INHOFE APPLAUDS PASSAGE OF ENERGY BILL CONFERENCE REPORT BY THE SENATE

July 29, 2005 INHOFE APPLAUDS PASSAGE OF ENERGY BILL CONFERENCE REPORT BY THE SENATE Notes Inclusion of Key Requested Provisions WASHINGTON, DC ñ Sen. James Inhofe (R-Okla.), Chairman of the Environment and Public Works Committee, today applauded the Senateís passage of the conference report for H.R. 6, the Energy Policy Act of 2005. The Senate approved the legislation, which will soon be presented to the President for his signature, 74-26. ìOur nation has been in need of a comprehensive national energy policy since the Reagan era,î Senator Inhofe said. ìThe Energy Bill, while not perfect, is an important step forward in fulfilling that need. Specifically, we need to enhance our energy reliability and improve the nationís energy security. This bill will help accomplish that. ìI am very pleased that the billís conferees saw fit to include a number of provisions I had requested. With these additions, weíll be able to expand refinery capacity, expand the use of nuclear energy and strengthen security at nuclear facilities, and improve permitting processes so we can explore our domestic resources in an environmentally-conscious manner. These provisions will benefit Oklahoma and the nation as a whole.î Key provisions requested by Senator Inhofe include: Tax incentives for the expansion of refinery capacity and to encourage new facility construction; Improvement of the environmental permitting process on federal lands; Clarification of Congressional intent with regard to uncontaminated stormwater runoff from oil and natural gas sites; Clarification of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commissionís exclusive jurisdiction to site LNG infrastructure and improvements in the permitting process under the National Environmental Policy Act; LUST program reforms to ensure proper inspection of tanks and operator training to prevent tanks from leaking and contaminating groundwater; and Language from three bills recently passed by the EPW Committee that will strengthen nuclear security and safety, and help expand the use of nuclear power. The Environment and Public Works Committee has held a series of hearings that focused on the use of domestic natural resources and energy production. In May 2005, the committee held an oversight hearing to review the permitting of energy projects. Last year, the committee reviewed environmental regulations in oil refining and the environmental impacts of U.S. natural gas production. In June, Senator Inhofe also released a new report, Energy and the Environment: The Future of Natural Gas in America, which demonstrates that environmental policies are driving demand for natural gas while, at the same time, other policies are restricting supply, thus resulting in high prices.