Good morning, I split last week between Houston and Washington, D.C., and they felt world's apart — and one big reason is what's laid out in my latest column.
I'll share that, and then Axios' Ben Geman will you get you up to speed on the rest of the news.
Illustration: Lazaro Gamio/Axios
President Trump and congressional Republicans are increasingly outliers in an otherwise emerging consensus across America that climate change is a problem and that the government should pass new laws to address it.
The intrigue: The juxtaposition was on stark display last week.
Where it stands: After a decade of either questioning or ignoring climate change, some Republicans are slowly beginning to discuss the issue. But for now it's mostly rhetoric and it's not enough to convince the majority of the party, and especially Trump, to change their views.
Between the lines: Those remarks aside, a fundamental difference persists between what most congressional Republicans say should be done about climate change versus almost all other leaders: mostly status quo with incremental bills versus more sweeping policy changes.
Generate readers know about the drama over White House moves to gut Obama-era auto mileage rules — an effort the industry supports, even though they're calling for a less-aggressive rollback.
But, but, but: Axios' Joann Muller and Jonathan Swan have a good piece that looks at the broader and very complex relationship between Trump and Big Auto.
Why it matters: The combination of Trump's auto policies, notably his trade posture, are breeding uncertainty for automakers at a time when they're making investment decisions on electrification and autonomous tech.
Where it stands: Trump wants to restore American auto manufacturing to what he considers its mid-20th-century greatness, according to aides. But his ideas for saving the industry are creating angst for its top execs.
The big picture: As with most relationships, it's complicated.
Breaking Monday: "Oil producer group OPEC on Monday scrapped its planned meeting in April and will decide instead whether to extend output cuts in June, once the market has assessed the impact of U.S. sanctions on Iran and the crisis in Venezuela," Reuters reports from Azerbaijan.
Why it matters: The momentum against a nearer-term decision is a nod to the moving pieces in the markets, emerging reports from the OPEC+ meeting suggest.
Investors have never responded as negatively to a debut of a new Tesla product as they did after last week's Model Y event — as seen in the Bloomberg chart above, Axios' Courtenay Brown writes.
What they're saying:
Between the lines: Tons of questions remain about the Model Y — none of which were acknowledged at the event.
There are also concerns the problems that plagued previous Tesla vehicles will hit the Model Y.
"I did turn to him one day and I said, 'Mr. President, how many coal miners do we have in the United States and how many solar-panel installers do we have?'"
Who said it: Former White House economic adviser Gary Cohn, speaking on the Freakonomics podcast.
The context: Cohn says he made the comment in the internal battle over putting tariffs on solar panel imports. Cohn opposed the move but lost the battle.
Why it matters: The snippet shines on a light on the behind-the-scenes energy policy formation at the White House, and Trump's preference for trying to prop up coal even though power sector trends are moving away from the fuel.
What they're saying: Cohn said he emphasized to Trump that there are now several times more panel installers than coal miners in the U.S.
Axios Expert Voices contributor Maggie Teliska explains the significance that Disney World in Orlando flipped the switch Feb. 27 on a new 50-megawatt solar farm, which produces enough electricity to power 10,000 homes.
Why it matters: Amusement parks and resorts consume lots of energy during the day at peak hours. Installing renewables in a visible way not only reduces carbon emissions, but also displays a commitment to sustainability to park-goers.
By the numbers: Built in collaboration with Reedy Creek Improvement District and Origis Energy USA, the farm comprises 518,000 solar panels and sits on a 270-acre plot adjacent to Disney’s Animal Kingdom.
What’s next: Disney has launched initiatives to reduce emissions in its organization to 50% of 2012 levels by 2020.
Teliska is a technical specialist at Caldwell Intellectual Property Law, an intellectual property law firm, and CTO of Regent Power. She's also a member of GLG, a platform connecting businesses with industry experts.