Tuesday, August 7, 2007

House Passes Energy Bill

The U.S. House of Representatives recently passed the New Directions for Energy Independence, National Security, and Consumer Protection Act (H.R.3221). Some of the provisions of this bill are outlined below.

Green Jobs- Creates a grant program to train workers for energy industries.
- Creates grants for states to identify job openings in energy industries and prepare workers for them.
- Creates grants for states to make subgrants to nonprofits for training workers for energy industries.

- Creates an Office of Global Climate Change and an International Clean Energy Foundation within the Department of State.
- Authorizes the U.S. Agency for International Development to support clean and efficient energy technology.
- Directs Department of Commerce to promote U.S. clean and efficient energy technology abroad, especially in India and China.
- Establishes a global climate change exchange program.
- Establishes programs to support research, development and demonstration of carbon capture and storage technologies.
- Establishes programs intended to move the federal government toward being carbon-neutral.

Small Business
- Expands small business loan programs to include loans for energy use reduction and use of renewable energy sources.
- Creates grants for small business development centers to support energy efficiency projects.
- Expands small business investment programs to promote energy savings and provides funding for renewable fuel investment companies.

Research and Alternative Energy- Creates the Advanced Research Projects Agency-Energy and an Office of Solar Energy Technologies within the Department of Energy.
- Establishes programs to support development of marine energy including research, development and demonstration centers.
- Establishes programs to support development of geothermal and hydrothermal energy including centers for geothermal technology transfer.
- Establishes programs to support development of solar energy.Establishes programs to support development of biofuels including a biofuels information center and authorizes financing for biofuels plants.