Energy & Environment

Key House Republican floats energy package

Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) asks questions of Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra during a House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health hearing to discuss the President’s FY 2023 budget for the department on Wednesday, April 27, 2022.
Greg Nash
Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) asks questions of Secretary of Health and Human Services Xavier Becerra during a House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health hearing to discuss the President’s FY 2023 budget for the department on Wednesday, April 27, 2022.

House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairwoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-Wash.) on Wednesday signaled the committee will move on a larger energy legislative package under her leadership.

“There’s a lot in these packages, but I’d say it’s focused on securing American resources, it is [focused] on permitting reform, it is [focused] on modernizing energy infrastructure, [liquefied natural gas] exports … we need to be promoting carbon capture and sequestration, promoting renewables, promoting nuclear power, American needs to lead on next-generation nuclear energy,” Rodgers said Wednesday, speaking at the American Petroleum Institute’s State of American Energy event in Washington, D.C.

The Washington state Republican particularly signaled support for nuclear energy, arguing that the U.S. “needs to lead on next-generation nuclear energy.”

Nuclear energy as a fuel source was broadly phased out in the late 20th century amid opposition by environmentalists and fears after the Chernobyl nuclear disaster. Nuclear energy proponents have called for a reevaluation as a renewable source in recent years, specifically pointing to Europe’s energy crisis following the Russian invasion of Ukraine and the domestic energy supply nuclear power could potentially have provided.

Permitting reform for new energy infrastructure has long been a priority for Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), who backed the Inflation Reduction Act last year in exchange for a vote on such a measure. An amendment including the Manchin proposal was blocked in the Senate last year, but the West Virginia Democrat has vowed to continue pushing for it.

The Hill has reached out to Rodgers for clarification on whether the committee is in touch with Manchin, as well as for further details on whether the package in question will involve a single large bill or a series of independent bills.

Rodgers was formally named chair of the committee Tuesday, replacing Rep. Frank Pallone Jr. (D-N.J.). House Republicans have indicated they will use the majority to broadly oppose the Biden administration’s energy policies, including a bill to investigate the administration’s release of oil from the Strategic Petroleum Reserve last year amid spiraling gas prices following the Russian invasion of Ukraine.

Tags Cathy McMorris Rodgers Cathy McMorris Rodgers Energy Frank Pallone House Energy and Commerce Committee Joe Manchin Nuclear energy
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