I support a comprehensive “all of the above” energy strategy to meet our nation’s growing energy needs and reduce our reliance on foreign fossil fuels. Whether developing the vast resources we have here at home, promoting the advancement of safe nuclear, harnessing alternative energy sources, or developing energy efficient technologies, we need to put a premium back on domestic energy production.
Promoting the Development of American-Made Energy
By focusing on the development of American’s vast energy resources we can simultaneously create good-paying jobs here at home, alleviate rising energy prices, and fortify our energy security. The development of Alaska’s arctic waters alone could produce up to 1 million barrels of oil per day and create tens of thousands of American jobs. On June 22, 2011, the House passed bipartisan Energy and Commerce legislation – the Jobs and Energy Permitting Act (H.R. 2021) – to allow for expanded energy exploration in the Outer Continental Shelf by streamlining the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) permitting process and eliminating needless regulatory delays that have prevented energy development in these waters.
Creating Jobs through the Keystone XL Pipeline Project
Energy security is both a matter of national security and economic security. Today, with the proposed expansion of the Keystone XL pipeline, the United States has a rare opportunity to reduce its energy dependence on volatile overseas suppliers and create thousands of jobs here at home. This proposed project calls for the expansion of the Keystone XL energy pipeline from Canada to refineries in the Midwest. The promises of 1.3 million barrels of oil per day and the creation of more than 100,000 U.S. jobs is a win-win situation for Michigan. Unfortunately, the administration has continued to drag its feet on the project’s approval for over two years. The Energy and Commerce Committee has successfully passed bipartisan legislation through the House (H.R. 1938) that would require the administration to make a decision on the project by November 1, 2011. I have also made it a top priority to pass pipeline safety legislation this Congress in order to overhaul our nation’s vast pipeline infrastructure. Our energy needs are going nowhere but up – working with our northern ally to create jobs and safely meet that growing demand should be a no-brainer.
Supporting the Advancement of Safe Nuclear Power
We in southwest Michigan are familiar with the benefits of safe nuclear power. The D.C. Cook and Palisades nuclear generating stations not only provide our region with a steady supply of energy, they employ nearly 2,000 people and account for the largest revenue sources in Berrien and Van Buren counties. I support a visionary nuclear policy to create jobs and reduce our reliance upon traditional fossil fuels. I also support the development of a safe, permanent storage site for the nation’s spent nuclear fuel – rather than scattered at sites across the country and on the shores of our Great Lakes – as well as use of recycling technologies that other developed nations have been utilizing for years.