The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on Wednesday approved an energy bill that would allow drilling in large tracts of the Gulf of Mexico. Also included in the bill: loan guarantees for an Alaskan gas pipeline, creation of an emergency 30 million-barrel petroleum reserve, a provision to allow drilling within 45 miles of the Gulf Coast along Florida's shores, federal oversight of transmission lines and a renewed call for utilities to generate 15% of their electricity from renewable sources by 2021.

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