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GLIN==> Northeast-Midwest Weekly Update -- 12 February 2001



H E A D L I N E S

* Energy Alternatives for the Midwest
* Letters on LIHEAP and CSO
* Conservation Security Act
* Lead Free Homes
* Water Infrastructure
* Bonneville Beneficiaries Want to Stiff U.S. Taxpayers


ENERGY ALTERNATIVES FOR THE MIDWEST
-----------------------------------
     The Northeast-Midwest Coalitions on Wednesday, February 14, will
host a luncheon briefing on how the Midwest can avoid an electricity
crisis such as now being experienced in California.  The briefing, to
be moderated by Senator Byron Dorgan (D-ND), will feature a new
report by the Environmental Law and Policy Center on how the region
can harness its abundant renewable resources and largely-untapped
potential for energy efficiency.

     Also speaking at the briefing will be representatives of several
midwestern businesses, including Whirlpool, the Michigan-
headquartered manufacturer of energy-efficient home appliances; Spire
Solar Chicago, the world's leading supplier of photovoltaic
manufacturing and testing equipment; and NEG Micron, the Illinois-
based manufacturer of wind turbines.

     The luncheon on February 14 will begin at 12:30 pm in room SC-5
of the U.S. Capitol. The presentations will run from 1:00 pm until
2:00 pm in the same room.

     ContactDick Munson at the Northeast-Midwest Institute (544-
5200).


LETTERS ON LIHEAP AND CSO
-------------------------
     The Northeast-Midwest Congressional Coalition continues to
collect signatures on two letters.  The first seeks supplemental
funds for the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP),
Weatherization, and State Energy Program (SEP).  The second urges the
president to budget funding increases for water infrastructure
projects, including the State Revolving Loan program and a new
initiative to address combined sewer overflows.

     Another letter -- led by Reps. Bernie Sanders (I-VT), Jack Quinn
(R-NY), Marty Meehan (D-MA), Mark Udall (D-CO), John McHugh (R-NY),
and Philip English (R-PA) -- asks President Bush to budget increased
funds for LIHEAP, Weatherization, and State Energy Program.  It also
seeks the immediate release of all 2 million barrels of heating oil
from the Northeast Home Heating Oil Reserve.

     ContactOlwen Huxley with the Northeast-Midwest Congressional
Coalition (226-9497).


CONSERVATION SECURITY ACT
-------------------------
     Senator Tom Harkin (D-MA) is seeking cosponsors for the
Conservation Security Act that would provide incentive payments to
all farmers and ranchers for maintaining or adopting conservation
practices on land in production.  The bill seeks to conserve soil,
water, and energy, as well as protect wetlands and wildlife habitat.

     Contact:  Alison Fox with Sen. Harkin (224-6901).


LEAD FREE HOMES
---------------
     Senator Jack Reed, co-chair of the Northeast-Midwest Senate
Coalition, is leading a group of senators asking the new Secretary of
Housing and Urban Development to double funding for HUD's lead safe
housing grant initiative.  Lead poisoning continues to rank as the
number one environmental threat to children in the United States, and
an estimated 19 million U.S. homes have lead hazards.  The problem is
particularly severe in the Northeast and Midwest with a relatively
older housing stock.

     Contact: Kara Stein with Sen. Reed (224-4642).


WATER INFRASTRUCTURE
--------------------
     The Water Infrastructure Network and the Congressional Water
Infrastructure Caucus on Tuesday, February 13, are releasing a report
on the nation's water needs.  The Tuesday event will begin at 9:00 am
in room 140 of the U.S. Capitol.


BONNEVILLE BENEFICIARIES WANT TO STIFF U.S. TAXPAYERS
-----------------------------------------------------
     Some Bonneville Power Administration beneficiaries are proposing
that BPA avoid paying its $700 million in annual debt payments to the
U.S. Treasury -- even though BPA's current energy problems are
largely of its own making.  The Northeast-Midwest Institute has
released a short critique of BPA arguments, showing that Bonneville
could protect salmon, pay its debts, and still enjoy the nation's
lowest-cost electricity.  That critique is available at:
http://www.nemw.org/BPAdebtrelief.pdf.