CPR Archive for Lesley McAllister

Regulatory Paralysis by Preemption: GMO Food Labeling and Potentially More

by Lesley McAllister | March 02, 2017

Originally published on Environmental Law Prof Blog by CPR Member Scholar Lesley McAllister.

Did you know that as of July 2016, we have a new federal law mandating that genetically engineered food be labeled? It is true – see 7 U.S.C. § 1639(b)(2)(D) (Jul. 29, 2016). So when, you might ask, will you be able to know which of all those foods we buy at the grocery store are produced with GMOs?

It could be a very long wait. For one thing, the law – the National Bioengineered Food Disclosure Standard – didn't actually mandate a label that directly states that the food is a GE food. Rather, Congress left open the possibility that USDA allow scannable QR codes instead of on-package labeling as the means of disclosure. Congress charged the USDA with completing a study within one year (i.e. by July 2017) regarding whether QR codes would preclude consumer access to the disclosure (and if so, the agency shall provide "additional and comparable options to access the bioengineering disclosure.") As of early January, USDA didn't have the funds to conduct the study.

The Disclosure Standard itself is supposed to be established within two years of the passage of the law. But in Trump's administration, with its strong anti-regulatory ideology, the best guess is that forward motion will be further delayed. On the campaign trail in Iowa, Trump said he opposed efforts to require ...

The Reliability of the Sun and the Wind

by Lesley McAllister | April 17, 2013
The following is reposted from the Environmental Law Prof Blog. The electric utility industry often complains that renewable energy proponents don’t pay enough attention to the intermittency of renewable resources.  A common refrain is “the sun doesn’t always shine and the wind doesn’t always blow.”  The industry then reminds us that, for a reliable electricity grid, supply and demand must be in balance at all times. The implication is that this will be impossible if we rely heavily on renewable energy. A new report published by the ...

Subsidizing in Spurts: Our Production Tax Credit Policy, or Lack Thereof

by Lesley McAllister | February 12, 2013
Taxes and energy are subject to constant partisan debate. Both are at play in politically-charged discussions about the government’s role in promoting renewable energy, particularly wind energy. Since 1992, the federal government has granted a production tax credit (PTC) (currently 2.2¢ per kilowatt/hour (kWh)) for production of certain renewable energy. The credit initially focused on wind, closed-loop biomass, and poultry-waste energy resources; in 2004 Congress expanded the program to include open-loop biomass, geothermal, and several other renewable energy sources. With ...

Obama on Clean Energy: Actions Speak

by Lesley McAllister | November 02, 2012
Cross-posted from Environmental Law Prof Blog. Unlike climate change, clean energy policy has received a fair bit of attention in the presidential campaign. Obama made clear that he supports renewable energy as part of his "all of the above" approach, while Romney would end an important federal subsidy for wind power and otherwise increase reliance on coal, oil and gas. But for those who are disappointed that Obama didn’t say more about our need to transition away from fossil fuel ...

The End of the Acid Rain Program

by Lesley McAllister | July 12, 2011
Cross-posted from Environmental Law Prof Blog. Do you realize that the Cross-State Air Pollution Rule finalized by the Environmental Protection Agency  last week represents the end of the famed Acid Rain Program? It's a good thing because the Acid Rain Program had outlived its usefulness by several years and its allowance market had collapsed. Legislated into existence by the Clean Air Act Amendments of 1990, the Acid Rain Program (ARP) was a major experiment with cap-and-trade regulation. It began in ...

Energy Efficiency on the Rebound?

by Lesley McAllister | March 24, 2011
Cross-posted from Environmental Law Prof Blog. Energy efficiency policy is one of the few areas where we might still expect some progress at the federal level toward reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the next few years.  Predictably, energy efficiency has become the target of criticism. Republican senators argue that phasing out inefficient incandescent light bulbs is anti-consumer even though it would save consumers money on their energy bills.  And in a New York Times article, John Tierney took aim at ...

Also from Lesley McAllister

Lesley K. McAllister is a Professor of Law at the UC Davis School of Law.

Regulatory Paralysis by Preemption: GMO Food Labeling and Potentially More

McAllister | Mar 02, 2017 | Food, Drug, Product Safety

The Reliability of the Sun and the Wind

McAllister | Apr 17, 2013 | Environmental Policy

Obama on Clean Energy: Actions Speak

McAllister | Nov 02, 2012 | Climate Change

The End of the Acid Rain Program

McAllister | Jul 12, 2011 | Environmental Policy

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