Pompeo Bill to Provide Infrastructure for Affordable Energy Approved by Bipartisan Vote
WASHINGTON, DC – The U.S. House of Representatives today approved H.R. 161, the Natural Gas Pipeline Permitting Reform Act, by a bipartisan vote of 253 to 169. The legislation, authored by Energy and Commerce Committee member Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-KS), would expedite the construction of natural gas pipelines that are needed to deliver our nation’s affordable energy supplies to consumers. The legislation would fix the outdated and broken federal permitting process and enforce agency deadlines to provide for timely project approvals. Stakeholders ranging from consumer groups to unions voiced strong support for the bill ahead of today’s vote.
“We may have fixed our supply problems but we now have a serious distribution problem. Our archaic energy infrastructure and outdated regulatory system is blocking American consumers from reaping the benefits of our energy abundance. We have the gas, but don’t have the pipelines to get cheap energy directly to families and businesses that need it most,” said full committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI). “This legislation seeks to fix the problem, inserting accountability into the permitting process for natural gas pipelines and establishing firm deadlines for agency reviews. Now that we are the leader in energy production, there is no reason America shouldn’t be number one in energy affordability too.”
“We are tens of thousands of miles of pipeline capacity short of the necessary pipelines to carry natural gas to consumers who need it and businesses who demand it today in America,” said Pompeo. “As coal-fired power plants become more difficult to build, the need for natural gas will become even more increased. This legislation is aimed directly at making sure that we don’t have shortages, outages, and catastrophes in energy production and energy delivery that America cannot afford.”
“We have heard testimony about the escalating prices of electricity in regions of the country where there is a shortage of pipeline capacity. This administration’s climate driven agenda is only exacerbating the problem as more coal plants are forced to shut down. This bill is designed to provide the infrastructure to get the natural gas to where it needs to be. That’s what this bill is about. It’s a commonsense bill to help meet the energy needs of America,” said Energy and Power Subcommittee Chairman Ed Whitfield (R-KY).