Last week, House Republican Leader Kevin McCarthy and Rep. Garret Graves, chair of the Energy, Climate, and Conservation Task Force, launched a new Republican energy and climate policy strategy, underscoring what is fundamental to conservative principles—investing in America, unlocking American resources, lowering costs for American families, enhancing our national security, and reducing global emissions.
“Three things are guiding this,” explained Rep. Graves. “Portability, emissions reduction, and energy security. This administration has no comprehensive plan, or rational plan, or plan components that actually make up any type of puzzle that you can look at and recognize. I challenge anybody … right now to explain to me this Administration’s energy policy.”
The policy strategy is comprised of six key issue areas to be unveiled over the next several months, including:
- Unlock American Resources
- Let America Build
- American Innovation
- Beat China and Russia
- Conservation with a Purpose
- Build Resilient Communities
CRES Forum’s white paper series “Understanding the Facts“—which examines solutions to America’s most critical energy and environment issues—introduces readers to many of the issues identified in the Task Force’s agenda, setting the stage for how conservatives will move our nation forward under a Republican-led Congress.
“We are aggressively pursuing this, meaning this global energy demand spike of 50 percent, with U.S. resources,” added Graves. “This means U.S. innovation, U.S. renewable energy technology, and yes, it means conventional energy resources like oil and gas, because in the U.S., we produce it in a way that is cleaner with lower emissions profiles than other countries.
Graves was joined Rep. Randy Feenstra (R-IA) and Rep. Jay Obernolte (R-CA) for a roundtable conversation hosted by Rep. Yvette Herrell (R-NM) in Hobbs, New Mexico, which is located in the famous Permian Basin, the largest petroleum-producing basin in the United States.
New Mexico embodies the GOP’s all-of-the-above vision for domestic energy production—ranking second in the nation in crude oil production and among the top ten in natural gas; but it also generates 30 percent of its energy from wind power, ranking sixth in the country, and it is on the cutting edge of nuclear energy innovation, research and development (R&D) thanks to its two national laboratories, Los Alamos National Laboratory and Sandia National Laboratory.
Conservatives recognize that America is fortunate to have abundant natural resources, including cleaner-burning natural gas. Increasing America’s natural gas production can support our own energy needs, as well as the needs of our European allies to reduce emissions and help offset Russian imports. Yet, the Biden administration continues to stand in the way of domestic production, leaving Americans with high prices at the gas pump and supermarket. And because these commodities are being produced in less carbon efficient nations, global emissions will go up. Decreasing our nation’s dependence on Russia and China and investing in U.S. innovation are the building blocks to a better America.
“I think we can all see, we understand, the importance of energy independence,” said Rep. Herrell. “It’s terrifying to think we are compromising our position globally in terms of energy policy and what that does for our country.”
The week prior to the roundtable, Rep. Herrell co-authored an op-ed with Rep. Bruce Westerman (R-AR) titled, “It’s Time to Unleash the Power of American Energy,” which described their vision for America’s energy future.
Rep. Herrell and the other participants are optimistic Republicans would gain control of the House in November, and she was confident the Task Force could implement a number of game-changing policies. She invited the Task Force to return to New Mexico after the elections to discuss next steps.
In support of the Task Force, CRES President Heather Reams said, “It’s time we cut away the Washington red tape that stifles American growth, hurts American families, and increases global emissions. The policies put forth by the Republican Climate Task Force aim to do just that.”
Earlier this year, CRES announced the results of its national survey conducted by Public Opinion Strategies, which found Americans across party lines overwhelmingly support “commonsense” policies to reduce emissions that cause climate change—ranging from tax incentives to reducing regulatory red tape, to holding foreign countries to their climate commitments. Further, voters continue to support the federal government taking more action to address climate change—60 percent—which includes accelerating the development and use of clean energy—70 percent.
Over this summer, the Energy, Climate and Conservation Task Force will roll out policies in six key issue areas, including: