glimco   
Friday, 13 April 2012 15:17

ISU installing Student-Funded Green Roof atop Memorial Union

Project illustrates the student body’s commitment to sustainability

 

AMES, IA / April 9, 2012 – Students are helping turn Iowa State University’s Memorial Union’s roof green, both literally and figuratively.  In a bold move that echoes the origins of an Iowa State University landmark student center, ISU’s Government of the Student Body (GSB) has agreed to allocate funds from the mandatory student activity fee to help install a green roof that had been planned for the center, but had not previously been funded. On April 13th, volunteer students from ISU’s Landscape and Horticulture Clubs and the Green Umbrella organization will install an 855-square foot green roof under the supervision of LiveRoof® Certified Installer Central States Roofing of Ames.  The project promises to be both educational and functional:  providing hands-on experience with a leading green technology, while reducing the university’s operating expenses and storm water runoff.  In addition, this LiveRoof® Hybrid Green Roof System project, grown by Roof Top Sedums of Davenport, Iowa, will instantly add a beautiful habitat to what until now has been a barren rooftop.  ISU’s Memorial Union was built in the 1920’s entirely through private donations from students, alumni and other supporters as a memorial to Iowa State students and alumni who died in World War I.

The Memorial Union project was the brain-child of ISU senior Miles Thompson of Cedar Rapids, who studies green roof technology under ISU Horticulture Lecturer Jennifer Bousselot, of DeWitt, IA.  Thompson so enjoyed working on another green roof on campus that he sought out and advocated for other suitable green roof sites at ISU.  When he learned that a green roof had been planned for the Memorial Union, but funding hadn’t been approved, he took it upon himself to bring the issue to the GSB, which allocated funds from student activity fees to finance what MU couldn’t.  “I just really wanted to make a difference and turn this into a teaching opportunity for fellow students and a lasting testament to the importance that ISU students place on sustainability.”   Lecturer Bousselot adds, “The passion these students have for this project is powerful.  I’m so impressed with what they’ve been able to make happen for ISU.”

The colorful mix used in ISU’s latest project features hardy, drought-tolerant groundcover plants, which display a variety of colors and textures, even during the fall and winter months.  Besides being beautiful, the green roof’s vegetation soaks up rainfall and reduces storm water runoff.  The green roof helps reduce rooftop temperatures during summer, thereby protecting and extending the life of the roof membrane.  Green roofs are estimated to double the life of roofing materials and they work as insulation to reduce heating and cooling costs.  In addition to using plants that are well-established in soil specially engineered for the extremes of a rooftop environment, the LiveRoof® System also features a patent-pending hybrid design combining the best features of all green roof systems. The LiveRoof® System reduces labor costs to maintain compared to most systems, and because the established plants thrive  as their own living mulch.

This project is particularly meaningful to Roof Top Sedums founders Roxanne Nagel and Teresa Nelson.  Both are ISU alums; Nagel graduated with BS in Horticulture (’99) and Nelson with a Bachelors in Landscape Architecture (’87).  Nagel adds, “We’re honored that the institution that helped instill our passion for the environment will now use this product to teach the next generation about green roof technology.”

About Roof Top Sedums: Roof Top Sedums was established in 2007 and is a Regional LiveRoof® Licensed Grower servicing Iowa, Western Illinois, Eastern Nebraska, Eastern Kansas, and most of Missouri.  The business is 100% women-owned and certified nationally as a Women’s Business Enterprise as well as an Iowa Targeted Small Business.  For more information on projects previously grown by Roof Top Sedums or information about the LiveRoof® System, visit www.rooftopsedums.com.

 
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