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                                                      Calendar No. 1060
110th Congress                                                   Report
                                 SENATE
 2d Session                                                     110-489

======================================================================



 
                       BLACK CARBON RESEARCH BILL

                                _______
                                

  September 24 (legislative day, September 17), 2008.--Ordered to be 
                                printed

                                _______
                                

    Mrs. Boxer, from the Committee on Environment and Public Works, 
                        submitted the following

                              R E P O R T

                         [To accompany S. 3489]

      [Including cost estimate of the Congressional Budget Office]

    The Committee on Environment and Public Works, to which was 
referred the bill (S. 3489) to require the Administrator of the 
Environmental Protection Agency to conduct a study on black 
carbon emissions, reports favorably thereon, and recommends 
that the bill do pass.

                      PURPOSES OF THE LEGISLATION

    S. 3489 would require the Administrator of the 
Environmental Protection Agency to conduct a study of black 
carbon emissions.

                    GENERAL STATEMENT AND BACKGROUND

    Scientists have found that black carbon, a key component of 
soot, likely plays a much larger role in global warming than 
previously estimated. Because soot particles are generally 
small, they also contribute significantly to air pollution 
related illness and mortality.
    Black carbon is produced from the incomplete combustion of 
wood, biomass such as crop residues, forest fires, and fossil 
fuels, particularly diesel. Black carbon absorbs solar 
radiation, warming the atmosphere. Because black carbon's 
atmospheric life span is short, only a matter of days or weeks, 
reducing black carbon emissions likely will have an immediate 
impact on global warming. Black carbon is of particular concern 
in the Arctic region because it settles on ice and snow, 
reducing its reflectivity and increasing the rate of melting. 
According to some estimates, black carbon may be responsible 
for up to 30 percent of the warming that is occurring in the 
Arctic. While significant emissions of black carbon are emitted 
from the developed world, the majority of emissions are from 
the developing world.
    Reducing black carbon emissions in the United States would 
also have the benefit of reducing premature mortalities and 
other public health impacts, and result in reductions in global 
warming. Because of the potential benefits of reducing black 
carbon emissions, it is imperative that the Administrator of 
the Environmental Protection Agency conduct a study of the 
sources and quantities of black carbon emission, climate and 
health related impacts, potential control technologies, areas 
for additional research, and actions that the Federal 
Government should take to reduce black carbon emissions.

                      SECTION-BY-SECTION ANALYSIS

Section 1. Study by administrator of black carbon emissions

            Subsection (a)--Study
    Subsection (a) requires the Administrator of the 
Environmental Protection Agency, working with representatives 
of industry and environmental groups, to study carbon black 
emissions, including: (1) an identification of the major United 
States and worldwide sources, an estimate of the quantity of 
current and projected future emissions and the net climate 
effect of those emissions; the most recent scientific 
information on black carbon emissions; the most effective and 
cost-effective control technologies, operations, and 
strategies; a determination of a carbon dioxide equivalency 
factor or other metrics to compare black carbon to other 
greenhouse gases; and the health benefits of additional black 
carbon reductions; and (2) recommendations regarding additional 
research; actions that the Federal Government could take to 
encourage or require reductions in black carbon emissions; and 
the development of a climate-beneficial tropospheric ozone 
reduction strategy.
            Subsection (b)--Report
    Subsection (b) requires the Administrator to submit the 
report to Congress no later than 180 days from enactment of 
this Act.
            Subsection (c)--Authorization of appropriations
    Subsection (c) authorizes the appropriation of such sums as 
are necessary to carry out this Act.

                          LEGISLATIVE HISTORY

    S. 3489 was introduced by Senators Clinton and Carper. The 
bill was read twice and referred to the Senate Committee on 
Environment and Public Works. The Committee met on September 
17, 2008, when S. 3489 was ordered favorably without amendment 
reported by voice vote.

                                HEARINGS

    The Committee did not hold hearings on S. 3489 during the 
110th Congress.

                             ROLLCALL VOTES

    There were no rollcall votes. The Committee on Environment 
and Public Works met to consider S. 3489 on September 17, 2008. 
A quorum of the Committee being present, S. 3489 was reported 
favorably without amendment by a voice vote.

                      REGULATORY IMPACT STATEMENT

    In compliance with section 11(b)(2) of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate, the Committee states that there 
are not expected to be significant costs to private entities 
under this legislation.

                          MANDATES ASSESSMENT

    In compliance with the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act of 1995 
(Public Law 104-4), the Committee finds that S. 3489 would 
impose no Federal intergovernmental unfunded mandates on State, 
local or tribal governments.

               CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE COST ESTIMATE

    In compliance with paragraph 11(a) of rule XXVI of the 
Standing Rules of the Senate and section 403 of the 
Congressional Budget Act of 1974, the Committee provides the 
following cost estimate, prepared by the Congressional Budget 
Office:

                                                September 23, 2008.
Hon. Barbara Boxer,
Chairman, Committee on Environment and Public Works,
U.S. Senate, Washington, DC.
    Dear Madam Chairman: The Congressional Budget Office has 
prepared the enclosed cost estimate for S. 3489, a bill to 
require the Administrator of the Environmental Protection 
Agency to conduct a study on black carbon emissions.
    If you wish further details on this estimate, we will be 
pleased to provide them. The CBO staff contact is Susanne S. 
Mehlman.
            Sincerely,
                                                   Peter R. Orszag.
    Enclosure.

S. 3489--A bill to require the Administrator of the Environmental 
        Protection Agency to conduct a study on black carbon emissions

    S. 3489 would require the Environmental Protection Agency 
(EPA) to conduct a study that identifies the major sources of 
black carbon emissions in the United States, their 
contributions to global warming, and the most effective 
technologies for removing or reducing such emissions. EPA would 
be required to submit the results of the study to the Congress 
not later than 180 days from the bill's enactment. Based on 
information from EPA, CBO estimates that implementing this 
legislation would cost about $2 million over the 2009-2010 
period, assuming availability of appropriated funds. Enacting 
the bill would not affect direct spending or revenues.
    S. 3489 contains no intergovernmental or private-sector 
mandates as defined in the Unfunded Mandates Reform Act and 
would not affect the budgets of state, local, or tribal 
governments.
    The CBO staff contact for this estimate is Susanne S. 
Mehlman. This estimate was approved by Theresa Gullo, Deputy 
Assistant Director for Budget Analysis.

                        CHANGES IN EXISTING LAW

    Section 12 of rule XXVI of the Standing Rules of the Senate 
requires the committee to publish changes in existing law made 
by the bill as reported. Passage of this bill will make no 
changes to existing law.