Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) says he wants to finish floor action by June 23 on a bill that aims to spur energy efficiency and conservation. But some controversial amendments first must be addressed. Energy committee Chairman Jeff Bingaman's (D-N.M.) amendment requiring utilities to get 15% of their electricity from renewable sources by 2020 drew a GOP counterproposal that counts nuclear power as a renewable source. An amendment from Carl Levin (D-Mich.) would moderate the bill's tougher vehicle fuel-economy standards. So far, provisions seeking to make federal buildings "greener" have not sparked major opposition.
Another amendment is a $32.1-billion package of energy tax breaks and extensions of existing incentives, which the Finance Committee approved June 19.