Vermont s congressional delegation announced today $2 million in Brownfields grants for the state. Senators Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Bernie Sanders (I-Vt.) and Congressman Peter Welch (D-Vt.) said the Environmental Protection Agency funding, $400,000 of which came from the economic stimulus plan, will go towards clean up of and reinvestment in properties blighted by hazardous waste. The City of Burlington will receive a $200,000 grant; the City of St. Albans will receive $400,000 in cleanup funds, and the New England Youth Theatre in Brattleboro will receive a $200,000 cleanup grant.There are also four regional recipients. The Windham Regional Commission will receive $400,000. The Lamoille County Planning Commission will receive $400,000. The Northwest Regional Planning Commission will receive $200,000. And the Rutland Regional Planning Commission will receive $200,000.The EPA defines a brownfield site as a location where the presence of a hazardous substance may complicate the expansion, redevelopment, or reuse of the property. Cleaning up polluted site takes development pressures off of undeveloped open land. It also improves and protects the environment.Details of the Vermont grants are available here. To learn more about the Brownfields program, visit the E.P.A. Web site here.
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ERAFP, the €16bn French public sector pension fund, is to lower the carbon output of a €750m equity portfolio by more than one-third.The scheme – a signatory to the Montreal Carbon Pledge together with PGGM, the UK’s Environment Agency Pension Fund and AP4 – said it would be working with French manager Amundi to lower the carbon intensity of one of its portfolios by 40%.It said the portfolio’s index would employ a ‘best in class’ approach, additionally excluding the 5% of companies deemed most polluting and the bottom 20% of companies in each sector.“While monitoring this mandate closely, ERAFP will continue its work on measuring carbon and climate risks with a particular focus on supporting research and development initiatives aimed at assessing the alignment of investments with climate objectives,” the fund added in a statement. Julian Poulter, executive director of the Asset Owners Disclosure Project, said the main argument for reducing the carbon footprint was not about morals or ethics but financial risk.Philippe Desfossés, chief executive at ERAFP, added: “It is hard to dispute that carbon is a risk. So how can we fulfil our duty of trust if we don’t implement the systems necessary to assess this risk to reduce it? And worse still, having measured the risk, we don’t disclose it to stakeholders?”The Montreal Carbon Pledge hopes to attract institutions worth $3trn to the initiative in time for the Paris climate change talks.Swedish buffer fund AP4 and France’s Fonds de Réserve pour les Retraites previously committed €1bn each to low-carbon indices designed with Amundi.,WebsitesWe are not responsible for the content of external sitesLink to homepage of Montreal Carbon Pledge
Hunters in Indiana can expect another productive deer season in 2013, but probably not as productive as last year’s record setter.Hoosier deer hunters in 2012 harvested 136,248 deer. Hunters have gotten a record number of deer in four of the last five seasons, a trend that DNR deer research biologist Chad Stewart doesn’t expect to continue in 2013.“It wouldn’t surprise me if it was down a little this year,” Stewart said. “But I don’t expect the harvest numbers to fall off a cliff. There will still be plenty of deer out there.”The main reason Stewart thinks a decrease in the harvest might happen is because hunters in 2012 harvested a record number of does. As a result, reproduction was likely down this year.Stewart emphasized that reducing the deer population to a more balanced level has been the DNR’s goal in recent years. Changes to hunting regulations that went into effect in 2012 were geared toward that goal. The changes included extending archery season, allowing crossbows for all archery hunters and creating a “license bundle” that saved hunters money.The 2013 license bundles give the additional option of harvesting either two antlerless deer and a buck or three antlerless deer.Archery season starts October 1. Firearms season starts Nov.ember 16.