The working materials in the NRDC Document Bank are listed in reverse chronological order. For additional policy materials including reports and issue papers, see the Issues section of the main NRDC site.
Bangladesh: Best Practices for Textile Mills
The world textile industry is a large part of our daily lives, from the clothes we wear to the napkins at eateries. Dyeing and finishing that textile can be an environmentally taxing process: One ton of fabric can lead to the pollution of up to 300 metric tons1 of water with a suite of harmful chemicals, and consume vast amounts of energy for steam and hot water. Now that the industry is centered in countries with still-developing environmental regulatory systems, such as China and Bangladesh, textile dyeing and finishing has a huge environmental footprint. To address this issue, NRDC and a group of apparel retailer and brand partners started the Responsible Sourcing Initiative (RSI) to curb pollution in the sector while saving the industry money. This report summarizes the practices that we found to be the top money-saving, environment-protecting opportunities in Bangladesh, which largely overlap with practices we previously identified in China.
Cooling India With Less Warming: The Business Case for Phasing-Down HFCs in Room and Vehicle Air Conditioners
This paper explores the business case for Indian room air conditioning companies to “leapfrog” and phasing down unsustainable technologies based on chemicals with high global warming potential (GWP) called hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) and moving to a future based on climate-friendly refrigerants and energy-efficient equipment designs that will cool Indian buildings and vehicles while reducing dangerous climate change.
New Facts and Additional Information Supporting the CoP16 Polar Bear Proposal Submitted by the United States of America
The United States proposes to transfer the polar bear, Ursus maritimus, from Appendix II to Appendix I of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES), on the basis that the polar bear is affected by trade and threatened with extinction because of a projected marked decline in the population size in the wild. This paper summarizes new scientific findings and additional evidence since 2009, which underpin Russian Federation and U.S. support for uplisting since the last Convention was held. Notably, the reasons why polar bears meet the criteria for Appendix I listing are (1) they are a species that has declined in the wild, and is characterized by future declines, leading to widespread extirpation, projected on the basis of a decrease in area and quality of habitat; and (2) they are a species affected by commercial trade, which overharvesting is helping supply.
¿Se necesitan represas en la Patagonia? Un análisis del futuro energético chileno
El desarrollo de mega-represas en la Patagonia puede tener altos impactos ambientales, económicos y culturales. Este estudio demuestra con datos precisos que es posible reemplazar el eventual aporte a la matriz energética de proyecto hidroeléctricos como Hidroaysén empleando energías renovables no convencionales y un uso eficiente de la energía.
Aporte potencial de Energías Renovables No Convencionales y Eficiencia Energética a la Matriz Eléctrica, 2008 - 2025
Este estudio hace una estimación del potencial técnico y económicamente factible de energías renovables que se podrían incorpora al sistema interconectado central (SIC) hacia el año 2025 bajo tres escenarios posible. El estudio identifica las principales barreras que obstaculizan el aprovechamiento de estas fuentes de energía, y propone recomendaciones de política pública para la plena incorporación de las ERNC en la matriz eléctrica.
Breaking Down the Myths: The True Cost of Energy and the Future of Renewable Energy in Chile
A white paper summarizing NRDC’s findings about demand growth and the true cost of energy in Chile.
Letter from The US Marine Mammal Commission supporting US to list polar bears as an "Appendix I" species under CITES
Letter from the United States Marine Mammal Commission supporting a United States to propose listing polar bears as an “Appendix I” species under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species.
Letter From United States Representatives urging the U.S. to list polar bears as an “Appendix I” species under CITES
Letter on June 11, 2012 from United States Representatives urging the United States to propose listing polar bears as an “Appendix I” species under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species.
Letter From United States Senators urging the U.S. to list polar bears as an “Appendix I” species under CITES
Letter on June 13, 2012 from United States Senators urging the United States to propose listing polar bears as an “Appendix I” species under the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species.
Letter in Support of Banning the International Trade in Polar Bear Parts
NRDC and other conservation organizations sent a letter to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service urging it to propose a ban on the international trade in polar bear parts at the next meeting of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). The letter argues that we must do everything we can to strengthen polar bear populations, like stopping the killing of polar bears for the international market, to give them a greater chance to survive their primary threat – climate change. Simply put, the world no longer has any polar bears to spare, and certainly not to end up as a rug in front of someone’s fireplace.
Building Resilience to Extreme Heat: Top Strategies for Protecting India's Slum Communities from Heat Waves
To prepare slum residents for rising extreme heat due to climate change, the Indian Institute of Public Health, Gandhinagar, Emory University and the Natural Resources Defense Council conducted a scientific study to characterize factors affecting vulnerability in summer 2011 in Ahmedabad, Gujarat, India. This two-pager lays out recommended interventions for the municipal government and other local groups to help residents of Ahmedabad’s slum communities protect themselves and adapt to increasing temperatures.
Letter from 22 Environmental CEOs to President Obama Urging U.S. Leadership at the June 2012 Rio+20 Earth Summit
The chief executive officers of 22 American environmental organizations wrote to President Obama to encourage him to lead the U.S. Delegation to the Rio+20 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil June 20-22, 2012. They stated that the President’ participation was essential to demonstrating our nation’s concern about global challenges and our determination to be a leader in the transition to a low-carbon green economy. The letter also called upon the President to take specific actions at home and abroad, including reducing fossil fuel subsidies, creating an international network for monitoring ocean acidification, and securing a major new commitment of World Bank funding for off-grid clean energy.
The Sustainable Cities Working Group’s Submission to the Secretariat of the UN for the “Rio +20 Earth Summit”
The Rio+20 Earth Summit Sustainable Cities Working Group is pleased to provide this input “for inclusion in a compilation document to serve as basis for the preparation of zero draft of the outcome document” for the June 2012 UN Conference “Rio +20 Earth Summit”. The Working Group consists of a diverse group of leading civil society organizations and experts. The Working Group believes that it is essential for Rio+20 to give high priority to the challenges and opportunities presented by urban development worldwide.
NRDC's Submission to the Secretariat of the UN for the "Rio+20 Earth Summit"
NRDC, in consultative status with UN Economic and Social Council, is pleased to submit our views as a contribution for “inclusion in a compilation document to serve as basis for the preparation of zero draft of the outcome document” for the June 2012 UN Conference “Rio+20 Earth Summit”. Here, we set our vision for a different kind of summit, provide a list of potential deliverables from Rio+20, and describe NRDC’s international activities and experience with international sustainability summitry.
El costo nivelado de energía y el futuro de la energía renovable no convencional en Chile
Una presentación dada por el NRDC a los Comités Congresionales de Chile, sobre el amplio espectro de fuentes locales de energía renovable existentes en Chile, su viabilidad económica actual y las oportunidades disponibles al gobierno para aumentar su uso de energía limpia.
Tar Sands Pipeline Safety Risks Report Map
This map details the Lakehead pipeline system and proposed Keystone XL pathway, highlighting areas particularly vulnerable to damage from pipelines weakened by diluted bitumen tar sands oil.
Peru: Vida y muerte en una tierra seca
Desde Lima hacia Los Angeles, la sobrevivencia de las grandes ciudades por todo el mundo depende de fuentes de agua que se están agotando a una velocidad alarmante. Un informe especial desde los Andes en Perú, sobre el derretimiento de los glaciares y otros efectos del calentamiento global.
Identifying Near-Term Opportunities For Carbon Capture and Sequestration (CCS) in China
After three decades of rapid industrialization fueled by coal, China is now the world’s biggest emitter of carbon dioxide (CO2). China is well positioned to be a global leader in the development and deployment of CCS technologies with broad support and engagement from the international community.
NGO Letter to Secretary Clinton re: International Climate Financing, 12/7/10
This letter to U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton was signed by 19 non-governmental organizations, urging the United States to uphold its Copenhagen commitments to finance international climate efforts. Such financing is essential for combating climate change and its impacts, building the U.S. green economy, and protecting our national security. The letter was sent during the second week of international climate negotiations in Cancun, Mexico.
Key Outcomes of Climate Negotiations in Cancun, Mexico
This position paper contains NRDC's recommendations for the United Nations Climate Conference COP16 talks taking place in Cancun, Mexico from Nov. 29 to Dec. 10, 2010.
2010 Report: U.S. Implementation of the Water for the Poor Act
Billions of people lack access to clean water and safe sanitation which has catastrophic consequences for human health and well-being. Diarrhea caused by unsafe water and sanitation kills more children under 5 per year than HIV/AIDS, malaria, and measles combined. The good news is that we have the tools to solve this global crisis. In 2005 the Water for the Poor Act took a historic step calling for bold U.S. action to bring clean water and sanitation to the world. This November 2010 report provides a comprehensive assessment of the steps the U.S. government still needs to take to protect human health and the environment.
Letter to President Obama and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh from TERI and NRDC on Climate Change and Clean Energy
Letter to President Obama and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh from The Energy and Resources Institute (TERI) and the Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC) calling for strengthening cooperation between the United States and India on climate change and clean energy.
India Initiative Briefing Report on Effective Environmental Governance and Compliance
This briefing report was written on the occasion of NRDC’s participation in a public workshop on environmental compliance and governance organized by India’s Ministry of Environment and Forests (MoEF). The report discusses principles for effective compliance and enforcement based on the U.S. experience with environmental protection, illustrating both the successes and challenges.
NRDC Comments to Ministry of Environment and Forests on Its National Environmental Protection Authority Proposal -- December 2009
NRDC provides perspectives on effective environmental compliance and governance based on its experience in the US and elsewhere. NRDC requested that the Ministry conduct further analysis on its proposal for a National Environmental Protection Authority and did not provide specific comments on the new agency structure. We urged that the Ministry allow for a broadly inclusionary process for discussing the creation of the National Environmental Protection Authority, if such an agency is created. Robust public participation -- especially by civil society -- is warranted to ensure that an effective structure is established.
Open letter to President Obama in support of the proposed 2012 Earth Summit
An open letter to President Obama from civil society organizations representing over a million Americans calling on his Administration to support the proposed 2012 Earth Summit.
¿Se necesitan represas en la Patagonia?: Un análisis del futuro energético chileno
En julio de 2008, Chile Sustentable publicó el informe “Potencial de Energía Renovable y Eficiencia Energética en el Sistema Interconectado Central en Chile, periodo 2008 – 2025”, basándose en los análisis de eficiencia energética realizados por el Programa de Estudios e Investigaciones en Energía (PRIEN) de la Universidad de Chile y el análisis de energías renovables realizado por la Universidad Técnica Federico Santa María (UTFSM) de Valparaíso.
NRDC's Recommendations for Strengthening US-China Climate Change and Energy Engagement
The United States of America and the People's Republic of China are both key players in international efforts to address global warming and global energy security. Indeed, they are by far the two largest emitters of greenhouse gases (GHGs) in the world, together accounting for over 40% of global CO2 emissions from fossil fuel use. Efforts by these two players over the coming decades to cut greenhouse gas emissions and energy consumption will play a large role in determining the ultimate outcome of efforts to combat global warming. They are, of course, not alone in this effort, but they are the critical actors, jointly holding the key to either sustainability or catastrophe. Building upon NRDC's experience in China and the international global warming negotiations, this paper recommends nine key steps for the incoming Obama administration, US Congress, and leaders in China to strengthen US-China Climate Change and Energy Engagement.
NRDC @ IUCN World Conservation Congress
Listing all of NRDC events, motions and the names of the delegation members.
Climate Change and Sustainable Energy Policies in Europe and the United States
A report from the Transatlantic Platform for Action on the Global Environment, a joint project of the Institute For European Environmental Policy and the Natural Resources Defense Council.
Letter to the Governors of the Western Governors' Association on Tar Sands
Letter to the Governors of the Western Governors' Association about the greenhouse gas and wildlife corridor impacts of oil extraction from Canadian tar sands located in the Boreal Forest of Canada - the largest intact forest ecosystem remaining on the planet.
Don't Buy It; Tar Sands Oil is Still Dirty
On April 29, 2008, the Deputy Premier of Alberta, Ron Stevens, visited DC to meet with U.S. officials and promote dirty tar sands oil. The visit aimed to assuage the environmental concerns raised by NRDC, while also seeking to ensure tar sands oil's future in the U.S. marketplace.
Senator Paul Simon Water for the Poor Act: Responses to U.S. State Department 2007 Report to Congress
Joint response from NRDC and WaterAid America, June 26, 2007.
Comments Submitted to the Multi-Stakeholder Committee in the Oil Sands Consultation Visioning Process
Melanie Nakagawa (Attorney, NRDC International Program) presented at the Oil Sands Consultation held in Bonnyville, Alberta, September 13, 2006 and comments were submitted to the committee on October 3, 2006.
Trade in Bigleaf Mahogany: The Need for Strict Implementation of CITES
As a species on the brink of Appendix I, full compliance with CITES is essential to protect mahogany populations and the human victimsof illegal logging operations. Under current conditions, this can only be achieved through a suspension of imports.
Letter to CITES Mahogany Working Group, Plants Committee
June 26, 2006 letter from NRDC and Defenders of Wildlife concerning Peru's continued export of bigleaf mahogany in violation of the provisions of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES).
Native Groups Request a Halt to Trade in Illegal Amazon Mahogany
A letter sent to the U.S. government and U.S. wood importers on April 3, 2006 by the Federacion Nativa del Río Madre de Dios y Afluentes, a group representing 27 native Peruvian communities and indigenous people living in voluntary isolation.