House lines up energy bill amendments on oil exports, pipeline permits

House lines up energy bill amendments on oil exports, pipeline permits

House members are set to vote this week on a slate of amendments to a Republican-backed energy reform bill, addressing oil exports and cross-border pipeline permits.

One amendment, from Rep. Joe BartonJoe Linus BartonGOP trading fancy offices, nice views for life in minority Privacy legislation could provide common ground for the newly divided Congress Texas New Members 2019 MORE (R-Texas), would repeal the ban on crude oil exports, a measure he pushed through the House in October.


At the time, Barton’s bill won 261 votes in the House and buoyed supporters’ hopes that the measure could move through the Senate as well. Senators have not yet brought their bill to the floor. 

Barton’s amendment is largely similar to the bill members passed in October. 

Rep. Gene GreenRaymond (Gene) Eugene GreenTexas New Members 2019 Two Democrats become first Texas Latinas to serve in Congress Latina Leaders to Watch 2018 MORE (D-Texas) is pushing an amendment that would reform the permitting process for cross-border pipelines, something that tangled up deliberations on the proposed Keystone XL pipeline before President Obama nixed the project last month.

“If we’re going to have a North American energy plan that includes production and trading of our products,” Green said, then pipeline approval for natural gas and crude oil and energy transmission lines needs to be improved. 

“What happened with Keystone is it actually poisoned the well for other pipelines that are not as controversial,” he said Wednesday.

Lawmakers will consider 38 amendments to the energy bill in all. Others include a Republican push to ban the denial of energy export facilities before environmental reviews are completed and another to speed up legal challenges against energy development on federal land. 

Democrats look to strip out sections of the underlying bill, including a Republican effort to end fossil fuel reduction targets for federal buildings. Democrats are also looking to block implementation of the bill until federal energy researchers determine its impact on carbon emissions. 

Many amendments call for federal studies, including those on the use of carbon capture technology for power plants, security measures for the electric grid, battery energy storage and methane emissions.

Rep. Fred UptonFrederick (Fred) Stephen UptonThe 9 House Republicans who support background checks Al Green says impeachment is 'only solution' to Trump's rhetoric Trump primary challenger Bill Weld responds to rally chants: 'We are in a fight for the soul of the GOP' MORE’s (R-Mich.) energy overhaul bill hits the House floor Wednesday night, and members are set to vote on it Thursday. 

The bill focuses on modernizing infrastructure, improving energy efficiency and updating other federal energy policies. The White House has threatened to veto the legislation over regulatory provisions within it.