Research / Energy & Environment


Other | December 2019

Issues to Watch - 2020

Anne Roberts Brody, Cody Allen and Roger Moore

As the 2020 legislative cycle approaches, legislators across the South are preparing and pre-filing legislation to address emerging and relevant policy issues in their states. With its regional focus, the Southern Legislative Conference (SLC) is uniquely positioned to identify and research current and emerging policy issues and trends. This report was prepared by Anne Roberts Brody, policy and program manager, and Roger Moore and Cody Allen, policy analysts, and provides a sampling of issues and trends that are anticipated to emerge during the 2020 legislative term. State actions referenced in this report may represent appropriate policy options for Southern lawmakers to consider and, as such, may include bills or policies originating outside the SLC region.

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SLC Regional Resource | April 2019

Weathering the Storm: Assessing the Agricultural Impact of Hurricane Michael

Anne Roberts Brody

Note: Since the release of this report on April 15, 2019, Hurricane Michael was retroactively upgraded to a Category 5 storm.

Hurricane Michael roared onto the Florida Panhandle on October 10, 2018. A Category 4 storm with sustained winds of 155 miles per hour — just shy of the 157 miles per hour necessary to be classified a Category 5 storm — it was the third strongest hurricane to strike the United States mainland. As Michael moved northeast across Alabama and Georgia, the hurricane’s fierce winds, towering storm surge and punishing rain caused billions of dollars in damage to homes, businesses and infrastructure in the Southern region.

For farmers in Florida, Alabama and Georgia, the timing of the storm could not have been worse. Just as harvest season for many vegetable and row crops was beginning, like a plague of locusts, Michael devoured nearly every farm in its path. This SLC Regional Resource, current as of April 15, 2019, reviews the agricultural impact of Hurricane Michael on Florida, Alabama and Georgia. Across the three states, cotton and timber were hardest hit, but damage to other agricultural products and infrastructure was equally devastating.


Policy Analysis | March 2019

Disposal of Coal Combustion Residuals

Anne Roberts Brody

The Disposal of Coal Combustion Residuals (CCRs) from Electric Utilities final rule was signed on December 19, 2014, and published in the Federal Register on April 17, 2015. The rule finalized federal regulations to provide a comprehensive set of requirements for the safe disposal of CCRs, commonly known as coal ash, from coal-fired power plants.

On July 26, 2016, the administrator of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) signed a direct final rule and a companion proposal to extend the compliance deadlines for certain inactive CCR surface impoundments. These revisions were in response to a partial vacatur ordered by the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit on June 14, 2016. The direct final rule was published in the Federal Register on August 5, 2016, and became effective October 4, 2016.

Since 2016, there have been 52 legislative measures addressing CCRs in seven Southern states. The majority came from Virginia, with 17 pieces of legislation introduced. Meanwhile, Georgia introduced 11 pieces of legislation, North Carolina 10 and Missouri eight. Alabama, South Carolina and Texas also considered legislation related to CCRs.

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2019-2020
Chair

Senator
Ed Emery

Missouri

2019-2020
Vice Chair
Representative Jim Gooch Jr., Kentucky

Representative
Jim Gooch Jr.

Kentucky

Immediate
Past Chair

Representative
Lynn Smith

Georgia

Committee
Liaison
Anne Roberts Brody

Anne
Roberts Brody

Policy and Program Manager


The SLC Energy & Environment Committee considers issues related to the abundant natural resources of Southern states and the instrumental role they play in the growth and development of the region. In sustaining economic development, meeting growing energy needs, and maintaining the South’s high quality of life, states are increasingly recognizing the need to forge energy and environmental policies that ensure sound stewardship of the region’s resources and the economy of the region. Recent issues examined include the expansion of wind energy production in Southern states; waste tire disposal laws; interstate groundwater disputes; and the implications of federal energy and environment policies on the states.

More SLC research into Energy & Environment


Other | January 2019

Issues to Watch - 2019

SLC Special Series Report | October 2018

Blown Away: Wind Energy in the Southern States (Part III)

SLC Special Series Report | January 2018

Blown Away: Wind Energy in the Southern States (Part II)

SLC Special Series Report | May 2017

Blown Away: Wind Energy in Southern States (Part 1)

Policy Analysis | April 2016

Landfill Tipping Fees

Policy Analysis | October 2015

Wild Fires

SLC Regional Resource | February 2015

SLC State Efforts to Rebuild the Coastline

SLC Regional Resource | December 2014

Charging Forward: Net Metering Policies in SLC States

Webinar | December 2014

Non-Ratepayer Energy Efficiency Options

Policy Analysis | December 2014

Southern States' State Energy Plans

Policy Analysis | September 2014

Climate Change Legislation in the Southern States

Policy Analysis | January 2012

Property Assessment Clean Energy (PACE) Programs

Policy Analysis | May 2011

Natural Gas Recovery and "Hydrofracking"

Policy Analysis | April 2011

Nuclear Safety in a Post-Fukushima World

SLC Regional Resource | June 2010

Creating Value: Recycling in the Southern States

SLC Regional Resource | January 2008

Landfill Gas to Fuel

SLC Regional Resource | October 2000

The War over Water