The Shaheen-Portman Act, which aims to boost energy efficiency across multiple sectors, might be killed under the weight of “unacceptable riders.” Specifically, the Obama administration has threatened to veto the bill if it passes with amendments that seek to limit regulations on carbon emissions from coal-fired power plants. Additionally, Republicans (and a handful of Democrats) are seeking to add amendments regarding the Keystone XL pipeline. The Obama administration supports energy efficiency but will not sign a bill into law that contains these “unacceptable riders,” especially at a time when the administration is drawing attention to climate change policy.
White House senior adviser John Podesta on Monday indicated that President Obama would veto an energy efficiency bill set to be debated in the Senate this week if it is approved with “unacceptable riders.”
Podesta’s comments could be read as a warning to proponents of the Keystone XL pipeline that the White House would veto an energy bill that seeks to force Obama’s hand on the issue.
Podesta said the White House hopes the bipartisan energy efficiency bill led by Sens. Jeanne Shaheen (D-N.H.) and Rob Portman (R-Ohio) gets to the floor and that the administration backs the underlying bill.