Today, the House Energy and Commerce Committee voted on a mostly party line vote to approve H.R. 8, the North American Energy Security and Infrastructure Act. From the outset, NRDC and others raised serious concerns about several sections of the bill - and noted the lack of any provisions supporting renewable energy or addressing climate change. We are disappointed that the committee did not address these issues and instead, Republicans added more controversial provisions, over strenuous objections.
While early hearings promised future legislation that would make small, but important, improvements to our energy policy that both parties could support, the bill that passed today is instead one-sided and ignores the important role of clean energy. We remain disappointed that Republicans ignore the values shared by millions of Americans who want policies that deliver a cleaner, safer, and sustainable future by refusing to include clean energy in their energy agenda. This important and growing sector should be proactively promoted within any bipartisan bill, if we are serious about modernizing our grid, improving reliability and addressing climate change and the challenges it presents to our energy system.
Overall, this bill started in the wrong place and only grew less acceptable as the process advanced. We continue to oppose this bill, but hope contentious provisions can be resolved or removed. Sadly, with the House floor up next, the bill is more likely to become weaker than improve.