Week ahead: House to vote on gas exports, pipelines

A slew of energy bills will hit the House floor next week, including a measure designed to force the Department of Energy to more quickly approve applications to export liquefied natural gas.

The bill is sponsored by Rep. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.), who hopes to defeat Sen. Mark Udall (D-Colo.) this fall in what could be a pivotal battle in the race for the Senate.

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Republicans in Congress and pro-energy Democrats have urged the administration to speed up the approval of applications for facilities that would export liquefied natural gas to non-Free Trade Agreement countries.

The Energy Department recently issued new guidelines for approving applications, which it claimed will help speed up the process, but House Republicans aren’t satisfied. 

Gardner's bill, which will likely pass the full House with ease, would give the agency 90 days to approve an application. 

Other bills set to come to the floor this week include Rep. Fred Upton's (R-Mich.) North American Energy Infrastructure Act, which seeks to speed up the approval and construction of pipelines for natural gas, oil, and petroleum products.

The House is also expected to move on a group of energy efficiency bills. 

Meanwhile, the House and Senate are also packing in hearings in the last week before the July 4th recess.

On Tuesday, the House Science, Space and Technology Committee will mark up legislation aimed at restricting the Environmental Protection Agency from proposing, or finalizing regulations without proving they are founded on science and reproducible. 

The legislation comes amid Republican accusations that the EPA has based its signature climate rules on “unsound” science. 

Also on Tuesday, a House Natural Resources subpanel will hold a hearing on federal jurisdiction over U.S. bodies of water, and the possible impacts on states, water users and recreation. The hearing will likely focus on the EPA's latest proposal to clarify its jurisdictional authority over U.S. waters, which Republicans are calling a “power grab.”

Another House Natural Resources subpanel will examine the ways schools are educating students to better prepare for energy jobs opening up across the U.S.

Tuesday afternoon. The same committee will also hold an oversight hearing on the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service's plan to ban the commercial trade of elephant ivory.

The Joint Economic Committee on Tuesday will host a hearing on the “economic impact of increased natural gas.” Daniel Yergin, vice chairman at the international consultancy firm IHS will testify, along with executive vice president of the oil company Anadarko, Charles Meloy. 

On Wednesday the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will hold a hearing examining legislation that would establish an interagency committee between the Energy and Interior departments focused on energy and water production, use and efficiency. 

Off Capitol Hill on Monday, the World Bank will release a new report on the “benefits” of investing in climate policies. It will take a look at government policies that improve energy efficiency, waste, management and public transport.

On Thursday, the Heritage Foundation will hold a discussion on the Waters of the U.S. rule proposed by the EPA. Heritage has come out against the proposal, as have Republicans in Congress.