Talk:United States Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works

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This article tells me almost NOTHING meaningful about the committee. Why does it even exist?

==Specter Specter remains a Republican for purposes of committees until there is a reorganizing resolution. Ranking membership and sub-committee membership is undetermined and it is not clear that the Democratic Leadership will allow the Republicans to reclassify Specter as a Democrat for the purpose of committee assignments. [1][2]PantsB (talk) 22:26, 3 May 2009 (UTC)

On the question above, the first entry -- why this committee exists -- my take:

Environmental legislation -- clean water and air; children's health; climate change; wildlife protection; transportation and nuclear safety.

Please see: Source Watch.

The week of June 15, 2009, on the matter of Louisiana coastal restoration and future New Orleans hurricane/flood protection, after listening to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Mississippi Valley Division Commander, Brigadier General Michael Walsh, giving status, and trying to explain another delay on the post-Katrina New Orleans project (on the technical report, I think), in which he argued "drainage" was outside the definition of "surge protection," and thus out of its domain, he contributed to getting this hearing in the news by calling the committee chair, Senator Barbara Boxer, "Ma'm." His assertions on the projects were to the consternation of both Louisiana senators. The "Ma'm" issue was reportedly quelled by a call from the senator to Brigadier Gen. Walsh, in which both professed mutual respect.

The Corps was the body that designed and built the failed New Orleans levees. By most accounts (including some of its own), and both government and NGO engineering analyses the Corps was responsible for inadequate soil analyses (improper swamp peat shear strength), sub-design-level surge protection levee breaches (breaches where there was no overtopping) and suboptimal levee wall strength margins (30% instead of double). Please see 2005 levee failures in Greater New Orleans.

Louisiana Senator Mary L. Landrieu addressed the committee, arguing for 1) quick resolution 2) adoption of a Dutch model 3) longer tenures for division commanders and 4) a restructuring of the Army Corps of Engineers' policy and structure. This language is Sen. Landrieu's, as quoted [here].

DonL (talk) 20:35, 20 June 2009 (UTC)