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Hearings Updates


Chairs Rodgers and Latta Announce NTIA Oversight Hearing

Washington, D.C. — House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) and Communications and Technology Subcommittee Chair Bob Latta (R-OH) today announced a hearing titled “Oversight of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration.”  “NTIA plays a pivotal role in strengthening American communications networks. From improving broadband deployment, federal spectrum management, Internet governance, and cybersecurity, to understanding how new technologies, like AI, can strengthen our communications infrastructure, said Chairs Rodgers and Latta. "The Energy and Commerce Committee is leading to ensure NTIA has the right tools to accomplish these important tasks. We look forward to hearing from Administrator Davidson to make sure America maintains its dominance in the communications sector.”  Subcommittee on Communications and Technology hearing titled “Oversight of the National Telecommunications and Information Administration.”  WHAT: Communications and Technology Subcommittee oversight hearing on NTIA’s role in advancing American communications leadership.  DATE: Tuesday, December 5, 2023  TIME: 10:30 AM ET  LOCATION: 2322 Rayburn House Office Building  This notice is at the direction of the Chair. The hearing will be open to the public and press and will be live streamed online at https://energycommerce.house.gov/ . If you have any questions concerning the hearing, please contact Noah Jackson at Noah.Jackson@mail.house.gov . If you have any press-related questions, please contact Sean Kelly at Sean.Kelly@mail.house.gov



Nov 21, 2023
Press Release

Chairs Rodgers and Griffith Announce Oversight Hearing with CDC Director

Washington, D.C. — House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) and Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations Chair Morgan Griffith (R-VA) today announced a hearing titled “Unmasking Challenges CDC Faces in Rebuilding Public Trust Amid Respiratory Illness Season.” “The CDC’s public trust has been damaged as a result of its confusing messaging and other failures during the COVID-19 Pandemic. This lack of trust could lead to complications as America heads into respiratory illness season,” said Chairs Rodgers and Griffith. “We look forward to hearing from Director Cohen about how the agency is applying lessons learned during the pandemic to its public guidance regarding common seasonal illnesses, like influenza and RSV, so that the American people are equipped to make the best decisions for themselves and their families.”   Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations hearing titled “Unmasking Challenges CDC Faces in Rebuilding Public Trust Amid Respiratory Illness Season.” DATE: Thursday, November 30, 2023   TIME: 10:00 AM ET  LOCATION: 2322 Rayburn House Office Building   WITNESSES:   The Honorable Mandy Cohen, M.D. , Director, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention   This notice is at the direction of the Chair. The hearing will be open to the public and press and will be live streamed online at https://energycommerce.house.gov/ . If you have any questions concerning the hearing, please contact Lauren Eriksen with the Committee staff at Lauren.Eriksen@mail.house.gov . If you have any press-related questions, please contact Christopher Krepich at Christopher.Krepich@mail.house.gov



Nov 21, 2023
Press Release

Chairs Rodgers and Latta Announce FCC Oversight Hearing

Washington, D.C. — House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) and Communications and Technology Subcommittee Chair Bob Latta (R-OH) announced a subcommittee hearing titled “Oversight of President Biden’s Broadband Takeover.”  The Chairs released the following statement:  “The Energy and Commerce Committee has a responsibility to the American people to ensure the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) is being a good steward of taxpayer dollars, faithfully following Congressional intent, and fostering a regulatory environment that allows our communications networks to offer faster speeds and lower costs. Unfortunately, President Biden’s FCC is attempting a government takeover of broadband by imposing burdensome new regulations that will harm people’s access to broadband, increase costs, and slow deployment," said Chair Rodgers and Chair Latta . “We will hold Chair Rosenworcel and the other FCC commissioners accountable for their partisan efforts to micro-manage Americans’ broadband services. The FCC must return to its mission of strengthening U.S. leadership in next-generation technologies.”  Subcommittee on Communications and Technology hearing titled: “Oversight of President Biden’s Broadband Takeover.”   WHAT: Communications and Technology Subcommittee hearing on oversight of the Federal Communications Commission.  DATE: Thursday, November 30, 2023  TIME: 10:30 AM ET  LOCATION: 2123 Rayburn House Office Building  This notice is at the direction of the Chair. The hearing will be open to the public and press and will be live streamed online at https://energycommerce.house.gov/ . If you have any questions concerning the hearing, please contact Noah Jackson at Noah.Jackson@mail.house.gov . If you have any press-related questions, please contact Sean Kelly at Sean.Kelly@mail.house.gov



Nov 21, 2023
Press Release

Chairs Rodgers and Guthrie Announce Subcommittee Hearing on AI

Washington, D.C. — House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) and Subcommittee on Health Chair Brett Guthrie (R-KY) today announced a hearing titled “Understanding How AI is Changing Health Care.” “The explosion of AI offers great promise for improving efficiency in the health care system. This technology has the potential to directly help patients, including by allowing doctors and hospitals to spend less time doing paperwork and more time providing care. It also offers hope to those battling deadly diseases that this technology may improve research and development into new treatments and cures,” said Chairs Rodgers and Guthrie. “That said, this level of AI utilization is a new frontier in health care, and this committee has a vested interest in ensuring that it is improving patient care and driving innovation—not being used to supplant the clinical judgement of physicians or indiscriminately limit access to care. It’s also critical that the data that feeds AI is not collected, used, or shared without one’s consent when it may be personally identifiable—which is often not protected under current law. This hearing will give our members a chance to hear from experts and those in the field about how AI is currently being used, as well as what guardrails, like a national data privacy standard, are needed to protect people’s privacy.”  Subcommittee on Health hearing titled “Understanding How AI is Changing Health Care.”   DATE: Wednesday, November 29, 2023   TIME: 10:30 AM ET  LOCATION: 2322 Rayburn House Office Building   WITNESSES: Witnesses will be announced and are by invitation only.  This notice is at the direction of the Chair. The hearing will be open to the public and press and will be live streamed online at https://energycommerce.house.gov/ . If you have any questions concerning the hearing, please contact Jolie Brochin with the Committee staff at Jolie.Brochin@mail.house.gov . If you have any press-related questions, please contact Christopher Krepich at Christopher.Krepich@mail.house.gov .   NOTE : This hearing is part of an ongoing Energy and Commerce Subcommittee hearing series to explore the role of artificial intelligence across every sector of the economy, including health care, telecommunications, emerging technologies, and energy.



Nov 14, 2023
Press Release

Subcommittee Chair Johnson Opening Remarks the Clean Power Plan 2.0 and the EPA’s Effort to Jeopardize Reliable and Affordable Energy for States

Washington D.C.— House Energy and Commerce Environment, Manufacturing, and Critical Materials Subcommittee Chair Bill Johnson (R-OH) delivered the following opening remarks at today’s hearing titled “Clean Power Plan 2.0: EPA's Effort to Jeopardize Reliable and Affordable Energy for States.” DANGERS OF THE RUSH-TO-GREEN AGENDA   “Today we will continue the Subcommittee’s review of EPA’s proposed greenhouse gas standards for fossil power plants—what we refer to as the ‘Clean Power Plan 2.0.’  “The Biden administration and its allies at agencies like the EPA continue to endanger our energy and national security in their ‘rush to green’ policies and proposals. These proposals, including several other EPA rulemakings, pose a very real threat to the affordability and reliability of our electric grid.   “We continue to hear from states, utilities, and grid operators that the grid is facing reliability issues. The experts at NERC tell us that reliability crises are looming because of premature retirement of dispatchable resources.   “In fact, here’s a headline from just last week. ‘Two-thirds of North America could face power shortages this winter—NERC.’ This comes from their annual Winter Outlook report.   “The Clean Power Plan 2.0 proposal looks only to make things worse. It directly targets the dispatchable coal and natural gas resources that produce 60 percent of our nation’s electricity.”  UNFEASIBLE EPA PROPOSAL   “These are the resources that reliability experts say that the grid needs more, not less of. Yet 'less of' appears to be the likely outcome of EPA’s proposals.  “In early June, we took testimony from stakeholders representing the fossil energy power sector. The witnesses raised troubling questions about feasibility, costs, and impacts of this proposal.   “They pointed to the sheer technical and practical infeasibility of these proposed performance standards.   “This was especially problematic for the existing fleet of coal and gas generators—given the time frames required.    “The commercial viability of compliance technologies, such as CCS or hydrogen co-firing, is optimistic at best.   “While these nascent technologies could be part of our energy future, none of them has yet been adequately demonstrated in sustained large, commercial power plant operations.   “Yet the proposal would direct states to require new and existing power plants to implement carbon capture and sequestration, gas and hydrogen co-firing, or even the replacement of natural gas with hydrogen.  “There is also not enough pipeline infrastructure in place today that can transport CO2 at the scale envisioned in this proposal. Proposed pipelines continue to have permits rejected by states and have been delayed and canceled as a result.   “Very little commercial hydrogen generation exists today; none has been adequately demonstrated in commercial operation or in co-firing at the levels EPA seeks, nor do we have an extensive hydrogen pipeline network.   “What is particularly troubling is that EPA just assumes this expensive, infeasible infrastructure will be built on their timeline!”  SHUTTING DOWN AMERICAN ENERGY   “Power plants and states will have to comply within 10 years or less or shut down fossil generation. It does make me wonder if that may be the feature, not a bug, within this proposal.   “Today we will hear important state perspectives on this. And I thank our witnesses, some of which traveled a great distance to be here with us.   “We will hear from a witness who has been working at ground zero for installing carbon capture and from an expert on the implementation of Clean Air Act rules, as well as on the impacts on electricity reliability and rates.  “We will hear about the feasibility of the standards, about state authorities and responsibilities under the Clean Air Act, about what happens if the standards can’t be met, about the costs and potential impacts to the reliability of our energy systems.”  STATES ARE FEARFUL OF THE POWER GOING OUT   “Again, thank you to our panel for making the trip. Your perspectives will help us better understand the implications of this proposal.   “So far, evidence has been mounting that EPA proposed something that it knew or should have known was not able to be implemented and would lead to the shutdown of baseload, dispatchable fossil generation.   “It’s as if EPA seeks unworkable standards for coal and gas just as a pretense for the real goal—which is to shift the nation’s energy mix to administration’s favored wind and solar technologies.   “Not only does this violate what Congress directed of EPA in the Clean Air Act, it undermines the states’ own authorities for their electricity resources and rates, as recognized under the Federal Power Act. “Its even being reported in the news now as I mentioned. The American people are fearful of the power going out. And rightfully so! If this proposed rule moves forward in anything like its current form, it will take us another step closer to that reality. “Today we will advance the record on the potential impacts to state energy systems if this Clean Power Plan 2.0 proposal goes forward.”



Nov 14, 2023
Hearings

Chair Rodgers Opening Remarks on the EPA’s Effort to Jeopardize Reliable and Affordable Energy for States

Washington D.C. — House Energy and Commerce Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) delivered the following opening remarks at today’s Environment, Manufacturing, and Critical Materials Subcommittee hearing titled “Clean Power Plan 2.0: EPA's Effort to Jeopardize Reliable and Affordable Energy for States.” AMERICAN ENERGY LEADERSHIP   “Energy is foundational to everything we do.   “It powers our economy and our security. It’s why America is leading in lifting people out of poverty and raising the standard of living.  “America’s ability to harness energy through innovation and deploy it through entrepreneurship has transformed the human condition.   “We’ve achieved this while being a leader in emissions reductions and maintaining some of the highest environmental and labor standards in the world, and we’ve done this while delivering reliable and affordable energy across every state and community.     “We should be celebrating our accomplishments with solutions that expand on this country’s remarkable legacy of innovation.”  THREAT OF BLACKOUTS   “We’ve been blessed with an abundance of natural resources that people and businesses rely on every day.   “Rather than enacting policies that will undermine our essential energy systems and shut down these key resources, we should be taking steps to build on America’s energy leadership and legacy.   “The reality is more and more Americans today face threats of blackouts as a result of rush to green policies destabilizing our grid.     “In California, baseload and firm generation sources were driven out or shuttered by the state in exchange for less reliable weather dependent electricity.   “As a result, California has had to import a significant amount of hydroelectric power from Washington state to support its grid when sources like wind and solar can’t produce enough energy to meet demand.   “In Texas, an overreliance on weather-dependent resources has limited the state’s capacity to endure severe weather.    “Last winter, several Southern state utilities were unable to get the power resources they needed from neighboring states during a severe cold event, forcing blackouts during the holidays.    “NERC continues to warn that more than half the nation is at elevated risk of forced blackouts.   “At a recent Energy and Commerce hearing, grid operators confirmed this, warning that accelerated retirements of baseload generation, without adequate replacements, will only increase the threat of these life-threatening blackouts.”   RUSH TO DISMANTLE RELIABLE GENERATION    “Rushing to dismantle our nation’s electricity generation will harm people’s lives and well-being.    “The EPA’s recent proposals, like the Clean Power Plan 2.0, will force states to change fundamentally how they generate electricity and will raise costs across the board.     “This will cause lasting damage to energy reliability and accessibility.    “This is a continuation of the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan, which sought to use obscure provisions in the Clean Air Act to restructure the American power sector by shutting down coal-fired power plants and shifting electricity generation to other less reliable sources.     “Furthermore, these policies go well beyond the EPA’s congressionally mandated authority, and potentially violate the recent Supreme Court decision in West Virginia v. EPA, where the Court ruled that EPA’s efforts to circumvent Congress and restructure the U.S. power sector through the Clean Air Act were unconstitutional.    “The Supreme Court’s ruling made clear that the EPA’s actions would transform the nation’s electricity system on a scale that only Congress had the authority to direct.  “Yet this ruling has not stopped the EPA’s assault on our grid, and I am concerned about additional abuses of power by the administration in an attempt to exceed the authority delegated to the EPA by Congress.   “We have a lot of questions about how the EPA’s Clean Power Plan 2.0 proposal could harm our way of life.   “In June, we heard from the electric sector. Today, we will hear from states, who would have to implement these rules, limiting their ability to get reliable, affordable energy to ensure families, communities, and businesses can thrive.     “What they say about the practicality of these rules, for their communities and their own authorities over their electric systems and electric generation, matters.    “In order to ensure the American people have access to affordable, reliable energy to keep them safe, fed, and warm, it’s vital that we, the Committee of jurisdiction, understand and take actions to address the EPA’s proposals and what they mean for the nation’s electricity systems as well as America’s energy leadership.   “That is our goal today.” 



Subcommittee Chair Latta Opening Remarks on Leveraging AI to Enhance American Communications

Washington D.C. — House Energy and Commerce Communications and Technology Subcommittee Chair Bob Latta (R-OH) delivered the following opening remarks at today’s hearing titled “Leveraging AI to Enhance American Communications.” UNLOCKING THE POTENTIAL OF AI   “Good morning and thank you to our witnesses for being here to discuss the importance of artificial intelligence—otherwise known as AI—in the communications and technology sector.   “But AI is more than just a thing of fiction. “The uses of AI technology spans across many sectors. This technology has the potential to significantly improve the quality of our lives across a range of industries, many of which are within the jurisdiction of this subcommittee. “There is no one-size-fits-all approach to regulating this technology, nor should there be. To unlock the full potential of AI, we must establish foundational protection for the data that powers many of these new AI tools by enacting a comprehensive data privacy standard in the United States. “As we integrate AI into various aspects of our lives, it is crucial to ensure that its deployment is guided by ethical principles and American values.” BOLSTERING AMERICANS’ CONNECTIVITY “In the communications sector, artificial intelligence applications are used to optimize the quality and reliability of service, fight the scourge of robocalls, detect and respond to cybersecurity incidents, and ensure a safe online experience for kids. “AI applications are used to provide faster, more reliable Internet service. Whether Americans are on a telehealth visit, working from home, streaming their favorite shows, or playing video games, intelligent networks now and in the future will perform better by using large models to predict where traffic capacity will be needed and when. “Network operators currently take advantage of digitized networks to more rapidly detect outages, use detailed analytics to determine the cause of the outage, and eventually, get Americans back online faster. "This automation takes place not only in wired networks, but also in wireless networks, where AI applications are used to optimize the use of the airwaves to provide the best user experience." STRENGTHENING OUR SECURITY “For cybersecurity, some AI models utilize algorithms to detect incoming threats and learn from networks’ previous behavior to establish a framework for prevention in the future. “AI utilization in content moderation has become a significant factor in deterring violent content and other material that violates the rules of a platform. AI’s actions are key to creating a safer and more interactive platforms for users. “In the same way humans are not perfect, AI is not perfect, either. Because humans design AI algorithms, AI systems may contain unintentional bias, which unfortunately could lead to discrimination. "The key to ensuring the safety of algorithms used by Big Tech is to make sure the algorithms are trained and developed responsibly with greater transparency for the user. “These are just a few of the nearly unlimited uses of AI technology. Whether you are in your home or on a busy road, AI will assist in providing a more seamless transition from one service to the next, ensuring continuous connectivity. “Despite these technological advances, this new frontier doesn’t come without challenges, which is why we must ensure the responsible and ethical use of AI. “In today’s hearing, we will discuss some of the many use cases and benefits of AI. We will also examine why U.S. leadership on AI is imperative for economic and national security.”



Nov 14, 2023
Press Release

Chair Rodgers Opening Remarks on Leveraging AI to Enhance American Communications

Washington D.C. — House Energy and Commerce Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) delivered the following opening remarks at today’s Communications and Technology Subcommittee hearing titled “Leveraging AI to Enhance American Communications.” “AI has the potential to usher in a new era of discovery and innovation.   “This technology can be used to solve problems we once thought unsolvable.  “It offers advancements that could empower people, expand worker productivity, create new jobs, and grow the economy.  “Its potential is vast, unlocking possibilities across every sector of the economy.  “That said, AI also raises serious concerns about how bad actors can exploit this technology and abuse it.  “As AI gets deployed, we must think about appropriate measures to ensure accountability.  “The best way to start this effort is by laying the groundwork to protect people’s information with a national data privacy standard, which provides greater transparency and puts people back in control over the collection and use of their personal information.   “It is critical that America—not China—is the one addressing these challenges and leading to both AI’s development and deployment and ensuring people’s data privacy is protected.”   ENHANCING TELECOM NETWORKS   “Access to the Internet has become an integral part of life for many Americans.   “Broadband has unleashed new tools that have improved our education system, health care, and our ability to stay in touch with family and friends.  “It’s strengthened our economy, empowered entrepreneurs, researchers, and allowed people to connect around the world in ways they never could before.   “Providers are constantly working to increase the capacity on their networks and deploy more network infrastructure.  “AI and machine learning can monitor networks to determine what bandwidth is available at a specific time.    “This could significantly improve the efficiency of our communications infrastructure without any disruption for people using the services, enhancing the user experience.”   CYBERSECURITY   “AI’s ability to engage in pattern recognition extends far beyond human capability, allowing for advanced detection of cybersecurity threats and malicious activity.   “Unfortunately, AI models can also be used to enhance hacking capabilities, such as deepfake-enabled phishing attacks.   “The best way to address this malicious use of AI may in fact be to leverage AI tools to detect, prevent, and respond to threats.  “America’s networks are under constant attack from our adversaries and other bad actors.  “Cyberwarfare is an ever-changing landscape and requires that we utilize all technologies available to protect our critical infrastructure.”  STOPPING ILLEGAL CONTENT   “Similarly, AI can be a helpful tool to combat illegal and violent content online, like recent content posted by Hamas, which they are using to recruit, spread propaganda, potentially livestream the murder and torture of hostages, and organize more terrorist activities.   “That said, while this may be an efficient tool to combat illegal content, we need transparency and accountability from Big Tech to ensure these new tools aren’t being abused to moderate content in a way that infringes on American’s right to free speech.”  ENCOURAGING RESPONSIBLE DEPLOYMENT AND INNOVATION   “Protecting the innovative nature of AI while encouraging responsible development and deployment is key to unlocking its full potential.   “This is best done with a light-touch, market-driven approach that provides clear rules and guidance for industry.   “The Biden administration’s recent AI Executive Order fell short of this objective.  “While I agree with the President that the best way to cementing American AI leadership is by first enacting a comprehensive data privacy and security law, I am concerned the order itself places unnecessary and duplicative regulatory burdens that could hinder the development of this critical technology.     “To address the challenges of AI and take advantage of the benefits, the administration needs to work with Congress to strike the right balance between encouraging innovation and ensuring responsible development and deployment.   “AI and machine learning are here to stay. Its potential is both exciting and disruptive.   “AI could vastly enhance people’s lives, especially by improving communications network performance and internet speeds.  “But with the benefits come risks, especially cyber risks and the abuse of people’s personal data.   “The best way to mitigate many of these risks and cement America’s leadership in AI is by enacting comprehensive data privacy and security legislation.   “I look forward to the discussion today and to hearing from our witnesses about the vast use cases for artificial technology in the communications and technology space.” 



Chairs Rodgers and Johnson Announce Hearing on President Biden’s Agenda to Jeopardize Reliable and Affordable Energy for States

Washington, D.C. — House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) and Environment, Manufacturing, & Critical Materials Subcommittee Chair Bill Johnson (R-OH) today announced a hearing titled "Clean Power Plan 2.0: EPA's Effort to Jeopardize Reliable and Affordable Energy for States.” The Chairs released the following statement: “Electricity is vital for hospitals, military bases, homes, and businesses across America. Recent proposals, like the Clean Power Plan 2.0 from the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA), will force states to fundamentally change how they generate electricity and will raise costs across the board. These new proposed rules will result in lasting damage to energy reliability and accessibility. In addition, they go well beyond the EPA’s congressionally mandated authority and potentially violate the recent Supreme Court decision in West Virginia v. EPA . In this subcommittee hearing, we will hear from state officials about how the EPA’s efforts affect the various states’ abilities to provide affordable, reliable energy to power local economies, keep people safe, and preserve their livelihoods.” Environment, Manufacturing, and Critical Materials Subcommittee hearing titled "Clean Power Plan 2.0: EPA's Effort to Jeopardize Reliable and Affordable Energy for States.” WHAT: An Environment, Manufacturing, and Critical Materials Subcommittee hearing to discuss EPA regulations that threaten American energy reliability and compromise states’ rights. DATE: Tuesday, November 14, 2023 TIME: 10:30 A.M. LOCATION: 2322 Rayburn House Office Building This notice is at the direction of the Chair. The hearing will be open to the public and press and will be live streamed online at https://energycommerce.house.gov/ . If you have any questions concerning the hearing, please contact Kaitlyn Peterson at Kaitlyn.Peterson@mail.house.gov . If you have any press-related questions, please contact Sean Kelly at Sean.Kelly@mail.house.gov .