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Photo: Alex Wong/Getty Images

Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-N.Y.) has urged President-elect Joe Biden to nominate Mary Nichols, chair of California's air pollution regulator, to lead the Environmental Protection Agency, Bloomberg reports.

Why it matters: The reported push by Schumer could boost Nichol's chances of leading an agency that will play a pivotal role in Biden's vow to enact aggressive new climate policies — especially because the plan is likely to rest heavily on executive actions.

Where it stands: The EPA gig is just one of several important outstanding selections. The New York Times has a nice rundown of names in contention for other energy- and climate-related jobs.

Here's just a few...

  • Mustafa Santiago Ali, a former EPA official, is in contention to head the White House Council on Environmental Quality. He's currently an exec with the National Wildlife Federation.
  • Ali A. Zaidi, a top New York State energy official who also served in the Obama administration, "is widely considered the front-runner for the role of domestic climate change coordinator," the NYT reports.
  • The NYT and E&E News both report that former Michigan Gov. Jennifer Granholm is a possibility for the White House climate coordinator role, while E&E also lists Washington State Gov. Jay Inslee as an option.
  • Michael Connor, an alum of the Obama and Clinton administrations, is among the options for Interior Secretary, per the NYT. He's a citizen of the Taos Pueblo, and the piece notes there's strong interest in nominating a Native American to lead Interior for the first time.
  • Rep. Deb Haaland (D-N.M.), one of the first two Native American women elected to Congress, also "remains a contender" for Interior, the NYT reports.

Go deeper

Ben Geman, author of Generate
Jan 27, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Biden to sign major climate orders, setting up clash with oil industry

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

President Biden will sign new executive actions today that provide the clearest signs yet of his climate plans — elevating the issue to a national security priority and kicking off an intense battle with the oil industry.

Driving the news: One move will freeze issuance of new oil-and-gas leases on public lands and waters "to the extent possible," per a White House summary.

Biden to meet with U.S. financial regulators on Monday

Photo: Drew Angerer via Getty Images

President Biden will meet with financial regulators on Monday.

Driving the news: "The meeting will cover regulatory priorities including climate-related financial risk and agency actions to promote financial inclusion and to responsibly increase access to credit," said press secretary Jen Psaki, according to a press pool report.