NEW DIRECTION FOR ENERGY INDEPENDENCE, NATIONAL SECURITY, AND CONSUMER PROTECTION ACT -- (House of Representatives - August 04, 2007)
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Mr. BUTTERFIELD. Mr. Chairman, I am proud of the Democratic majority for its boldness in bringing this Energy Bill to the House floor on this Saturday morning.
You know, 20 years ago it was the academics that were talking about energy independence and climate change. Today, it is a conversation all across America and the American people are expecting us to do something about it.
This Energy Bill is not a perfect bill but it is a responsible piece of legislation. It represents the views of competing interests and it begins us on that long road to energy independence.
My State of North Carolina is eager to be part of developing solutions. We have lost over 100,000 textile jobs since 1997. This legislation will usher in significant job creation that will replace some of the lost jobs. Microcell Corporation is a hydrogen fuel cell company in my district that's made a giant leap and is now ready to produce their cells on a large scale. With this breakthrough, over 1,000 good paying jobs will be created in this rural district.
I am proud to tell you that our State legislature has enacted an ambitious Renewable Portfolio Standard that is reasonably related to our ability to reach energy independence. Other states have done the same thing and others will do so as we move in this new direction.
Finally, I am proud to be a part of an effort to include Historically Black Colleges and Universities in the research and development of Cellulosic Ethanol for transportation fuels. These institutions have wanted to be part of developing ethanol from biomass but they have not had the opportunity.
This bill makes $50 million available for minority serving institutions to engage in this research on a competitive basis. I introduced this concept to the Energy and Commerce Committee and I am proud that we finally reached a bipartisan agreement to include this language in the final bill.
I urge my colleagues to vote for final passage.
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