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Unleashing American energy resources will provide relief to the pocketbooks of Michigan families while encouraging domestic job creation and securing long-term energy security and reliability.  Unfortunately, many federal regulations can often inhibit the use of domestic energy and the construction of new infrastructure that is necessary for Michiganders to enjoy affordable energy.

Congress needs to get serious about developing an “all of the above” energy policy that ends our dependence on foreign oil, leads to cheaper utility bills and encourages job creation. In order to achieve energy independence, I believe a few commonsense steps can be taken:

Increase Domestic Energy Production

With major advances in energy technology and innovation as well as the discovery of vast domestic shale and natural gas reserves, the U.S. is now producing more crude oil than we import for the first time in decades. Our nation needs to continue moving away from volatile oil markets such as the Middle East and Venezuela and instead use environmentally friendly ways to develop domestic energy sources. A commitment to developing North American energy will keep prices affordable for Michigan families, enhance our national security, and boost domestic manufacturing.

As a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, I am working to promote the robust development of American energy, which will spur new jobs and economic growth while firmly putting us on a path to North American energy independence.

In order to unleash America’s full energy potential we must ensure there is transparency and accountability in the federal regulatory rule making process. In order to do so, I supported H.R. 26, the “Regulations from the Executive in Need of Scrutiny (REINS) Act” in January 2017.  The REINS Act injects oversight into the bureaucratic rule making process by requiring Congress to approve any new major regulation that would have a negative impact of $100 million or more to the U.S. economy.

Update our Energy Infrastructure

To make sure these energy resources make it into Michigan homes, we must build the necessary infrastructure to transport domestic energy.

American businesses and industry are currently investing over $100 billion in our nation’s electric infrastructure. The federal government can maximize this much needed investment by reducing and removing unnecessary burdensome red tape. Reducing onerous regulations is a budget friendly way to spur and maximize investment in critical infrastructure such as our electric grid.

When we are updating and modernizing our grid we need to make sure that it is also as secure and resilient as possible. Our nation’s electric infrastructure faces myriad threats every day both physical and cyber. One of the fastest growing concerns is over cyber security.

In January 2019, my colleague Rep. Bobby Rush (D-IL) and I introduced H.R. 362, the Energy Emergency Leadership Act to elevate cyber security in the federal government. This is a bipartisan and practical bill that elevates the Department of Energy’s (DOE) energy security and emergency functions to a Senate confirmed Assistant Secretary level in agency leadership that is reflective of its importance across the agency, the government, and to the nation. 

The bipartisan bill will strengthen coordination across DOE, ensure there is more effective interagency collaborations, and increase accountability to Congress. It is critical that we do everything we can to protect our nation’s critical electric infrastructure and I will continue to work in a bipartisan manner to do just that.

In September 2018, President Trump signed into law H.R. 1109. This bipartisan legislation I introduced with Rep. Debbie Dingell (D-MI) reduces unnecessary paperwork burdens and bring down energy prices for American families. The legislation unties the hands of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s hands and allows the commission to do what it does best, regulate electricity markets to ensure American rate payers are getting the most affordable and reliable electricity possible.

Ensuring Pipeline Safety

As a member of the Energy Subcommittee, it is important to strive to find the happy medium between pro-growth policies that encourage investment in our nation’s infrastructure and policies that protect our environment and consumers.

One issue of great importance to Michiganders is pipeline safety. I share this sentiment and believe we should do all we can to make sure pipelines are using the most advanced technology and are operating as efficiently and safely as possible. 

Develop and Promote Alternative Fuels

We need to support market-based strategies that encourage alternative energy sources like wind, solar, geothermal, cellulosic ethanol, bio-diesel, hydrogen and other clean alternatives in addition to promoting conservation.

Support Safe Nuclear Energy

Only 19 percent of the nation’s electricity is produced by nuclear power; meanwhile nations like France receive 75 percent of all its power from nuclear. In Michigan, 30 percent of our state’s total nuclear generation capacity comes from the Fermi 2 plant located in Michigan’s 7th District. We need to grow our ability to produce this emissions-free energy so that Michigan’s future energy needs can be met.

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