The League of Conservation Voters led 19 environmental organizations in sending the below letter to the House of Representatives urging Members to oppose the following amendments to H.R. 4394, the House Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2024, when they come up for votes. The League of Conservation Voters will strongly consider including votes related to these amendments in our 2023 National Environmental Scorecard.
October 3, 2023
U.S. House of Representatives
Washington, DC 20515
Re: Amendment Vote Recommendations on H.R. 4394, the House Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2024
Dear Member of Congress,
On behalf of our many members and supporters, the 19 undersigned groups make the following vote recommendations on amendments to H.R. 4394, the House Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, 2024. While not all undersigned organizations work directly on each of these issues, we appreciate your consideration of these pro-environmental positions.
We also write to express our disapproval of the self-executing amendment in the rule that cuts $1 billion from the Department of Energy’s Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). EERE plays a critical role in saving businesses and families billions of dollars, developing the U.S. clean energy sector, and reducing pollution. This amendment sends a dangerous message to our international competitors that we’re willing to cede our global leadership on clean energy innovation, and signals of uncertainty around federal funding that will cast a pall over the US clean energy industry and job growth.
We further wish to express our disapproval of amendment #21 Peltola (AK), which was included in Fleischmann En Bloc #1. This is a messaging amendment that supports DOE providing a federal loan guarantee for the massive Alaska LNG Project, a $38 billion pipeline and fossil gas export terminal with lifecycle emissions ten times worse than the Willow Project. It is past time to put an end to Big Oil subsidies, including by opposing new giveaways to Alaska LNG and any other fossil fuel projects.
Thank you for your consideration,
League of Conservation Voters
Alaska Wilderness League Action
Appliance Standards Awareness Project
Center for Biological Diversity
Clean Water Action
Climate Action Campaign
Defenders of Wildlife
Friends of the Earth
Interfaith Power & Light
Natural Resources Defense Council
Ocean Defense Initiative
Public Citizen, Inc.
Union of Concerned Scientists
WE ACT for Environmental Justice
24. Escobar (TX) The Department of Energy’s appliance efficiency program is wildly successful and popular, and their actions in just the past couple of years will cut consumers’ bills by over half a trillion dollars and carbon pollution by over 2.4 billion metric tons in the next 30 years.
14. Westerman (AR) Reduces funding by $5 million for the Bureau of Reclamation’s Policy and Administration to Fiscal Year 2022 levels consistent with the Limit, Save, Grow Act. This would indirectly harm the administration and operations of the Bureau of Reclamation in California to oversee the Central Valley Project, including administering the Central Valley Project Restoration Fund, and all related critical infrastructure and deliveries that our state relies on. The Central Valley Project Restoration Fund is critical for securing water supplies for refuges and wildlife projects in the Central Valley of California, protecting what is left of the state’s inland wetland refuges and the populations of waterfowl and shorebirds that reside in and migrate through California each year.
15. Griffith (VA) This amendment would cut even more funding from the Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy program in order and give a portion of that money to fossil fuel programs. This would further cripple the office from advancing meaningful energy efficiency and renewable energy programs and double down on the last century of fossil fuel spending at the cost of climate action
16. Roy (TX) This amendment would completely eliminate funding for the Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy program, effectively ending important work in reducing energy bills through efficiency and developing the future clean energy economy.
19. Perry (PA) This amendment would eliminate funding for the Office of Clean Energy Demonstrations, a program that helps bridge the gap from Research & Development of advanced clean energy technologies to general market adoption.
20. Norman (SC) This amendment would entirely eliminate funding for ARPA-E, a program driving cutting-edge innovation in energy technologies. The National Academy of Sciences has already assessed the program pursuant to congressional mandate and found the program to be successful and on track.
22. Ogles (TN) This amendment would eliminate funding for the ATVM Loan Program which ensures that progress in improving vehicle fuel efficiency is bolstered by a strong domestic manufacturing sector that creates high-standard jobs.
34. Cammack (FL) This amendment would prevent any major rules from being promulgated, regardless of their benefits or whether they are required by existing law. This could prevent life-saving protections for Americans.
35. Fallon (TX), Fischbach (MN) This amendment would block implementation of just finalized efficiency standards that will reduce families’ costs by about $350 over the life of a furnace compared to using older, inefficient models. The Department of Energy’s appliance efficiency program is wildly successful and popular, and their actions in just the past couple of years will cut consumers’ bills by over half a trillion dollars and carbon pollution by over 2.4 billion metric tons in the next 30 years.
38. Hageman (WY) Prohibits funds for DOE’s implementation of their proposed Industrial Decarbonization Roadmap, which outlines critical strategies for reducing emissions from the industrial sector, which accounts for almost a third of US greenhouse gas emissions.The technologies necessary to reach deeper levels of decarbonization are still in the early stages of development and deployment, and the federal government has an essential role to play in bringing these nascent technologies to maturity.
39. Hageman (WY) This amendment would prohibit funds for the SuperTruck III program which invests in new technologies to electrify medium- and heavy-duty trucks, which are responsible for a large share of transportation pollution that disproportionately impacts the health of communities of color and low-income communities.
40. Hageman (WY) This amendment would block standards for water heaters that are projected to save consumers $11.4 billion every year through reduced energy bills, and cut more than 500 million metric tons of carbon pollution over 30 years. The Department of Energy’s appliance efficiency program is wildly successful and popular, and their actions in just the past couple of years will cut consumers’ bills by over half a trillion dollars and carbon pollution by over 2.4 billion metric tons.
46. Norman (SC) This amendment would block the implementation of standards for manufactured housing, which were finalized in 2022 (more than 10 years after the legal deadline for an updated standard). The standards are set to save consumers who live in manufactured homes – who tend to have low incomes – more than $5 billion in energy costs in the next 30 years. While the standards finalized by DOE were not as strong as advocates had pushed for, the standard for manufactured homes had last been updated in 1994, making this update decades overdue.
47. Norman (SC) This amendment would block funding for the Department of Energy’s Office of Scientific Workforce Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. This office works to improve DEI in the national labs and other grants, bringing a better breadth of scientific perspective to DOE’s work.
48. Norman (SC) This amendment would effectively prohibit work updating official analysis on the costs of climate change, locking in old numbers even as new data emerge on the harms affecting millions of people.
49. Norman (SC) This amendment would command the federal government to blind itself to the economic costs of climate change. Weakening or eliminating the use of the social cost of carbon as a tool for federal agencies would ignore the sobering cost of health, environmental and economic impacts of extreme weather, rising temperatures, intensifying smog, and other impacts. These costs, which affect businesses, families, governments and taxpayers, could reach hundreds of billions of dollars through rising health care costs, destruction of property, increased food prices, and more.
50. Norman (SC), Ogles (TN) The American Climate Corps combines national service with workforce training to rally a new generation around the need to confront the climate crisis; it will build a versatile corps of 20,000 workers with the skills to help conserve and restore waters and lands, make our communities more resilient, speed the shift to clean energy and advance environmental justice. It will prioritize underserved communities, including the energy communities that have powered the nation for generations, and help meet the administration’s Justice40 goal.
54. Palmer (AL) This amendment would block the Department of Energy’s updated energy efficiency standards for room air conditioners. The rule was finalized in July 2023, with compliance required in May 2026. The rule saves consumers money and reduces the energy consumption of room ACs by 12 percent. The rule has total net benefits of approximately $10 billion.
55. Pence (IN) FERC is charged with protecting the public interest, and yet the public often struggles to participate in FERC proceedings due to the extreme imbalance of power and money between it and energy companies. Section 319(b)(2) of the Federal Power Act is intended to help provide compensation for landowners and community members who dedicate their limited means to participating in FERC dockets and attempts to eliminate this would make it even more difficult for the public to participate.
58. Rosendale (MT) This amendment would indiscriminately cut funding across the bill, on top of the cuts already in the base bill. Further cuts to critical programs like research & development and environmental cleanup would only bring harm.
60. Roy (TX) This amendment would block spending to implement executive orders that help reduce pollution, adapt to climate change, and improve the clean energy independence of buildings and installments. The damaging effects of this amendment would include hobbling our government’s ability to prepare for and respond to the very real threats of the climate crisis.