OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Obama’s fracking plans under the microscope

Click here to read the “hearing charter” that has more info about what the GOP-led House panel is exploring.

ALSO FRIDAY: Energy development on tribal lands in focus

A Friday hearing in a House Natural Resources Committee subpanel will discuss legislation to lift regulations that bill supporters say impede energy development on Native American lands.

Rep. Don YoungDon YoungReport: Ryan pleaded on one knee for ObamaCare repeal vote House votes to make it easier to fire VA employees for misconduct The Hill's Whip List: 36 GOP no votes on ObamaCare repeal plan MORE’s (R-Alaska) Native American Energy Act (H.R. 1548) is designed to give Native American tribes more control over their land for energy production and other purposes.

Michael Black, director of the Bureau of Indian Affairs with the Interior Department, will testify at the 11 a.m. hearing.

Click here for more information.


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

— Senator: Texas explosion has exposed 'toothless' chemical regulations
— House GOP moves to shield oil companies from disclosure rule
— Senate panel's paper suggests looking at carbon tax
— Senators float nuclear waste storage draft bill
— Organizing for Action attacks GOP on climate change
— Wind power lobby names new CEO 


Bipartisan bill would thwart EPA on mine permit vetoes

Several Republicans and conservative Democrats are floating legislation that would restrict the EPA’s power to “retroactively” veto Clean Water Act permits issued by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

The bill is a response to the agency’s 2011 decision to scuttle a big West Virginia mountaintop removal coal mining project that the Corps had permitted several years earlier.

The EPA’s action enraged many Republicans and conservative Democrats, and their concern grew this week when an appeals court upheld — for now — its decision.

“As we continue to face a recovering economy, American businesses must have certainty in the marketplace. It is simply common sense to allow companies that already have been granted permits to finish the work they have started,” said Sen. Joe ManchinJoe ManchinCongress nears deal on help for miners Senate votes to confirm Rosenstein as deputy attorney general Congress nears deal on help for miners MORE (D-W.Va.).

The other sponsors are Sens. Lisa MurkowskiLisa MurkowskiTrump’s Army pick faces tough confirmation fight Republican Sen. Collins considering run for Maine governor in 2018 Alaska senators push bill to allow Arctic drilling MORE (R-Alaska), John HoevenJohn HoevenCongress nears deal on help for miners Overnight Energy: Lawmakers work toward deal on miners’ benefits Congress nears deal on help for miners MORE (R-N.D.), Mary LandrieuMary LandrieuMedicaid rollback looms for GOP senators in 2020 Five unanswered questions after Trump's upset victory Pavlich: O’Keefe a true journalist MORE (D-La.), Rob PortmanRob PortmanOvernight Energy: Lawmakers work toward deal on miners’ benefits Lawmakers urge Pruitt not to close Midwest EPA office Lighthizer unanimously approved by Senate panel MORE (R-Ohio), Jay RockefellerJay RockefellerObama to preserve torture report in presidential papers Lobbying world Overnight Tech: Senators place holds on FCC commissioner MORE (D-W.Va.) and David VitterDavid VitterFormer senator who crafted chemicals law to lobby for chemicals industry Former GOP rep joins K Street lobbying firm Capitol Counsel Lobbying World MORE (R-La.).

State Dept. to make Keystone comments public

The State Department will publish comments on its draft environmental review of the Keystone XL oil sands pipeline on Regulations.gov, InsideClimate News reported Thursday.

The news outlet said the decision marks the first time State has made such comments public. Previously, people seeking the comments needed to file a Freedom of Information Act request.

The draft review has been a flashpoint in the debate on the Canada-to-Texas pipeline’s environmental impact. It said Keystone would not accelerate production of carbon-intensive oil sands or significantly increase greenhouse gas emissions.

Here's the full story.

Cantwell energy aide to lead George Washington U solar group

Amit Ronen, a longtime energy aide to Sen. Maria CantwellMaria CantwellReport: GOP lawmakers selling access to top staffers Bipartisan group demands answers on United incident Cohn backs modern version of Glass-Steagall: report MORE (D-Wash.), is leaving Capitol Hill to become director of The George Washington University’s Solar Institute.

Ronen has been with Cantwell, a member of the Senate’s Energy and Finance committees, for more than a decade, and has been her deputy chief of staff since 2009.

He has been in the thick of energy policy development on Capitol Hill, working on development of smart-grid programs, toughening federal energy market oversight, crafting and extending various of green energy tax incentives, and more.

“We are so pleased to have Amit join the GW community in May and look forward to continuing our work on solar energy and finding ways to meet global energy needs and environmental challenges,” said Peg Barratt, dean of GW’s Columbian College of Arts and Sciences.

Ronen, before joining Cantwell’s office, worked in the Energy Department’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy from 2000-2003, and before that held positions in the Transportation Department and White House Council on Environmental Quality.

“He brings to the Solar Institute a wide-ranging knowledge of government and extensive experience in energy and environmental policy strategy,” the university said in announcing the hire.

Ronen holds a master's degree from Princeton University.

Transocean ordered to comply with subpoenas

A federal judge ordered Transocean on Thursday to hand over documents regarding the 2010 Gulf of Mexico oil spill.

Transocean owned the Deepwater Horizon drilling rig that exploded in that April 2010 disaster, which killed 11 people and spewed millions of barrels of oil into the Gulf.

The development is the latest in the ongoing federal civil trial on the incident.

From the Houston Chronicle:

At issue are five subpoenas that the safety board issued to Transocean in 2010 and 2011 while that independent federal agency sought to learn more about the explosion of the company’s Deepwater Horizon rig in the Gulf of Mexico. When Transocean asked the federal court to dismiss those subpoenas, the Justice Department intervened to argue on behalf of the CSB’s authority and the document requests.

Click here for the rest of the story.

EIA suspends annual energy review

The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) won’t publish its annual energy review this year.

The statistics arm of the Energy Department chalked the pause up to “budget considerations.”

While it won’t put out its voluminous yearly publication, the EIA said Thursday it would stuff more information into its monthly reports.

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

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