House advances energy measures to support U.S. oil and natural gas industry



The U.S. House passed a series of bills and resolutions to support the U.S. oil and natural gas industry. Only a handful of Democrats, largely from Texas, supported them.

The House last week passed “Protecting American Energy Production Act,” HR 1121, sponsored by U.S. Rep. Jeff Duncan, R-South Carolina, to prohibit a presidential moratorium on hydraulic fracturing and ensure states retain regulating authority. It passed by a vote of 229-188 with no Republicans voting against it and 15 Democrats voting for it.

Democrats who voted for it were Colin Allred, Henry Cuellar, Lizzie Fletcher, Vicente Gonzalez, and Marc Veasey of Texas; Sanford Bishop of Georgia; Brendan Boyle, Matt Cartwright, and Chrissy Houlahan of Pennsylvania; Yadira Caraveo of Colorad; Jim Costa of California; Marcy Kaptur of Ohio; Mary Peltola of Alaska; Marie Perez of Washington; and Gabe Vasquez of New Mexico.

The House also passed HR 6009, “Restoring American Energy Dominance Act,” sponsored by Rep. Lauren Boebert, R-Colorado. The bill would nullify a Bureau of Land Management proposed “Fluid Mineral Leases and Leasing Process” rule that increases bonding rates for production on federal lands.

It passed by a vote of 216-200 with three Democrats supporting it: Henry Cuellar and Vicente Gonzalez of Texas and Donald Davis of North Carolina.

The House also passed two resolutions, Resolution 987, “Denouncing Biden’s Anti-American Energy Policies,” and a Concurrent Resolution 86, opposing a carbon tax.

Resolution 987, sponsored by Rep. Dan Newhouse, R-Washington, denounces “the harmful, anti-American energy policies of the Biden administration,” including the president saying he will “end fossil fuels.” It cites examples of Biden policies “that increase the cost of energy for domestic consumers, hamper domestic production of energy, and increase reliance on foreign adversaries for energy needs.”

It also cites consequences of these policies: record-high gas prices, small businesses and families struggling to make ends meet unable to afford rising energy prices, 11,000 jobs lost from the Keystone XL pipeline cancellation, and thousands of jobs and hundreds of millions of dollars lost from cancelled lease sales in the Gulf of Mexico, the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge, and from mining moratoriums. The president’s actions all violate federal law established by Congress, the resolution, states.

It passed by a vote of 217-200 with four Democrats supporting it: Donald Davis of North Carolina, Vicente Gonzalez of Texas, Mary Peltola of Alaska, and Marie Perez of Washington.

CR 86, sponsored by Rep. Ryan Zinke, R-Montana, states that a carbon tax is “detrimental to American families and businesses, and is not in the best interest of the United States.” The tax will increase prices on gas, electricity, natural gas, and home heating oil, hurting families and consumers, it states, falling “hardest on the poor, the elderly, and those on fixed incomes.” It will also “lead to more jobs and businesses moving overseas” and reduce economic growth.

It also highlights “American ingenuity innovations in energy exploration and development,” which it argues should be encouraged.

The CR passed by a vote of 222-196 with 10 Democrats supporting it: Colin Allred, Henry Cuellar, and Vicente Gonzalez of Texas, Yadira Caraveo of Colorado, Donald Davis of North Carolina, Ruben Gallego of Arizona, Jared Moskowitz of Florida, Mary Peltola of Alaska, Marie Perez of Washington, and Gabe Vasquez of New Mexico.

Resolutions are not legally binding but express support for or condemnation of policies. The CR requires the Senate to consider it.

The House barely passed HR 1023 to repeal section 134 of the Clean Air Act. Sponsored by Rep. Gary Palmer, R-Alabama, it would repeal a $27 billion greenhouse gas reduction fund created by the administration to mobilize “financing and private capital to address the climate crisis.”

One Democrat joined 208 Republicans to pass it: Vicente Gonzalez of south Texas. One Republican, Brian Fitzpatrick of Pennsylvania, joined 203 Democrats to vote against it.

The House also passed HR 7023, “Creating Confidence in Clean Water Permitting Act,” sponsored by Rep. David Rouzer, R-North Carolina, to amend section 404 of the Federal Water Pollution Control Act. It would codify certain regulatory provisions relating to nationwide permits for dredged or fill material to provide regulatory certainty for businesses operating under Clean Water Act permits in the Gulf of Mexico. It was received in the U.S. Senate and referred to the Committee on Environment and Public Works.

It passed by a vote of 213-205 with two Democrats joining Republicans to pass it: Henry Cuellar of Texas and Donald Davis of North Carolina.

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