Energy policy in the United States

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1 Current energy policy
2 Historic energy policy
3 Major legislation
4 Federal departments and agencies
5 Congressional committees
5.1 U.S. Senate
5.2 U.S. House of Representatives
6 Major organizations
7 See also

Energy policy in the United States has been revolutionized by technological advances that have made previously untapped fossil fuel reserves economically recoverable. The vast abundance of natural gas and oil being produced is making the United States much more energy independent. Energy independence has important implications for domestic and foreign policy and has led to much debate about energy use, economic development and environmental impacts. As the public becomes more aware of this energy boom, policymakers and stakeholders are competing to shape the debate and determine future energy policy goals. Thus, for example, while coal and natural gas prices have kept energy prices relatively low, increased regulation of coal is expected to increase energy costs, which will in turn affect discretionary spending in homes, businesses and even government. According to a member of the Federal Energy Regulatory Agency, "We are now in an era of rising electricity prices." As prices increase the trade-offs being made among environmental, production, investment and regulatory considerations will become more pronounced.[1]

Energy policy in the United States depends on geography, natural energy resources, how electricity is generated, how much energy consumers use, politics and the influence of groups such as environmental and industry organizations. Decisions by policymakers, such as the federal government, state and local governments, utilities, and regulatory agencies, affect all citizens economically and environmentally, and are generally geared toward providing reliable, affordable energy. The cost of energy affects not only home heating and electricity bills, and thus disposable income, but also economic growth, including jobs, investment and the cost of doing business in the United States.

How energy is produced and consumed also has an impact on the environment and pollution. Because the infrastructure for producing and delivering renewable energy sources is not as advanced as it is for energy generation from traditional sources, these policies often require subsidies to make the produced energy affordable, and their effects are difficult to measure. Energy policy involves trade-offs between providing an affordable, consistent energy supply on the one hand, and limiting pollution and protecting the environment, on the other. How the United States attempts to balance these two shifts over time, and in the political arena the conversation often boils down to energy costs versus the environment. Energy policy is made, executed and influenced by many organizations, both public and private, and across all levels of government, federal, state and local. At the federal level energy policy can be made through legislation, executive orders, court rulings, rules and regulations from federal agencies and treaties. Generally the purpose of these policies is to affect "the supply of or the demand for energy products" in the near or long term.[2]

Current energy policy

See Energy use in the United States for information on how energy is produced and consumed in the United States.

According to a report by the Congressional Research Service, the three main goals of energy policy in the United States since the oil embargo of the 1970s are: "assuring a secure supply of energy, keeping energy costs low, and protecting the environment." These three goals can conflict with one another because the importance between goals varies among individuals, and especially between those who see it as the government's role to determine energy policy and those who see it as a market decision. These three main goals can be further expanded into six policy areas, as identified by a recent Congressional Research Service study.[3]

Transmission lines at sunset.jpg

1. Energy efficiency: The federal government has worked to decrease energy consumption and energy efficiency through increased fuel economy standards, smart grid technology (which improves the efficiency of electrical grid systems), the "weatherizing" of homes, and increased efficiency of appliances, including controversial lightbulb standards.
2. Domestic supply of fossil fuels: Increasing the domestic supply of fossil fuels is another common policy goal in the United States. The federal government can affect this supply through federal regulations, most recently through potential fracking regulations, and the regulation of oil and gas extraction on federal lands. The Keystone XL pipeline, which would carry oil sands resources from Canada through the United States created gridlock in U.S. Senate in May 2014 as Republicans blocked an energy-efficiency bill, normally an uncontroversial topic, to demonstrate their support for the Keystone XL pipeline. This bill was considered by some to the first major piece of federal energy legislation since the 2007 Energy Independence and Security Act.[3][4]
3. Oil and gasoline prices: The price of oil and gasoline has long been an election issue for politicians. The 2010 Dodd-Frank Wall Street Reform Act attempted to reign in these volatile markets. These efforts are expected to be complicated by the fact that oil and gasoline prices are set globally and one country seldom affects the international price. The United States also has a Strategic Petroleum Reserve, intended to provide some cushion against a global petroleum supply shock. This reserve was used in June 2011, after the start of the Libyan civil war, in an attempt to stabilize world petroleum prices.[3]
4. Exportation of natural gas: Natural gas production has increased sharply since 2010. In addition, 95 percent of all natural gas produced in the United States is consumed in the United States. These two factors are pushing up the domestic supply of natural gas, and calls for exporting liquified natural gas. There is debate over whether the United States should export this gas, and if so, where these LNG export facilities should be located. One of these proposed facilities in Cove Point, Maryland could export 5.75 million metric tons of liquified natural gas if it can overcome environmental and safety concerns.[3][5]
5. Coal-fired power plant emissions: Coal-fired power plants and the carbon they emit have been an issue for those looking to limit the effects of climate change. The EPA announced rules in June 2014 that would require coal-fired power plants to reduce the amount of carbon dioxide emitted by as much as 72 percent by 2030. The EPA has created carbon reduction emission goals for each state, but left it up to the state to decide how to reach these mandates.[3][6]
6. Increased use of renewable energy: There has also been a push to replace fossil fuels with renewable, or cleaner, energy sources. For some time this goal focused on the transportation sector and the use of biofuels. Recent federal programs have been pushing consumers to shift away from the complete use fossil fuels in the electricity production sector and towards the increased use of wind, geothermal energy, photovoltaic, solar and biomass. Because many of these renewable energy sources are not economically or technological feasible, the federal government has been subsidizing them through loan guarantees, mandates, tax benefits and grants.[3]

Current events


Estimates regarding domestic 2015 oil production by the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) are projecting that:

  • Nine of every 10 barrels of new global oil supplies will come from the United States in 2015.
  • Daily oil production is expected to increase by 1.2 million barrels.
  • Net liquid fuel imports are expected to decreased to 21 percent in 2015, the lowest level since 1968.[7]

The EIA has also made projections regarding natural gas production in 2014 in the United States.

  • Natural gas production is expected to increase 5.3 percent in 2014.
  • The United States is expected to be producing 69.8 billion cubic feet per day of natural gas.
  • This production is increasing the amount of stored natural gas in the county, much of which was depleted during a colder than expected winter.
  • The United States has been able to decrease natural gas imports from Canada, while simultaneously increasing natural gas exports to Mexico.[8]


On November 11, 2014, President Obama announced joint carbon emission reduction efforts with the President of China, Xi Jinping. China and the United States are the world's first and second largest emitters of carbon pollution, respectively. Efforts by these two countries to curb carbon emissions was "viewed as essential to concluding a new global accord" on climate change. Obama announced that the United States would cut its carbon emissions by 26 percent to 28 percent by 2025. This target doubled the pace at which the United States had promised to curb its emissions. Xi, meanwhile, pledged that China would stop its emissions from growing by 2030, and that clean energy sources would account for 20 percent of his country's energy production by 2030.[9]

Even if both the United States and China meet the goals they set, the earth is still expected to warm by 6.8 degrees Fahrenheit by 2100, at least according to one climate modeler, Chris Hope.[10]

Historic energy policy


In 1973, Arab members of the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (OPEC) imposed a ban on petroleum imports to the United States, and other countries that supported Israel during the Arab-Israeli War. OPEC also cut oil production, leading to huge spikes in gasoline prices in the United States. During this time the federal government had a system of price controls in place that encouraged oil imports over domestic production. Because of growing dependence on foreign oil imports the United States was forced to negotiate an end to the embargo with less leverage, which influenced the outcome of the 1973 Arab-Israeli War. This event demonstrated one potential outcome of the relationship between energy policy and national security.[2][11]

Hand pumping gas.jpg

1980s and 1990s

During this time the federal government set fuel economy standards intended to reduce gasoline consumption. The fall of the Shah of Iran in 1979 triggered a cut in the supply of oil which lead to long lines at gasoline pumps because price controls limited the supply of petroleum products. High energy prices did lead to a decrease in consumption; from 1978 to 1982 petroleum consumption decreased by 3.6 million barrels per day. Because of the effect of government price controls on the oil supply, support for deregulation gained more traction and in 1981 President Reagan accelerated the tapering off price controls. Then, in 1985 higher oil prices incited OPEC to increase their supply of oil in the international market, leading to a drop in oil prices. Prices stabilized until August 1990 when Iraq invaded Kuwait causing oil prices to increase from 16 dollars per barrel to 36 dollars per barrel. OPEC responded by increased the production of oil to try and stabilize oil prices.[2] Because of the large fluctuations in price over this period, the U.S. began to look for other sources of energy and also began efforts to increase energy efficiency. The federal government increased its spending on renewable sources of energy and clean coal. Also, regulations were passed that would increase the energy efficiency of appliances and buildings. Utilities were also reconfigured to promote energy efficiency and reduce the need to build new power plants. During the 1990s the U.S. saw strong economic growth that fueled an increase in petroleum consumption, despite earlier investments in energy efficiency.[2]


In the 2000s problems with home heating oil and gasoline supplies demonstrated needed energy infrastructure improvements. Blackouts across the Midwest, Northeast and Canada in 2003 also highlighted the need for transmission grid infrastructure improvements. In 2004 OPEC increased oil production, however other pressures including Hurricane Ivan, decreased U.S. production and instability in Iraq, didn't lower prices to desired levels. Deregulation of the energy market in California, which led in part to rolling blackouts, added uncertainty to the energy policy debate. There was also debate over the nationalization of reformulated gasoline, or gasoline with regulated oxygen that decreased the release of some pollutants. The goal of nationalization would be to increase the supply of gasoline so that it can easily move to where it is demanded. There was also a large debate over the possibility of opening up the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge in Alaska to oil and natural gas drilling. This debate extended to the larger issue of drilling on federal lands and the argument that large amounts of petroleum reserves were "locked-up" on federal lands. High natural gas prices in early 2000s increased demand for liquified natural gas (LNG) and several LNG import companies began expanding their facilities and exploring the possibility of opening new facilities. Proponents of renewable energy also pushed for the creation of a national Renewable Portfolio Standard to mandate the increased use of renewables. There were also calls to increase federal corporate average fuel economy (CAFE) standards to decrease the consumption of gasoline.[2]

Major legislation

  • The Energy Policy Act of 2005 (EPAct) was the first major piece of energy legislation enacted by Congress in over a decade; the act totals 551 pages.[12][13] EPAct addressed many energy production issues including: energy efficiency, fossil fuels, nuclear energy, renewables (including hydropower and geothermal), hydrogen, Tribal energy, motor fuel and vehicles, electricity, ethanol, energy tax incentives and climate change.[14] The act set energy conservation standards for a variety of household appliances and tax credits for builders investing in energy efficient appliances. Tax credits were created for those buying hybrid or fuel cells vehicles. A renewable fuel standard was set. Tax credits were extended for small ethanol and biodiesel producers. Oil and gas producers drilling deeper than 400 meters in the Gulf of Mexico were given royalty relief. Restrictions were placed on oil and gas drilling around the Great Lakes. Production tax credits were extended to nuclear and renewable energy generation facilities. There was also an investment made in clean coal technologies.[15]
Map of DOE American Recovery and Reinvestment Act spending
  • The Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 (EISA) was created with the goal of increasing U.S. energy security, increasing renewable fuel production and increasing vehicle fuel economy. The act set a renewable fuel standard (RFS) of 36 billion gallons of ethanol by 2022, with a limit of 15 billion gallons of corn ethanol. New CAFE standards were set for cars and trucks and the act created the possibility of trading CAFE credits among vehicle manufacturers. More energy efficiency standards were created. Also standards were set for federal building energy conservation.[16][17][18]
  • The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (also known as the "Stimulus Act" or ARRA), was passed in 2009. The U.S. Department of Energy was given $35.2 billion (just over one-third of the $90 billion invested through the ARRA) to invest in smart grid technology, energy efficiency upgrades, carbon capture, cleaning up nuclear waste and alternative fuels for vehicles. The goal of this funding was to maintain jobs that were expected to be lost during the recession and create new jobs. According to the Department of Energy between the summer of 2010 and January 2012 they supported between 40,000 and 50,000 direct jobs. The map to the right shows where U.S. Department of Energy ARRA funding went; the Department of Energy has an interactive map of the funding on their website.[19][20][21]
  • The Clean Air Act (CAA) was passed by Congress in 1970. The act was then revised in 1977 and again in 1990. The Clean Air Act was created to clean up the smog that polluted many cities in the United States. The CAA authorized the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to create national standards to limit the amount of certain pollutants including ozone, lead, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide and particulate matter.[22]
  • The Clean Water Act (CWA) was passed by Congress in 1972 and was a reorganization of the 1948 Federal Water Pollution Control Act. Under the CWA the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has created wastewater standards and administered the National Pollution Discharge Elimination System (NPDES), which made it illegal for anyone to discharge a pollutant into navigable waters without a permit from the EPA.[23]

Federal departments and agencies

Machinery at Argonne National Laboratory
  • The U.S. Department of Energy is a United States executive department established in 1977. The department was formed to address energy challenges using scientific solutions.[24][25] The Department is led by the current Secretary of Energy, Ernest Moniz. The department's mission is to "ensure America’s security and prosperity by addressing its energy, environmental and nuclear challenges through transformative science and technology solutions."[25] The department works towards its mission through four areas: energy, science and innovation, nuclear safety and security, management and operation excellence. The DOE has 27 offices under its jurisdiction, 21 national laboratories, four power marketing administrations, ten field sites and also oversees the Energy Information Administration and the National Nuclear Security Administration.[25][26]
  • The U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) is the agency under the U.S. Department of Energy responsible for collecting, analyzing and disseminating "impartial energy information to promote sound policymaking, efficient markets, and public understanding of energy and its interaction with the economy and the environment." The administration was created in 1977 by the Department of Energy Organization Act. Under the EIA there are four offices: Energy Statistics, Energy Analytics, Communications and Resource and Technology Management.[27][28]
  • The U.S. Department of the Interior is a United States executive department established in 1849. The Department was formed to protect and manage the nation's natural resources and cultural heritage.[29] The department is led by the current Secretary of the Interior, Sally Jewell. The Department of the Interior oversees most of the land agencies that administer federal land across the United States, which includes managing energy development and land leasing, including off-shore energy development.[30]
  • The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) is a United States executive department established in 1862 in order to "provide leadership on food, agriculture, natural resources, rural development, nutrition, and related issues based on sound public policy, the best available science, and efficient management."[31] The Department is led by the current Secretary of Agriculture, Tom Vilsack. The USDA has several energy programs dealing with biofuels and bioenergy.[32] Additionally the USDA oversees the U.S. Forest Service, which is responsible for several programs dealing with wood biofuels, renewable energy and even some oil and gas activities and permitting on Forest Services lands.[33][34]
  • The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) is a United States agency formed in 1970 "to protect human health and the environment."[35] The current Director of the EPA is Gina McCarthy, who was confirmed by the Senate on July 18, 2013.[36] The EPA was formed in 1970, deriving its duties from the U.S. Department of the Interior, U.S. Department of Agriculture, U.S. Department of Health, Education and Welfare (now the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services), Atomic Energy Commission, Federal Radiation Council and the Council on Environmental Equality.[37] The EPA runs Energy Star, a voluntary program established in 1992, that works to help "businesses and individuals save money and protect our climate through superior energy efficiency."[38]
  • The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) is housed within the Department of Energy and "regulates the interstate transmission of electricity, natural gas, and oil." FERC is responsible for setting charges and rates for natural gas and oil transportation and pipelines. It also reviews liquified natural gas facility permits. FERC is composed of five commissioners appointed by the president; commissioners serve five year terms.[39]
  • The U.S. Department of Transportation "conducts research to examine potential climate change impacts on transportation, methods for increasing transportation efficiency, and methods for reducing emissions that contribute to climate change." The department works with Federal Highway Administration, the Federal Transit Administration, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the Federal Aviation Administration.[40]

Congressional committees


Committee on Energy and Natural Resources

US Senate Energy Committee logo.png

The United States Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources is a standing committee of the U.S. Senate. It was created in an earlier form in 1816. The Energy and Natural Resources Committee has jurisdiction over the following energy issues: national energy policy, which extended to emergency preparedness and international energy affairs; territorial policy, which can extend to Antarctica; nuclear waste policy; and ad hoc issues.[41]

2013-2014 membership (113th Congress)



The Energy Subcommittee has oversight and legislative responsibility over the research and development of nuclear, coal, oil, natural gas, new energy technologies and synthetic fuels. The committee can regulate nuclear energy in regards to: fuel cycle policy, facilities siting and insurance. The subcommittee regulates liquefied natural gas projects, oil and natural gas, energy conservation programs, the Trans-Alaska Pipeline System and other fuel transportation systems. The subcommittee has responsibility over the commercialization of solar programs, oil and natural gas refinery, utility, and coal conversation policy, the strategic petroleum reserve, Department of Energy National Laboratories, and oil, gas and coal production and distribution. Finally the subcommittee has influence over climate change policy. The current chair is Al Franken.[42]

Public Lands, Forests and Mining

The Public Lands, Forests and Mining Subcommittee has oversight and legislative responsibility over all U.S. Bureau of Land Management and U.S. Forest Service lands and policies. These policies include grazing and farming permitting, wildlife refuges, wilderness designations and areas, and reserved water rights. The subcommittee oversees mining and mineral policy on these lands in regards to: general mining policy and laws, surface mining, mineral leasing, both on and off-shore, the strategic petroleum reserve, mining education and mine reclamation and enforcement. The subcommittee also oversees work related to the Alaska Native Claims Settlement Act and military land withdrawals. The current chair is Joe Manchin.[42]

Water and Power

The Water and Power Subcommittee has responsibility over: irrigation, flood control and reclamation projects and "power marketing administrations (e.g., Bonneville Power, Southwestern Power, Western Area Power, Southeastern Power)." The subcommittee also oversees groundwater resources and management, the impact of energy development on water resources, and hydropower. The current committee chair is Brian Schatz.[42]

Committee on Energy and Commerce

The United States House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce is a standing committee of the U.S. House of Representatives. The committee is the oldest standing in the House. It was created on December 14, 1795, as the Committee on Commerce and Manufactures. In 1819, it became the Committee on Commerce, and in 1891 it become the Committee on Interstate and Foreign Commerce. The committee assumed its present name in 1981.[43]

US HoR Energy and Commerce Comm.png

According to the official House website, the jurisdiction of the Energy and Commerce Committee includes a wide variety of issues, but can summed up as having jurisdiction over national energy policy, including the "Exploration, production, storage, supply, marketing, pricing, and regulation of energy resources, including all fossil fuels, solar energy, and other unconventional or renewable energy resources." The committee also oversees energy conservation issues, the generation and marketing of power, transmission, ratemaking and siting of energy generation facilities (except for waterpower projects). The subcommittee also oversees the U.S. Department of Energy and the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission. The subcommittee can also regulate nuclear energy.[44]

2013-2014 membership (113th Congress)


Energy and Power

The Energy and Power Subcommittee has jurisdiction over national energy policy, including traditional energy resources, renewable energy resources, energy information and conservation. The subcommittee also regulates utilities, nuclear facilities and nuclear energy generally, and interstate energy contracts. The committee oversees the Clean Air Act, air emissions and government activities that relate to emissions and related legislation. The current committee chair is Ed Whitfield.[45]

Environment and the Economy

The Environment and the Economy Subcommittee has jurisdiction over soil and water contamination and industrial plant security. The committee regulates hazardous and nuclear wastes, drinking water, and toxic substances and noise. The current committee chair is John Shimkus.[45]

Committee on Natural Resources

The United States House of Representatives Committee on Natural Resources is a standing committee of the U.S. House of Representatives. The committee was created on December 17, 1805. The inaugural committee was chaired by Andrew Gregg.[46] According to the official House website, the jurisdiction of the Natural Resources Committee includes the following energy related areas: matters dealing with alien land and mineral ownership, the U.S. Geological Survey, interstate water compacts, mineral interests, mineral rights on public lands and mineral schools, petroleum conservation on public lands and conservation of the U.S. radium supply, and the trans-Alaska Oil Pipeline.[47]

2013-2014 membership (113th Congress)


Energy and Mineral Resources

The Energy and Mineral Resource Subcommittee has jurisdiction over most of the U.S. Geological Survey, geothermal resources and the conservation of United States uranium and radium supplies. The subcommittee oversees mining as it relates to: regulation and enforcement, reclamation, environmental impacts, mineral laws, mineral rights, mining schools, mineral research, and mineral resources on and off shore. The subcommittee has also authority over the transportation of natural gas by the trans-Alaska oil pipeline, rights of way over federal lands, and the transportation of fuels underground. The subcommittee can oversee environmental enhancement and protection through international programs. The current chair is Doug Lamborn.[48]

Public Lands and Environmental Regulation

The Public Lands and Environmental Regulation has jurisdiction over the Land and Water Conservation Fund Act of 1965. The subcommittee oversees public lands in regards to: forest reservations, entry, easements, grazing, water rights, withdrawals and alien ownership of mineral rights. The committee can engage in international programs for the protection of the environment and the conservation of natural resources. The current committee chair is Rob Bishop.[48]

Water and Power

The Water and Power Subcommittee has jurisdiction over the generation and marketing of electric power and power movement programs. The subcommittee has authority over the following water resource areas: planning, the Water Resources Planning Act, federal water projects, research, interstate water compacts, water rights, irrigation and reclamation projects. The subcommittee is authorized to engage in international programs for the protection of the environment and the conservation of natural resources. The current committee chair is Tom McClintock.[48]

Major organizations

  • The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy (ACEEE) is a 501(c)(3) organization, founded in 1980, that "acts as a catalyst to advance energy efficiency policies, programs, technologies, investments, and behaviors." The ACEEE releases an annual report card ranking the 50 states on their energy efficiency. The Center for Responsive Politics does not have data on spending by ACEEE.[49][50]
Crescent Dunes Solar Energy Project in Tonopah, NV
  • The American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers began as the National Petroleum Association in 1902. The group stands for "American manufacturing and jobs; proven and reliable products for your life every day; economic and national security; and a commitment to serve our nation and the American people." According to the Center for Responsive Politics, the American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers spent $5,311,107 lobbying in 2013.[51][52][53]
  • The American Petroleum Institute (API) is the only national trade organization representing the oil and natural gas industry in the United States. API's mission is to "influence public policy in support of a strong, viable U.S. oil and natural gas industry essential to meet the energy needs of consumers in an efficient, environmentally responsible manner." The organization represents more than 550 companies ranging from pipeline operators, refiners, producers and oil and gas service and supply companies. API publishes research on economic impacts of the industry, toxicology testing and other industry trends. According to the Center for Responsive Politics, API contributed $439,315 to campaigns for the 2014 election cycle and spent $9,300,000 lobbying in 2013.[54][55][56][57]
  • The Center for America Progress Action Fund is a non-profit organization with the mission "to transform progressive ideas into policy through rapid response communications, legislative action, grassroots organizing and advocacy, and partnerships with other progressive leaders throughout the country and the world." The fund supports the news site Think Progress, which runs the daily news site Climate Progress. The Center for Responsive Politics does not have data on spending by the Center America Progress Action Fund.[58][59]
  • The League of Conservation Voters (LVC) is a non-profit organization 501(c)(4), organized in 1969 by David Brower from the Sierra Club. LVC "works to turn environmental values into national, state and local priorities. LCV, in collaboration with our state LCV partners, advocates for sound environmental laws and policies, holds elected officials accountable for their votes and actions, and elects pro-environment candidates who will champion our priority issues." According to the Center for Responsive Politics the LCV contributed $691,465 to campaigns for the 2014 election cycle, spent $120,000 lobbying in 2013 and contributed $2,769,784 to outside spending in 2014.[60][61][62]
Natural gas rig in Shreveport, Louisiana
  • The Institute for Energy Research (IER) is a 501(c)(3) organization committed to free-market energy and environmental policy research. IER was founded in 1989. IER's mission is to conduct "intensive research and analysis on the functions, operations, and government regulation of global energy markets." IER maintains a database of federal energy subsidies, the Federal Energy Spending Tracker. The Center for Responsive Politics does not have data on spending by IER.[63][64]
  • The National Resources Defense Council (NRDC) is a non-profit organization created in 1970. Their mission is to "To safeguard the Earth: its people, its plants and animals and the natural systems on which all life depends." It lists its current issues areas as global warming, clean energy, the world's oceans, defending wildlife and wild places, preventing pollution, clean water and sustainable communities. According to the Center for Responsive Politics the NRDC spent $179,509 on lobbying in 2014 and contributed $65,300 to campaigns from 2013 to 2014.[65][66][67]
  • The Sierra Club is a 501(c)(4) founded by conservationist John Muir in 1892. The Sierra Club's motto is "Explore, Enjoy, and Protect the Planet." The Sierra Club claims the passage of the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act and the Endangered Species Act among some of its most important successes. According to the Center for Responsive Politics the Sierra Club contributed $516,370 to campaigns for the 2014 election cycle, spent $330,000 lobbying in 2013 and contributed $149,637 to outside spending in 2014.[68][69][70][71]

See also

External links


  1. L.A. Times, "U.S. Electricity prices may be going up for good," April 25, 2014
  2. 2.0 2.1 2.2 2.3 2.4 Congressional Research Service, "Energy Policy:Historical Overview, Conceptual Framework, and Continuing Issues," December 21, 2004
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 Congressional Research Service, "Energy Policy: 113th Congress Issues," November 29, 2013
  4. Reuters, "UPDATE 2-U.S. Senate Republicans block energy bill, forfeit Keystone vote," May 12, 2014
  5. The Baltimore Sun, "Gas export facility clear hurdle," May 15, 2014
  6. Governing, "EPA Carbon Emissions Reduction Targets by State," accessed June 11, 2014
  7. U.S. Energy Information Administration, "World Oil Production Growth," September 9, 2014
  8. U.S. Energy Information Administration, "Natural Gas Production," September 9, 2014
  9. The New York Times, "U.S. and China Reach Climate Accord After Months of Talks," November 11, 2014
  10. Vox, The US and China just reached a major climate deal on cutting emissions," November 11, 2014
  11. U.S. Department of State, "Milestones:1969-1976," October 31, 2013
  12. U.S. Government Printing Office, "Energy Policy Act of 2005," August 8, 2005
  13. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, "Energy Policy Act of 2005," August 8, 2006
  14. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, "Summary of the Energy Policy Act," March 16, 2014
  15. U.S. Energy Information Administration, "EPACT2005 Summary," accessed June 12, 2014
  16. U.S. Government Printing Office, "Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007," accessed June 12, 2014
  17. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, "Summary of the Energy Independence and Security Act," March 16, 2004
  18. U.S. Energy Information Administration, "Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007: Summary of Provisions," accessed June 12, 2014
  19. U.S. Department of Energy, "Recovery Act," accessed June 12, 2014
  20. U.S. Department of Energy, "Department of Energy: Successes of the Recovery Act," January 2012
  21. U.S. Government Printing Office, "American Recover and Reinvestment Act of 2009," January 6, 2009
  22. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, “Clean Air Act Requirements and History,” accessed January 29, 2014
  23. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, “Summary of the Clean Water Act,” accessed January 29, 2014
  24. U.S. Department of Energy, "A Brief History of the Department of Energy," accessed June 12, 2014
  25. 25.0 25.1 25.2, "Mission," accessed October 4, 2014
  26. U.S. Department of Energy, "Offices," accessed June 12, 2014
  27. U.S. Energy Information Administration, "Mission and Overview," accessed June 12, 2014
  28. U.S. Energy Information Administration, "EIA Offices," accessed June 12, 2014
  29. U.S. Department of the Interior, "Strategic plan FY 2011-2016," accessed January 2, 2013
  30. U.S. Department of Energy, "Interior Organizational Chart," accessed June 12, 2014
  31. Department of Agriculture, "Mission Statement," accessed January 14, 2014
  32. U.S. Department of Agriculture, "Energy," June 13, 2014
  33. U.S. Forest Service, "Energy & Forest Products," accessed June 13, 2014
  34. U.S. Government Printing Office, "BLM and Forest Service Oil and Gas Permitting," April 25, 2001
  35. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, "Our Mission and What We Do," accessed March 14, 2014
  36. Huffington Post, "Senate approves Obama-pick McCarthy to head EPA," July 18, 2013
  37. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, "Duties Transferred to EPA," accessed March 14, 2014
  38. Energy Star, "About Energy Star," accessed June 13, 2014
  39. Office of the Federal Register, "Federal Energy Regulatory Commission," accessed June 13, 2014
  40. U.S. Global Change Research Program, "Department of Transportation," accessed June 13, 2014
  41. United States Senate Committee on Energy & Natural Resources, "History"
  42. 42.0 42.1 42.2 United States Senate Committee on Energy & Natural Resources, "Subcommittee on Energy"
  43. House Energy & Commerce Committee, "About the Committee" accessed January 2012 (dead link)
  44. House Energy & Commerce Committee, "About the Committee" accessed January 2012 (dead link)
  45. 45.0 45.1 House Energy & Commerce Committee, "Subcommittees" accessed January 2012 (dead link)
  46. Natural Resources Committee, "Committee History" accessed January 2012
  47. Natural Resources Committee, "Committee History" accessed January 2012
  48. 48.0 48.1 48.2 Natural Resources Committee, "Subcommittees" accessed January 2012
  49. American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, "Overview/Mission," accessed June 13, 2014
  50. American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy, "The State Energy Efficiency Scorecard," accessed June 13, 2014
  51. American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers, "Our History," accessed June 13, 2014
  52. Center for Responsive Politics, "American Fuel & Petrochem Manufacturers," accessed June 13, 2014
  53. Campaign finance totals are from May 19, 2014, lobby data are from April 28, 2014 and outside spending data are from June 13, 2014
  54. American Petroleum Industry, "API Overview and Mission," accessed June 13, 2014
  55. American Petroleum Industry, "Industry Mission," accessed June 13, 2014
  56. Center for Responsive Politics, "American Petroleum Institute," June 13, 2014
  57. Campaign finance totals are from May 19, 2014, lobby data are from April 28, 2014 and outside spending data are from June 13, 2014
  58. Center for American Progress Action Fund, "About the Center for American Progress Action Fund"," accessed June13, 2014
  59. Think Progress, "About Us," June 13, 2014
  60. The League of Conservation Voters, "About LCV," accessed June 13, 2014
  61. National Public Radio, "Profile: League of Conservation Voters," September 9, 2008
  62. Campaign finance totals are from May 19, 2014, lobby data are from April 28, 2014 and outside spending data are from June 13, 2014
  63. Institute for Energy Research, "Who We Are," accessed June 13, 2014
  64. Institute for Energy Research, "Federal Energy Spending Tracker," accessed June 13, 2014
  65. Center for Responsive Politics, "Environment," accessed June 13, 2014
  66. The National Resources Defense Council, "About Us," accessed June 13, 2014
  67. Campaign finance totals are from May 19, 2014, lobby data are from April 28, 2014 and outside spending data are from June 13, 2014
  68. The Sierra Club, "About the Sierra Club," accessed June 13, 2014
  69. The Sierra Club, "Gift Planning: Supporting the Sierra Club Family," accessed June 13, 2014
  70. Center for Responsive Politics, "Sierra Club," accessed June 13, 2014
  71. Campaign finance totals are from May 19, 2014, lobby data are from April 28, 2014 and outside spending data are from June 13, 2014