Tuesday in DC

With Congress out of town, most of the speculation and news is surrounding the potential nominations of the next Administrator of the EPA–it is being reported that Gov. Christine Gregoire of Washington state will be announced soon. Jack Lew, Obama’s current COS, is also being considered to replace Tim Geithner at Treasury. The nomination of Sen. Hagel to serve as Sec. of Defense has sparked debate over the nominee’s views on Israel, which could result in a very difficult confirmation process.

API will hold its Third annual State-of-Energy lunch today. Jack Gerard is expected to discuss fracking, KXL, RFS, and tax policy in his remarks. We will be attending the lunch.

Later this week:
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission will receive testimony from industry and environmental experts on Wednesday about venting systems for some older, General Electric Co.- designed reactors. The agency is considering additional requirements for the structures as it implements regulations following Japan’s Fukushima Dai-Ichi nuclear disaster in March 2011. The event will be webcast at http://www.nrc.gov.

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission has until Friday to respond to Deutsche Bank AG’s rejection of $1.6 million in penalties for alleged efforts to manipulate electricity markets. FERC’s enforcement staff, in a Sept. 5 order, said Deutsche Bank Energy Trading LLC submitted false information related to its power trading in California in early 2010.

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce is hosting an event this Thursday highlighting the need for investments in the nation’s aging transportation infrastructure.
According to the Chamber, one-third of major U.S. roads are in poor condition, 25 percent of bridges are structurally deficient or functionally obsolete and the 18.4-cent-per-gallon gasoline tax that pays for repairs hasn’t been raised since 1993. The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee has indicated a willingness to review the gasoline tax and looking at other previously taboo funding sources, like a vehicle-miles-traveled tax. The Chamber is studying 15 financing alternatives ranging from taxes on car tires and truck trailers to tariffs on imported oil. However, the Chamber admits that a gasoline-tax increase still may be necessary.