Energy & Environment – Sinema says yes to the climate, to taxes

Senators are preparing to vote on historic climate legislation after all 50 Democrats said “yes”. Meanwhile, China ceases climate and military cooperation with the United States for President Nancy Pelosi’s (D-California) trip to Taiwan.

This is energy and environment during the night, your source for the latest news focused on energy, the environment and beyond. For The Hill we are Rachel Frazin and Zack Budryk. Anyone forward this newsletter to you? Sign up here.

Sinema announces agreement on reconciliation

Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) Announced Thursday evening that it has reached an agreement with Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (DNY) that could pave the way for Democrats to approve their budget reconciliation package.

The deal would eliminate a provision that closes the so-called interest loophole carried by the package announced last week by Schumer and Senator Joe Manchin (DW.Va.).

Sinema said she and Schumer also reached an agreement on protecting manufacturing from the impact of a 15% minimum corporate tax proposal, which business leaders in Arizona warned would dampen economic growth.

The announcement paves the way for Sinema to vote on Saturday a motion to proceed with a budget reconciliation package that reforms the tax code, tackles climate change, reduces the cost of prescription drugs and reduces the federal deficit.

  • “We have decided to remove the provision related to the tax on interest carried forward, protect advanced manufacturing and promote our clean energy economy in the Senate budget reconciliation legislation,” said Sinema, signaling that he intends to vote to start the debate. on the bill.
  • “Subject to the parliamentary review, I will go ahead,” he said.

A Democratic source familiar with the deal said it will include a new excise tax on share buybacks that would bring more than enough revenue to cover the removal of the reported interest provision.

Read more about the deal here from Alexander Bolton of The Hill.


The Senate is expected to adopt the reconciliation bill in the coming days, and the House is now expected to tackle the rapidly changing legislation next week.

The Senate The call is scheduled for Saturday. It is not entirely clear when the reconciliation bill will be voted in the next few days, as lawmakers stand up to

20 hours to discuss the bill. Next, they will vote on a series of amendments, known as vote-a-rama, before proceeding with the bill itself.

The house is plans to meet again next Friday and tackle the Democrats’ sprawling climate, tax and health care bill, pending Senate approval of the multi-billion dollar package in the coming days.

  • House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer (D-Md.) Office sent a core update on Friday announcing that votes are expected on Friday 12 August. The Chamber is currently out of session for the August break.
  • “Members are informed that pending Senate action on the 2022 Inflation Reduction Act, the House is expected to meet on Friday August 12 to review the legislation,” read the room update.

Read more about the Senate plans here by Alexander Bolton and the House plans here by Mychael Schnell.

The reconciliation includes $ 4 billion for drought resilience

The reconciliation package slated for a vote in Congress this weekend includes $ 4 billion in new funding for the drought affecting the western United States

The package, dubbed the Inflation Reduction Act, includes new specific funding for the Bureau of Reclamation to tackle the 22-year drought, the worst that has hit the region since the year 800, according to a statement by SENS. Michael Bennet (D-Colo.), Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) And Mark Kelly (D-Ariz.).

  • “The western United States is experiencing an unprecedented drought and it is essential that we have the resources we need to support our states’ efforts to combat climate change, conserve water and protect the Colorado River Basin,” said the senators in a statement.
  • “This funding in the Inflation Reduction Act will serve as an important resource for Nevada, Arizona and Colorado and the work we have done to include it will help secure the West’s water future.”

A Senate source familiar with the funding confirmed to The Hill that the $ 4 billion is new funding.

How did we get here: After Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (DNY) and Senator Joe Manchin (DW.Va.) agreed on a tax and climate package, questions remained about Sinema’s position.

CNN reported this week that Senator Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) Wanted $ 5 billion in drought funding to be added to the package.

Sinema spokeswoman Hannah Hurley said the additional funding for the drought played a role in the senator’s deal on the deal.

A source familiar with the negotiations said $ 0 to $ 5 billion in drought resilience was on the table, and that Bennet, Kelly and Cortez-Masto were key to getting the $ 4 billion figure.

The announcement comes as drought has a growing impact on the region, plunging two of the nation’s largest reservoirs, Lake Powell and Lake Mead, to record lows.

Read more about financing here.

China suspends the climate, other talks with the US

China’s Ministry of Foreign Affairs said Friday that the country will stop its cooperation with the United States on military and climate issues in response to President Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) Trip to Taiwan.

The foreign ministry announced eight “countermeasures” against Pelosi after visiting Taiwan “regardless of China’s strong opposition and serious demonstrations”.

The list of measures included “the suspension of talks between China and the United States on climate change”.

China is the world’s largest source of global warming emissions, while the United States is the second largest producer of emissions.

At last year’s global climate conference, US and Chinese officials said they would collaborate on regulations to reduce emissions, encourage electrification, and implement emission capture technology.

Read more about China’s stocks from Chloe Folmar of The Hill.


Kentucky is facing huge financial costs to rebuild after the massive flooding in the eastern part of the state that left 37 dead and hundreds homeless.

While the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) is still evaluating the budget, Governor Andy Beshear (D) said the state would need “significant dollars”, describing the disaster as “the most devastating flood event that ours. state I’ve ever seen. ”

“When we look at the infrastructure, when we look at the massive damage here: roads, bridges just worn out, the water system just badly damaged, some swept away. It will take a long time and substantial dollars to restore what has been destroyed. [There was] real and significant damage to water and wastewater systems, ”Beshear said Wednesday.

  • Jonathan Jett, superintendent of public schools in Perry County, Kentucky, said in an interview with The Hill that he expects millions of dollars to be needed to rebuild public infrastructure in his school district.
  • “It will take years,” Jett said. “I have two schools with significant, significant damage. I am waiting to hear from the structural engineers and architects who will come next Wednesday to see if we can also go back to the building. I won’t have people in there before I know it’s structurally sound. ”

One of the potentially most costly consequences of this year’s Kentucky floods is damage to the state’s water and sanitation infrastructure, Beshear said.

On Wednesday, he said there were “still just over 18,000 waterless service connections, 45,600 service connections with boiled water warning, [and] 21 water systems in limited operation due to power outages and storm damage.

The link with climate change: As climate change makes extreme weather worse and more frequent, more floods and more intense weather events are expected to occur in the future.

Melissa Roberts, executive director of the American Food Coalition, noted, however, that this isn’t just a future problem, saying the world has already seen the impact over the past five to ten years.

“We are experiencing more devastating flood disasters, we are taking them to more places, we are receiving them more frequently and the costs are increasing,” he said.

Read more about these costs here.


  • How Republicans Are Arming Public Bureau Against Climate Action (The New York Times)
  • Revealed: How Climate Collapse Is Overrunning the Balance of Extreme Weather Conditions (The Guardian)
  • Canada says Ukraine gas route is not an alternative to Nord Stream (Bloomberg)
  • Coroner reveals new details on skeletal remains discovered at Lake Mead (8NewsNow)

🔭 And finally, something unusual and out of the box: How the sausage is made.

That’s it for today, thanks for reading. Check out The Hill’s energy and environment page for the latest news and coverage. I’ll see you next week.


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