The power of the federal government to impose regulations based on environmental concerns dates in large part to the Endangered Species Act signed into law by President Richard Nixon in 1973.  That action came shortly after the government banned the use of the pesticide DDT, the broad use of which had been shown to harm animal and human health.  By then the population of the bald eagle was in serious decline, and the whooping crane was nearly extinct.  The modern environment movement then grew into a diversity of groups focused on air and water quality, wilderness, farmland preservation, energy production, public transit and chemical uses, among others.  In many areas industries and user groups responded to urge a balance between environmental concerns and the preservation of jobs and businesses.  In recent years the environmental movement joined the international political debate over evidence human activity--especially the production of carbon-based greenhouse gases--has so altered the world as to change the climate.  The United States rejected the 1997 international Kyoto Protocol intended to reduce greenhouse gases, and the policy debate in Washington has recently focused on what is known as a cap-and-trade system.  That would set a limit on greenhouse gases while creating a market for cleaner industries to sell pollution credits to dirtier ones. Critics call the plan a hidden tax that would drive up costs, and attempts to move the legislation forward have stalled.


Related Legislation

SB 641 Air pollution

Air pollution; outdoor wood-burning heaters.  Requires the Air Pollution Control Board to develop a model ordinance… more »

SB 550 Oyster beds

Public oyster beds on the seaside of the Eastern Shore; adjustment of boundaries.  Instructs the Virginia Marine Resources… more »

SB 528 Hunting and fishing licence

Special hunting and fishing license for disabled veterans.  Allows a veteran who is permanently disabled due to a service-connected… more »

SB 512 Hunting

Hunting on Sundays.  Allows any person who has obtained a hunting license to hunt any wild bird or wild animal on Sundays. more »

SB 511 Natural gas utilities

Natural gas utility infrastructure.  Permits a natural gas utility to construct the necessary facilities of a qualifying… more »

SB 505 Combined heat and power facilities

Combined heat and power facilities; incentives.  Provides that combined heat and power facilities that meet the output… more »
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Virginia (change)

Virginia was founded in 1607 in Jamestown. Since then, Virginia has grown and prospered into a thriving state rich with diversity from culture to climate.
Offices & Officials

Governor: Robert F. McDonnell
Lieutenant Governor: Bill Bolling
Attorney General: Ken Cuccinelli
Secretary of State: Janet Polarek