Population densities of the Collembola Cryptopygus antarcticus and Friesea grisea were compared in two maritime Antarctic habitats with different moisture availability. C. antarcticus was absent from the drier rock platform habitat, where F. grisea was the only collembolan collected. In contrast, the sand/pebble habitat on East Beach had greater moisture availability, and C antarcticus dominated the arthropod community, with juveniles (individuals < 1 mm length) representing 58% of the population. The hygropreference characteristics of F. grisea were determined in relative humidity (RH) gradients (12-98% RH) at 10 and 20 degreesC. F. grisea demonstrated a stronger preference for 98% RH conditions than C. antarcticus, suggesting that the former species is less likely to vacate moist refuges when available. The movement of both species was also monitored at 10 and 15 degreesC under conditions of 33, 75 and 100% RH. C. antarcticus was more active than F. grisea at both temperatures, and its movement increased at a greater rate as a consequence of reduced RH. The limited desiccation tolerance of C. antarcticus, combined with the increased water loss that would result from its continued movement under declining RH conditions, suggests this species is not well suited to drought-prone environments. In contrast, the reduced movement and 'risk averse' behavioural strategy of F. grisea, i.e. taking advantage of moist refuges when available, facilitates water conservation between precipitation/habitat rehydration events. This study provides the first evidence that moisture availability and habitat structure are potential habitat segregation mechanisms between these two Antarctic Collembola.
The battle of the property industry trainers has begun following the Guild’s decision to launch its first Ofqual qualification for estate agents.The Level 3 qualification will be offered to Guild agents for free as part of their membership, but they will have to pay for the cost of the examination to obtain the qualification.This pitches the 800-firm agency network directly against Propertymark, which since the RoPA report has been redoubling its efforts to present itself as the default provider of training courses.It is no coincidence that the Guild’s first Ofqual is a Level 3 course. This is the minimum requirements for property agents recommended by the RoPA report – Level 4 is only recommended for senior staff or business directors.All comersThe Level 3 course will only be available to Guild members initially, but may be offered to all comers if industry interest is strong enough.The Guild, which already has a Trading Standards approved training scheme, says its Ofqual course will be offered at both certificate or diploma level in residential sales and lettings, and property management.Its new training initiative will be headed up by compliance chief Paul Offley and colleague Jennifer Scott-Reid (both pictured).“While any mandatory qualifications within the industry are not quite with us yet and are unlikely to be so until Government decide on a response to RoPA, I believe people working in the industry want to be recognised for the professional service they offer to consumers and having fully qualified teams will raise standards and enhance consumer confidence,” says Offley.Jennifer Scott-Reid Paul Offley The Guild of Property Professionals March 19, 2021Nigel LewisOne commentMichaela Anaka, My home online My home online 19th March 2021 at 8:54 amAccording to their website Propertymark qualifications logo is displayed does this mean they’ve launched their own qualifications and won’t be offering Propertymark qualifications? Or Jane you got the facts mixed up a bit and they’re offering Propertymark qualifications?I’m confused?Log in to ReplyWhat’s your opinion? Cancel replyYou must be logged in to post a comment.Please note: This is a site for professional discussion. Comments will carry your full name and company.This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.Related articles BREAKING: Evictions paperwork must now include ‘breathing space’ scheme details30th April 2021 City dwellers most satisfied with where they live30th April 2021 Hong Kong remains most expensive city to rent with London in 4th place30th April 2021 Home » News » Associations & Bodies » Qualifications battle kicks off as agents begin preparing for RoPA previous nextAssociations & BodiesQualifications battle kicks off as agents begin preparing for RoPAThe Guild has launched its first Ofqual Level 3 qualification in direct competition with Propertymark and other training providers.Nigel Lewis19th March 20211 Comment809 Views read more
Coptic FestivalHundreds showed upto the Third Annual Bayonne Coptic Festival that took place the last weekend of July at St. Abanoub and St. Antonious Coptic Orthodox Church on 1325 Kennedy Boulevard. The three-day event featured games, prizes, and food, including gyros, falafel, and ice cream.Charities such as Coptic Orphans, Take Heart, and Bless USA joined in, while guestswere entertained by live music and a parade.The theme for this year’s festival was “Ask Me About My Way.”“My Way” is related to following the footsteps of the saints of the church in relation to the recent events that have taken place in Egypt’s Coptic Churches. The congregation set aside time for a live video conference with the Coptic Pope Tawadrous II.“This year has far exceeded the community’s expectations,” said Hadir Fahim, a member of the church. “This event is a great approach to bridging the gap between the church and community as well as taking a peak into Coptic culture and history. Lookout next year for more entertainment and fun as they approach their fourth annual round.” Man arrested in 2014 cold case bank robbery in BayonneA 2014 cold case bank robbery in Bayonne may have been solved after the Bayonne Police Department received new information in late July, which led to the arrest of Raul Brigantti, 39, on August 10, according to a statement from the Bayonne Police Department.Brigantti, a resident of West 14th Street, allegedly robbed the Chase Bank at 650 Broadway on December 5, 2014, when he allegedly passed the bank teller a note informing her of the robbery and allegedly requested that she give him all the cash in the drawer. The teller gave him approximately $5,475. The unknown male was allegedly last seen walking down Broadway. Brigantti was arrested at his residence without incident on August 10 at 11:36 hrs and charged with the robbery, according to policeMayor Davis hires new aideFormer third-ward councilman and Board of Education Trustee Ray Greaves was hired as an aide to Mayor James Davis this week, handling job functions such as constituent services, scheduling, and working as a liaison for local businesses, developers, and the Board of Education. With a salary of $55,000, Greaves, who is also the Amalgamated Transit Union NJ State Council chair, starts his new position immediately.Meanwhile, the Mayor has been without an official chief of staff since his nephew, Andrew Casais, resigned in February for another position in municipal government in the Borough of Roselle Park in Union County.Bayonne native serves on Navy ship in JapanA 2016 Bayonne High School graduate and Bayonne native is serving in Japan in the U.S. Navy aboard the USS Germantown.Seaman Javon Sims is a culinary specialist aboard the ship operating out of Sasebo, Japan.He is responsible for operating and managing Navy messes and living quarters to accommodate Navy personnel.“The best part of my job is knowing that my shipmates appreciate what I do for them,” said Sims. “It makes me feel that I am doing a good job.”With more than 50 percent of the world’s shipping tonnage and a third of the world’s crude oil passing through the region, the U.S. has historic and enduring interests in this part of the world.“Our alliance is rooted in shared interests and shared values,” said Admiral Harry Harris, U.S. Pacific Command Commander. “It’s not hyperbole to say that the entire world has benefited from the U.S.-Japan alliance. While our alliance helped stabilize the region after the Second World War, it also enabled the Japanese people to bring about an era of unprecedented economic growth.”Commissioned in 1986, the Germantown is the second Navy ship named after the Revolutionary War Battle of Germantown. With a crew of more than 900 sailors and Marines, the Germantown is 609 feet long and weighs approximately 16,000 tons. Designed specifically to operate landing craft air cushion small craft vessels, Whidbey Island-class dock landing ships have the largest capacity of any U.S. Navy amphibious ship.“This command shows that they care for you personally, and I love being able to work in that environment,” Sims said.Sea duty is inherently arduous and challenging, but it builds strong fellowship and esprit de corps among crewmembers. The crew is highly motivated and quickly adapts to changing conditions. It’s a busy life of specialized work, watches, and drills.“Serving in the Navy means that I can do something that means more than myself while helping myself at the same time,” Sims said.NJ DEP to curb two toxic chemicals in drinking waterThe New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection announced a new plan to limit two carcinogenic chemicals in drinking water, making the state a leader in the nation in regulating the chemicals. The DEP proposed maximum contamination limits for perfluorononanoic acid (PFNA) and 1, 2, 3 trichloropropane (TCP), which are both classified by the federal government as likely carcinogens.New state law requires annual audit of unspent fundsA new state law aims to ensure tax revenue is spent less wastefully. The legislation requires the state auditor to make an annual report to lawmakers on unspent funds in the accounts of each state agency at the end of the previous fiscal year.Bernards Township approves mosqueAfter Bernards Township tried denying the construction of a mosque in town, and was later sued by the Department of Justice for discrimination, the Bernards Township committee voted unanimously last week to approve the mosque’s construction. The decision was required as part of the settlement agreement. Bayonne is currently embroiled in a similar DOJ lawsuit after the zoning board denied the construction of a mosque on East 24th Street in March. The Muslim community in Bayonne has been searching for a location for its own place of worship for years, and increasingly has difficulty finding a property in the city. Government warns of “extremely active” hurricane seasonThe Climate Prediction Center, which is run by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, warns of an “extremely active” hurricane season this year, anticipating 14 to 19 named storms by the end of the hurricane season. Hudson County residents remember all too well the effects of Hurricane Sandy, which is approaching its five-year anniversary. Cities in Hudson County are still dealing with those effects, from remediation issues to infrastructure damage. Union takes Christie to court over cybersecurity lawsThe Communication Workers of America, the state’s largest union of state workers, is seeking to block the state from implementing a series of changes to the government’s technology infrastructure, which the government says are necessary to protect against cyber attacks. The CWA is challenging the order in court, claiming parts of the administration’s cybersecurity changes amount to gubernatorial overreach, reports NJ Spotlight. Bayonne is home to numerous CWA members. Property tax bills dueThird quarter property tax payments are due Monday, August 21. While the nominal legal due date for property tax bills was August 1, the City Council authorized a grace period through August 21 in which payments made by that date will incur no late fees.Property tax bills were mailed in July, but some tax bill mailings were delayed in Bayonne due to the state needing more time to calculate school funding figures.Taxes can be paid by mail or in person at City Hall, or at Bayonne branches of BCB Community Bank, or through the City of Bayonne website at bayonnenj.org.The average property value assessment in Bayonne is $133,400, while the average tax bill is $10,990, according to the Tax Collector’s Office. Property tax as a percentage of median income ($55,000) is about 20 percent. × read more
× SUPER CLASS — Ms. Adelung’s full day Pre-K Class at Midtown Community School started this year off as the first featured class of the week by embracing the school’s superhero theme. Children dressed up as superheroes with their MCS capes and superhero masks and they sang an up beat song about saving the day. With the children are their Teacher Miss Adelung, the classroom Assistant Mrs. Ives and the school Principal Mrs. Mercun.
We continue to seek approval to use a $2.6 million grant we have been awarded from the United States Department of the Interior to use dredge materials to create and stabilize wetlands. We are pursuing the required permits to do this. We continue to pursue approval to enlarge the undersized Route 52 Confined Disposal Facility (CDF) to significantly increase the capacity. This CDF is accessible by both trucks and barges and therefore would be easier to empty in the future to create additional capacity. We are working in partnership with other coastal communities to pursue changes in various state and federal regulations that make dealing with this situation so difficult. Representatives of Stockton University are also involved in these efforts. Dear Friends:Last evening, City Council awarded a contract to begin removing dredged materials from the site near Roosevelt Boulevard. The contractor will remove up to 50,000 cubic yards of material. This will allow us at a minimum to complete the dredging that was left unfinished in the last contract when the site reached its capacity.We are on several other parallel paths in regards to the dredging of our lagoons and other bay front areas including: Last week, we met with several representatives of the NJDEP and the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and had an opportunity to discuss these and other issues related to dredging. I am happy to report that these agencies are sympathetic to our needs.We are scheduling a follow-up meeting in Trenton in mid-March. We have agreed to allow the State of New Jersey to remove dredge materials from two full city owned sites at the southern end of Ocean City. These sites have no practical use for Ocean City due to their distance from the lagoons. It is in Ocean City’s best interest to allow the state to do this to hopefully develop some sort of viable beneficial reuse for the material. High and dry at low tide in Snug Harbor, just north of the Ninth Street Bridge.The following is Ocean City Mayor Jay Gillian’s weekly update to citizens posted on Friday, Feb. 27. The objective remains to develop a viable long-term plan to maintain our entire bayfront.Have a great weekend!Warm regards,Jay A. GillianMayor read more
For most of 2018, Holly Bowling has been focused on her new project Ghost Light, also featuring Tom Hamilton, Raina Mullen, Steve Lyons, and Scotty Zwang. However, the fan-favorite pianist came to prominence for her solo piano arrangements of classic Phish and Grateful Dead tunes, and recently, Bowling has been returning to her roots as a solo performer.Amidst a nationwide solo tour, Holly made a stop at Ardmore, PA’s Ardmore Music Hall last Friday to treat fans two sets of Phish and Grateful Dead favorites. After opening with the Dead’s “Help On The Way”> “Slipknot”, Bowling hopped into Phish’s “My Friend, My Friend”,before delving into an extended “Cassidy”, highlighting Bowling’s raw talent and ability to twist and bend songs into masterpieces on the piano.Bowling played another long, composed piece, Gamehendge suite “Colonel Forbin’s Ascent”> “Fly Famous Mockingbird”, before throwing a curveball and inviting up Ghost Light bandmate and guitarist, Raina Mullen, to sing lead on Radiohead’s “Black Star”, off their beloved 1995 sophomore album, The Bends. The Radiohead cover helped close the first set, before Bowling took a brief intermission.Set two opened up with the Dead’s “Weather Report Prelude and Part 1”, leading into “Let It Grow”. Holly mixed up some interesting Phish next, with a “Frankie Says” that led into “Steam”> “Wake Up” (Rage Against The Machine)> “Let It Grow Reprise”. The pianist’s choices to deviate slightly from Phish and the Grateful Dead’s catalogue made for a very unique Holly Bowling solo experience in Ardmore, PA. Holly finally wrapped up with a “Brokedown Palace” that led into “Piper” and, finally, a “Slipknot!” > “Franklin’s Tower” to complete the Help/Slip/Franklin’s sequence that began with the show’s opening number.Luckily for fans, Holly Bowling has shared pro-shot video footage of the evening’s Radiohead cover with Raina Mullen. Watch the video below.Holly Bowling w/ Raina Mullen – “Black Star” – 9/14/2018[Video: Holly Bowling]You can also listen to full show audio below, courtesy of taper Rich Stoler.Holly Bowling – Ardmore Music Hall – 9/14/2018[Audio:Rich Stoler]For a full list of Holly Bowling’s upcoming tour dates and tickets to her shows, head to her website.Setlist: Holly Bowling | Ardmore Music Hall | Ardmore, PA | 9/14/2018Set One: Help On The Way> Slipknot> My Friend, My Friend, Cassidy, Colonel Forbin’s Ascent> Fly Famous Mockingbird, Black Star#Set Two: Weather Report Prelude and Part 1> Let It Grow> Frankie Says> Steam> Wake Up (Rage Against The Machine)> Let It Grow Reprise, Brokedown Palace> Piper> Slipknot> Franklins Tower# w/ Raina Mullen read more
Mykhailo S. Hrushevs’kyi Professor of Ukrainian History S.M. Plokhy uncovers the daily dynamics of the 1945 Yalta Conference and embroiders them with items behind subsequent recrimination about the conference results, such as FDR’s ill health and the presence of probable Soviet spy Alger Hiss.
The current Nieman Fellows at Harvard University have selected Libyan Mohammed Nabbous, founder of Libya Alhurra TV, as this year’s recipient of the Louis M. Lyons Award for Conscience and Integrity in Journalism.Nabbous, who was killed in March, was chosen as a representative of all those who courageously worked to disseminate news during the Arab Spring. The award will be presented posthumously in a ceremony at the Nieman Foundation on Dec. 1. Full details can be found online on the Nieman website.Nabbous founded and ran the Internet division of Libya Alhurra TV, a widely viewed live video channel, and transmitted the first images and sounds of the civil unrest in Libya to the outside world in February. He was shot and killed on March 19, 2011 while reporting on fighting in Benghazi. read more
The Harvard Alumni Association (HAA) Awards were established in 1990 to recognize outstanding service to Harvard University through alumni activities. This year’s awards ceremony will take place on Thursday, Sept. 27, during the fall meeting of the HAA Board of Directors.Danguole Spakevicius Altman ’81 of Houston is deeply engaged with Harvard both at home and in Cambridge. For more than two decades, she has been an active member of the Harvard Club of Houston. She has held various positions, including serving as a longtime Harvard College alumni interviewer and twice in the role of Club president. On the HAA Board of Directors, she has held leadership roles including chair of the Alumni Leadership Conference, regional director for Texas, chair of the former Clubs and Shared Interest Groups (SIGs) Committee, and member-at-large on the HAA Executive Committee. As an initiative leader for Volunteer Ambassadorship, she was integral to the implementation of Board town hall meetings as a forum to discuss topical issues and University challenges. In addition, she served the Harvard and Radcliffe Class of 1981 as a member of its 35th Reunion planning committee.Altman is the founder and former president and CEO of Vapogenix, Inc., a clinical-stage pharmaceutical company. She and her husband, William Altman, M.B.A. ’84, are the parents of Darius Altman ’17 and three girls: Indre, Ilona, and Isabella.Joseph F. X. Donovan Jr. ’72, formerly of Cambridge, Massachusetts, devoted over 40 years to Harvard as a student, fundraiser, and active alumni volunteer. Joining the Harvard College Fund as an associate director in 1977, he recently retired from the University Development Office principal gifts team. During his career at Harvard, he became a driving force in many important fundraising areas, including House Renewal, financial aid, professorships, and athletics. His deep interest in Harvard sports began when he was the undergraduate manager of the Harvard football team. With his remarkable drive, attention to detail, judgment, and strategic skill, he was a role model and mentor to many colleagues. Donovan was also a committed Harvard volunteer, serving in various roles for many years on the board of the Harvard Club of Boston as a vice president and director and on the HAA Board of Directors as a member of the Awards and Happy Committees. He was a dedicated member of the Harvard and Radcliffe Class of 1972, serving as class secretary and as a member of their quinquennial reunion gift committees.Donovan passed away on May 14, 2018, in Cambridge. He is survived by his wife, Mary Kane “Mikki” Donovan, children Joseph F. X. “Jay” Donovan III and Megan Donovan-Chien, son-in-law Kenneth Chien ’73, and granddaughter Griffen Chien.Paul J. Finnegan ’75, M.B.A. ’82, of Evanston, Illinois, has had a distinguished and far-reaching career in service to Harvard. A proud member of the Harvard and Radcliffe Class of 1975, he was recognized by his class as a chief marshal nominee at their 25th Reunion. Locally, he served as a director of the Harvard Club of Chicago. Elected to the HAA Board of Directors in 2004, he served as the president from 2006 to 2007 during the transition from the presidency of Lawrence H. Summers to the appointment of Drew Gilpin Faust. He was then elected to the Harvard Board of Overseers in 2008. Named a Fellow of the Harvard Corporation in 2012, Finnegan was appointed treasurer in 2014 and continues to serve in this role and as chair of Harvard Management Company. In addition, as a true University citizen, he has made a significant impact across a number of Harvard graduate and professional Schools, including service on various councils for the Faculty of Arts and Sciences, Harvard Business School, Harvard Kennedy School, and the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.Finnegan is the cofounder and co-CEO of Madison Dearborn Partners in Chicago. He and his wife, Mary, have three children, including Paul M. Finnegan ’11, M.B.A. ’18.Ronald Ostberg, M.Arch. ’68, of Harvard, Massachusetts, remains connected to Harvard through his extensive and continuous support of the Harvard University Graduate School of Design (GSD) and the HAA. He served as chair of the GSD Alumni Council from 2010 to 2013. Under his unwavering leadership, he focused their efforts on student and alumni outreach and ambassadorship, and introduced an alumni mentoring program. As a member of the HAA Board of Directors, he served in many roles, including appointed director for the GSD, chair of the University-wide Alumni Outreach Committee, and member-at-large on the Executive Committee. Always a University-wide advocate, he convened the graduate school director cohort and initiated regular meetings to facilitate the sharing of ideas across the graduate and professional Schools. He was also a critical and thoughtful voice on the HAA Board Review Task Force that was responsible for examining the structure and schedule of the Board’s meetings in Cambridge.An award-winning international architect, Ostberg is formerly the director of design at The Stubbins Associates. He is married to Susan C. Ostberg, J.D. ’73, and has four children, including Elizabeth Ann Ostberg, Ed.M. ’06, and Mary Cristina Ostberg, J.D. ’12.Harold I. “Harry” Pratt ’59, LL.B. ’63, of Cambridge, Massachusetts, is a loyal and highly engaged Harvard volunteer. A resolute class leader, he has served as the Class of 1959’s assistant treasurer since 1989 and has been the Class’s John Harvard Society chair for nearly 20 years. He has also faithfully and diligently served on both the reunion gift and planning committees for his Class over a number of decades. Appointed to the HAA Board of Directors as a class representative in 1987, he joined the Happy Observance of Commencement Committee and was an enthusiastic member for 25 years. For most of 20 years, dressed in his top hat and tails, he directed the cohort of alumni escorts for Harvard’s most distinguished guests at Commencement from the grand staircase of Loeb House. In addition, Pratt has been involved with his Harvard Law School class fundraising for a number of years.Pratt is a founder and partner of the Boston private trustee office Nichols & Pratt, LLP. He and his wife, Frances G. Pratt, have three children.Cynthia A. Torres ’80, M.B.A. ’84, of Los Angeles served as president of the HAA from 2014 to 2015. A loyal alumna who has dedicated decades of service and leadership to Harvard, her deep involvement in different aspects of the alumni community led to a number of varying roles on the HAA Board of Directors — including chair of the Awards and Clubs and SIGs Committees, chair of the Alumni Careers and Students Task Force, and member of the Committee to Nominate Overseers and Elected Directors. Her extensive work with Harvard Clubs in Hong Kong and Southern California resulted in her appointment as regional director for the Pacific Southwest on the Board. A proud member of the Harvard and Radcliffe Class of 1980, she has participated on various reunion gift and planning committees and was vice chair of the Harvard College Fund West Coast Council. Her interest in connecting alumni with students for career advice led to her spearheading a collaboration among the HAA, the University’s Office of Career Services, the Office for the Arts at Harvard, and the Phillips Brooks House Center for Public Service and Engaged Scholarship, and she organized alumni participation during Wintersession.Torres is founder and president of College Decisions, LLC, a company which emphasizes improving access to college. She has two sons, including Spencer Gisser ’14. read more
Freeman: It would be far better if the U.S. Congress got in the game and passed legislation putting a price on carbon, whether through a carbon tax or through an economywide cap on carbon that allows firms to trade pollution allowances in a market-based scheme — an approach that has worked well for other pollution problems, like acid rain. It would be far more efficient and effective for Congress to adopt a comprehensive solution to climate change than to rely on piecemeal strategies that a president can implement using existing laws, which are not perfectly designed for dealing with climate change.Before the COVID crisis, industry support for a carbon tax was building, and I think that support is fairly solid because a tax is the preferred option for business. But the Democrats would need to control both chambers, I think, to get it done. And even then, it would be a heavy lift without a president putting his shoulder to the wheel.HLT: COVID-19 has reduced the number of people traveling by car or air. At the same time, oil prices have recently fallen to record lows. What impact is all this having on the environment in the short term, and do you see potential for any long-term effects?Freeman: It’s too soon to draw lessons from COVID, and I don’t agree with some who say there is a “silver lining” in the form of lower emissions because the economy is shut down. No one wants the economy shut down! On a short-term basis, yes, we have healthier air, and with the simultaneous supply and demand shocks in the oil industry, we have a glut of product, so gas prices have plummeted. And in theory, people might be tempted to buy bigger, less fuel-efficient SUVs since fueling them will be cheap, if this situation lasts.But we need to keep our eye on the ball with climate policy — we need a policy not for the short term, but for the long term. The best solution is to raise fuel efficiency standards for the transport sector and support zero-emission vehicles, including electric vehicles; drive greenhouse gas reduction in the electricity sector by supporting renewables and energy efficiency; and adopt a suite of other policies in the manufacturing, industrial, and agricultural sectors that also reduce greenhouse gases. It may be harder to do that in an economic crisis, because it will be tempting to say we can’t afford it. But if COVID teaches us anything, it’s that there is more peril in being unprepared than in taking steps in advance to avoid disasters. The long-term economic costs of doing nothing on climate change are far higher than if we take appropriate steps and make the needed investments now. You don’t need to believe me — economists from both parties and informed experts on both sides of the aisle have repeatedly made this argument.To me, the lesson of the moment is: We were not ready for this global pandemic, and our institutions were slow to respond. Let’s not keep making that mistake with climate change. A cattleman who grew up on a ranch talks about the interdependence of financial and environmental viability Related Harvard endowment to go greenhouse gas-neutral by 2050 Arctic Initiative leans on expertise of residents on climate change initiatives Global problem, local solutions University’s efforts to eliminate carbon footprint extend to investment portfolio In the weeks leading up to Earth Day 2020, clear blue skies broke out over famously smog-ridden cities like Beijing, Los Angeles, and Delhi. Harvard Law School Professor Jody Freeman LL.M. ’91 S.J.D. ’95 believes these short-term gains in air quality, likely driven in part by economic slowdowns necessitated by the global pandemic, are no panacea for the environment. Instead, says the Archibald Cox Professor of Law and founding director of the Harvard Law School Environmental & Energy Law Program, the nation’s lack of preparedness for the coronavirus only highlights the need for a long-term climate change strategy.In an email conversation with Harvard Law Today, Freeman, who served in the White House as counselor for energy and climate change in the Obama administration, discusses the progress the nation has made in protecting the environment since Earth Day was founded in 1970, the Trump administration’s efforts to undo Obama-era federal climate regulations, and COVID-19’s urgent lessons for the planet’s health.Q&AJody FreemanHarvard Law Today: On the 50th anniversary of Earth Day, how much progress has the nation made protecting the environment?Freeman: The U.S. has a great deal to be proud of in its 50-year legacy of environmental and public health protection. We’ve made huge strides in controlling air and water pollution, and protecting our precious natural resources, even while our population has thrived and our economy has grown. That is a remarkable achievement. And we have pioneered some of the most creative approaches to environmental protection, which much of the world has copied, like the use of environmental impact statements, and market-trading schemes that cut pollution efficiently.We’ve also relied on a partnership between federal and state governments to implement environmental protection, which for the most part has worked very well, with the federal government setting minimum standards to create a national floor, which the states can build on to do more. This structure allows for states to compete in a “race to the top,” rather than inducing a “race to the bottom.”And we should be very proud of the Environmental Protection Agency, which will celebrate its 50th anniversary this year. It’s popular to complain about the government and malign civil servants, but I think those attacks are often deeply unfair. I have tremendous respect for the persistence and professionalism of the EPA career staff, who work under extremely challenging conditions to protect the public health and welfare of the American people.HLT: And how are we doing in our efforts to combat climate change?Freeman: On climate change, in particular, we have unfortunately not been as successful as we need to be — that story is overall disappointing to date. The U.S. Congress, and each successive president over the last 50 years, have known more and more about the science of climate change, and understood the serious risks it poses for our economy and public health. Yet Congress has done nothing serious to address the problem, failing to pass comprehensive legislation to cut greenhouse gas emissions, or to put a price on carbon.President Obama used executive power, chiefly the Clean Air Act, to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from cars and trucks and power plants, and he played an instrumental role in the Paris accord, the global climate change agreement, but that progress has stalled with President Trump, who has sought to dismantle every pillar of the Obama climate strategy. So, we are not in a great place at the moment, but I remain optimistic that a clean-energy transition is inevitable. I think industry gets this, many states are leading the way, and eventually with a new administration I think we will head in the right direction again.,HLT: You mentioned that the Trump administration is dismantling environmental regulations approved by the Obama administration, including new fuel efficiency standards for cars and trucks. What is the current status and what do you think the impact will be?Freeman: The EPA just finalized their rule rolling back the historic fuel efficiency/greenhouse gas standards the Obama administration adopted for cars and trucks. I think the EPA will run into some trouble in the courts. They did everything possible to try to justify the new rule, but just couldn’t manage to do it. Their own numbers show that its costs outweigh its benefits, and that it’s bad for consumers, bad for the environment, and bad for public health. A trifecta of failure! It’s hard to think of another policy as misguided as this, especially since the auto industry itself is ambivalent about it at best — many leading companies would be happy with gradually escalating standards, and have said so, only to be threatened with a lawsuit by Trump suggesting they colluded with California. Remarkable.HLT: An effort is also underway to reverse Obama administration regulations on power plant emissions. Where does that stand and what are the likely effects?Freeman: The Trump administration replaced Obama’s “Clean Power Plan,” which would have reduced greenhouse gas emissions from the electricity sector by a projected 32 percent by 2030, with a rule that would only slightly cut emissions in the very best case by around 1.5 percent. Again, their own numbers show what a bad policy this is: It will actually increase premature deaths from the additional air pollution.The Obama plan would have built on market forces that are already pushing electric utilities to use cheap natural gas instead of coal, by pressing them to go even faster and further toward a cleaner energy mix, with a greater share of renewables and more energy efficiency displacing fossil fuels. Instead, this administration has done everything possible to try to extend the life of the nation’s oldest and dirtiest coal-fired power plants. It’s exactly the wrong policy for climate change. Here again, we will see a legal challenge, which won’t be resolved until we are past the 2020 presidential election.HLT: How about Congress? Is there a role for the legislative branch to play here? “We were not ready for this global pandemic, and our institutions were slow to respond. Let’s not keep making that mistake with climate change.” Sustainability in Big Sky Country read more