December 12, 2016

Congress Fails To Pass Comprehensive Energy Bill, But Americans Are Still Hungry For Reform

The 114th Congress ended its session last week without voting on a final passage of a comprehensive energy bill. (Both the House and Senate had successfully voted earlier in the year on their individual bills, but lawmakers could not bridge the differences between those two packages in order to arrive at final legislation.) Republican leaders in the U.S. House have pledged to bring up similar legislation in the 115th Congress. 

The Metals Service Center Institute supports comprehensive energy legislation. (See MSCI’s stance on energy issues in its advocacy agenda here.) 

The majority of American voters agree. According to a new survey by the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), clear majorities of voters in the battleground states of Pennsylvania, Ohio and Virginia support increasing domestic energy production, and more than 80 percent support increased investment in power lines, pipelines, power plants, refineries and railroads. The NAM survey also found support for increased investment in energy infrastructure stretches across party lines. The findings show that 86 percent of self-identified environmentalists and 89 percent of union members want to increase spending on energy infrastructure. Additionally, 61 percent said infrastructure investment will create good-paying jobs while  64 percent said they believe that investing in energy infrastructure will help build a stronger economy. 

In other energy infrastructure news: President Barack Obama last week denied the final easement for the Dakota Access Pipeline, a move that halts completion of the project. Some analysts believe President-elect Donald Trump easily will be able to reverse the decision once he takes office.