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Lauren Gardner covers energy and environment policy as a staff writer at CQ, following a two-year stint on CQs legislative action team tracking markups and floor votes. Before joining CQ, she covered the IRS for BNAs Daily Tax Report. Lauren graduated from American University, where she received bachelors degrees in French/print journalism and international studies. A Philadelphia native with the accent to prove it, she currently lives in Old Town Alexandria.
The domestic natural-gas boom couldn’t have come at a better time for President Barack Obama. His first term started amid a recession and with a legislative failure to cap U.S. greenhouse gas emissions, but ended with natural gas hitting historically low prices that helped fuel an energy and manufacturing jobs comeback.
The Environmental Protection Agency is set to finalize a suite of rules this summer limiting carbon pollution from new, existing and modified power plants. The regulations are all but guaranteed to solidify the country’s wholesale shift away from coal-fired generation to natural gas and renewables, a prospect that causes heartburn for states that are major coal producers and consumers.
The consequence of a congressional stalemate is clearly visible in the nearly 75,000 metric tons of spent radioactive fuel piling up in pools of water and steel casks that rest in the shadows of the nation’s nuclear power plants.
President Barack Obama first put Atlantic drilling on the table in March 2010, as part of a strategy to bring more Republicans to the negotiating table for a comprehensive climate change bill in the Senate.
The Obama administration’s recent proposal to lease oil and gas drilling in a swath of the Atlantic Ocean generated the expected mix of cheers and jeers on Capitol Hill, but local reaction was mostly divided along state borders rather than party affiliations.
A veto showdown moved closer on Thursday after the Senate passed legislation to approve the Keystone XL pipeline and yank the decision out of President Barack Obama’s hands.
Sen. Lisa Murkowski on Tuesday again slammed an Interior Department proposal to block areas in Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge from future oil and gas exploration, a plan Murkowski called "unacceptable" and said violated the 1980 Alaska National Interest Lands Conservation Act (ANILCA).
"What this administration is doing is moving forward into essentially de facto wilderness," Murkowski said. "What the president is doing is not unlike what we are seeing with the selective interpretation of the Affordable Care Act or immigration, where he is unilaterally acting. He is ignoring the law from 1980, ANILCA."
Congress wasted no time this year getting back into the debate over the Keystone XL pipeline, despite last voting on approving the project in November. Now with firm control of the House and Senate, Republicans are eager to contrast their energy policy with that of President Barack Obama, who has questioned the need for and the importance of the pipeline.
The House passed legislation 266-153 Friday approving the Keystone XL pipeline, defying a White House veto threat and just hours after a Nebraska court upheld that state’s law agreeing to the builder’s proposed route.
Senate Environment and Public Works Chairman James M. Inhofe said Wednesday that the GOP continues to look at a gas tax increase among other alternatives to cover shortfalls in transportation spending, characterizing the mechanism as a "user fee."
The Environmental Protection Agency is days away from proposing an updated air quality standard that Republicans are sure to target as they try to win concessions from President Barack Obama on his environmental agenda — and industry lobbyists think they have the upper hand.
Democratic Sen. Mary L. Landrieu and GOP Rep. Bill Cassidy are facing off in one last legislative duel in which the completion of the Keystone XL pipeline is portrayed as so overriding an issue that it will drive votes at the Louisiana polls. Keystone has become important enough to grab a top spot on the agenda of the lame-duck Congress.
Sen. Charles E. Grassley plans to put a birthday present to good use to grab himself a Dairy Queen Blizzard, but he hasn’t quite decided on the flavor yet.
Two House lawmakers are about to find out whether Congress can solve a problem precipitated, in part, by concerns over climate change — without devolving into a fight over climate change.
President Barack Obama has called for a national commitment to controlling climate change, but the market approaches and limited regulatory measures the government has been capable of in the past won’t be able to deal with the problem fast enough to make much difference.
Senate Democrats are offering Republicans a vote on approving the Keystone XL pipeline, but are demanding an energy efficiency bill pass in return.
The U.S. Coast Guard will need to expand its presence in the Arctic year-round as oil and gas exploration and general maritime activity increase in the region, researchers say, but paying for such a presence is likely to be difficult as Congress wrestles with austere budgets.
The United States has become a global leader in developing previously inaccessible oil and gas reserves by revolutionizing drilling technology, but one area has remained just out of reach — the Arctic Ocean.
Another public health challenge the National Climate Assessment will explore is the likelihood that diseases native to other geographical areas will migrate to the United States as climate changes alter ecosystems.
A United Nations report this week warned that a warming planet will exacerbate existing health problems in the coming decades — and U.S. scientists will caution later this month that those and other public health concerns are imminent.
Solar energy represented less than 1 percent of the domestic electricity generation mix in 2012 but has experienced dramatic growth in the interim with help from both the federal government and the private sector.
Two weeks ago, Energy Secretary Ernest J. Moniz traveled to the California desert to dedicate a signature achievement of the Obama administration’s loan guarantee program: an up-and-running, utility-scale solar power plant that is the largest of its kind in the world.
Senate Democrats launched a new effort Tuesday to reclaim the political initiative in the climate change debate and create a sense of urgency about mitigating the causes of the planet’s warming atmosphere.
A group of Native Alaskans traveled to Washington, D.C., this week to plead for congressional action on climate change as they grapple with its dramatic impacts.
The EPA may not have many friends in Congress, but the Obama administration is focused on making them where it counts when it comes to advancing the president’s climate agenda: at the local level.