The Week Ahead: Senate Vote on McCarthy Nomination to Head EPA Anticipacted, Committee to Hold Climate Hearing


The Senate may hold a vote as soon as July 16 on Gina McCarthy, President Obama's nominee to head the Environmental Protection Agency.

As detailed in a July 11 Energy and Climate Reportarticle, the date was announced after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) filed a cloture motion for McCarthy and six other stalled nominees for federal positions.

As he filed for cloture, Reid threatened to move forward with the so-called nuclear option that would change Senate rules to allow nominations to be confirmed with just 51 votes—if Republicans try to block the nominations.

Reid took to the Senate floor July 11 complaining that Republican obstructionism has been holding up nominees, including McCarthy, who was nominated by Obama more than four months ago.

McCarthy's nomination is expected to be approved by the Senate.

Senate Committee to Hold Climate Hearing

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee will hold a hearing July 18 on "Climate Change: It’s Happening Now." Some Republicans Senators, whose remarks are included in a July 10 article, called on Committee Chairman Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.) to add administration witnesses to testify at the hearing about Obama's climate change plan.

Details of the president's climate change plan are covered in a June 25 article.

Interior Secretary to Testify

On July 17, Sally Jewell is scheduled to testify for the first time as Interior Department Secretary before the House Natural Resources Committee. As detailed in a June 3 article, when nominated, she announced a commitment to DOI's emphasis on developing renewable energy projects on public lands and approval of three commercial-scale projects in two Western states.

House Small Business Subcommittee to Hold Climate Hearing

The House Small Business Subcommittee on Agriculture, Energy, and Trade will hold a hearing July 17 on the "President's Climate Action Plan: What is the Impact on Small Businesses?" Witnesses include Michael Kezar, general manager for San Miguel Cooperative in Jourdanton, Texas, and James L. Brown, president of Bremen Castings in Breman, Ind.

Energy Department 'Kickoff' Planned

The Department of Energy will hold a meeting July 15 in Crystal City, Va., on "Big Data Projects on Solar Technologies Evolution and Diffusion." DOE said it will launch, during the meeting as part of its SunShots Initiative, seven research teams that are developing strategies to introduce solar technologies to energy markets.

International Finance Meeting on Agenda

The United Nations Convention on Climate Change will hold its first "Experts Meeting on Long-Term Finance" in Manila July 16-17. The meeting is part of a UNFCCC initiative seeking to scale up financing for efforts by developing countries to adapt to the impacts of climate change.

Other Climate, Energy Events

On July 16, the International Finance Corporation's Climate Business Department program, which is part of World Bank and the World Green Building Council, will hold an event in Washington, D.C., on "Transforming the Built Environment in Emerging Markets."

The Center for Climate and Energy Solutions will hold an event July 17 in Washington, D.C., to launch a report on Weathering the Storm: Building Business Resilience to Climate Change.

The American Council on Renewable Energy will host a forum July 18 in Washington, D.C., on the "U.S. Military and Renewable Energy."

On July 15, the U.S. Energy Association will hold an event in Washington, D.C., on "Technologies for Removal of CO2 from the Atmosphere."