The White House on Wednesday said it has “concerns” with many of the provisions in a wide-ranging energy bill being debated in the Senate.
But it stopped short of threatening to veto the legislation, saying it supports many major aspects in it and wants to work with lawmakers to resolve problems.
“Modernizing the nation's energy system and the policies that govern it has been a central focus of the administration's efforts to combat climate change, strengthen energy security and resilience, and enhance our economic competitiveness,” it added.
The bill, which the Senate formally started to debate Wednesday, contains numerous minor priorities from both Republicans and Democrats such as expediting liquefied natural gas export approvals and indefinitely renewing the Land and Water Conservation Fund.
Sens. Lisa MurkowskiLisa MurkowskiWhat we learned from Rick Perry's confirmation hearing Perry regrets saying he would abolish Energy Department Trump education pick to face Warren, Sanders MORE (R-Alaska) and Maria CantwellMaria CantwellWhat we learned from Rick Perry's confirmation hearing Perry regrets saying he would abolish Energy Department Dems seek more vetting for Trump nominees before hearings MORE (D-Wash.) drafted the bill with the stated goal of remaining bipartisan.
The White House welcomed much of the legislation, particularly the parts dealing with energy efficiency, infrastructure and conservation.
But officials said they have “concerns” with provisions it said could hamper efficiency programs, national laboratories and cybersecurity, among other parts.
“The administration looks forward to working with the Congress to address these and other concerns as the bill moves through the legislative process,” it said.