Each year, CRES honors policy makers who have been stalwart leaders in proposing and reinforcing U.S. clean energy legislation as our Clean Energy Champions during National Clean Energy Week (NCEW). In the coming weeks, we will be profiling each of this year’s Champions in more depth on the CRES blog.
Congresswoman Mariannette Miller-Meeks believes in a homegrown energy sector that benefits all Americans. That’s why Rep. Miller-Meeks supports a commonsense, all-of-the-above energy approach. Rep. Miller-Meeks understands to reach true energy independence, we need every viable source of energy available.
“I’m honored to be named a Clean Energy Champion this year,” said Rep. Miller-Meeks in the press announcement. “Iowa leads the nation in renewable energy production and Iowans are constantly seeking ways to make clean energy more affordable, accessible, and abundant. In order to leave a healthier planet for our children and grandchildren, we must enact policies that benefit a variety of energy sources where they work best.”
The fourth of eight children, Rep. Miller-Meeks grew up in a military family. Her father, a Master Sergeant in the United States Air Force, and mother both worked multiple jobs to support the large family. Rep. Miller-Meek’s family could not afford her college, so she left home at 16, enrolled in community college, and later enlisted in the Army at age 18. Rep. Miller-Meeks served in the U.S. Armed Forces for 24 years in multiple roles: private, nurse, and doctor. In 1997, she went into private practice, and in 2018, Rep. Miller-Meeks was elected to Iowa State Senate, a role she resigned from in 2021 so she could join the U.S. House of Representatives.
Rep. Miller-Meeks has shown vision for the future of American energy. She joined the the first-ever Republican-only delegation as a member and attended the 2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP26). She’s also a cosponsor of the SUPER Act, legislation that requires the U.S. Department of Energy to establish programs to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from the production of iron, steel, and steel mill products.
In July, Rep. Miller-Meeks introduced the bipartisan Biochar Research Network Act of 2022. In her own words: “This bill would create a National Biochar Research Network where biochar can be further researched and tested. This research includes how well biochar sequesters carbon, improves water and soil quality, retains water to reduce irrigation, reduces greenhouse gas emissions, and how it increases crop production, especially in marginal soil.”
As an Iowa representative, Rep. Miller-Meeks loves to tout her state’s accomplishments in the clean energy sector. In a recent op-ed, Rep. Miller wrote: “Iowa’s vast farmland allows solar and wind to thrive, and Iowans are constantly seeking new ways to expand our clean energy sector. This has brought jobs and revenue to Iowa and has helped the United States to be energy independent.”
Congratulations, Congresswoman Miller-Meeks! CRES looks forward to continuing to work with all our Clean Energy Champions on important clean energy legislation in the coming years.