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Energy and Environment

While Drought Compels California to Take Action, Rest of the Country Shouldn't Wait | Commentary

While the rest of the country may only think about climate change during an extreme weather event or as something our children are going to have to deal with, my home state of California is already facing the effects of climate change and is working tirelessly to deal with its effects. From reduced snowpack to a rising sea level, warming temperatures will continue to strain our state’s water supply and threaten millions of acres of farmland.

Fracking: Good Science Vs. Science Fiction | Commentary

The United States is now the world’s largest oil and natural gas producer, having recently overtaken both Saudi Arabia and Russia. Two decades ago, no one would have believed it. The practice of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, has fueled this energy boom. Fracking has unlocked vast amounts of what used to be considered economically inaccessible oil and gas. Increased domestic energy production has benefited the environment, the economy and hardworking families who now enjoy reduced energy prices.

National Parks Can Guide the Way on Climate Change | Commentary

Each day I walk into my district office, I am guided by the iconic arrowhead symbol of the National Park Service.

Focus on Support for Solar Owners

While the solar industry and environmental groups look ahead to protecting the federal solar investment tax credit, they are at the same time engaged in a campaign to maintain the financial supports solar owners get at the state and local level.

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Boom Puts Spotlight on Renewing Key Solar Tax Break

Solar energy is booming in the United States and the industry wants everyone to know it. But winning an extension of a key solar tax break in a GOP Congress suspicious of green energy won’t be easy, especially as regulatory and market forces continue to batter fossil fuels and nuclear power.

The Business Argument for Addressing Climate Change | Commentary

Most Americans know, in general, about climate change. Even those who dispute it have read or heard about rising tides, melting ice caps and superstorms.

Congress Must Protect the Wild Silence of the Arctic Refuge | Commentary

Recently, President Barack Obama and his administration signed the Record of Decision for the updated management plan for the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and transmitted a wilderness recommendation to Congress — finalizing the decision to recommend 12.28 million acres of wilderness for the Arctic Refuge and its biologically sensitive coastal plain. Now it’s Congress’ turn.

Congress: Protect ANWR from Alaska's Greed | Commentary

President Barack Obama showed great leadership in announcing his intent to protect our nation’s vanishing wild, natural capital by recommending that Congress protect 12.28 million acres of Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge as wilderness. Congress has been busy talking about the decision during this month’s budget hearings, and we likely haven’t heard the end of it.

The 40-Year Saga of The EPA's Coal-Ash Rule

The path to the Environmental Protection Agency’s December release of its final rule for coal-ash disposal stretched for nearly 40 years through the halls of Congress, the bureaucratic web of federal agencies, and in and out of courtrooms across the country. Here are a few key milestones:

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Noting the Irony, Republican Praises EPA Coal-Ash Rule

An unusual event transpired last week in the House: A senior Republican opened a hearing by praising the Environmental Protection Agency.

Chemical Safety Reform: We're Not There Yet | Commentary

“The perfect should not be the enemy of the good” is perhaps the most-repeated axiom you hear on Capitol Hill.

In Lieu of the Cane, a Reflection on Conservation Policy | Commentary

More than 200 years ago, Rep. Roger Griswold of Connecticut used his wooden cane to bludgeon Rep. Matthew Lyon of Vermont on the House floor. Had Griswold any respect for Lyon, he would have challenged him to a duel.

Renewable Fuels Critical to Energy Security | Commentary

Although it doesn’t feel like it now, spring and summer are fast approaching in Massachusetts. If gasoline prices stay low, millions of Bay Staters will have the ability to inexpensively travel across New England to visit our wonderful beaches, mountains and parks. However, the one downside of cheap fuel at the pump is that it lulls people into forgetting our over-reliance on oil creates a serious national security concern for America and our allies.

Atlantic Drilling Back on Table After Spill Delay

President Barack Obama first put Atlantic drilling on the table in March 2010, as part of a strategy to bring more Republicans to the negotiating table for a comprehensive climate change bill in the Senate.

Maryland, Virginia Members Disagree on Atlantic Oil Drilling

The Obama administration’s recent proposal to lease oil and gas drilling in a swath of the Atlantic Ocean generated the expected mix of cheers and jeers on Capitol Hill, but local reaction was mostly divided along state borders rather than party affiliations.

As Fracking Debates Roil, It's Time for National Standards | Commentary

Few developments on the energy landscape have been as disruptive as the spread of hydraulic fracturing, commonly known as fracking. The technique has transformed the economy of communities across the country while raising concerns about safety and environmental impacts.

The President's Misplaced Energy Priorities | Commentary

Earlier this month, the White House doubled down on President Barack Obama’s pronouncement that climate change is a bigger threat to Americans than terrorism. The comments reveal a startling disconnect and come at a time when we have witnessed an unsettling uptick in terror attacks. These recent statements also underscore just how out of touch the White House is from the daily priorities of Americans. Despite growing strife around the world and a sluggish economic recovery at home, this president’s No. 1 priority continues to be climate change. Moreover, White House officials do not shy away from the desire to make climate the president’s legacy, regardless of the cost and consequences to Americans.

From Health Care to Energy: Majority of Americans Pay More, Get Less Under Obama | Commentary

As a member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, I sit at the intersection of energy and health care policy. From that vantage point, I’ve come to see some of the unfortunate parallels between the Obama administration’s past claims about the Affordable Care Act and the similar claims it now makes about the EPA’s Clean Power Plan.

Mr. President, Say Yes to Energy | Commentary

For far too long, our country’s energy policies have been based on the idea of energy scarcity and foreign dependence. Now, we seem to be on the verge of energy independence. In order to unleash our true energy potential, we must explore all options — including exploration on federal lands. It is time to have a long-term energy policy for America. While I welcome President Barack Obama’s recent Mid- and South-Atlantic offshore plan, I view it as one step forward and two steps back because he has removed millions of acres of potentially resource-rich land from exploration. It is time this administration says yes to energy; it is time to open the 87 percent of federal land currently prohibited from potential energy exploration.

Building More Energy Infrastructure Is in Our Best Interest | Commentary

When the United Stated entered World War II in 1941, oil was an essential part of military operations around the world. The U.S. was rich with the abundant natural resources it needed to protect the homeland and help its allies, but there was one problem. Transportation bottlenecks restricted movement to vital distribution points along the East Coast, and German U-boat attacks along the Eastern seaboard and in the Caribbean were successfully cutting off the resources the allies needed to fight. Losses mounted until August of 1941, when the federal government and industry leaders partnered to protect U.S. resources and find a better, safer and faster way to transport oil. The result was the largest pipeline construction project the nation had ever seen. The Inch Pipelines — the Big Inch and Little Inch — were each 1,200 miles long, running from Texas to New Jersey. By the end of the war in 1945, the Inch Pipelines had safely delivered more than 350 million barrels of oil to the East Coast. The rest is history.

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