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Ranking Member Stabenow Urges Administration to Support Biomass Industry, Spur Economic Growth in Michigan

U.S. Senator Debbie Stabenow, Ranking Member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Agriculture, Nutrition and Forestry, joined 46 U.S. Senators in a letter to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Department of Energy, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture urging the agencies to support the growth of biomass energy, which makes up approximately 35 percent of Michigan’s renewable energy. This letter calls on the Administration to streamline current policies, which would boost job creation in the biomass industry and spur economic growth in Michigan.
‘We write to support biomass energy as a sustainable, responsible, renewable, and economically significant energy source,’ the Senators wrote. ‘Federal policies across all departments and agencies must remove any uncertainties and contradictions through a clear, unambiguous message that forest bioenergy is part of the nation’s energy future.’
Michigan’s 20 million acres of forestland support thousands of jobs and bring in $16.3 billion per year to Michigan’s economy. These forests directly contribute to the state’s biomass industry, which supports hundreds of local jobs and contributes millions of dollars to communities throughout the state. There are currently seven biomass power plants in Michigan generating carbon neutral electricity and reducing our dependence on fossil fuels.
The letter was led by Senators Jeff Merkley (D-OR) and Susan Collins (R-ME) and included Senators Kelly Ayotte (R-NH), Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), Roy Blunt (R-MI), Sherrod Brown (D-OH), John Boozman (R-AR), Bob Casey (D-PA), Richard Burr (R-NC), Joe Donnelly (D-IN), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), Bill Cassidy (R-LA), Al Franken (D-MN), Thad Cochran (R-MI), Tim Kaine (D-VA), John Cornyn (R-TX), Angus King (I-ME), Tom Cotton (R-AR), Amy Klobuchar (D-MN), Mike Crapo (R-ID), Joe Manchin (D-WV), Steve Daines (R-MT), Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), Cory Gardner (R-CO), Claire McCaskill (D-MO), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), Patty Murray (D-WA), Johnny Isaskson (R-GA), Bill Nelson (D-FL), Ron Johnson (R-WI), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), David Perdue (R-GA), Rob Portman (R-OH), Jon Tester (D-MT), James Risch (R-ID), Mark Warner (D-VA), Jeff Sessions (R-AL), Tim Scott (R-SC), John Thune (R-SD), Richard Shelby (R-AL), Thom Tillis (R-NC), Pat Toomey (R-PA), David Vitter (R-LA), and Roger Wicker (R-MS).
The full text of the letter follows.
Dear Administrator McCarthy, Secretary Moniz, and Secretary Vilsack:
We write to support biomass energy as a sustainable, responsible, renewable, and economically significant energy source. Federal policies across all departments and agencies must remove any uncertainties and contradictions through a clear, unambiguous message that forest bioenergy is part of the nation’s energy future.
Many states are relying on renewable biomass to meet their energy goals, and we support renewable biomass to create jobs and economic growth while meeting our nation’s energy needs. A comprehensive science, technical, and legal administrative record supports a clear and simple policy establishing the benefits of energy from forest biomass. Federal policies that add unnecessary costs and complexity will discourage rather than encourage investment in working forests, harvesting operations, bioenergy, wood products, and paper manufacturing. Unclear or contradictory signals from federal agencies could discourage biomass utilization as an energy solution.
The carbon neutrality of forest biomass has been recognized repeatedly by numerous studies, agencies, institutions, legislation, and rules around the world, and there has been no dispute about the carbon neutrality of biomass derived from residuals of forest products manufacturing and agriculture. Our constituents employed in the biomass supply chain deserve a federal policy that recognizes the clear benefits of forest bioenergy. We urge you to ensure that federal policies are consistent and reflect the carbon neutrality of forest bioenergy.

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NASA Awards Evaluations, Assessments, Studies, Services Support Contract

NASA has announced the selection of Cornell Technical Services, LLC, in Columbia, Maryland, to provide support for NASA’s Science Office for Mission Assessments at the agency’s Langley Research Center in Hampton, Virginia.

Read more here:: NASA Awards Evaluations, Assessments, Studies, Services Support Contract

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NASA Awards Contract for Consolidated Facility, Maintenance Services

NASA has awarded the Synergy-Achieving Consolidated Operations and Maintenance (SACOM) contract to Syncom Space Service LLC of Fort Worth, Texas.

Read more here:: NASA Awards Contract for Consolidated Facility, Maintenance Services

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NASA’s New Horizons Spacecraft Stays the Course to Pluto

NASA’s New Horizons spacecraft is getting a final “all clear” as it speeds closer to its historic July 14 flyby of Pluto and the dwarf planet’s five moons.

Read more here:: NASA’s New Horizons Spacecraft Stays the Course to Pluto

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NASA Awards Earth Science Data and Information Contract

NASA has awarded the Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS) Evolution and Development (EED)-2 contract to Raytheon Company of Riverdale, Maryland.

Read more here:: NASA Awards Earth Science Data and Information Contract

Senators Stabenow, Peters Announce Support for Forsyth Township Fire Department

U.S. Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters today announced $143,124 for the Forsyth Township Fire Department in Marquette County. This grant, which comes through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program, will be used to replace 22 self-contained breathing apparatuses.
‘Our firefighters put their lives on the line every day to keep our families, homes, and communities safe,’ said Senator Stabenow. ‘These new resources will help the Forsyth Fire Department buy the breathing sets they need to keep their firefighters safe and protect their community.’
‘First responders put so much on the line to keep our communities safe, and ensuring they have the resources needed to continue safeguarding neighborhoods is critical,’ Senator Peters said. ‘I applaud this funding which will help firefighters in Forysth Township be better equipped to respond to emergencies and improve public safety.’
The Assistance to Firefighters Grant program is part of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). These competitive grants will help fund professional training programs, update equipment and facilities, and provide new supplies to help first-responders handle hazards efficiently and effectively. More information about the grant can be found at http://www.fema.gov/welcome-assistance-firefighters-grant-program.

Read more here:: Senators Stabenow, Peters Announce Support for Forsyth Township Fire Department

Senators Stabenow, Peters Announce Support for Hudson Township Fire and Rescue

U.S. Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters today announced $24,762 for Hudson Township Fire and Rescue in Charlevoix County. This grant comes through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program.
‘Our first responders put their lives on the line every day to keep our families, homes, and communities safe,’ said Senator Stabenow. ‘These new resources will help the Hudson Fire and Rescue buy the equipment they need to safely protect their community.’
‘First responders put so much on the line to keep our communities safe, and ensuring they have the resources needed to continue safeguarding neighborhoods is critical,’ Senator Peters said. ‘I applaud this funding which will help firefighters in Hudson Township be better equipped to respond to emergencies and improve public safety.’
The Assistance to Firefighters Grant program is part of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). These competitive grants will help fund professional training programs, update equipment and facilities, and provide new supplies to help first-responders handle hazards efficiently and effectively. More information about the grant can be found at http://www.fema.gov/welcome-assistance-firefighters-grant-program.

Read more here:: Senators Stabenow, Peters Announce Support for Hudson Township Fire and Rescue

Senators Stabenow, Peters Announce Support for Croswell Emergency Medical Services

U.S. Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters today announced $23,777 for Croswell Emergency Medical Services in Sanilac County. This grant comes through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program.
‘Our first responders put their lives on the line every day to keep our families, homes, and communities safe,’ said Senator Stabenow. ‘These new resources will help Croswell Emergency Medical Services buy the equipment they need to safely protect their community.’
‘First responders put so much on the line to keep our communities safe, and ensuring they have the resources needed to continue safeguarding neighborhoods is critical,’ Senator Peters said. ‘I applaud this funding which will help firefighters in Croswell be better equipped to respond to emergencies and improve public safety.’
The Assistance to Firefighters Grant program is part of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). These competitive grants will help fund professional training programs, update equipment and facilities, and provide new supplies to help first-responders handle hazards efficiently and effectively. More information about the grant can be found at http://www.fema.gov/welcome-assistance-firefighters-grant-program.

Read more here:: Senators Stabenow, Peters Announce Support for Croswell Emergency Medical Services

Senators Stabenow, Peters Announce Support for Climax Township Fire Department

U.S. Senators Debbie Stabenow and Gary Peters today announced $21,601 for the Climax Township Fire Department in Kalamazoo County. This grant comes through the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program.
‘Our firefighters put their lives on the line every day to keep our families, homes, and communities safe,’ said Senator Stabenow. ‘These new resources will help the Climax Fire Department buy the equipment they need to safely protect their community.’
‘First responders put so much on the line to keep our communities safe, and ensuring they have the resources needed to continue safeguarding neighborhoods is critical,’ Senator Peters said. ‘I applaud this funding which will help firefighters in Climax Township be better equipped to respond to emergencies and improve public safety.’
The Assistance to Firefighters Grant program is part of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). These competitive grants will help fund professional training programs, update equipment and facilities, and provide new supplies to help first-responders handle hazards efficiently and effectively. More information about the grant can be found at http://www.fema.gov/welcome-assistance-firefighters-grant-program.

Read more here:: Senators Stabenow, Peters Announce Support for Climax Township Fire Department

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NASA Takes to Kansas Skies to Study Nighttime Thunderstorms

NASA has joined a multi-agency field campaign studying summer storm systems in the U.S. Great Plains to find out why they often form after the sun goes down instead of during the heat of the day.

Read more here:: NASA Takes to Kansas Skies to Study Nighttime Thunderstorms

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