5:18 p.m. - BOXER TAKES AIM AT MANCHIN'S EX-IM COAL PROVISION. Quick update from a skirmish in the battle over the Export-Import Bank's reauthorization: Sen. Barbara Boxer is bashing Sen. Joe Manchin's bid to weaken the Ex-Im restrictions on financing construction of coal-fired power plants abroad. "What his language does is just throws out practically everything that would lead to cleaner air," Boxer, a California Democrat who heads the Environment and Public Works Committee, told reporters in the Capitol. See our daily "Energy Edge" post here for more. -- BG
4:05 p.m. - SENATE APPROVES LAFLEUR, BAY TO FERC. The Senate cleared the nominations of Cheryl LaFleur and Norman Bay to the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. Bay, the head of FERC's enforcement office, was approved by a narrow 52-45 vote, with Republicans opposing his nomination over a lack of experience and for what they say is a history of targeting carbon-intensive business.
LaFluer, the acting chairman of the board, was also granted another term by a 90-7 vote. Under an agreement between lawmakers and the White House, Bay is expected to become FERC chairman after nine months as a member of the commission. -- JP
2:30 p.m. - EPA SPENDING BILL CLEARS COMMITTEE. The House Appropriations Committee approved a $30.2 billion Interior and Environment spending bill that includes plenty of environmental riders to block President Obama's climate plan. The bill passed 29-19, with Democrats saying the bill's funding level was too low and contained too many poison pill provisions. Among those: language that would block the EPA's rules limiting emissions from power plants, blocking the EPA's proposal to redefine its Clean Water Act jurisdiction and delay an Endangered Species Act listing of the sage grouse.