OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Path forward remains murky for EPA nominee McCarthy

Republicans on the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee boycotted the initial vote on that panel to advance McCarthy’s nomination to the full Senate. They said she had not fully addressed concerns about transparency at the agency.

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But Democrats say Republicans submitted more than 1,000 questions for McCarthy to answer in an attempt to be “obstructionist.”

“Right now, they have stalled her,” Reid said. “I will do it whenever we can.”


COMING FRIDAY:

Energy subsidies debated

Panelists will discuss the economic impacts of energy subsidies an event hosted by National Review and conservative energy group the American Energy Alliance (AEA).

The debate will touch on a hot-button issue just as congressional tax-writing panels are set to dig into overhauling the federal tax code, which contains numerous energy provisions.

Speakers at the 12 p.m. event, to be webcast at www.nationalreview.com, include Bob Dinneen, chief executive with the Renewable Fuels Association; Tom Pyle, president of AEA; and Michael Zehr, vice president of federal affairs with HBW Resources.

Electric grid security in focus

Bolstering the electric grid against storms and cyber threats will dominate the discussion at a Friday briefing hosted by the U.S. Energy Association (USEA).

The 10 a.m. event at USEA’s Washington, D.C., offices will explore how low-cost upgrades to equipment and personnel can harden systems against destructive acts.

Steve Mitnick, president of Win.for.Energy and the former top energy adviser to ex-New York Gov. Eliot Spitzer, will speak.


IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:

Check out these stories that ran on E2-Wire Thursday ...

— House GOP add pressure on EPA over FOIA fees
— NRC issues post-Fukushima safety rule
— Reid: Keystone XL vote coming
— Interior chief says no new drilling in Atlantic as GOP forges ahead
— Bills boosting states' environmental oversight pass first hurdle
Few objections to fracking rule from oil industry, says Obama's Interior chief
— Interior pumps brakes on fracking regs
— Former Interior chief Salazar lands new gig
— DOE chief Moniz: Reaction to hairdo 'absolutely excellent' 


NEWS BITES:

Anti-Keystone ad targets Kerry

Secretary of State John Kerry should side with the EPA’s view that the State Department’s environmental review of the Keystone XL oil sands pipeline was “insufficient,” says an ad campaign launched Thursday.

The anti-Keystone “All Risk, No Reward” coalition is spearheading the effort. The advertisement will run during all major Sunday cable news programs, and is part of a larger initiative aimed at pressuring Kerry.

“It is our hope that he listens to the EPA, examines all of the risks as part of the process he’s going through and stops this potentially devastating pipeline,” Bill Burton, the coalition’s spokesman and a senior adviser with the League of Conservation Voters, said in a statement.

The State Department is in the process of finalizing an environmental impact statement for the Canada-to-Texas pipeline. The agency is currently weighing whether to grant Keystone builder TransCanada Corp. a cross-border permit to finish the pipeline.

The EPA, though, said Foggy Bottom’s draft Keystone analysis contained “insufficient information,” and said it had “environmental objections” to the review.

Pipelines key to doubling Canada’s oil output, says industry group

Canada could potentially double its oil production by 2030 — but it will need pipelines like Keystone XL to get there, says an industry group that represents Canada’s petroleum producers.

From Bloomberg:

“The biggest potential risk is not having enough transportation capacity in time to enable this forecast to go ahead,” Greg Stringham, CAPP’s vice president of markets and oil sands, said in a phone interview from Calgary.

The State Department’s draft environmental review said Keystone would not accelerate oil sands production, noting that rail or other pipelines would bring oil sands to market.


Please send tips and comments to Ben Geman, ben.geman@thehill.com, and Zack Colman, zcolman@thehill.com.

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