Moniz: Energy efficiency bill failure reinforces need for presidential action

Energy Secretary Ernest MonizErnest MonizObama energy secretary criticizes Trump on oil reserve Obama energy secretary launches nonprofit Overnight Energy: Zinke, Perry take heat over Trump budget MORE expressed disappointment Wednesday at least week’s failure of energy efficiency legislation in the Senate, saying it strengthens the need for the Obama administration to take action on its own.

“Let’s face it, it’s a poor reflection on our status of being able to move good governance forward,” Moniz said at an event organized by the Alliance to Save Energy.

The legislation’s fate also demonstrated the importance of President Obama’s push to take action on various fronts, including energy, in ways that do not require congressional approval. This includes regulation and executive actions, such as recent moves to increase federal buildings’ efficiency.

“We’re going to just have to move with as many administrative tools as we can to keep momentum on both the demand and the supply side,” Moniz said.

The bill, sponsored by Sens. Jeanne Shaheen Jeanne ShaheenOvernight Defense: Trump gets briefing at Pentagon on ISIS, Afghanistan | Senate panel approves five defense picks | Senators want Syria study in defense bill Gore wishes Mikulski a happy birthday at 'Inconvenient Sequel' premiere Senators ask for Syria policy study in defense bill MORE (D-N.H.) and Rob PortmanRob PortmanOPINION | They told us to abandon ObamaCare — then came the resistance Regulatory experts push Senate leaders for regulatory reform Conservative group to give GOP healthcare holdouts ‘Freedom Traitors Award’ MORE (R-Ohio), failed to reach a 60-vote threshold in the Senate last week after nearly all Republicans voted against it. Rep. Peter Welch (D-Vt.) sponsored similar legislation in the House that passed last year.

“The Shaheen-Portman bill appears to have very widespread, bipartisan support, but no pathway to implementation,” Moniz said at an event organized by the Alliance to Save Energy. “The House companion bill, the Welch bill, ultimately of course will need bicameral support.”