Representatives Devin Nunes (R-CA), Paul Ryan (R-WI), John Shimkus (R-IL), Mike Simpson (R-ID) and Rob Bishop (R-UT) today introduced legislation, H.R. 5899, that will reduce U.S. dependence on foreign energy, provide a cleaner environment, and put Americans to work. [Bill Text] [Summary] [Section-by-Section]
The bill titled "A Roadmap for America's Energy Future" uses untapped energy resources throughout our nation to bridge the gap between current energy consumption and our nation's long-term goal of transitioning to renewable and advanced energy alternatives.
"Congress must take action and provide real incentives for the development of the kinds of energy consumed by the American people -- namely fossil fuels. To do otherwise would assure high energy prices as well as the flight of American businesses to foreign shores. At the same time, we have a responsibility to promote alternatives that will sustain us in the long-term. That's what the Energy Roadmap accomplishes," said Rep. Devin Nunes.
In the last 25 years, U.S. energy needs have grown dramatically while supplies have remained relatively static. In the past decade alone, energy demand increased by more than 12 percent while domestic production increased by less than one percent. Today, nearly half of the U.S. trade deficit is related to imported energy.
"The Energy Roadmap is a common sense all-of-the-above approach that promotes American-made energy and American jobs. It offers a bold new path that provides additional support for renewable energy, while strengthening its competitiveness and reducing our dependence on government. The Energy Roadmap will help unlock the vast potential of our natural resources, promote a responsible transition to renewable energy resources, and reduce our reliance on foreign oil," said Rep. Paul Ryan.
The Energy Roadmap seeks to restore confidence in off-shore drilling by establishing a 9/11 style commission to investigate the Deepwater Horizon disaster. It then expands oil production in the far reaches of northern Alaska, off our shores, and in the lower 48 states through oil shale deposits.
"Due to misguided government policies, many of our domestic energy resources sit idle, untapped and underutilized. The United States has an estimated two trillion barrels of oil shale. This is more than seven times the amount of crude oil reserves found in Saudi Arabia, and is enough to meet current U.S. demand for over 200 years. Tapping this homegrown resource would not only help address a huge component of our domestic energy needs, but would provide thousands of new jobs throughout the West- a region currently suffering from the highest comprehensive unemployment in the country. With soaring unemployment and rising energy costs, it's time we put Americans back to work and domestic resources into play. That is precisely what the Energy Roadmap does," said Rep. Rob Bishop.
To address long-term energy needs, the Energy Roadmap leverages lease and royalty revenue associated with new fossil fuel development to fund alternative and advanced energy technologies. The result will be historic and unprecedented investments that are protected from special interests and political favoritism through an innovative and market oriented reverse auction program.
"Our nation is at an energy crossroads, and we need to look at every option available to us in order to achieve energy independence. I am particularly pleased that the all-of-the-above legislation introduced by Representative Nunes recognizes the vital role that nuclear energy will play in our nation's future, and I am glad to have an opportunity to work with him to find real, workable solutions to the energy challenges that we face," said Rep. Mike Simpson.
The Energy Roadmap also expands carbon-free nuclear power production and allows nuclear waste to be recycled, reducing that waste by 96%. And it allows the military to transition to liquid coal rather than oil based fuels, assuring our Armed Forces access to a reliable domestic fuel source.
"The Illinois basin coal reserves contain more BTUs of energy than the oil reserves of Saudi Arabia and Kuwait combined. We can and must harness that energy. Coal-to-liquid technology exists and should be used to reduce our dependence on Middle Eastern oil. We cannot totally remove liquid fuel from our energy diet overnight, but introducing alternatives is a must. I am proud to support this comprehensive energy roadmap," said Rep. John Shimkus.