Welcome back! Today's Smart Brevity count: 1,145 words/ ~ 4 min read.
Situational awareness: Earnings season is providing a window into what's happening in the shale patch.
Finally, at this moment 35 years ago, the late Prince was simultaneously atop Billboard's Hot 100, dance and R&B charts with today's intro tune...
Top Democrats on the House Energy and Commerce Committee intend to craft a major climate bill — or bills — that would bring the country to net-zero carbon emissions by 2050.
The big picture: Chairman Frank Pallone yesterday said the aim is to have the legislation written by the end of this year, and the panel is launching a stakeholder process and hearings.
Why it matters: Democrats feel they need to be ready to act if a political window opens after the 2020 elections. Pallone, at a press conference, repeatedly cited the need for "consensus."
Quick take: Republicans' failure to have a plan for replacing the Affordable Care Act after they took full control of Washington in 2017 offers a lesson.
What they're saying: Rep. Paul Tonko said the goal is to be ready so that "when there is a force in the White House that accepts the concept of climate change, we can move forward aggressively."
1. On politics, Bloomberg's Ari Natter points out that it "comes as some Democrats worry the Green New Deal [GND] ... could cost them at the polls."
2. The big question: Can Democrats thread the political needle on climate legislation even if they win the White House? Tonko said the goal is bipartisan buy-in.
3. The plan drew quick criticism from the left via the Sunrise Movement, a group that's been influential in pushing the GND. They said the Energy and Commerce effort "sets ambition irresponsibly low."
4. Pallone sought to downplay the distance with GND advocates. “The ideas that come from the Green New Deal and from those who have been outspoken on the Green New Deal are things that we certainly want to hear,” he said.
There could be a "supply crunch" for cobalt, lithium, and nickel used in batteries for electric vehicles and other applications as soon as the mid-2020s, the consultancy Wood Mackenzie said Wednesday.
The big picture: Check out the chart above, which shows their projections of demand for materials used in EVs but also batteries needed for consumer electronics and energy storage.
What's next: Wood Mackenzie forecasts that pure electrics and plug-in hybrids combined will account for 7% of all passenger car sales by 2025, 14% by 2030 and 38% by 2040.
The bottom line: "The electrification of transport is redefining a number of metals markets," Wood Mackenzie said in a release summarizing their analysis.
What they're saying: Wood Mackenzie research director Gavin Montgomery said battery supply chains could be among the challenges for long-term EV adoption.
GM's Cruise subsidiary is backing off its plan begin commercial deployment of electric self-driving taxis in San Francisco this year.
Why it matters: The decision highlights the challenge to introducing the tech into real-world driving conditions on a commercial basis, despite Cruise's considerable resources. The company has raised over $7 billion to date.
What they're saying: "Our first deployment needs to be done right and we will only deploy when we can demonstrate that we will have a net positive impact on safety on our roads," Cruise CEO Dan Ammann said in a Medium post.
What's next: While there's not yet a new target date, Cruise also said they're accelerating testing efforts and building the "largest EV fast charger station in the country" to prepare for the eventual launch of a large-scale robotaxi service in San Francisco.
Go deeper: Look for much more on Cruise's announcement in our Axios Autonomous Vehicles newsletter later today. Sign up here.
Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios
Axios' Courtenay Brown broke the news yesterday that on Nov. 8, the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco will host what is believed to be the central bank's first research conference focused specifically on climate change.
Why it matters: Climate change poses systemic risks to the soundness of the U.S. banking system, and the Fed is signaling its appetite to learn more.
Flashback: The Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco published a widely circulated paper in March on climate change-related economic risks.
What's next: According to a memo seen by Axios, the Fed is seeking research submissions on topics including...
The bottom line: The Fed hasn't joined a global initiative to assess climate risk management in the financial sector.
Prototype electric F-150. Photo courtesy of Ford Motor Company
Ford is circulating video of its prototype electric F-150 truck pulling rail cars weighing a combined 1 million pounds (and more when they added 42 gasoline-powered F-15os to the load).
Quick take: It's a not-so-subtle attempt to show that the company's push into EVs won't come at the expense of performance of the F-150, the country's top-selling pickup.
The intrigue: Per CNBC, it's also an effort to "defend its highly profitable pickup franchise from emerging all-electric truck competitors such as Tesla." GM is also working on electric pickups.
One big question: It's not clear when the truck will actually go on sale. A spokesperson said "in the next few years."
Go deeper: Ford teases all-electric F-150 pickup truck by pulling a million-pound train (The Verge)