Posted on July 29, 2005
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The U.S. Senate today approved the Energy Policy Act of 2005 conference report by a vote of 74-26. U.S. Senator Lamar Alexander (R-TN), chairman of the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee’s Subcommittee on Energy, praised final Senate passage at a press conference in the U.S. Capitol following the vote. “To me, the most important part of this bill is that it should stabilize and begin to lower the price of natural gas,” said Alexander, a member of the House-Senate conference on the energy bill. “That is important for home owners, for farmers and for blue collar workers in America. We hear a lot about the importance of gasoline prices at the pump. But by far, the bigger problem is the high price of natural gas. We have a million chemical workers whose jobs will gradually move overseas if we don’t lower the price of natural gas. Farmers are taking a big pay cut because of fertilizer costs. And home owners are paying too much to heat and cool their homes. “The second thing this bill does is to change the way we produce electricity. All of us are excited about the different ways of making electricity. For example, I strongly supported the new solar energy provisions. Others support wind, biomass, geothermal. But there’s a new realism in this bill, because those renewable energies and those exotic energies will not fuel our needs for the next generation in America. This bill focuses on those techniques that will. First, conservation and efficiency. Second, nuclear power. Third, coal gasification and carbon sequestration. And four, new supplies of natural gas. That’s the way we’ll deal with global warming, that’s the way we’ll deal with clean air problems, and that’s the way we’ll have enough electricity to keep American jobs in a more competitive world marketplace.” The bill now goes to President Bush for his signature.