Double-Digit Increases In Electricity and Home Heating Bills Coming This Winter, Bipartisan Group Of Legislators Warns
Democrats and Republicans Join With Congress of Racial Equality To Urge Passage Of The “Americans for American Energy Act”
A bipartisan group of state legislators is warning that consumers face double-digit utility and home heating bills increases this winter “because we are not moving quickly enough to build new baseload power plants, erect new power lines and increase our production of American energy from fossil, nuclear and renewable energy resources.”
“Four-dollar-a-gallon gasoline may be fading from the publics memory, but we are not out of the woods. Double-digit increases in utility bills and home heating costs are just around the corner,” warned Wyoming State Senator Bill Vasey (D), chairman of Americans for American Energy, a non-profit public education and grassroots group. “Our energy crisis is not over, and its about to get even worse.”
Vasey noted that the U.S. Department of Energy “is forecasting double-digit price increases in consumer expenditures to heat homes with natural gas, electricity and heating fuel from coast-to-coast. For natural gas-heated homes, the projected expenditure increases are 15 percent in the West, 18 percent in the South, 19 percent in the Midwest and 12 percent in the Northeast. For heating oil, the numbers are even higher. These double-digit increases are going to hurt tens of millions of American families and further depress our economy.”
“There is no getting around it — if we want to keep the lights on in America, we are going to need to build new baseload power plants, erect new high-voltage transmission lines, and increase our production of all forms of American energy,” said Colorado State Senator Bill Cadman (R). “We have a lot of pressing problems in America, but none rank higher than maintaining our national security. Modernizing our energy infrastructure is critical to our security, and that means taking immediate action. The new Congress and President-elect Obama have a great opportunity to get it right this year.”
“Coming from an energy producing state rich in coal, oil and gas, oil shale and renewable resources, I am especially sensitive to how attacks by extremist groups against the energy and natural resource industries kills jobs and puts people out of work. Thats why I am so supportive of the direction in which Congressman Rob Bishop is taking his Americans for American Energy Act,” said Rep. Aaron Tilton (R-UT), another AAE board member. “I join my colleagues in applauding his leadership on this crucial issue.”
The legislators joined with U.S. Rep. Rob Bishop (R-UT), incoming chair of the U.S. House Western Caucus and the chief sponsor of the “Americans for American Energy Act,” in calling on Congress to act quickly on Bishop’s soon-to-be-reintroduced legislation.
Last year’s bill, HR 6384, won the support of 46 cosponsors Members and was the most comprehensive domestic energy supply and conservation measure introduced in the Congress.
This new version of the AAE Act is similar to last year’s, but adds other important initiatives that encourage greater energy efficiency, conservation and environmental protection through encouragement of clean energy initiatives and clean energy infrastructure build-out. The bill promotes new American energy supplies by expanding the safe and environmentally responsible development of traditional energy resources, expands science and engineering education, new technology and energy innovation. The bill also would modernize and improve our nations energy infrastructure, as well as remove government roadblocks to sensible energy development by streamlining energy regulations and requires a first-of-its-kind cost/benefit assessment of any legislation that affects U.S. energy supply, such as withdrawal of energy lands held by the federal government.
Highlights of the latest draft of the Americans for American Energy Act include:
– Lower Emissions through Efficiency Gains: incentives for industry to install and employ energy efficiency technologies and practices that economically can be met by the utility, power production, manufacturing, industrial, natural resource development and transportation sectors;
– Clean Energy Portfolio: incentives for utilizing clean energy technologies including clean coal with carbon capture sequestration, nuclear, oil and gas and renewables;
– Apollo-Project Funding for CCS Technologies: major new investment in research and development of technologies that expands CO2 management and deployment for power producers, manufacturers and other industrial sectors;
– Clean Energy Infrastructure Build-Out: incentives for investment in new energy infrastructure including: CO2, oil and natural gas pipelines, modern baseload power plants and improved transmission lines;
– Decrease Foreign Oil through CO2 Storage: incentives to encourage rapid build-out of infrastructure needed for enhanced oil recovery;
– Reduce Foreign Oil by Developing American Oil Shale: regulatory changes that provide incentives to develop America’s 800 billion barrel oil supply from western U.S. oil shale; and
– CO2 Sequestration Legal Reforms: legal reforms that ensure that effective CO2 sequestration isnt slowed or stopped by activist lawsuits by plaintiffs’ attorneys.
“The AAE Act will prove to be the most comprehensive and substantive energy legislation again next year. When the public demanded Congress take action on important measures like lifting the OCS drilling ban and the ban on commercial leasing of federal oil shale lands, they got only part of what is needed to make us a more energy secure America,” said Vasey. “The AAE Act is a broad-based bill that is realistic, economical, and gets to the real issues that hamstring our nation when it comes to producing more American energy. I applaud Congressman Bishop and my colleagues from around the nation for being here today to support this important initiative.”
Americans for American Energy
350 Indiana Street, Suite 640
Golden, CO 80401