ELECTRIC VEHICLES: General Motors announces an $8 billion increase in its electric vehicle spending, to $35 billion by 2025, and plans to build two more batteries plants in the U.S. (New York Times) 

ALSO: Volvo Cars will invest $118 million to boost production of electric cars at its South Carolina plant. (Associated Press)

POLITICS:
• Eleven more senators join a bipartisan group working on an infrastructure bill that doesn’t go as far as President Biden’s in promoting clean energy and climate action, while Democrats could propose a $6 trillion alternative if bipartisan talks fail. (Washington Post, Politico)
• Environmental groups threaten to oppose Biden’s infrastructure bill if he drops its climate provisions in an attempt to win Republican support. (Bloomberg)
• Texas Gov. Greg Abbott signs legislation to ban state investment in businesses that cut ties with the oil and gas industry. (Bloomberg)
• Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker says state lawmakers and interested parties remain “very, very close” to deal on a sweeping clean energy bill that failed to pass this week. (Herald & Review)

PUBLIC LANDS: Interior Secretary Deb Haaland is reviewing a federal judge’s order to resume leasing federal land for oil and gas production, but offers no timeline for the process to restart. (Reuters)

CLIMATE: The Earth is trapping about twice as much heat as it did in 2005, NASA and NOAA data shows, speeding up global warming. (Washington Post)

GRID:
• Texas Gov. Greg Abbott proclaims the grid “is better today than it’s ever been” as state residents are asked to conserve energy and grid officials can’t explain why power plants totalling 9,000 MW are still offline. (Texas Tribune)
Thousands lose power in southeastern New Mexico due to heat-related strains on El Paso Electric’s grid, while California’s grid operator asks customers to conserve electricity today. (El Paso Matters, KGTV)
The Nevada Public Utilities Commission urges Western utilities to form a regional grid to boost reliability. (Nevada Appeal)

OFFSHORE WIND: A bipartisan pair of U.S. senators introduce a bill to divert offshore wind revenues to a new fund for coastal protection and resiliency. (E&E News, subscription)

COAL: Democrats pledge to prioritize Appalachia and other fossil-fuel producing areas in climate policies during a House hearing. (E&E News, subscription)

CLEAN ENERGY: A new Las Vegas casino and the state’s largest utility ask regulators to approve a market-based deal aimed at powering the casino with all renewable energy. (Nevada Independent)

EFFICIENCY: An expanded energy efficiency rebate program is helping some Minneapolis small businesses build back with more efficient equipment following last summer’s civil unrest. (Sahan Journal)

UTILITIES:
Both chambers of the Maine legislature approve a bill forming a public power authority by seizing the assets of the state’s two investor-owned utilities, despite criticism and a likely veto from Gov. Janet Mills. (Maine Public Radio)
Consolidated Edison’s chief executive says the utility can be a carbon-free power transition leader, discussing his thoughts on microgrids, battery storage, green hydrogen and renewable natural gas. (Forbes)

BIOFUELS: Democratic members of Congress urge the EPA to block measures that would allow oil refiners to skip out on biofuel blending requirements. (Reuters)