President TrumpDonald John TrumpDems flip Wisconsin state Senate seat Sessions: ‘We should be like Canada’ in how we take in immigrants GOP rep: ‘Sheet metal and garbage’ everywhere in Haiti MORE will decide in the coming week whether to impose trade tariffs or quotas on imported solar panels.
The decision, expected Friday, will close a major chapter in a dispute that puts tens of thousands of jobs on the line and has tested long-standing alliances.Solar panels imported from China already have hefty tariffs, but proponents of heavier tariffs say Chinese manufacturers get around those trade remedies by establishing operations in Vietnam and Malaysia and exporting to the U.S. from those countries.
The legal deadline for Trump to take action is Jan. 26. He has said his decision would come “pretty soon.”
All eyes will also be on Congress, as a partial government shutdown enters its third day on Monday.
The House passed a monthlong continuing resolution to fund the government, but Senate Democrats opposed the measure, holding out for an immigration fix to protect immigrants brought to the country illegally as children.
If lawmakers are able to pass a funding measure and keep the government open, they’ll be able to turn their attention to energy and environment issues.
The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee is slated to consider how weather patterns affect the U.S. electric grid.
The meeting, scheduled for Tuesday, aims to focus on the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic regions, and will look at how electric systems fared in winter storms such as the recent bomb cyclone that brought record-breaking freezing temperatures to the East Coast.
Representatives from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission and Department of Energy are scheduled to testify.
Members of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, as well as an Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) representative, will be attending and holding meetings at the Washington Auto Show on Thursday to talk public policy. The event’s keynote address will be given by Michigan Gov. Rick Snyder (R) who is expected to talk about his vision for the auto industry’s future. EPA Assistant Administrator Bill Wehrum is slated to hold his own keynote address at lunchtime. Wehrum heads the EPA’s Office of Air and Radiation.
The EPA plans to remain open in the coming week, despite the shutdown. Administrator Scott PruittEdward (Scott) Scott PruittWith offshore drilling scheme, Trump’s America looks like a banana republic Overnight Energy: California regulators vote to close nuclear plant | Watchdog expands Pruitt travel probe | Washington state seeks exemption from offshore drilling plan Overnight Regulation: Fight erupts over gun export rules | WH meets advocates on prison reform | Officials move to allow Medicaid work requirements | New IRS guidance on taxes MORE announced Friday afternoon that EPA funding levels would allow employees to work normal hours this week if a shutdown continues. If the shutdown were to continue through Jan. 26, however, Pruitt said further updates would be made about the agency’s operating status.
The status for camping at national parks during the shutdown looks more bleak. The National Park Service said Friday that all campgrounds would be closed in the event of a shutdown and contingency plans listed on the Interior Department’s website said that roads in and out of parks are to be restricted “wherever possible.”