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Scoop: House E&C pushing on LNG

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Jan 29, 2024
Illustration of a battleship style board game with a liquefied natural gas ship as one of the pieces, surrounded by orange hits just missing the ship.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Republicans have a legislative response at the ready for President Biden's apparent pause on new permits for LNG projects.

Why it matters: As the LNG review becomes a political football, it increases the likelihood that it becomes a chit in negotiations around must-pass legislation and deals on bipartisan priorities (see: permitting).

Driving the news: House Republicans are talking with leadership about a floor vote on HR 1130, which would put FERC exclusively in charge of approving or denying applications to build LNG terminals.

  • This would amount to a de facto rescission of the Energy Department's authority to pause permits for new terminals, something the agency is now doing.
  • This bill, which was also included as language in the GOP's HR 1 package, was teed up for a floor vote last year, but its schedule became a casualty of the fight over Kevin McCarthy's speakership.
  • Now, Republicans are ready to bring it back. "We're prepared to take it up," a House Energy and Commerce GOP aide told Axios. "Those decisions are of course made by the Speaker and the leadership, but we're having those conversations now."

What we're watching: Whether the protestors who pushed Biden's team to pause LNG terminal permitting target Republicans next over this legislation.

  • "It seems genuinely up our alley," Michael Greenberg of Climate Defiance told Axios.
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