ST. PAUL – Rep. Adam Putnam (R-FL) kicked off a House Republican Conference presser today explaining, “Energy is an issue we don’t have to wait till November to address.” For the next five minutes one might have thought they were at a Speaker Nancy Pelosi press conference as Putnam reeled of all of the commitments the GOP is proposing in their ‘All of the Above‘ energy plan including: tax incentives for businesses and families that purchase fuel efficient vehicles, permanently extending the tax credit for wind and solar power, and establishing a renewable energy trust fund.
But when it came to to explain how they planned to fund their new renewable energy trust fund, that’s when it began to sound like a Republican press conference again. The ‘All of the Above’ energy plan pays for new investments in renewable energy with proceeds from the sale of leases to oil and gas producers in now banned areas in the Outer Continental Shelf (OCS) and Arctic National Wildlife Refuge (ANWR). Minority Leader John Boehner (R-OH) insisted on an up and down vote on the bill and was skeptical that Pelosi would offer any compromise that truly made an effort to develop our natural resources. The ‘Gang of 10’ energy plan currently floating on the hill allows only 14% of the currently banned oil resources to be developed.
Ranking Energy Committee Joe Barton (R-TX) noted that some experts estimate that U.S. energy use is expected to grow 30-40% by 2030. “We simply are not prepared for this,” Barton said, “and we will not meet these needs without developing our own energy resources.