Dems accuse Energy Dept. of ‘failure’ to follow efficiency law

Dems accuse Energy Dept. of ‘failure’ to follow efficiency law

House Democrats say the Department of Energy (DOE) is failing to follow its obligations to carry out energy efficiency legislation.

Rep. Frank Pallone Jr.Frank Joseph PalloneOvernight Health Care — Presented by PCMA — Senators unveil sweeping bipartisan health care package | House lawmakers float Medicare pricing reforms | Dems offer bill to guarantee abortion access Hillicon Valley: Assange hit with 17 more charges | Facebook removes record 2.2B fake profiles | Senate passes anti-robocall bill | Senators offer bill to help companies remove Huawei equipment Overnight Energy: Democrats ask if EPA chief misled on vehicle emissions | Dem senators want NBC debate focused on climate change | 2020 hopeful John Delaney unveils T climate plan MORE (N.J.), the top Democrat on the Energy and Commerce Committee, joined two top subcommittee Democrats on Thursday in a letter outlining the department’s “failure to fulfill its statutory responsibilities” to implement efficiency rules for appliances, which “will result in significantly higher costs for consumers, while also increasing greenhouse gas standards.”


Central to the Democrats’ arguments are four regulations on air conditioners, air compressors and other products that the Obama administration made final in 2017, but that the Trump administration has indefinitely delayed.

A federal court ruled earlier this year that the DOE illegally delayed the rules and ordered it to implement them. But the Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit halted the ruling while DOE appeals.

The Democrats also hit DOE over its reported intent to roll back the Obama administration’s lightbulb efficiency rules, for being behind deadline for evaluating more than 20 potential new efficiency standards and for not submitting required reports to Congress about its progress on those deadlines.

“DOE’s inability or unwillingness to meet legal obligations ignores Congress’ intent that efficiency standards be regularly updated to provide continuous benefits to consumers,” the lawmakers said.