Front Porch Blog

Tenn Tuesday! Spotlight on Shaheen-Portman Energy Savings Act

Making 120 Energy Efficiency Amendments SEXY…

We’re going to do something a little different today by focusing on a specific piece of federal legislation currently before the U.S. Senate called the “Energy Savings and Industrial Competitiveness Act” (S 1392).

This bipartisan bill, sponsored by Senators Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and Rob Portman (R-OH) is the first significant energy bill to see the floor of the Senate since 2007, which President George W. Bush eventually signed into law as the Energy Independence and Security Act.

The Shaheen-Portman legislation (S. 1392) is not only an extremely exciting bill for Appalachian Voices and for our fellow advocates of energy efficiency, but it already has strong bipartisan support. The bill focuses on improvements in three main areas; 1) building codes, 2) industrial energy efficiency, and 3) energy improvements to federal facilities. The American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy has MUCH more in “White Paper” form.

Energy Efficiency is pretty non-controversial, obviously, and we celebrated as the bill sailed through the Senate Energy Committee by a vote of 19-3. Tennessee Senator Lamar Alexander was one of the many Republicans to join his Democratic colleagues in taking a positive step for our energy future, our economy and the environment.

The bill was on the Senate floor last week, but was tabled when Senator David Vitter (R-LA) blocked a vote on the bill and its amendments due to an unrelated issue.

He essentially ran out the clock by demanding that Democrats allow a vote for defunding Obamacare. So now, before any votes were taken, the Senate had to move on from the bill amid Republican shouts that we should defund Obamacare or shut down the government completely. The hope is that they return to Shaheen-Portman once the budget battle is over. But it’s not quite that simple.

Since the bill has gone through Committee, there have been 120 amendments filed on topics ranging from energy efficiency financing to golf carts. Now, Republican and Democratic leadership still have to work out which of the amendments will receive actual votes on the floor. Some of the amendments would make the bill even stronger, and some of them would basically mean a quickening of the apocalypse for communities in the coal-bearing counties of Central Appalachia.

So the Appalachian Voices team thought that we would consolidate and summarize these amendments for you. Here are the 120 amendments that have been filed so far. Click “link” for more information about each amendment. Feel free to leave questions in the comments.

So here we go…


Shaheen-Portman Amendments

# Sponsors Notes Read Position
#1841 Coons (D) Expands Master Limited Partnership (MLP) program to include renewable energy projects link Pro
#1842 Coons (D) – Collins (R) Strengthen and reauthorize “Weatherization Assistance Program” and “State Energy Program” link Pro
#1844 Isakson (R) – Bennett (D) To improve the accuracy of mortgage underwriting by Federal mortgage agencies by ensuring that energy cost savings are included in the underwriting process link
#1843 Wicker (R) Audit requirement link
#1845 M. Udall (D) – Collins (R) Helping schools learn about and implement existing efficiency programs link Pro
#1846 M. Udall (D) – Risch (R) Requires fed gov to reduce energy use in data centers through consolidation link
#1847 Bennett (D) – Ayotte (R) Tenant Star Program link
#1848 Reid/Pryor (D) – Ayotte/Coburn (R) Veterans link
#1850 Inhofe (R) Natural gas vehicles link
#1851 Inhofe (R) – Carper (D) Including energy savings as a renewable energy link
#1852 Whitehouse / Boxer (D) Multifamily housing units link
#1853 Barrasso / Enzi / Flake (R) Halts some regulation of CO2 link Oppose
#1854 Barrasso / Flake (R) Social cost of carbon link
#1855 Franken (D) Requires disclosure of energy use in federally owned buildings link
#1856 Klobuchar (D) – Hoeven (R) Non-profit building retrofits link Pro
#1857 Rubio (R) Study on costs of regs on small businesses link
#1858 Wyden / Merkley (D) Study on standby energy power usage link
#1859 Stabenow (D) Vehicle efficiency link
#1860 Gillibrand (D) Use of energy efficiency improvement for disaster relief link
#1861 R. Johnson / Coburn (R) — — — link
#1862 R. Johnson / Coburn (R) Saving energy at federal data centers link
#1863 Enzi / Barasso / Flake (R) Anti-EPA’s regional haze regulations link
#1864 Enzi / Barasso (R) Mineral leasing link
#1865 Toomey / Coburn / Flake / Risch (R) Repeal of renewable fuel standard under CAA link
#1866 Vitter / Enzi / Heller / Lee / Johnson / Inhofe (R) Obamacare link
#1867 Coburn (R) Obamacare link
#1868 Coburn (R) Federal workers should turn out lights when they leave a room. link
#1869 Coburn (R) Cost-benefit studies by DOE link
#1870 Coburn (R) Combining green building programs link
#1871 McConnell / Coats / Cornyn / Coburn / Alexander / Barrasso / Burr / Risch / Johanns / Ayotte / Blunt / Moran / Hoeven (R) Obamacare delay link
#1872 Vitter (R) Automobile tax credits and CO2 during production link
#1873 Coburn (R) — — — link
#1874 Coburn (R) — — — link
#1875 Coburn (R) Consolidation of Energy Star programs link
#1876 Thune (R) Health insurance link
#1877 Bennett (D) – Coburn (R) Federal data center consolidation link
#1878 Blumenthal (D) Study non-monetary benefits on energy savings, commercial building code compliance, etc link
#1879 Sessions (R) – Pryor (D) Voluntary efficiency certification program for AC, furnace, boiler, heat pumps link
#1880 Lee (R) Vehicle fuels link
#1881 Pryor / Begich / Coons / Heinrich / Tester / Udall (D) – Alexander / Boozman (R) Gov’t should do quadrennial energy reviews for itself link
#1882 Inhfoe (R) Farms and oil spills link
#1883 Inhfoe (R) Lead paint study link
#1884 Inhfoe (R) Vehicle fuels link
#1884 Inhfoe (R) Vehicle fuels link
#1885 Landrieu (D) – Wicker (R) Third party certification under Energy Star link
#1886 Landrieu / Pryor (D) – Crapo/Wicker (R) Improving federal building efficiency standards; doesn’t look to be as good as it sounds link
#1887 Thune (R) Repealing “Advanced Technology Vehicles Manufacturing Incentive Program” from 2007 energy bill link
#1888 Thune (R) Prohibits keeping a database of farm owners, operators, and employees link
#1889 Thune (R) Would prohibit GhG regulations that were determined to have a negative impact on jobs or energy prices. link Oppose
#1890 Thune (R) Would prohibit fuel emissions standards that would cause an increase in the price of gasoline. link
#1891 Thune (R) Would require any reglation with over $1 billion compliance costs to have congressional approval. link Oppose
#1892 Thune (R) Relates to setting goals for increasing the production of domestic oil and natural gas link
#1893 Heller / Flake (R) “Energy Consumers Relief,” increases requirements of EPA when finalizing rules related to energy link Oppose
#1894 Menendez (D) “Sense of Senate on Implementation of Energy Savings Projects” – encourages federal agencies to meet goals required in 2011 Presidential memorandum on implemation of energy savings projects. link
#1895 Warner / Manchin / Schatz / Tester (D) State Race to the Top Initiative – Offers grants to states with aggressive energy savings plans link Pro
#1896 Flake / Burr / Coburn (R) Obamacare link
#1897 Coburn / Risch (R) Requires projects to be funded in advance through appropriations acts link Oppose
#1898 Coburn (R) Pulls funding for projects that employ union labor link Oppose
#1899 McCain (R) Amends “Feedstock Flexibility Program for Bioenergy Producers” link
#1900 McCain (R) Repeal of “Feedstock Flexibility for Bioenergy Producers” program link
#1901 Blunt / Hoeven / Kirk (R) Shortens “presumptive approval” clause for EPA on Clean Air Act waivers to 3 days link Oppose
#1902 Blunt / Vitter (R) Prohibits an agency from monetizing potential effects associated with carbon emissions”. link Oppose
#1903 Enzi / Barrasso / Flake (R) Weakens “Regional Haze Program” link Oppose
#1904 T Udall /Franken / M Udall (D) “Smart Water Resource Management Pilot Program” – gives grants to utilities, municipalties and others considering energy and water savings link Pro
#1905 T Udall (D) Establishes a “WaterSense” program to reduce water use, strain on water infracstructure, and preserve water resources for future generations. link
#1906 Boxer (D) Withholds Congressional salaries if US financial obligations are not met due to debt limit being reached. link
#1907 Merkley (D) Financing Energy Efficient Manufacturing Program link Pro
#1908 Hoeven / Barasso / Blunt / Cornyn / Enzi / Heller / Inhofe / McConnell Murkowski / Risch / Thune (R) – Baucus / Begich / Donnelly / Heitkamp / Landrieu / Manchin / Pryor / Tester (D) “Sense of Congress” regarding approval of KXL Pipeline. link Oppose
#1909 Hoeven (R) – Heitkamp (D) ) Regarding federal regulation of oil/gas development on federal land link
#1910 Toomey (R) – Casey (D) Compliance delay for units burning coal refuse until 2017 link Oppose
#1911 Udall / Markey (D) Consumer Access to Electric Energy Information – encourages policies that allow electricity users access to their own electricity data. link Pro
#1912 Udall / Schatz (D) – Collins (R) Coordination of Energy Retrofitting Assistance for Schools link Pro
#1913 Paul (R) Elimination of federal or state regulation of plumbing supplies link
#1914 Donnelly (D) – Blunt (R) Requires EPA Administrator using emissions rates based on efficiencies achievable by the best demonstrated commercially available tecnology, by fuel type. link Oppose
#1915 Sanders / Wyden (D) Loans for residential building energy efficiency upgrades link Pro
#1916 Hoeven / Blunt / Chambliss / Grassley (R) – Klobuchar / Pryor (D ) Additional standards for grid enabled water heaters link
#1917 Hoeven (R) – Manchin (D) Energy reductions for federal buildings and buildings with energy intensive activities link
#1918 McCain / Flake (R) Relating to GSA and DHS buildings for rental, lease or sale to government personel, contractors, or their family if cost exceeds average link
#1919 Whitehouse (D) Energy Conservation in Federal Buildings link Pro
#1920 Harkin (D) Community Energy Program link Pro
#1921 Cornyn (R) Prohibits IRS from dealing with Obamacare link
#1922 Cornyn (R) Dealing with Endangered Species Act litigation link
#1923 Johanns(R) Requires EE analysis and disclosure of energy audits at federal facilities. link
#1924 Johanns (R) Exempts golf carts from some conservation rules. link
#1925 Levin (D) – Inhofe (R) For development of public natural gas auto fueling stations link Pro
#1926 Inhofe (R) Incentivizes natural gas vehicles, weakens electric auto standards link
#1927 Schatz (D) Extends consideration of sustainabile building practices to include “location” of new and replacement buildings link
#1928 Inhofe (R) NA link
#1929 Blumenthal (D) Study on benefits of energy saving devices and code compliance in commercial buildings link Pro
#1930 Bennet (D) – Coburn (R) Consolidates federal data centers link
#1931 Fischer / Flake (R) Eliminates higher education grants for worker training and capacity building link
#1932 Sanders / Wyden (D) – Murkowski (R) State Residential Building EE loan pilot program link Pro
#1933 M Udall (D) – Risch (R) Enhances implemenation of energy efficiency efforts in federal agencies and data centers, including OMB efficiency reports and scorecards link Pro
#1934 Flake / Coburn / Johnson(R) Obamacare link
#1935 Flake (R) Limits “Regional Haze” rule link
#1936 Flake (R) Prohibits this bill from affecting Indian Tribes link
#1937 Flake / Fischer (R) Eliminates “Electric Motor Rebate Program” from this legislation link
#1938 Flake / Fischer (R) Makes building code provision of this act voluntary link Oppose
#1939 Flake / Fischer (R) Requires EPA to have cost offsets on other federal agencies when promulgating rules limiting GhGs link Oppose
#1940 Klobuchar / Stabenow (D) – Hoeven (R) Energy Efficient Retrofit Pilot Program – allows non-profits, churches, etc to recieve grants for energy saving activities link Pro
#1941 Franken (D) – Local Energy Supply and Resiliency Act of 2013, regarding recovering waste heat, renewable energy, and strengthening of local energy resources. link Pro
#1942 Manchin (D) – Vitter / Hoeven (R) Spruce Veto veto link Opposero
#1943 Machin (D) Clean Water Cooperative Federalism Act link Oppose
#1944 Manchin (D) Seeks $2 billion for “clean coal” projects link Oppose
#1945 Machin (D) Studies GhG emission changes in electric sector link Oppose
#1946 Baldwin (D) Increases outreach and coordination in the “Future of Industry” program contained in this act link
#1947 Warren (D) – Crapo (R) Study of energy savings benefits of operational efficiency programs and services link Pro
#1948 M Udall / Merkley (D) Consumer Access to Electric Energy Information link Pro
#1949 Brown (D) – Kirk (R) Increasing Water Efficiency In Federal Buildings link
#1950 Murray (D) Alternative Fuel Infrastructure link
#1951 Harkin (D) Community Energy Program, giving grants to municipalities or non-profits for energy saving activities link Pro
#1952 Warner / Manchin / Tester / Schatz (D) State Energy Race to the Top Initiative link Pro
#1953 Udall, T / Udall, M / Franken (D) ) Smart Water Resource Management Pilot Program link
#1954 Warner / Manchin / Tester / Schatz (D) Energy Productivity Innovation Challenge – to assist states to double electric and thermal energy productivity by 2030 link Pro
#1955 Klobuchar / Schumer (D) – Graham (R) Metal Theft Prevention Act – regarding the use of federal, state, or local electric infrastructure link
#1956 Klobuchar / Franken (D) – Hoeven (R) Regarding reporting requirements during coordination of Refinery Outages link
#1957 Udall, T / Udall / Cardin / Markey (D) Renewable Electricity Standard of 25% by 2025 link Pro
#1958 McConnell (R) “Saving Coal Jobs Act” – basically everything bad you can imagine about Mitch McConnell’s wildest dreams link Oppose
#1959 Crapo / Risch (R) Resloution of conflicting Clean Water Act 401 certifications link Oppose
#1960 Wyden (D) Helium Stewardship of 2013 link
#1961 Hatch (R) Amends the coordination and nonduplication section of this bill link
#1962 Hatch (R) Amends the Weatherization Assistance Program link
#1963 Hatch (R) Adds third party evaluations to federally funded energy training programs link

Some of the amendments that are particularly exciting to us are:

#1932 – (Sanders-Wyden (D) / Murkowski (R))
This amendment would allow states and other entities to compete for grants from the Department of Energy (DOE) to help perform energy efficiency upgrades in residential buildings.

#1940 – Klobuchar (D) / Hoeven (R)
This amendment, originally introduced as the Non-Profit Energy Efficiency Act, would provide matching grants to non-profits (including houses of worship, etc) who are making efficiency upgrades.

#1952 – Warner / Manchin / Tester / Schatz (D)
Originally introduced as the “State Energy Race to the Top” Initiative (S 1209), provides grants to states who can revise their energy conservation plans. The goal of the amendment is to double electric and thermal productivity by the year 2030.

So, all of that said, we hope that the Senate will get back to work soon to continue their extremely important work for the economy, environment and our energy future by passing Shaheen-Portman. Then, we can all go over to the U.S. House of Representatives and do this all again!

Raised on the banks of the Tennessee River, JW's work to create progress in his home state and throughout Appalachia has been featured on the Rachel Maddow Show, The Daily Kos and Grist. He served first as Appalachian Voices’ Legislative Associate and then Tennessee director until leaving to pursue a career in medicine in 2012.

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