OVERNIGHT ENERGY: House introduces $34B energy spending bill

SHOW ME THE MONEY: The House Appropriations Committee unveiled a $34 billion energy and water spending bill for fiscal year 2015. 

The bill funnels money into fossil-fuel energy programs while placing renewable technologies on the chopping block. All together it is expected to reduce spending on nuclear and energy security from 2014 levels. 

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The bill details funding for a number of Energy Department nuclear weapons security programs, and research for coal, natural gas, and oil, among other department expenses. Read more here.

 

WATER RULE IN GOP CROSSHAIRS: The spending bill released Monday would block funding for the Army Corps of Engineers to work on its joint rule with the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to redefine the federal government’s power over water for pollution purposes.

The rider provision should come as little surprise. Hundreds of lawmakers have written to the Army Corps and EPA since the rule was proposed in March blasting it as a power grab that significantly boosts the federal government’s power over not just water, but land that is occasionally wet.

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy has repeatedly said that the Waters of the United States rule won’t expand the agencies’ power at all, but lawmakers generally have not believed her.

 

ON TAP TUESDAY: A House Appropriations subpanel will take up the fiscal 2015 energy and water bill Tuesday.

 

ON TAP II: The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee’s subcommittee on oversight will hold a hearing Tuesday on speeding up Superfund cleanups of contaminated sites. Senators will hear from two Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) officials, local officials from Oklahoma and New Jersey and leaders from stakeholders.

 

Rest of Tuesday’s agenda ...

Electric infrastructure ... The Working Group for Investment in Reliable and Economic Electric Systems and the Environmental and Energy Study Institute will host a Capitol Hill briefing on the current state of electric transmission infrastructure. Speakers will focus on threats to the electric grid, including natural disasters and attacks. The groups are bringing in officials from local electric transmission companies, along with Joseph McClelland, director of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s infrastructure security office.

Western lands ... The Heritage Foundation is hosting an event Tuesday on reducing the federal government’s control of land in western states by transferring more ownership to states. It will feature Rep. Rob Bishop (R-Utah) and Carl Graham, director of the Sutherland Coalition for Self-Government in the West.

 

NEWS BITES:

Climate rule ... EPA chief Gina McCarthy tweeted on Monday that she will be on HBO's "Real Time with Bill Maher" Friday. 

"Looking forward to chatting about climate issues and the Clean Power Plan w/@billmaher on Friday #ActonClimate," McCarthy tweeted.

Climate rumble ... Democrats are taking to the Senate floor to talk about climate change. They invited all 45 Senate Republicans, but so far only Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) is expected to show up, according to a Seante aide. Check The Hill throughout the evening for more on the floor speeches.

 

AROUND THE WEB:

American Energy Partners, headed by former Chesapeake Energy Corp. chief Aubrey McClendon, announced three major purchases of shale-drilling rights stretching from West Virginia to Texas for a total of $4.25 billion Monday, the Dallas Morning News reports.

More than a dozen Massachusetts towns in the planned path of a Kinder Morgan pipeline from the Gulf of Mexico to the Northeast have passed resolutions against it, the Associated Press reports.

Officials in North Carolina and Virginia have signed deals with Duke Energy in which the company agreed to pay to clean up coal ash from its February spill in the Dan River, the Associated Press reports.

 

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT:

Check out Monday's stories ...

- Obama: Brace for rough wildfire season out West
- NSA sued for EPA records
- Supreme Court won't let BP stop paying settlements for 2010 Gulf spill
- Grimes says she has 'strong words' for Reid on climate rule
- House spending bill targets EPA's water jurisdiction rule
- Landrieu to attack climate rule during coal plant visit
- Planned coal plant closings to have minimal emissions impact
- House GOP unveils $34B energy spending bill
- EPA should withdraw climate rules or face lawsuit, says W.Va. AG
- Steyer to completely divest from fossil fuels
- Reid trades Searchlight for Las Vegas
- Obama: Climate change increases chance of terrorism, war
- Week ahead: EPA chief hits the road for emissions rule

 

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