The House and Senate committees have come to agreement on the language of the energy bill (all 1,724 pages of it). Once approved by the respective bodies, it will go on to the President.
A longer review of this will follow shortly, but one immediate item of note: support for the development of plug-in hybrids and flex-fuel hybrids (proposed by Obama) remains in the final bill.
Section 706 of the Energy Bill (Joint Flexible Fuel/Hybrid Vehicle Commercialization) establishes a program to develop and to commercialize either a combination hybrid/flexible fuel vehicle or a plug-in hybrid/flexible fuel vehicle.
Preference is to be given to proposals that:
Achieve the greatest reduction in petroleum fuel consumption
Achieve not less than 250 miles per gallon petroleum fuel consumption
Have the greatest potential of commercialization to the general public within 5 years
Congress is authorizing the appropriation of a total of $40 million between 2006 and 2009 to carry this out. A small amount relative to the magnitude of some of the other sums tossed about in the bill, but significant.
More to come.