The Senate on Monday confirmed Jeffery M. Baran to an extended term on the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, and Ellen D. Williams to head the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy at the Energy Department.
Baran's term was to end next June. A Democrat, Baran was confirmed to a term through June 2018 by a 52-40 vote.
Williams was confirmed on a voice vote. Her nomination had been pending since late last year.
Baran will complete the term of NRC Chairman Allison Macfarlane, who is stepping down at the end of the year to join George Washington University.
Companies like Echogen are betting that advances in technology will improve the feasibility of energy harvesting – generating power from things like vibrations, heat or radio waves – although the chief of ARPA-E, the Energy Department’s agency promoting research, says retooling the grid to add local energy storage may be a more significant step for the nation’s power picture, CNBC reports.
President Barack Obama late Wednesday tapped oil giant BP's chief scientist to head up the Energy Department's high-tech research program.
The White House said Obama would nominate Ellen D. Williams to direct the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy. She would take over from the program's Deputy Director Cheryl Martin, who has been running the program since the beginning of this year.
The House accepted amendments to the water and energy development appropriations bill to boost ARPA-E funding and environmental cleanup funds but rejected others that would have boosted or cut the bill's spending on renewable energy, The Hill reports.
President Barack Obama on Wednesday proposed a $3.8 trillion federal spending blueprint that again seeks to cut billions of dollars in tax incentives for oil and gas companies while boosting clean energy research.
The 2014 budget plan includes Obama's renewed call for Congress to close incentives worth $44 billion over 10 years, a goal that has failed to advance in past years because of opposition from Republicans and oil-state Democrats. In comments at the White House, Obama said the budget "will continue our march towards energy independence and address the threat of climate change."
ARPA-E Energy Innovation Summit 2013 Day Three. Concludes today. Morning remarks by Energy Secretary Steven Chu, Energy Deputy Secretary Dan Poneman, Sen. Lamar Alexander, Sen. Lisa Murkowski, Sen. Ron Wyden, New York Mayor Bloomberg, American Electric Power President Nick Akins, Center for American Progress Chair John Podesta.
In a move that’s drawn opposition from political figures including Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad and new Sen. Joni Ernst, both Republican, Des Moines Water Works, struggling to cope with unsafe levels of nitrate in the rivers it draws on, has served notice on three agricultural counties upstream that it will sue to impose restrictions on nitrates from runoff, E&E reports.
The record U.S. crude exports of 502,000 barrels a day in November -– most of which went to Canada -- shattered an old mark set back in the 1950s, according to data from the Energy Information Administration, Platts reports.
At one point March natural gas futures hit a 28-month low of $2.695 per million British thermal units during trading on the Nymex Thursday, the drop prompted by word from the Energy Information Administration of a smaller-than-expected storage drop of 94 billion cubic feet last week, Platts reports.
Calling the proposal unrealistic and asking that its implementation be delayed, Sen. John Thune, R-S.D. and chair of the Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee, warned that Obama administration moves targeting DOT-111 tank cars have the potential to disrupt the U.S. rail network, USA Today reports.
The Department of Energy would manage if Congress were to impose a time limit on its reviews of LNG export applications, Assistant Secretary Christopher Smith told Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, at a hearing Thursday, The Hill reports.
Occidental Petroleum Corp. said it posted a loss of more than $3.4 billion in the fourth quarter, compared to a $1.64 billion profit during the period a year earlier, hit by the drop in prices for oil and natural gas liquids, The Wall Street Journal reports.
Valero Energy Corp. attributed results that beat analysts’ expectations to better margins, although the refiner reported a slight dip in fourth quarter net income -- to $1.2 billion – compared to the period a year earlier, FuelFix reports.
A spokesman says Toyota, with plans to start selling a hydrogen fuel cell car in the U.S. this year, will press Congress to give buyers a tax credit for purchasing one, as well as seeking government assistance to get more hydrogen filling stations operating, a plan already proposed but then withdrawn by Sen. Thomas Carper, D-Del., as an amendment to the Keystone XL approval bill, National Journal reports.
Oil was little changed early Thursday, following a dramatic drop the day before that had been triggered by news of a big build in U.S. crude stockpiles. West Texas Intermediate crude for March delivery was up 8 cents to $44.53 a barrel in electronic trading on the Nymex, while in London Brent gained 34 cents to $48.81, Bloomberg reports.