Members of the House Energy Action Team today unveiled the Domestic Energy and Jobs Act, a legislative package comprised of a series of bills that aim to increase access to American energy resources and prevent misguided federal policies that will drive energy prices higher. Energy and Commerce Committee member Cory Gardner (R-CO) will sponsor this legislative collection that will help spur job creation by removing roadblocks to American energy production. Included in the package are two proposals advanced by the Energy and Commerce Committee: the Strategic Energy Production Act and the Gasoline Regulations Act.
The Strategic Energy Production Act, authored by Gardner, will hold the president accountable to long-term domestic energy supply solutions over short-term political gimmicks. The proposal requires that any future drawdown of the Strategic Petroleum Reserve be coupled with a plan to increase the percentage of Federal lands leased for oil and gas exploration, development, and production.
"Our country is in desperate need of a national energy strategy, and increasing domestic production should be a major component of that plan. By increasing oil and gas leases on federal land to match what is released from our emergency energy reserves, we can turn a short-term supply fix into a long-term policy that promotes America's energy independence," said Gardner.
The Gasoline Regulations Act, introduced by Energy and Power Subcommittee Chairman Ed Whitfield (R-KY), promotes a "look before you leap" approach to regulation. It requires an interagency committee to conduct a cumulative analysis on certain EPA regulations affecting transportation fuels to better understand their impact on gas prices, jobs, and the economy. The legislation also prevents the agency from finalizing three of its most costly rules--Tier 3 standards, NSPS standards for petroleum refineries, and new ozone standards--until after the study is completed and policymakers have time to assess the consequences.
"Over the past three years, prices at the gas pump have roughly doubled, and that is unacceptable," said Whitfield. "That is why I introduced commonsense legislation that will ensure that the federal government doesn't add to the pain at the pump by implementing regulations without first understanding the full costs they will have on consumers, jobs, and economic growth."
Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) praised the introduction of the Domestic Energy and Jobs Act and commended his colleagues for their work on these common-sense solutions. "President Obama likes to talk about what the government can't do when it comes to energy policy, but we prefer to focus on what we can do," said Upton. "I want to congratulate Rep. Gardner for leading the charge, and thank all the members who authored bills as a part of this effort."
The Domestic Energy and Jobs Act also includes several measures reported out of the Natural Resources Committee: the Planning for American Energy Act, the Providing Leasing Certainty for American Energy Act, the Streamlining Permitting of American Energy Act, the National Petroleum Reserve Alaska Access Act, and the BLM Live Internet Auctions Act.