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Congress

Key EPA Issues Drive Energy Bill Debate As Congressional Deal Nears

Issues that are key to EPA -- including the agency's jurisdiction over renewable fuels, its forthcoming proposals to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from automobiles and its pending response to California's waiver request to implement GHG vehicle rules -- are at the center of high-level negotiations on Capitol Hill to hammer out a final energy bill that House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has pledged to send to President Bush next week.

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Voinovich Seeks EPA Analysis Of Climate Bill Impacts On Agency Work

Sen. George Voinovich (R-OH), a leading Republican voice on climate change legislation and critic of mandatory climate plans, is asking EPA to assess the impact on its core programs of a carbon cap-and-trade bill introduced by Sens. Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) and John Warner (R-VA), a move that may help lay the groundwork for alternative climate change legislation that Voinovich is expected to introduce soon.

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GOP Moderate May Lead Republicans On Key House Air Quality Panel

Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI), a GOP moderate on environmental issues, is emerging as a leading contender to replace former House Speaker Dennis Hastert (R-IL) as the ranking member of the House Energy & Commerce Committee's energy and air quality subcommittee, a key panel with jurisdiction over climate change and other air quality issues.

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Boxer Adds Multi-Pollutant Emissions Language To Climate Change Markup Bill

Senate Environment & Public Works Committee Chairwoman Barbara Boxer (D-CA) has drafted proposed revisions to the Lieberman-Warner climate change bill that include language acknowledging the need for possible additional cuts in traditional power plant pollutants, including mercury, according to a copy of the bill obtained by Inside EPA. The committee plans to mark up the bill Dec. 5. The revised bill also would reduce the percentage of emission allowances that will be given away to industry.

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Fearing Superfund Changes, Key Panel Seeks Mining Bill Oversight

House Energy & Commerce Committee Democrats are asserting jurisdiction over portions of a sweeping hardrock mining reform bill that recently passed the House in an effort to ensure anticipated conference committee negotiations with the Senate do not produce legislation detrimental to EPA's Superfund cleanup program.

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LAWMAKERS PROBING ARMY OVER KENTUCKY CHEM WEAPONS HANDLING

Two senators and one congressman from Kentucky are asking the Army tough questions over its handling of chemical weapons stored in the state, after regulators found numerous violations of state environmental regulations, and possible criminal misconduct, at a storage facility near Richmond, KY.

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HOUSE GOP BROADENS ATSDR INQUIRY BEYOND TCE CONTAMINATED SITES

Top Republicans on the House Energy & Commerce Committee are expanding their investigation of Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry (ATSDR) failures to adequately study health impacts at hazardous waste sites contaminated with the chemical trichloroethylene (TCE) to "every hazardous waste site" where humans are exposed to harmful contaminants.

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LAWMAKERS USE NEW BIOMONITORING REPORT TO PUSH FOR TSCA REFORM

Prominent lawmakers are citing a new biomonitoring report, which found toxic chemicals in blood and urine samples of people around the country, to argue for revisions to the Toxic Substances Control Act (TSCA), saying the report shows that the existing law governing chemical safety is inadequate to protect human health.

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House GOP Broadens ATSDR Inquiry Beyond TCE Contaminated Sites

Top Republicans on the House Energy & Commerce Committee are expanding their investigation of Agency for Toxic Substances & Disease Registry (ATSDR) failures to adequately study health impacts at hazardous waste sites contaminated with the chemical trichloroethylene (TCE) to "every hazardous waste site" where humans are exposed to harmful contaminants.

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Reid's New FY08 Budget Plan Offers Hope For Modest EPA Funding Boost

Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid's (D-NV) recently announced plan to craft a fiscal year 2008 omnibus spending bill could result in EPA getting a share of a roughly $700 million funding boost for environment-related agencies, congressional sources say, though the president is still vowing to veto spending bills that exceed his requested levels.

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