OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Issa set to blast administration over ‘green jobs’

NEWS BITES:

Obama: Climate problem is ‘tough,’ but ‘solvable’: President Obama said policymakers could help solve the climate crisis if politicians were willing to work together on the issue.

Here’s Obama on Wednesday at the Clinton Global Initiative in New York City:

“It is technically difficult to figure out how we are going to deal with climate change — not impossible, but difficult. There are technical challenges to making sure that we’re providing enough safe drinking water around the world, or making sure that preventable diseases are eradicated in countries that don’t yet have a public health infrastructure. These things are all tough stuff. But they’re solvable, if everybody’s attitude is that we’re working together, as opposed to trying to work at odds with each other.”

Rep. Hall launches investigation into NOAA Climate Service: House Science, Space and Technology Committee Chairman Ralph HallRalph Moody HallRising star Ratcliffe faces battle to become Trump's intel chief Former Texas GOP Rep. Ralph Hall dead at 95 GOP fights off primary challengers in deep-red Texas MORE (R-Texas) is launching an investigation into the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Service, an agency he says is “unauthorized.”

“I’m very concerned that NOAA has taken steps to form what amounts to a shadow climate service operation with budget, policy and other decision-making authorities,” Hall said Wednesday in a news release.

Hall objects to the Climate Service, arguing that it will divert resources from NOAA’s other functions. His office has raised concerns that the agency will be “prone to politicization and policy advocacy.”

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House panel approves pipeline safety bill: The House Energy and Commerce Committee unanimously approved pipeline safety legislation Wednesday, in a rare moment of bipartisanship.

“I believe that we have come up with a practical path forward for improved pipeline safety,” Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-Mich.) said in a news release.

Carl Weimer, executive director at the Pipeline Safety Trust, praised the bill, calling it the “strongest passed by any committee in Congress so far.”

The bill includes requirements for maximum allowable pressure for natural-gas pipelines, a response to a pipeline explosion in San Bruno, Calif., last year that killed eight people. The bill also requires improved leak detection, mandates the use of automatic or remote shutoff valves and sets a one-hour time limit for operators to report incidents to a national response center.

House committee clears bills to delay EPA rules: The House Energy and Commerce Committee also approved bills that would delay and soften EPA air-toxics rules for industrial boilers and cement plants. The GOP-led bills both won support from a handful of conservative Democrats.

House GOP leaders are bringing several bills to the floor this fall to roll back EPA rules that they allege are hindering economic growth, while Democrats and environmentalists say the plans would gut important public health protections and aren’t a brake on the economy.

Alaska officials revive push for ANWR drilling: Alaska officials revived the long-running push to approve drilling in the state’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR) during a House Natural Resources Committee hearing.

Alaska Gov. Sean Parnell (R) testified via teleconference Wednesday; Alaska Sens. Lisa MurkowskiLisa Ann MurkowskiPotential Dem defectors face pressure on impeachment The Hill's Morning Report - Sponsored by AdvaMed - A crucial week on impeachment Senate braces for brawl on Trump impeachment rules MORE (R) and Mark BegichMark Peter BegichAlaska political mess has legislators divided over meeting place Former GOP chairman Royce joins lobbying shop Lobbying world MORE (D) and Rep. Don YoungDonald (Don) Edwin YoungThe Hill's 12:30 Report: Dems release first transcripts from impeachment probe witnesses GOP lawmaker head-butts MoveOn camera Hundreds turn out for London's first transgender equality march MORE (R) testified in the hearing room.

All of the officials said drilling in ANWR would cause minimal environmental damage and result in a boom to the economy, assertions with which environmentalists vehemently disagree.

Drilling in ANWR is “a good investment for our nation, one that we can no longer afford to ignore,” Parnell said.

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Grijalva, Udall push for energy profits, benefits report: Rep. Raúl Grijalva (D-Ariz.) and Sen. Tom UdallThomas (Tom) Stewart UdallOvernight Defense: Bombshell report reveals officials misled public over progress in Afghanistan | Amazon accuses Trump of 'improper pressure' in Pentagon contract decision | House Judiciary holds final impeachment hearing Senate Democrats ask Pompeo to recuse himself from Ukraine matters Bureau of Land Management staff face relocation or resignation as agency moves west MORE (D-N.M.) are asking the Government Accountability Office to probe “corporate profits and public financial benefits from mineral and oil extraction on federal lands.”

Grijalva is holding a news conference Thursday to discuss the matter.

“The public hasn’t been getting a fair return on the commercialization of its natural resources for generations, and Senator Udall and I are not alone in demanding some answers,” Grijalva said in a news release. “Public land giveaways without benefits for taxpayers are unacceptable, and we hope GAO is able to shed light on a better way forward.”

ON TAP THURSDAY:

EPA’s Lisa Jackson faces Congress: EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson will square off with House Republicans when an Energy and Commerce subcommittee holds a hearing on agency regulations.

“I think that they have issued a lot of new regulations that have raised the cost of doing business and have hurt creating jobs,” said Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.), chairman of the Energy and Commerce subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, which is holding the hearing.

“This EPA has a huge role over the economic recovery — the cost of manufacturing, construction, power production, the reliability of energy, certainty of future rules and standards. So it’s well worth us to look at them and what they are doing,” Stearns said Wednesday.

Jackson, however, will make the case for public health protections and argue that EPA has a long and successful track record of cutting dangerous pollution without hindering economic growth. Check out her testimony here.

Speaking of Lisa Jackson ...:
We’ll have a piece in print and online Thursday morning about the challenges the secretary faces in the wake of President Obama’s decision to shelve ozone rules that she had championed.

House Ways and Means Committee subpanel delves into energy taxes:
The Ways and Means subcommittee on Revenue Measures will examine “questions of whether energy policy should be conducted through the tax code, and if so, how best to design provisions that advance the principles of both sustainable energy policy and tax reform.”

The Thursday hearing will explore a bill backed by billionaire oil-and-gas magnate T. Boone Pickens that would provide billions of dollars in tax incentives for conversion to natural gas in the nation’s heavy trucking fleet.

Keystone pipeline in focus:
The Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars will hold an event about the proposed Keystone XL oil sands pipeline. Speakers include Sen. John HoevenJohn Henry HoevenBottom Line The Hill's Morning Report — Schiff: Clear evidence of a quid pro quo Trump steps up GOP charm offensive as impeachment looms MORE (R-N.D.) and Rep. Gene GreenRaymond (Gene) Eugene GreenTexas New Members 2019 Two Democrats become first Texas Latinas to serve in Congress Latina Leaders to Watch 2018 MORE (D-Texas). More here.

‘Resource Nationalism’ in focus:
The National Bureau of Asian Research will hold an event to roll out a report titled “Asia’s Rising Energy and Resource Nationalism.”

Speakers include Sen. Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska). More here.

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT …

Here’s a quick roundup of Wednesday’s E2 stories:

- Issa’s committee: Obama’s ‘green jobs’ push is ‘propaganda’
- House rejects temporary spending bill over FEMA funding
- Senate panel approves bill to funnel oil-spill penalty money to Gulf
- Solyndra execs walked back from agreement to answer questions
- Rep. Issa lobbied for same kinds of federal loans his committee is now investigating
- White House formalizes veto threat over bill to delay clean-air regs
- Under fire, administration touts ‘green jobs’
- House headed for Clean Air Act clash
- Issa sinking his teeth into ‘corruption’

Please send tips and comments to Ben Geman, ben.geman@thehill.com, and Andrew Restuccia, arestuccia@thehill.com.

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