ECOLOG-L Digest - 19 Aug 2005 to 20 Aug 2005 (#2005-210) ECOLOG-L Digest - 19 Aug 2005 to 20 Aug 2005 (#2005-210)
  1. ECOLOG-L Digest - 19 Aug 2005 to 20 Aug 2005 (#2005-210)
  2. DISCCRS: Dissertations Initiative for the Advancement of Climate-Ch
  3. ESANEWS Digest - 5 Aug 2005 to 19 Aug 2005 (#2005-21)
  4. Policy News from ESA's Public Affairs Office
  5. Archive files of this month.
  6. RUPANTAR - a simple e-mail-to-html converter.

Subject: ECOLOG-L Digest - 19 Aug 2005 to 20 Aug 2005 (#2005-210)

There is 1 message totalling 98 lines in this issue.

Topics of the day:

  1. DISCCRS: Dissertations Initiative for the Advancement of Climate-Change


Date:    Sat, 20 Aug 2005 06:26:35 -0700
From:    Jennifer Marlon <jennmarlon@GMAIL.COM>
Subject: DISCCRS: Dissertations Initiative for the Advancement of Climate-Ch

*Please distribute*

Applications are invited from recent Ph.D. graduates doing
climate-change/impacts research for the Spring 2006 DISCCRS II
Symposium (application deadline of Oct. 2, 2005).  DISCCRS (pronounced
Discourse) is an interdisciplinary opportunity for recent Ph.D.
graduates engaged in climate-change research.

DISCCRS II Symposium
March 26 - April 2, 2006
Asilomar Conference Center
Pacific Grove, CA

Register now to become part of the DISCCRS network and receive the
DISCCRS newsletter at

DISCCRS Rationale: After years of specialization, today's graduates
increasingly find themselves on a multi-dimensional trajectory that
requires a breadth of knowledge sufficient to make connections between
distant disciplines, and a global network of colleagues from different
backgrounds. It can take years to gain the necessary collegial
networks and experience to work effectively.  DISCCRS, an initiative
funded by NSF and NASA, seeks to jump-start the process.

Recent Ph.D. graduates from all disciplines and countries are invited
to join the DISCCRS program and apply to be a DISCCRS Symposium

Symposia: Annual symposia, funded for 2006, 2007 and 2008, will bring
together 36 new scholars from the physical/natural and social sciences
to foster understanding across disciplines and catalyze formation of
an interdisciplinary, international  collegial network.  Participants
will present their research in plenary sessions. Established
interdisciplinary professionals will be on hand to share their
perspectives. Consultants will teach participants to communicate
across disciplines and with a non-specialist audience. Representatives
of Federal agencies will describe programs and funding opportunities.

Eligibility: Graduates completing Ph.D. requirements between Oct. 1,
2002 - Sept. 30,2005 are eligible to apply for the DISCCRS II
Symposium., to be held March 26 - April 2, 2006 at the Asilomar
Conference Center, CA.

 Application deadline is October 2, 2005.

Support for symposium travel and on-site expenses will be provided for
selected applicants.

Electronic Resources: An electronic newsletter and web-based resources
make the DISCCRS program accessible to a global audience. A unique
feature is the on-line Ph.D. Dissertation Registry, which introduces
graduates to a world-wide community and provides a concise overview of
current work. The webpage archives resources developed for and by
symposium participants.

Graduates from all disciplines and countries are encouraged to
register their Ph.D. dissertation abstract using the convenient
on-line form at

Contact: Susan Weiler,

Supported by the U.S. National Science Foundation, NSF, and National
Aeronautics and Space Administration, NASA through grants to Whitman
College (EAR-0105201, C.S. Weiler PI) and University of Oregon (EAR-
0435719. R.B. Mitchell PI). Jointly sponsored by the following

C. Susan Weiler, Ph.D.
Office for Earth System Studies
Whitman College
Walla Walla, WA 99362
Phone: 509-527-5948/Fax:  509-527-5961

Ronald Mitchell
Department of Political Science
University of Oregon
Eugene OR 97403-1284
Phone: 541-346-4880/Fax: 541-346-4860


Subject: ESANEWS Digest - 5 Aug 2005 to 19 Aug 2005 (#2005-21)

There is 1 message totalling 216 lines in this issue.

Topics of the day:

  1. Policy News from ESA's Public Affairs Office


Date:    Fri, 19 Aug 2005 19:35:02 -0600
From:    David Inouye <inouye@UMD.EDU>
Subject: Policy News from ESA's Public Affairs Office

Policy News from ESA's Public Affairs Office

A Bi-Weekly Publication of the Ecological Society of America

August 19, 2005

In this Issue:







The federal appropriations process for Fiscal Year 2006 is still
underway. The Ecological Society of America encourages ecological
scientists to contact their Member of Congress and Senators-especially
if they serve on an appropriations committee-and urge support for
agencies that fund scientific research.  Instructions for sending
letters, as well as template letters for several agencies of interest
can be found at .

Before adjourning for a month-long August recess, the Senate drafted
appropriations for all federal research and development (R&D) funding
agencies except the Department of Defense, while the House approved all
of its appropriations.  The House and Senate will resolve their budget
differences in conference committees this fall.

The National Science Foundation (NSF) budget, after declining in 2005,
would barely increase by 1.1 percent to $5.5 billion in Fiscal Year (FY)
2006 in the latest Senate plan, falling short of the $5.6 billion in the
House and Administration proposals, and bringing NSF R&D to below the
2003 funding level in inflation-adjusted dollars.  Most NSF research
directorates would receive increases between 1 and 3 percent in 2006.
Most of NSF's education and training programs, however, would suffer
steep cuts for the second year in a row under the House, Senate, and
Administration plans.

The House and the Senate disagree strongly on R&D funding in the FY 2006
budget for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
The House would slash NOAA R&D by 23 percent, while the Senate would
boost it by 6.5 percent to $693 million.

The House approved $526 million for the Department of Energy's (DOE)
Biological and Environmental Research programs in FY 2006, $60 million
above the Administration's request and $22 million above the Senate
mark.  Both the House and Senate declined to earmark funds for the DOE's
Savannah River Ecology Laboratory (SREL).  While DOE agreed to restore
$4.3 million to SREL in FY 2006, its funding nevertheless would fall
short of the FY 2005 level of $7.7 million.

The House and Senate came to an unusually early conference agreement on
the final FY 2006 budget for the Department of Interior and the
Environmental Protection Agency (EPA).  Congress restored the
Administration's proposed budget cuts to EPA's R&D budget, which will
instead increase slightly by 1.2 percent to $579 million in FY 2006.
Within Interior, Congress reversed the Administration's proposed cuts to
the U.S. Geological Survey and instead agreed on a 4.3 percent increase
to $976 million.


President Bush signed into law a long-sought energy bill that his
administration has been pursuing since entering the White House in 2001.
At his side during the signing ceremony were many of the lawmakers who
played a pivotal role over the last five years in shepherding the bill
through Congress, including Senate Energy and Natural Resources
Committee Chairman Pete Domenici (R-NM), House Energy and Commerce
Committee Chairman Joe Barton (R-TX) and the Senate's top Democrat on
energy policy, Sen. Jeff Bingaman (D-NM).

The bill will provide tax breaks and loan guarantees for new nuclear
power plants, clean coal technology and wind energy. It will require
utilities, for the first time, to comply with federal reliability
standards for the electricity grid, instead of relying on
self-regulation, an effort to avoid power blackouts, like the one that
struck the Midwest and Northeast in the summer of 2003.  It will also
provide $1 billion in coastal impact assistance for six offshore oil and
gas producing states; more than two-thirds of the funding will go to
Texas and Louisiana.

Despite its bipartisan backing, the measure drew objections from some
quarters that it granted too many subsidies to industry and that it did
little to curb a growing national appetite for gasoline.

The new energy law ends several years of deadlock among lawmakers.
Earlier attempts to pass an energy bill died for various reasons, most
famously in 2003 when Northeast Republicans opposed a provision granting
liability protection to producers of the fuel additive methyl tertiary
butyl ether (MTBE).

Congress cleared the energy bill in July after conference negotiations
produced legislation that is silent on the MTBE liability issue, as well
as drilling in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.


President Bush signed into law a $286.5 billion transportation bill, a
measure that critics say is loaded with thousands of earmarks that were
not fully disclosed until after Congress approved the measure.  The bill
also contains language that could dramatically change the review process
for transportation projects under the National Environmental Policy Act

The bill makes the Department of Transportation (DOT) the lead federal
agency for NEPA reviews of transportation projects, tightens deadlines
for comment periods and filing decisions, and allows officials to
develop the preferred alternative before a final decision is made, among
other changes.

Dave Bauer of the American Road and Transportation Builders Association,
said the language expands upon efforts started with the 1998
transportation bill to streamline NEPA reviews that fell through in the
regulatory process. Road builders and construction companies have
complained it can take up to nine years to complete the planning process
for federal projects.

But Trish White of Defenders of Wildlife's Habitat and Highways Campaign
said environmentalists are particularly concerned with provisions
regarding the preferred alternative.

NEPA requires agencies to develop a range of alternatives, including a
"no-action" plan, and then designate one as the preferred alternative
before sending the environmental impact statement out for public
comment. This is generally the action the agency wants to take and is
not required to be the most environmentally friendly alternative.

The transportation bill will now allow DOT to develop the preferred
alternative to "a higher level of detail than other alternatives,"
potentially giving that plan a leg up on the competition. White said
this is unfair because one plan will be more developed than the others,
limiting the ability of the public and other stakeholders to compare and

The changes to NEPA implementation in the transportation bill are part
of a recent trend to limit the scope of the law via authorization
measures. Most notably, the 2003 Healthy Forests bill calls for limiting
the number of alternative assessments to be studied, streamlining the
administrative appeals process, and increasing the use of categorical


The National Marine Fisheries Service is extending the period for the
public to weigh in on its controversial proposal to rewrite federal
guidelines for restoring depleted fisheries, extending the comment
period for National Standard 1 Guideline changes to Oct. 21, 2005.

The changes, first proposed in June, would overhaul some of the guidance
for how the nation's eight regional fishery management councils must
meet the overall goals of the Magnuson-Stevens Act, the landmark law
that forms the basis of fisheries management.  See ESA Policy News for
June 24, 2005:


Countries plagued by severe haze from Indonesian forest fires have asked
for assistance from China, Japan and South Korea, said senior
representatives of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).
The organization also called for strong actions against those
responsible for the blazes.  The fires, normally used by farmers to
clear land for growing, are burning at what officials believe are ten
independent plantations, eight of which are Malaysian-owned. However,
none of the plantations have admitted to using such techniques.

In Malaysia, Prime Minister Abdullah Ahmad Badawi declared a state of
emergency in areas where the haze reached toxic levels.  Officials said
they are worried dry weather and monsoon winds could cause smog to
worsen through October, urging the assistance of surrounding nations.

Both Malaysian and Chinese officials advocated a more coordinated
response from ASEAN on the haze that engulfs Asian skies each year.


Sources:  AAAS R&D website (; Environment & Energy
Daily; Greenwire; The New York Times

Send questions or comments to Nadine Lymn, ESA Director of Public
Affairs, or Laura Lipps, Policy Analyst,

If you received Policy News from a friend and would like to receive it
directly, please send an e-mail to with the
following in the body of the message: sub esanews {your first and last

If you wish to unsubscribe to ESANEWS and your biweekly Policy News,
send the command "signoff ESANEWS" to

Visit ESA's website at 


End of ESANEWS Digest - 5 Aug 2005 to 19 Aug 2005 (#2005-21)

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