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Rep. Ed Markey (D-Mass.) arrived in the House in 1977, the same year Jimmy Carter became president. Carter was determined to enact strong energy legislation, and even as a junior Member, Markey was a key Congressional partner.
With international global warming talks scheduled to get under way in Denmark later this year, stakeholders from across the globe will be paying close attention when a House subcommittee takes up a landmark energy and climate change bill later this month.
The Energy and Natural Resources Committee has been working toward producing a bipartisan, comprehensive energy bill since the beginning of this Congress. By the end of this week, we will have held 13 hearings and the committee staff will have organized 30 staff briefings on the topics that would be included in such a bill.
There is a strong impetus in Congress and across America to reshape our energy landscape. Prospects for passing a comprehensive energy bill are good, if Congress can avoid overreaching. The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee has been working diligently on a bipartisan bill since the beginning of the 111th Congress and held the first of several planned markups at the end of March.
Everyone knows that Ohio and the industrial Midwest have been hit especially hard by this recession. What many people dont understand is that climate change legislation can make our region and our country stronger.
These are very difficult economic times for our nation. Michigan in particular has been hit hard. Despite our dire economic circumstances, Congress is set to embark on a costly cap-and-tax scheme to address climate change, and it is the nations working families who are in the cross hairs.
In 1850, the estimated number of glaciers in what would become Glacier National Park was 150; today, it is 26. The Joshua trees in Joshua Tree National Park are dying. Our national parks require and deserve attention from Congress and the Obama administration. We must take strong and swift action to combat climate change on federal lands, or these parks and others like them will need new names.
The National Park Service has funding issues, but addressing some of the underlying, contributing factors is more important and will be more beneficial than simply throwing more money at the problem.
I was working on my mathematics Ph.D. in the 1970s at the beginning of the first OPEC oil embargo. Like many Americans, I was astounded by how quickly a few countries could threaten our nations security and economy. That experience motivated me to pursue a 20-year career in developing new energy technology. I started as a contractor at Sandia National Laboratories, engineered turbines for a wind energy company, developed smart grid technologies and ultimately started my own wind turbine manufacturing business.
I am fortunate to be from a state that is blessed with an abundance of the natural resources that are the foundation for a comprehensive plan to move our nation toward energy independence.