Legislating in the Dark: Latest House Vote Attacks Water, Clean Energy and Light Bulbs

“This bill is an affront to historic bipartisan efforts to keep our nation’s waters clean and healthy and improve energy efficiency"

07-15-2011 // Mékell Mikell
Marie Murray

Today, the House of Representatives voted to further dismantle America’s clean water and clean energy future by passing H.R. 2354, the Energy & Water Development Appropriations Act of 2012. The bill blocks the Army Corps of Engineers from updating Clean Water Act guidance that would bring greater clarity to the law and better protect our rivers, lakes and streams. H.R. 2354 also stalls restoration of the Everglades and other Great Waters, which offer huge water quality, habitat and economic benefits to the nation.

“This bill is an affront to historic bipartisan efforts to keep our nation’s waters clean and healthy and improve energy efficiency,” said Jim Lyon, vice president for conservation policy at the National Wildlife Federation. “Instead of investing in American resources and innovation, the House continues to invest in the status quo of inefficiency, pollution and pandering to special interests.”

Energy efficiency and renewable energy programs at the Department of Energy were also slashed over 27 percent in the measure, with some of those funds being diverted to dirty fossil fuels. The legislation also rolls back the 2007 bi-partisan light bulb efficiency standards that help Americans save money by lowering their energy consumption.

H.R. 2354 is a terrible bill for the environment and for creating economic opportunity,” said Lyon. “We strongly urge the Senate to reject this harmful legislation and protect America’s clean water and clean energy future.”

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