Energy Bill Passed By Senate a Win for Natural Resources

ARLINGTON, VA | April 20, 2016

The U.S. Senate has passed a bipartisan energy bill, which includes comprehensive reforms to energy policy and permanent reauthorization of the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). The Nature Conservancy praised today’s 85-12 vote to approve the Energy Policy Modernization Act with the following statement from Mark R. Tercek, the Conservancy’s President and CEO:

“It is heartening to see Congress achieve such great progress on policies that enable us to meet our nation’s energy needs while also conserving the natural resources we all depend upon. This energy bill will benefit our nation’s lands and waters through a wide range of advances in natural resource protection and innovations that will promote energy efficiency.

“It includes permanent reauthorization of the Land and Water Conservation Fund—allowing this critical conservation program to continue its long tradition of successfully providing clean water, conserving natural resources, increasing recreation opportunities and supporting communities in every state across the nation.

“We’re also grateful for the bill’s energy efficiency provisions. Energy efficiency reduces the need for construction of new energy production and transmission facilities that fragment habitat and contribute to air and water pollution. And, through the bill’s work to modernize and secure our electric power grid, we believe it can make the power system cleaner and more reliable and give consumers more control over their energy bills.

“Our electric power sector is going through a period of revolutionary change that will put solar generation on millions of rooftops, batteries in homes for energy storage and electric vehicles in family garages—all controlled by smart meters and smart consumers. This bill establishes an important role for the Department of Energy and other federal agencies in supporting that revolution as it creates a clean electric power sector that will keep the American economy competitive for the 21st century.

“In addition, we appreciate the inclusion of the National Fish Conservation Act, the Federal Lands Transaction Facilitation Act and reauthorization of the North American Wetlands Conservation Act. These will advance efforts to conserve and restore critical habitat.

“Our congratulations and deep appreciation goes to the Senate for passing the Energy Policy and Modernization Act. Senators Lisa Murkowski and Maria Cantwell led the way, making this important step possible. A special thanks also goes to Senators Rob Portman and Jeanne Shaheen for their long-standing efforts to enact the far-reaching and bipartisan energy efficiency programs included in the bill. Those measures will help reduce energy costs for consumers and protect our climate by reducing global warming emissions.”

The Nature Conservancy is a global conservation organization dedicated to conserving the lands and waters on which all life depends. Guided by science, we create innovative, on-the-ground solutions to our world's toughest challenges so that nature and people can thrive together. We are tackling climate change, conserving lands, waters and oceans at unprecedented scale, and helping make cities more sustainable. Working in more than 65 countries, we use a collaborative approach that engages local communities, governments, the private sector, and other partners. To learn more, visit or follow @nature_press on Twitter.

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Heather Layman


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