OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Clinton to roll out green-energy plan

On Tap Friday: Secretary of State Hillary ClintonHillary Diane Rodham ClintonWoman behind pro-Trump Facebook page denies being influenced by Russians Trump: CNN, MSNBC 'got scammed' into covering Russian-organized rally Pennsylvania Democrats set to win big with new district map MORE will use the big United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Brazil as the platform to announce a new mechanism for financing green energy in Africa.

“The announcement will be made in conjunction with Elizabeth Littlefield, President and CEO of the Overseas Private Investment Corporation (OPIC). The mechanism plans to align different types of U.S. financial support to catalyze higher levels of private sector investment in clean energy projects, primarily in Africa,” an advisory states.


Highway bill talks intensify amid Keystone questions

House-Senate efforts to strike a deal on a sweeping surface transportation bill picked up speed Thursday after appearing near collapse in recent days.

House Speaker John BoehnerJohn Andrew BoehnerRestoring fiscal sanity requires bipartisan courage GOP congressman slams primary rival for Ryan donations Speculation swirls about Kevin McCarthy’s future MORE (R-Ohio) said Republicans will keep pushing for language that would ensure federal approval of the Keystone XL oil sands pipeline, a provision Senate Democrats and the White House are resisting.
Republicans are also pushing for provisions that would prevent stringent federal regulation of a waste product from coal-fired power plants called coal ash.

Check out The Hill’s Transportation Report blog for the latest.

Energy Department looks to get ‘Beyond Solyndra’

The Energy Department (DOE) is trying to burnish the image of the much-maligned loan guarantee program that backed the failed solar company Solyndra.

DOE unveiled a presentation called “Beyond Solyndra: How the Energy Department’s Loans are Accelerating America’s Transition to a Clean Energy Future.”

The presentation, which is being circulated on Capitol Hill, makes the case that the overall loan portfolio is a success and playing an important role creating jobs and helping to boost green-power generation.

Solyndra was a manufacturing company that went bust, taking a half-billion in taxpayer dollars along with it, but the presentation notes that a big part of the portfolio — 20 projects — is for electricity generation.

The projects together are expected to create enough electricity to power more than 2.5 million homes, according to DOE.

For instance, it highlights the $1.6 billion loan guarantee for the huge Ivanpah Solar Electric Generating System that the company BrightSource is building in California’s Mojave Desert, noting more than 1,700 people are working on the site.

“[W]hile critics have focused their attention on the Department’s loan guarantee to Solyndra, the full story is that the Department’s loan portfolio as a whole is having a transformative impact, supporting tens of thousands of jobs and helping double America’s renewable electricity generation,” writes Dan Leistikow, DOE’s director of public affairs, in a blog post.

The presentation also touts more than $8 billion in direct loans to automakers under the Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing Loan Program.

Committee vote sends nuclear nominees to full Senate

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee on Thursday cleared two nominees for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC).

Lawmakers approved Allison Macfarlane, President Obama’s choice to replace outgoing Democratic NRC Chairman Greg Jaczko, and Kristine Svinicki, a Republican nominated to a second NRC term.

The full Senate is expected to approve the nominees together by the end of the month, when Svinicki’s current term expires.

But while they’re on track for approval, there was some grumbling and opposition on both sides of the aisle Thursday.

“I could not support Commissioner Svinicki’s re-nomination, because I do not believe that she has demonstrated the commitment to safety that the American people have a right to expect in this post-Fukushima era,” Committee Chairwoman Barbara BoxerBarbara Levy BoxerKamala Harris endorses Gavin Newsom for California governor Dems face hard choice for State of the Union response Billionaire Steyer to push for Dem House push MORE (D-Calif.) said in a statement after the vote.

The two nominees were approved on a voice vote. But ... Sen. Jeff SessionsJefferson (Jeff) Beauregard SessionsUnder pressure, Trump shifts blame for Russia intrusion Overnight Tech: Judge blocks AT&T request for DOJ communications | Facebook VP apologizes for tweets about Mueller probe | Tech wants Treasury to fight EU tax proposal Overnight Regulation: Trump to take steps to ban bump stocks | Trump eases rules on insurance sold outside of ObamaCare | FCC to officially rescind net neutrality Thursday | Obama EPA chief: Reg rollback won't stand MORE (R-Ala.) asked to be recorded as a “no” vote on Macfarlane.

Sens. Kirsten GillibrandKirsten Elizabeth GillibrandAmerican women will decide who wins and loses in 2018 elections Dems ponder gender politics of 2020 nominee Calls mount from Dems to give platform to Trump accusers  MORE (D-N.Y.), Jeff MerkleyJeffrey (Jeff) Alan MerkleyGrassley, Dems step up battle over judicial nominees 2020 Dem contenders travel to key primary states Mulvaney remarks on Trump budget plan spark confusion MORE (D-Ore.), Bernie SandersBernard (Bernie) SandersDems ponder gender politics of 2020 nominee 2020 Dem contenders travel to key primary states After Florida school shooting, vows for change but no clear path forward MORE (I-Vt.) and Boxer went on the record as “no” votes on Svinicki.

House clears GOP energy package

The House on Thursday approved its latest plan to mandate expanded oil-and-gas leasing and thwart EPA air pollution rules. The Hill’s Floor Action blog was on top of the action.

Check out the coverage here.


On Thursday The Hill noted that Al GoreAlbert (Al) Arnold GoreJoe Lieberman: We’re well beyond partisanship, our national government has lost civility Trump doesn't start a trade war, just fires a warning shot across the bow Dems face hard choice for State of the Union response MORE says Mitt Romney is burying the facts about green jobs; looked at Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s hint that China could avoid sanctions targeting buyers of Iranian oil; and explored a study that's bullish on the use of natural gas as fuel for heavy trucks.

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