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New Direction For Energy Independence, National Security, And Consumer Protection Act

Floor Speech

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Date:
Location: Washington, DC


NEW DIRECTION FOR ENERGY INDEPENDENCE, NATIONAL SECURITY, AND CONSUMER PROTECTION ACT -- (House of Representatives - August 04, 2007)

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Mr. WALDEN of Oregon. Mr. Chairman, I thank you, and I thank our ranking member for yielding the time.

Mr. Chairman, I have been a believer that when it comes to RPS, they are best implemented locally at the State level or regionally, and, indeed, our State of Oregon has done so very effectively after much consideration.

I came to the floor today thinking maybe this was a national version, if we were going to have one, to incent renewable energy, which I am a big advocate of, that this might work. But in reading this amendment as it has been proposed over the last few days, there are some issues that are contained therein that bring me to the point where I have to oppose it.

Predominantly they relate around the sections that preclude certain biomass, depending on where it came from, from counting toward the Renewable Portfolio Standards requirement. I just don't understand why if biomass taken off one part of a forest counts, biomass taken off another part of a forest doesn't count. These are arbitrary decisions contained on page 3 and elsewhere in this legislation.

I have an area in my district that has juniper trees that need to be removed, and everyone agrees they need to be removed. You could remove those juniper trees off the land not under the National Landscape Conservation District boundaries and they would count toward the biomass, toward Renewable Portfolio Standards, but those contained therein would not. The same with roadless wilderness study areas and things of that nature.

Additionally, I am concerned about a definition I just ran across involving rural electric co-ops and how that could be defined, because I know there are some co-ops that aren't necessarily rural only.

Finally, I would love to know why Hawaii is completely exempted from it.

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