Another victim of the budget deal: key US greenhouse gas data?

Recent U.S. GHG data from the Energy Information Administration

It was my wonderful law school professor Gary Blasi who first introduced me to the idea that “what gets measured, gets done.”  I’m thinking of him and reading this news in some mixture of awe (at our seeming collective ability to ignore problems) and anger (at same):

The final fiscal year (FY) 2011 budget provides $95.4 million for the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA), a reduction of $15.2 million, or 14 percent, from the FY 2010 level.

“The lower FY 2011 funding level will require significant cuts in EIA’s data, analysis, and forecasting activities,” said EIA Administrator Richard Newell. . . .

Initial adjustments to EIA’s data, analysis, and forecasting programs include the following:

. . .

Eliminate annual published inventory of Emissions of Greenhouse Gases in the United States.

Read the full press release, announcing many more cuts, here

This annual inventory provides some of the best data on the sources and scale of GHG emissions in the U.S.   See past reports here.  The eighteenth such inventory came out two months ago, and the next had been scheduled to be published in March 2012.  Let’s just change our national bird to the ostrich if the next report isn’t rescued from the cutting room floor.

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