The Senate unanimously approved a bill (H.R. 6582) on December 7 that makes time-sensitive reforms, provides regulatory relief to manufacturers of certain appliances and strengthens the industrial efficiency and the Federal agency energy efficiency programs.
The legislation will extend the success of the 25-year old Department of Energy appliance efficiency program. It is estimated that by 2030, the DOE program, as amended by the H.R. 6582, will reduce national electrical demand 12 percent below what it otherwise would be -- all at virtually no cost to the American taxpayer.
Championed in the Senate by Energy Committee Chairman Jeff Bingaman (D-NM), and with the support of his colleagues Sens. Lisa Murkowski (R-AK), Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), Rob Portman (R-OH), Herb Kohl (D-WI), Jeff Sessions (R-AL) and others, the “American Energy Manufacturing Technical Corrections Act” as passed, would establish efficiency standards for certain specialized products, consolidate other standards and provide the Energy Department with the flexibility to consider new technologies in achieving energy efficiency goals. It also addresses the important issues of industrial efficiency and Federal agency energy efficiency by coordinating research and development among DOE offices, requiring implementation plans for measuring Federal agency efficiency performance and examining the barriers to the deployment of energy efficient technologies in the industrial sector.
Sen. Bingaman: “Energy efficiency cuts waste, saves consumers and businesses money, strengthens our economy, improves electric-grid reliability and reduces pollution. This bill will save energy and jobs and continue the tradition of collaboration among industry, consumer groups and energy efficiency advocates in improving energy efficiency. I am heartened to see the continued bipartisan commitment to energy efficiency that is demonstrated by the passage of H.R. 6582.”
Sen. Murkowski: “This bill will improve how we use energy, while providing adequate protections for manufacturers to ensure they can remain competitive. The bill contains standards that were developed by consensus. It’s encouraging to see all sides on this issue working together to find areas of agreement and pass bipartisan energy legislation.”
It is important to recognize the contributions of other of Bingaman and Murkowski’s colleagues, including Sens. Claire McCaskill (D-MO), Roy Blunt (R-MO), Debbie Stabenow (D-MI), Christopher Coons (D-DE), Bob Corker (R-TN), Mark Pryor (D-AR) and Richard Shelby (R-AL). This bill reflects the continuing bi-partisan commitment to these programs and to the fundamental role that energy efficiency plays in a balanced and successful national energy policy. A summary is available here