Energy and Commerce Members Introduce Bill To Facilitate Hydropower Production

December 15, 2011

WASHINGTON, DC -Bipartisan members of the U.S. House Committee on Energy and Commerce today introduced a bill to promote the expanded development and use of hydropower. Reps. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) and Diana DeGette (D-CO) co-authored H.R. 3680, the Hydropower Regulatory Efficiency Act of 2011, to help facilitate and advance hydropower projects across the country.

"This bipartisan legislation will create jobs and ensure that America maintains its competitive advantage in the energy sector.  As the largest renewable electricity source in the United States, hydropower has the potential to create 700,000 new jobs in the next 14 years alone," said Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA). "This bill promotes the usage of clean, renewable and affordable energy - and I'm proud to join with my colleagues across the aisle to introduce it."

"As we look to build America's global leadership in the clean energy economy of the 21st century, this bipartisan legislation will help us expand the development and use of an important renewable resource: hydropower," said DeGette. "In my home state of Colorado and all across the West, small hydro is growing, bringing jobs and economic growth to many of our communities. By improving the FERC process, we can expedite hydro projects, creating new jobs and bringing clean energy and economic opportunity to our nation."

Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton (R-MI) lent his support to the legislation, applauding its potential to create jobs and enhance America's energy portfolio.

"Hydropower plays an important role in our all-of-the-above energy strategy. Hydropower is renewable, reliable, and affordable, and the potential for this domestic resource is great. The increased development of hydropower will spur the creation of hundreds of thousands of American jobs and help us to meet our country's growing energy demands. I am pleased my Energy and Commerce colleagues have put this bipartisan proposal on the table and I look forward to advancing this legislation through our committee."

For a link to the bill text, click here.