OVERNIGHT ENERGY: Senate showdown looms on EPA nominee

The EPA, under Obama’s plan for second-term climate actions, has committed to regulating carbon emissions from the nation’s power plants.


Capitol Hill Republicans are likely to renew efforts to thwart the regulations. And while they probably lack the votes, Republicans will also seek chances to train the spotlight on climate rules they allege will hurt the economy.

Case in point: The GOP is criticizing Democratic plans for a Senate hearing on climate change that lacks Obama administration witnesses. Click here and here for more.

ON TAP FRIDAY: Obama's African energy plan in focus

President Obama’s push to increase access to electricity in Africa is the subject of a Friday discussion at the Center for Strategic and International Studies.

Obama announced the “Power Africa” effort in late June during a trip to the continent.

The administration is committing $7 billion over five years to the program, which aims to help eventually double power access in sub-Saharan access, with an initial target of bringing electricity to 20 million homes and businesses in coming years.

Robert C. Perry, vice president for international programs with the Corporate Council on Africa and a former U.S. ambassador to the Central African Republic, will participate in the panel.

Click here for more on the event.


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

— Energy Department to boost energy sector climate change efforts
— Dem to GOP: Climate hearing will be on science, not politics
— Energy Dept.: Climate change puts energy sector at risk
Electric utility group taps new press official
— Reid, McConnell spar on EPA nomination in ‘nuclear’ debate
— Senators float bill giving offshore energy revenues to coastal states 


US, China help boost second-quarter clean-energy investment

Global investment in clean energy jumped 22 percent in the second quarter compared with the first, but was less than the same period last year, Bloomberg reported Thursday.

Bloomberg's New Energy Finance arm said spending in the United States, China and South Africa buoyed a downturn in Europe.

From Bloomberg:

The $53.1 billion invested in the industry was still less than the $63.1 billion spent in the same period a year earlier as Europe’s spending fell to the lowest in more than six years, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Investment in the region shrank 44 percent from the first quarter to $9.5 billion.


The “sweet” spot was the U.S., where investment in renewables and so-called energy-smart technologies jumped 155 percent to $9.5 billion. It was helped by the extension of a tax credit that included wind power and a rally in clean-energy share prices including Tesla, which said May 17 it planned to sell as much as $1.08 billion in stock and debt.

Click here for the whole story.

Green activists climb London building in anti-Arctic drilling statement

Environmental activists scaled London’s tallest tower Thursday in a display of protest against Royal Dutch Shell’s Arctic drilling plans.

From the Houston Chronicle:

The quest on London’s 1,017-foot Shard tower unfolded before a global audience, courtesy of video streaming from cameras strapped to some of the six female climbers. Greenpeace employees gave a live play-by-play to about 10,000 viewers of the climbers’ trek up the glass-walled building that began at 4:20 a.m. local time.

About 14 hours later — midday in the United States — the climbers reached the top, where they unfurled at least one banner before meeting local police inside.

The campaign targeted Shell Oil Co., which has workers housed in three nearby office buildings, a year after the company wrapped up limited drilling in the Chukchi and Beaufort seas north of Alaska. But in a sign of the power and reach of social media — and a demonstration of how environmentalists are seizing on it — the effort drew eyeballs around the world.

Click here for the rest.

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

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