House GOP to push new wave of energy reforms next week

“Our country is
in desperate need of a national energy strategy, and increasing domestic
production should be a major component of that plan,” Rep. Cory Gardner
(R-Colo.), the lead sponsor of the bill, said last week. “By increasing
oil and gas leases on federal land to match what is released from our
emergency energy reserves, we can turn a short-term supply fix into a
long-term policy that promotes America’s energy independence.”

is the sponsor of the bill that now serves as the vehicle for several
proposals. His Domestic Energy and Jobs Act would link drawdowns from
the Strategic Petroleum Reserve to increased domestic energy — once
there is a drawdown, the secretary of Energy would have to develop a
plan for increased leasing of federal land for oil and gas development.

bill also includes language from Rep. Ed Whitfield (R-Ky.), the
Gasoline Regulations Act, which would set up an executive-branch
committee charged with estimating the cumulative impacts of EPA rules on
gas prices, jobs and the economy. That committee would have to issue a
report to Congress 210 days after enactment.

Another proposal,
from Rep. Scott Tipton (R-Colo.), would require the secretary of the
Interior to report every four years on the government’s federal onshore
energy strategy.

The bill also includes other GOP language
requiring the Secretary of the Interior to decide on energy leasing
permits within 30 days, requiring lease sales in Alaska, and allowing
Internet-based onshore oil and gas lease sales.

The House Rules Committee has set a June 18 deadline for amendments to the bill, H.R. 4480, a sign the bill could be considered as early as next week, once members return from break.

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