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The Tea Party’s Real Test

The Tea Party's Real Test

The budget battles are bigger, but the fight over the Water Resources and Reform Development Act—a wonky bill few really understand—will be a better test of House conservatives' commitment to tea-party ideals.


A coalition of 10 influential conservative groups, including Americans for Prosperity and Heritage Action, sent a letter to Congress on Tuesday opposing the $8.2 billion bill ahead of expected consideration today in the House.

The legislation maintains our nation's locks, dams (including those for hydropower), and other waterway projects that are key to moving goods around the country. Consequently, they're found in almost every congressional district. It's earmark-free for the first time, but that apparently wasn't enough to win over conservative groups.

How tea-party conservatives vote on this bill will reveal to what extent they're willing to prioritize their district's needs over conservative opposition to a spending bill.


Amy Harder


PETITION: FORMER OBAMA STRATEGIST SHOULD STOP WORKING WITH TRANSCANADA. CREDO Action, an online network of progressive activists, is calling for Anita Dunn, a Obama campaign adviser, to stop working on behalf of TransCanada, the company behind the Keystone XL pipeline.

STUDY: WEATHERIZATION COULD SAVE U.S. $33 BILLION. Making homes more energy-efficient could have a big economic payoff, according to a study by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.

ENERGY DEPARTMENT ANNOUNCES NEW SOLAR SUBSIDIES. The department will make $60 million available to help fund solar-energy research and development through the SunShot Initiative.


BRAZIL AUCTIONS OFF RIGHTS TO MASSIVE OIL FIELD. State officials say the auction holds the promise of transforming Brazil from a net importer of oil to a net exporter. (Paywall)

TEXAS POLS BACK HOUSTON'S BID TO HOST WORLD PETROLEUM CONGRESS. Republicans, Democrats support hosting efforts for "energy Olympics."

U.S. UNLIKELY TO GIVE MORE AID TO COMBAT CLIMATE CHANGE IN DEVELOPING NATIONS. A State Department climate envoy said the economic realities in the U.S. would not allow for a boost in monetary assistance.

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STATE REVENUE WILL HELP FUND ROAD REPAIRS IN EAGLE FORD. Revenue from vehicle-registration fees will be used to improve transportation infrastructure in Texas, including efforts to repair roads in the Eagle Ford Shale region.

EAGLE FORD AND BAKKEN SEE SHARPEST U.S. OIL INCREASES. The Permian Basin in West Texas, however, is still the largest producer of U.S. oil in absolute terms, according to an analysis from the Energy Information Administration.

BEIJING TO TEST 'SMOG VACUUM.' The system would pull smog particles to the ground using an electrostatic charge.

NATURAL-GAS OUTPUT FROM MARCELLUS SHALE SOARS. Data released by the EIA indicates that natural-gas production from the Marcellus Shale has hit 12 billion cubic feet per day, roughly equivalent to 2 million barrels a day.


AIR QUALITY. The Energy and Environmental Research Center holds the Air Quality IX conference.

CLEAN ENERGY. The Information Technology and Innovation Foundation holds a discussion on a report titled "Challenging the Clean Energy Deployment Consensus."

TEXAS WIND BOOM. The New America Foundation holds a book discussion on The Great Texas Wind Rush, which details the state's wind-energy boom.

EPA LISTENING TOUR. The Environmental Protection Agency tour to solicit public comment on upcoming regulations to limit greenhouse gas emissions from existing power plants begins today with stops in New York and Atlanta.

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