U.S. SENATE — U.S. Senator Steve Daines today welcomed the next step to go to conference on S.2012, the Energy Policy Modernization Act, which passed the U.S. Senate in April by a bipartisan vote of 85-12.
The U.S. Senate today overwhelmingly voted to appoint conferees and go to conference on S. 2012, the next step in the legislative process.
“It’s great to see momentum to permanently reauthorize LWCF, move forward critical forest reform to improve forest health and protect good-paying Montana energy jobs,” Daines stated.
This key legislation will help expand Montana energy production and at Daines’ request will permanently reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF).
In addition to the permanent reauthorization of LWCF, the Energy Policy Modernization Act of 2016:
- Provides for the reinstatement and three-year extension of a Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) license for Clark Canyon Dam Hydro Project in Dillon, Montana and a six-year extension of the FERC license for the Gibson Dam Hydro Project near Augusta, Montana
- Daines’ bills passed out of Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee on July 30, 2015.
- Streamlines the permitting for the export of liquefied natural gas, allowing more American energy to power the world.
- Strengthens hydropower development by defining hydro as a renewable fuel
- Establishes a pilot project to streamline drilling permits if less than 25 percent of the minerals within the spacing unit are federal minerals – particularly important to Montana given the patchwork of land and mineral ownership in the Bakken.
- Improves federal permitting of critical and strategic mineral production – which supports thousands of good-paying Montana jobs and is essential to our national security and international competitiveness.
- Strengthens restrictions on overreaching Obama administration rules like the EPA Power Plan.
- Includes components of the Sportsmen’s package that promotes and protects access to Montana’s public lands and increases recreational opportunities for hunters and anglers.
- Provides a path to stop obstructionist litigation caused by extreme environmentalists that harm Montana made forest projects.
***The U.S. House of Representatives added H.R. 2647, the Resilient Federal Forests Act of 2015, to their energy legislation, making it a topic for discussion in the conference committee opening the door for forest management reform to be included in the final conference report.***