Energy Bill On Tap

If you haven’t already contacted your U.S. senator and representative and asked for their energy bill support, the time do so is now. The vote on offshore drilling and other energy policies could happen as early as this week.

Bipartisan groups in both the House and Senate have introduced comprehensive energy proposals that address multiple areas of concern. The House version, H.R. 6709, the National Conservation, Environment, and Energy Independence Act, sponsored by Reps. John E. Peterson (R-PA) and Neil Abercrombie (D-HI), would increase domestic oil and natural gas production, increase incentives and funding for renewable fuels research and development, and would increase research and development for energy conservation techniques.

In the Senate, a bipartisan group of senators — referred to as the “Gang of 10” — unveiled language that would address some of the same concerns, but the Agricultural Retailers Association (ARA) says it lacks key language found in H.R. 6709.

Prior to the August recess, Democrats had been attempting to pass legislation — S.3268 and H.R. 6604 — that would increase the Commodity Futures Trading Commission oversight authority of energy trades and allow for more transparency in the futures market for energy and agricultural commodities. According to ARA, many believe that speculation is playing a part in high energy prices, and with transparency and oversight on trades combined with the pending legislation, Congress would bring about a comprehensive energy plan that would address all areas of concern.

For more information, contact ARA at 202-457-0825 or e-mail Jon@aradc.org. Members of Congress may be contacted via the Capitol Switchboard at 202-225-3121. ARA also recommends visiting www.bipac.net/alert.asp?g=agenergyand www.stopoilspeculationnow.com for additional information.

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