At an event earlier this week, U.S. Energy Secretary Ernest Moniz expressed his disappointment over the fact that the Senate could not pass a comprehensive energy efficiency bill. The widely-supported Shaheen-Portman legislation – a bipartisan effort – crashed and burned last week due to Republican and Democratic senators being unable to put politics aside to pass the proposed law. This failure of leadership has resonated with Moniz, who believes that it is up to the Obama administration to pick up the slack.
Improving how the country consumes energy has long been said to be a centerpiece of President Obama's remaining years in office, and he appears to be ready to throw his political weight behind this increasingly pressing issue. In June, the administration is expected to rollout new regulations and powers for the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), expanding its responsibilities under the U.S. Clean Air Act. Although this move has been criticized by Republicans, Obama seems to be willing to take the heat from the legislature.
Although the House has its own energy bill that was passed last year, it has since languished in the purgatory between the lower and upper chambers of the government. Moniz said at the Alliance to Save Energy event that the legislation will need bicameral support, but did not offer his thoughts on how he thinks the law, sponsored by Vermont Democrat Peter Welch, will fare in the political stalemate that has gripped the Senate.
"We're going to just have to move with as many administrative tools as we can to keep momentum on both the demand and the supply side," Moniz said to those attending the event.
If you are a Virginia resident interested in becoming more energy-efficient, schedule an appointment today an energy audit with Alban Inspections!