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June 24, 2014

It's "Dirty Energy Week" in the House of Representatives

Oil moneyWhile the Republicans in the House of Representatives are great at making sure almost every week is chock full of terrible legislation that would please their Big Oil and King Coal buddies, this week is their official "Energy Week." And it's just as awful as you could imagine from the party that regularly denies climate disruption while lining their pockets with money from the dirty fuels industry.
 
Take a look at some of the bills the House GOP is pushing:
 
The "Lowering Gasoline Prices to Fuel an America That Works Act of 2014," HR 4899, prioritizes oil and gas development over any other uses of America's public lands, be they conservation, hunting, hiking, wildlife habitat, or historic preservation. It also pushes the Department of the Interior to open up the coastal plain of the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge to oil and gas exploration if the State of Alaska supplies matching funds to carry out an exploration program.
 
The "North American Energy Infrastructure Act," HR 3301, which would allow Congress to approve the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline and any other pipeline that crosses the U.S. border.
 
The "Domestic Prosperity and Global Freedom Act," HR6, which would expedite liquefied natural gas exports and exponentially increase natural gas fracking nationwide.
 
There are others, including bills that would increase offshore oil drilling and block solar and offshore wind. Meanwhile the GOP also suspended several bills that would protect rivers and increase energy efficiency.
 
The GOP even used their weekly response to the President's Radio Address on Saturday to talk up energy….like nuclear, coal, and the Keystone XL tar sands pipeline.

Maybe this push shouldn't be a surprise from the most anti-environmental House of Representatives in history - one that's taken almost 500 votes against clean air and clean water in four years.

Yet on the heels of more and more stark climate stats (NOAA just announced that May was the hottest month on record, for example), seeing our supposed "leaders" continue to push the dirty fuels that are causing climate disruption is upsetting, to say the least.

Thankfully we have the environmental firewall of the Senate, where these fossil-fuel-loving bills will die.

Now's the time to be investing in more clean energy like solar and wind power, which won't pollute our air and water or fry our planet. When will the House GOP stop wasting time on fruitless dirty energy support when it could be creating clean energy jobs with the wind power production tax credit?

-- Heather Moyer, Sierra Club

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