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Lauren Gardner


Lauren Gardner covers energy and environment policy as a staff writer at CQ, following a two-year stint on CQ’s legislative action team tracking markups and floor votes. Before joining CQ, she covered the IRS for BNA’s Daily Tax Report. Lauren graduated from American University, where she received bachelor’s degrees in French/print journalism and international studies. A Philadelphia native with the accent to prove it, she currently lives in Old Town Alexandria.

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Stories by Lauren Gardner:

Cogeneration Systems Kept Some Lights Shining During Sandy

Oct. 29, 2013

Superstorm Sandy knocked out power for more than 8 million customers in the Northeast last year, but some hospitals and universities in the region managed to keep the lights on by using their combined heat-and-power systems.

One Year After Sandy, Little Progress on Funding for Storm Resilience

Oct. 29, 2013

One year ago, Superstorm Sandy slammed into the New Jersey coast, wreaking havoc across the mid-Atlantic region and racking up a preliminary bill of $50 billion in damages — making it the second-costliest hurricane to strike the United States since 1900, according to the National Hurricane Center.

Energy Tax Credits Set to Expire Could Hurt Wind Farm Industry

Oct. 8, 2013

Alternative fuels advocates aren’t the only ones looking for guidance from lawmakers on what their future tax treatment might look like. Several energy tax incentives — including the production-tax credit that has helped the wind power industry grow — are scheduled to expire on Dec. 31.

Propane Industry Prepares to Battle to Protect Its Tax Breaks

Oct. 8, 2013

Propane lobbyists are gearing up for a hard sell on Capitol Hill for tax incentives they say would help make the fuel more readily accessible to vehicle fleet operators and homeowners who want to invest in energy-efficient technologies.

EPA Seeks Definition of 'Bodies of Water' for Clean Water Act

Sept. 24, 2013

The EPA took a giant step toward finally defining which bodies of water are subject to regulation under the Clean Water Act last week, when it filed a draft rule with the White House regulatory czar designed to settle the confusion created in recent years by a series of court decisions.

Lawmakers Who Opposed EPA 'Guidance' Remain Wary of Proposed Rule

Sept. 24, 2013

The EPA’s and Army Corps of Engineers’ shift toward writing a formal regulation clarifying their Clean Water Act jurisdiction is likely to draw further criticism from members of Congress who fear a heavy-handed regulatory hand on environmental issues — particularly if it looks anything like the enforcement guidance that was previously issued.

Chemical Bill's Backers Hope to Assuage Barbara Boxer's Concerns

July 31, 2013

Supporters of bipartisan legislation to overhaul the nation’s toxic chemicals law hope to use a committee hearing Wednesday to assuage a Senate chairwoman’s concerns that the proposal would usurp tougher state environmental laws.

DeFazio Tapped as Top Democrat on House Natural Resources Panel After Rival Withdraws

July 18, 2013

Peter A. DeFazio of Oregon won the contest Thursday to become ranking Democrat on the House Natural Resources Committee, after Arizona Democrat Raúl M. Grijalva surprised colleagues with his decision to withdraw from consideration.

DeFazio Wins Leadership's Nod in Fight With Grijalva for Democratic Panel Slot

July 17, 2013

Peter A. DeFazio of Oregon bested Raúl M. Grijalva of Arizona in a hard-fought contest for the Democratic Steering and Policy Committee’s endorsement for the job of ranking member on the House Natural Resources Committee, setting up a final showdown before the full caucus on Thursday.

Conservation Fund Views Easements as Popular Alternative to Land Buys

July 9, 2013

Over the almost 50 years since its creation, most Land and Water Conservation Fund dollars have been doled out to federal agencies for land acquisition. But conservation advocates say funding is increasingly being steered toward alternatives that can protect outdoor spaces without expanding federal real estate ownership.

Revenue-Sharing Fight Presents Conservation Fund Backers With Challenge, Opportunity

July 9, 2013

A push by a group of senators to divert more offshore oil and gas royalties to coastal states presents a new challenge — but potentially a fresh opportunity — for defenders of the beleaguered Land and Water Conservation Fund.

Lobbying Heats Up in Fight Over Alaska Mine

June 18, 2013

Both sides in the fight over a proposed hard-rock mine near Alaska’s Bristol Bay are ratcheting up their public relations efforts, as the EPA’s comment period for a draft ecological risk assessment of the watershed draws to a close at the end of June.

EPA's Rare 'Veto' Power Used Most Under Reagan

June 18, 2013

The EPA has only used its Section 404(c) “veto” authority 13 times; twice in the 21st century. The power was exercised most frequently during the Reagan administration. Here are some highlights of proposals regulators blocked:

Democrats Vie for Plum Committee Slot

June 14, 2013

The fight for one of Rep. Edward J. Markey’s plum committee slots may come down to whether issue and identity politics trump the time-honored seniority system.

Regional Gas Price Spikes Pose New Challenges for Industry, Lawmakers

June 4, 2013

Memorial Day weekend marks the unofficial start to the summer driving season — and in recent years that has meant steadily rising gas prices. But for the second consecutive year, drivers filling their tanks for holiday road trips paid less at the pump on average than a year earlier.

Advocates Fight to Stop Sunset of Skin Cancer Program

May 14, 2013

To mark National Skin Cancer Awareness Month, a group dedicated to educating schoolchildren about the hazards of too much sun exposure will hold a reception Wednesday to honor winners of its annual poster contest.

EPA Environmental-Education Program Also on Budget Chopping Block

May 14, 2013

SunWise isn’t the only EPA education program on the budget chopping block.

Landrieu Revamps Flood Insurance Amendment, Clearing Path for Water Bill

May 10, 2013

Louisiana Democrat Mary L. Landrieu has revamped her amendment to freeze flood insurance rates for five years, removing the biggest obstacle to final Senate action this week on legislation to authorize federal projects for flood control, navigation and environmental restoration.

Baucus Retirement Could Put Landrieu in Top Energy Spot

April 24, 2013

The musical chairmanship game set off by Senate Finance Chairman Max Baucus’ retirement could put one of the Democrats’ biggest oil and gas industry boosters in charge of the Energy panel — and simultaneously improve her re-election chances.

Energy Storage Technologies Promise to Make Clean Energy Available Whenever Needed

April 23, 2013

In addition to its status as a carbon-free energy source that can provide baseload electricity, hydropower also offers a window into a future where variable renewables — such as wind and solar — can be more widely integrated into the grid.

House Hydro Bill Tests Water for Broad Energy Deals

April 23, 2013

In February, the House did something rare: It passed an energy bill unanimously. Unlike the previous Congress’ standard fare of anti-EPA, pro-drilling measures, the first energy bill of the 113th Congress promoted small-scale hydropower projects and the electrification of existing dams.

Oil Pipeline Breach Refocuses Keystone Debate on Risks of Spills

April 9, 2013

An oil pipeline rupture on March 29 poured thousands of barrels of heavy crude petroleum into the streets of Mayflower, Ark., focusing the environmental debate over the Keystone XL oil pipeline back on the risks of spills.

Shale Gas Boom Creates New Challenges for Regulators

April 9, 2013

The effects of transporting tar sands oil via the infrastructure currently in place are not the only questions the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration will address in the coming months. The regulatory agency also must grapple with the new pipeline networks that will be needed to carry natural gas from booming shale plays to market.

Boehner Discusses Divide on Budget Ahead of Floor Debates

March 17, 2013

As lawmakers in both chambers prepare to debate competing budget plans this week, much space remains between Democrats and Republicans on the best way to spur job growth while staving off a debt crisis.

Priebus Announces Minority Outreach Initiative at RNC

March 17, 2013

Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus announced a $10 million outreach initiative Sunday to better convey the party’s message to voters, particularly minorities.

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