Week ahead: House puts spotlight on crude exports

House Republicans this week will get a jump-start on what could be a raucous debate next year over lifting the decades-old crude export ban.

The House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Energy and Power will hold a hearing on Thursday that asks if the U.S. is positioning itself for “success in an era of energy abundance.”

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The hearing is likely to focus on the crude oil export ban, based on the witnesses chosen to appear.

Adam Sieminski, administrator of the Energy Information Administration, could shed light in his testimony on the work that the stat shop is doing to determine the impact of allowing U.S. oil to flow freely from America’s shores.

Also testifying will be Charles K. Ebinger, a senior fellow with Brookings, who strongly supports lifting the export ban.

Other witnesses include Lucian Pugliaresi, president of Energy Policy Research Foundation Inc., and Deborah Gordon of the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace.

The rest of the week will remain relatively busy on and off Capitol Hill as lawmakers seek to wrap up work for the year.

On Wednesday, a House Oversight and Government Reform subcommittee will hold a hearing on the Environmental Protection Agency’s management of the renewable fuel mandate, which determines how much ethanol and biofuels refiners must blend into the nation’s fuel supply during a given year.

The EPA recently announced it would not be finalizing its 2014 standard for the fuel mandate until next year, angering both the oil and biofuels industries.

The agency also has yet to propose the 2015 blending levels, but has vowed to get back on a regular schedule next year.

The delays have a number of lawmakers questioning the EPA’s handling of the Renewable Fuel Standard, providing fodder for critics who want to repeal it altogether.

Off Capitol Hill next week, the Sierra Club and Progressive Democrats of America will host a rally Monday on the “environment, good-paying jobs, and public health.” The event is billed as an attempt to bring transparency to the Trans-Pacific Partnership trade negotiations.

On Tuesday, the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, the Precourt Energy Efficiency Center and the California Institute for Energy and Environment will host a conference on energy and climate change.

Energy Secretary Ernest MonizErnest Jeffrey MonizTwo years after Harvey's devastation, the wake-up call has not been heeded Biden under pressure from environmentalists on climate plan Pelosi, Clinton among attendees at memorial reception for Ellen Tauscher MORE will keynote Tuesday’s luncheon at the conference.

Later on Tuesday, the Canadian Embassy and the Natural Gas Roundtable will host a forum on North American energy security.

American Gas Association CEO Dave McCurdy will participate, along with the president of the Canadian Gas Association, Timothy Egan, among others.

On Thursday, the American Gas Association will hold a discussion on the outlook for natural gas in 2015.

 

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