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President Trump. Photo: than Miller/Getty Images

Trump will announce 2 executive orders in Houston on Wednesday to help energy companies "avoid unnecessary red tape" in order to speed up development of pipelines and other projects, a White House aide said.

Why it matters: While U.S. oil and natural gas production is already at record levels, companies have chafed at the regulatory process for some infrastructure projects, notably battles over gas pipelines in the Northeast.

But, but, but: There isn't enough information yet to know whether the orders will assert new powers that will speed up development. Executive orders range from consequential moves to more symbolic documents that signal a chief executive's priorities.

What's next: Trump will discuss the orders in remarks Wednesday at the International Union of Operating Engineers' training center in Houston.

What they're saying: The White House aide said the orders are aimed at expanding oil-and-gas production, spurring more private infrastructure investment, streamlining permitting, and "further reducing regulations."

  • The goal is to allowing the U.S. to "continue to be the undisputed global leader in crude oil and natural gas production for the foreseeable future."  
  • "American families and businesses in states with energy restrictions will be able to access affordable and reliable domestic energy resources," the aide said.

Go deeper:

Go deeper

14 hours ago - Health

Food banks feel the strain without holiday volunteers

People wait in line at Food Bank Community Kitchen on Nov. 25 in New York City. Photo: Michael Loccisano/Getty Images for Food Bank For New York City

America's food banks are sounding the alarm during this unprecedented holiday season.

The big picture: Soup kitchens and charities, usually brimming with holiday volunteers, are getting far less help.

16 hours ago - Health

AstraZeneca CEO: "We need to do an additional study" on COVID vaccine

Photo: Pavlo Gonchar/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot said on Thursday the company is likely to start a new global trial to measure how effective its coronavirus vaccine is, Bloomberg reports.

Why it matters: Following Phase 3 trials, Oxford and AstraZeneca said their vaccine was 90% effective in people who got a half dose followed by a full dose, and 62% effective in people who got two full doses.

Updated 18 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Coronavirus cases rose 10% in the week before Thanksgiving.
  2. Politics: Supreme Court backs religious groups on New York coronavirus restrictions.
  3. World: Expert says COVID vaccine likely won't be available in Africa until Q2 of 2021 — Europeans extend lockdowns.
  4. Economy: The winners and losers of the COVID holiday season.
  5. Education: National standardized tests delayed until 2022.

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