Senators Give Green Light to Shaheen-Portman Bill
A STATEMENT FROM ALLIANCE PRESIDENT KATERI CALLAHAN
Clearly, our lawmakers see a need for action on energy efficiency. The Shaheen-Portman energy efficiency bill sailed through a procedural hurdle in the Senate this morning, with a lopsided, bi-partisan vote of 79-20, clearing the way for the Senate to debate and approve the bill.
The path to the Senate floor has taken three years – almost to the day (original introduction date was May 16, 2011) – and its journey has been one of building stronger bi-partisan support for making energy efficiency the “first fuel” for the American economy. The leadership and determination of the bill’s sponsors, Alliance Honorary Vice-Chairs Senators Shaheen (D-N.H.) and Portman (R-Ohio) has put energy efficiency in its rightful spot as a centerpiece of sound national energy policy. Their hard work has led to a piece of legislation that will help meet America’s goals of increasing energy productivity, promoting economic growth, enhancing energy security, and reducing emissions — all at little cost to taxpayers, and with no mandates.
The American public wants bi-partisan policies that will spur economic growth and create jobs, and Shaheen-Portman certainly fits the bill. The House of Representatives has already passed portions of the bill and appears poised to consider additional energy efficiency legislation if the Senate acts.
The legislation is supported by policymakers at both ends of the political spectrum, as well as a broad coalition of small and large businesses, trade associations, and public interest groups. Our policymakers may not agree on much, but this lopsided vote reaffirms, once again, that energy efficiency is a common sense way to address our nation’s energy challenges. The Alliance urges the Senate to act without delay and pass this cost-effective, bi-partisan legislation.