As our nation seeks to grow its economy and get people back to work, we need an energy policy that provides Southwest Washington with affordable and reliable energy. Higher energy costs hurt families and make it harder for businesses to compete. Every time gas prices go up, our region loses jobs. It's also an issue of national security. We jeopardize our safety as a nation when we depend on global players who don't like us very much for energy.
We are well-situated in Southwest Washington to take full advantage of an "all of the above" approach to energy. Our region is home to clean and renewable hydropower, wind, natural gas and a burgeoning biomass industry. By pursuing these and other forms of energy, we can keep costs affordable and ensure our energy supply is stable. Low energy costs will help us both keep the businesses we have, and attract new businesses -- and new jobs --to Southwest Washington.
We would all like to see a day when we are no longer dependent on fossil fuel. Until then, I support safe and responsible domestic energy exploration to keep gas prices affordable for families in Southwest Washington.
I share a desire for cleaner energy -- but not at the cost of more jobs to our communities. Incentives, not punishment, should be the path to more renewable energy. Arbitrary "clean energy" mandates, and backdoor attempts at cap-and-trade taxes on families and businesses are not in the best interest of our recovering economy.