"Fossil fuel is the key to our commerce, and we should recognize this in this Congress, and we should develop an energy plan that includes everything," Young continued. "You can't do it with just wind power. You can't do it with just solar power."

Young's comments were made in the context of a brief debate on an amendment from Rep. Bill Keating (D-Mass.) to a bill that would set U.S. energy production levels through more offshore drilling. Keating's amendment would have required the Department of the Interior to disclose the amount of bonuses given to companies that receive offshore leases.

Young dismissed Keating's amendment as one that is not relevant to the bill, H.R. 1231. Keating's amendment, as well as several others offered by Democrats, is expected to be rejected by the House later Wednesday evening and Thursday morning.