Week ahead: Obama officials look to seal climate deal

Several Obama administration officials are heading to Paris to help secure a final international climate deal.

Environmental Protection Agency chief Gina McCarthyRegina (Gina) McCarthyIt's time for Congress to address the 'forever chemical' crisis Overnight Energy: Critics accuse Interior's top lawyer of misleading Congress | Boaty McBoatface makes key climate change discovery | Outrage over Trump's order to trim science advisory panels Trump's order to trim science advisory panels sparks outrage MORE and 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 led the officials heading to the United Nations climate talks.

McCarthy will spend part of her trip discussing the Obama administration's climate rules and the way her agency will implement them.

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She will hold public events to talk about the EPA’s Clean Power Plan, the rule designed to cut carbon pollution from power plants, which represents the cornerstone of President Obama’s climate action agenda. McCarthy will discuss the matter with European Union Energy and Climate Commissioner Miguel Arias Cañete on Monday.

She will also take part in public events on the Obama administration’s broader climate plan later in the week.

Moniz will participate in a slate of events dealing with clean energy and technological innovation, the Department of Energy said.

He will “tour U.S. technologies featured at an exhibition of low-carbon solutions and provide remarks in a variety of events and discussions on advancing technology solutions to combat climate change,” the agency said.

Moniz will also discuss the U.S.’s role in Mission Innovation, a 20-nation project to double the amount of money in clean energy research and development.

McCarthy and Moniz are just two of a string of American officials to visit Paris and take part in the climate talks, which officials hope will yield a deal on global climate change by the conference’s end, on Dec. 11

Interior Secretary Sally JewellSarah (Sally) Margaret JewellNational parks pay the price for Trump's Independence Day spectacle Overnight Energy: Zinke extends mining ban near Yellowstone | UN report offers dire climate warning | Trump expected to lift ethanol restrictions Zinke extends mining ban near Yellowstone MORE and Agriculture Secretary Tom VilsackThomas James VilsackUSDA: Farm-to-school programs help schools serve healthier meals OVERNIGHT MONEY: House poised to pass debt-ceiling bill MORE have both attended the conference, as has Secretary of State John KerryJohn Forbes KerryWarren shows signs of broadening her base Let's not play Charlie Brown to Iran's Lucy The Memo: Democrats struggle to find the strongest swing-state candidate MORE. Before the conference, White House officials said Kerry may travel back to Paris for the closing stages of the talks.

Obama himself attended the meetings on Monday and Tuesday, where he plugged the work the United States and his administration have done on climate change. He reiterated his promise that the U.S. will cut its carbon emissions by 26 percent to 28 percent by 2025.

“I’ve come here personally, as the leader of the world’s largest economy and the second-largest emitter, to say that the United States of America not only recognizes our role in creating this problem, we embrace our responsibility to do something about it,” Obama said on Monday.

Republicans have looked to undermine the president’s negotiating position in Paris by passing legislation blocking the EPA’s climate rules. The resolutions cleared the House on Tuesday, meaning Obama could veto them any day.

Also on Capitol Hill next week, members of the House Natural Resources Committee turn to this summer’s toxic waste spill at an abandoned gold mine in Colorado. This time, they'll probe the Department of Interior’s role in the spill in a Wednesday hearing.

The committee recently held a hearing on legislation recognizing the 100th anniversary of the National Park Service, something the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee will consider on Tuesday. Senators will also hold a hearing on terrorism and the oil market on Thursday.

 

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