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The move throws into question a bill that sought to reform policies across the energy sector, from hydroelectric dams to home efficiency to defense against cyber attacks on the power grid.
U.S. Rep. Joe Barton, who sought to end the ban in each of the past few sessions of Congress, said the current industry slump of low oil prices helped seal the deal in Washington.
Sen. John Cornyn of Texas said the fall legislative session will likely be bogged down with spending and debt ceiling debates, but there are legislative efforts in the works to expand natural gas exports and lift a ban on shipping crude oil overseas.
Senators from Texas, Alaska and other coastal states have launched a fresh campaign to siphon off more of the revenue that flows to the federal government from offshore drilling.
At issue is a Pemex affiliate’s request to export 100,000 barrels per day of light U.S. oil and condensates in exchange for heavy Mexican crude — a transaction that can be approved by U.S. regulators on a case-by-case basis under existing trade laws.
Sen. John Cornyn suggested Wednesday that GOP lawmakers and President Barack Obama could find a middle ground on the controversial pipeline.
GOP leaders have signaled that Keystone XL is one of their top priorities when they take control of the Senate in January.
House Republicans’ environmental credentials are at rock-bottom lows, according to new ratings released Tuesday.
Nearly three dozen senators on Wednesday urged the Obama administration to move quickly and make simultaneous decisions on a host of proposals to broadly export liquefied natural gas harvested in the United States.