United States Debt Limit Myths and Facts

The debt limit is the total amount of money that the United States government is authorized to borrow to meet its existing legal obligations, including Social Security and Medicare benefits, military salaries, interest on the national debt, tax refunds, and other payments. The debt limit does not authorize new spending commitments. It simply allows the […]

Floodplain Construction Regulations

Part 1 of Floodplain Construction Regulations. In most communities throughout the United States, construction in floodplains is governed by combinations of Federal, State, and local regulations. At the Federal level, FEMA administers the NFIP. Congress created the NFIP in 1968 when it passed the National Flood Insurance Act (NFIA). The NFIP is a voluntary program […]

Risks and Realities: Understanding Radiation in the World Around You

Overview It is natural and all around us. It comes up from the ground, down through the atmosphere, and even from within our own bodies. It can be man-made too. But it’s nothing new. It’s been present since the birth of the planet. It is radiation, and radiation is, quite simply, part of our lives. […]

Energy-Efficient Appliances

Part 5 of Elements of an Energy-Efficient House. Appliances with relatively high operating efficiencies are usually more expensive to purchase. However, higher efficiency appliances provide a measure of insurance against increases in energy prices, emit less air pollution, and are attractive selling points when the home is resold. Home buyers should invest in high-efficiency appliances—such […]