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SPOTLIGHT

1. CLIMATE

Obama has kicked off a new conversation -- but where it's going is still unclear

President Obama and Democrats in Congress are talking about climate change again -- and environmentalists are delighted. Greens on and off Capitol Hill have rushed to interpret Obama's inaugural pledge to "respond to the threat of climate change, knowing that the failure to do so would betray our children and future generations" as a harbinger of action -- starting with tough new greenhouse gas rules for power plants and a rejection of the proposed Keystone XL pipeline, which would bring Canadian oil sands crude to the Gulf Coast. But Obama has given few hints about his climate agenda, preferring to focus instead on what he did in his first term, including curbs on auto tailpipe emissions and the first-ever U.S. greenhouse gas rules for power plants.

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