OVERNIGHT ENERGY: House passes bill to increase oil and gas exploration

HOUSE ENERGY MANIA: On Thursday, the House passed 229-185 legislation that expands energy production offshore and on federal lands.

The bill, sponsored by Rep. Doc HastingsRichard (Doc) Norman HastingsCongress just resolved a 20-year debate over Neolithic remains Boehner hires new press secretary GOP plots new course on Endangered Species Act reform MORE (R-Wash.) mandates that the Interior Department hold offshore oil and gas lease sales that have been delayed.


The bill also sets a 60-day deadline on approving drilling permits on federal lands, and would charge environmentalists $5,000 to protest permits and leasing decisions for oil and gas exploration.

It's the last in a slew of energy bills approved this week by the House, putting pressure on vulnerable Senate Democrats and President Obama.

On Tuesday the House passed legislation that would bypass Obama's authority to review permits for cross-border pipelines.

Instead the legislation puts the secretary of State on the clock after the final environmental review on a pipeline is complete. It requires the State Department to approve the permit within 120 days.

The White House issued a veto threat on the bill, which it says "imposes an unreasonable deadline."

On Wednesday, the House approved legislation that expedites liquefied natural gas exports, putting pressure on vulnerable Democrats like Sens. Mary LandrieuMary Loretta LandrieuBottom line A decade of making a difference: Senate Caucus on Foster Youth Congress needs to work to combat the poverty, abuse and neglect issues that children face MORE (D-La.) and Mark UdallMark Emery UdallThe 10 Senate seats most likely to flip Democratic presidential race comes into sharp focus Democrats will win back the Senate majority in 2020, all thanks to President Trump MORE (D-Colo.) to deliver on their gas export bill.

ON TAP FRIDAY I: The American Association for the Advancement of Science will hold a summit on energy and data. The event will focus on the challenges the energy industry faces and the possibilities government data, and especially open data, could help the industry.

ON TAP FRIDAY II: The Peterson Institute for International Economics will bring together energy experts to discuss global challenges in alternative energy innovation, focusing on differences between China and the West.


Sen. Joe ManchinJoseph (Joe) ManchinOvernight Defense: Embattled Pentagon policy nominee withdraws, gets appointment to deputy policy job | Marines, sailor killed in California training accident identified | Governors call for extension of funding for Guard's coronavirus response House-passed spending bill would block Pebble Mine construction The Hill's Morning Report - Presented by Facebook - At loggerheads, Congress, White House to let jobless payout lapse MORE (D-W.Va.) assailed conservative donors Charles and David Koch Thursday for funneling money into West Virginia's 3rd district House race.

Manchin slammed the Koch brothers in a fundraising email for Rep. Nick RahallNick Joe RahallWe shouldn't allow politics to impede disaster relief Break the cycle of partisanship with infant, child health care programs Clinton mulls role in 2018 midterms MORE (D-W.Va.), who is facing a tough reelection battle this year.

"The Koch brothers—the billionaires responsible for closing the Georgia Pacific plant in Mount Hope—have given the maximum legal donation to Nick’s opponent," Manchin said in the message. "This isn’t just about out-of-state cash; it’s about an out-of-state agenda that would jeopardize Medicare, raise taxes on working families and ship our jobs overseas."

It's a bit of a flip for Manchin, who just earlier this year defended the conservative billionaires.

But a number of Koch-backed ads have hit Rahall on his energy chops, tethering him to President Obama's climate agenda.

Rahall has come out in strong opposition to Obama's carbon rules however, proposing legislation that would derail the carbon dioxide standards for existing coal-fired power plants.


The Sierra Club and environmentalists hijacked the coal industry’s Twitter effort to illustrate that President Obama’s climate plan has been “all pain, no gain,” SNL Financial reports.

A Goldman Sachs analysis predicts that natural gas prices won’t significantly increase for decades, Bloomberg News reports.

The National Aeronautics and Space Administration launched an interactive feature to explore recent dramatic decreases in atmospheric nitrogen dioxide levels across the United States.


Check out Thursday's stories...

- Obama nominates acting NTSB chief to post full time
- Vulnerable Senate Dems get hit on natural gas exports
- CBO predicts higher fuel costs due to renewable mandate
- Feds to allow eagle deaths at California wind farm
- Murkowski: US only 'advanced' nation to ban crude oil exports
- House passes bill to increase offshore energy projects
- DOE project hits carbon-capture milestone
- McConnell invites Obama to coal country
- Ad campaign pushes ethanol in response to Iraq
- Sen. McConnell assails red-state Dems for joining 'war on coal'
- Tech firms turn to energy efficiency in climate fight
- Oil-heavy states see median ages fall

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