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Today’s report examines the effects of the Bureau of Land Management Move, an international agreement on plastics.
Lets jump in.
Headquarters move hit performance: report
According to a Government Accountability Office(GAO) report, Trump’s decision in moving the headquarters of Bureau of Land Management from Washington, D.C. to Grand Junction, Colo. led to a sharp decline in Black employees, and an increase in vacant positions.
The move, President BidenJoe BidenFlorida Man kicked off United Flight for using underwear to mask protest On The Money presented by Citi Build Back better…later than never Overnight Energy & Environment Biden announces a lead planIn September, he announced that he would reverse. This resulted in a vacancy rise of approximately 169 percent and the departures of decision-makers at the agency delayed any new guidance or policy. The GAO recommended that the bureau develop a workforce strategy to address issues caused by the move.
The watchdog discovered that vacancies saw a spike in July 2019 when the bureau announced that it would be moving. They more than doubled at headquarters between the announcement and March 2019, when they went from 121 to 326. They had been reduced to 142 by May 2021, still 17 percent higher than at the time of the relocation announcement.
According to the report, the relocation caused an increase in details or temporary reassignments for vacancies. However, senior bureau officials told GAO that they weren’t fully briefed about its use of details.
According to the report by the Bureau of Land Management, some staff blamed increased details use for negative effects on their offices performance. This was citing effects like reduced capacity at state offices.
According to the report, BLM officials are unable to make informed decisions regarding filling vacancies or initiating details that will help the agency achieve its goals and mission without reliable data.
According to the report, there was also a marked drop in Black employees in the already overwhelmingly white bureau workforce. Between January 2021 and the 2019 announcement, Black headquarters staff decreased by half. The report showed a similar decline in Asian-American employees during the same time period.
Find out more about the findings.
The United States supports international plastic pollution efforts
Secretary of State, John Bolton, announced that the U.S. would support international talks to establish a treaty to curb plastic polluting. Antony BlinkenAntony BlinkenThe Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Charter Communications – Dem wheels wobble in BBB train; Fed rate rises in ’22 Overnight Defense & National Security Senate adopts sweeping defense bill Hillicon Val Here come state-sponsored hackersThursday, April 13, 2010 in Kenya
[T]Today, we are stepping up to intensify our efforts to eliminate plastic pollution from our planet. This was announced by Blinken Thursday at the United Nations Environment Program, Nairobi.
He said that by launching these negotiations at UN Environmental Assembly in February 2022 our goal was to create a tool we can use to protect our oceans, and all of their life, from the growing global harms caused by plastic pollution.
The secretary of state stated that 14 million tons of plastic pollution is being added annually by humans. Some of these pollutants can take millions of year to completely degrade.
Similar approach to climate: Blinken urged for an international agreement that would allow countries to develop their own plans of action on plastic pollution.
Learn more about the effort by clicking here.
EPA reversesTrump water regulation rollback
The Biden administration has taken a step to reverse Trump-era rollbacks in water regulations. They have proposed a rule that will restore the pre-Obama definition and outline which waters they will protect from pollution.
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), in a press release, stated that it and the Army Corps of Engineers had proposed returning to the preObama definition of what constitutes a Water of the United States.
These waters are protected under the Clean Water Act. It is illegal to release pollutants into these waters without permits.
But…this is sorta already whats going on. The new proposal notes that the department was already using preObama interpretations after an August judge invalidated the Trump-era rule. The proposal should be completed, it says, because the Trump rule could reappear based upon developments in the litigation.
In July, the administration had announced its intent to reinstate protections that existed for decades. The administration stated that it would follow a two-track approach. First, it will restore pre-Obama regulations on water and then present a new definition.
The backstory Last year, Trump’s administration introduced a rule that both weakened Obama-era protections as well as rolled back some preObama ones that were in place for decades.
The new proposal claims that Trump’s rule is inconsistent with the Clean Water Act’s objectives.
Learn more about the proposal.
IS IT YOUR BBB-DAY
The House vote on Democrats’ climate and social spending bill is nearing, and could occur on Thursday.
House Majority Leader Steny HoyerSteny Hamilton HoyerHoyer demands an update on the regulations for carrying firearms inside House office buildings Clyburn to Democrats: ‘If your want my seat, get it’ Pressley offers measure condemning Boebert (D-Md.), who formally sets the floor schedule, Thursday afternoon, the plan was announcedJust hours after Speaker, he was greeted by a swarm of people. Nancy PelosiNancy PelosiDemocrats lack a backup plan with an expanded child tax credit set for lapse Officials point out Apache vulnerability when urging passage of cyber incident report bill White House rules out child tax credit being passed as a standalone bill(D-Calif.), had indicated an intention to bring the bill to the floor as soon as possible.
Hoyer stated on the House floor, “It is my hope we will complete this legislation now so that this would be our last legislative day before the Thanksgiving work period.”
THE WHITE HOME AND YOUR HOUSE
The White House is encouraging all states to distribute assistance that was included with President Bidens massive $1.9 trillion coronavirus relief bill passed in March. This law was intended to help lessen the burden of higher winter energy bills.
The White House distributed a factsheet Thursday that highlighted that the American Rescue Plan coronavirus relief legislation, also known as the American Rescue Plan added $4.5 Billion in funding to the Low-Income Home Energy Assistance Program or LIHEAP. This funding is available through September 2022. According to the White House the program receives an average of $3 billion to $4 billion in annual funding.
The Biden administration encourages state, tribal, and local governments to plan early to distribute expanded assistance to more families to offset rising gas prices.
According to the factsheet, the administration offers technical support to state and local governments who receive funds from this program in order to accelerate planning for the distribution of assistance ahead of winter season.
The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), is encouraging grantees, to expedite payments for households that have previously received LIHEAP funding and to simplify the process by which low-income households can be deemed eligible for the assistance.
Learn more about the push here.
WHAT WE ARE READING
A tribe’s rights case could upend the law on pipelines E&E News reports
Covid saw an increase in online shopping. The environmental consequences are becoming more obvious. Politico reports
California has a new plan to fight environmental injustice. The nation is watching. Los Angeles Times report
Participation in cyberattack simulation of electric grid is a huge success Despite growing threats
Watchdog: Trump official Ex-employer boostedInterior committee membership
GOP Requests an oversight hearingKerry and climate diplomacy
US asks Asia’s largest economiesReport on releasing oil reserves
And last but not least, something completely offbeat: Beep beep.
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