Natural Resources Committee - The Resources Roundup
The Latest Emails
April 26, 2013
House Passes Bipartisan Legislation to Prevent Global Helium Shortage Bill protects jobs and ensures a fair return for taxpayers
On Friday, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 527, the "Responsible Helium Administration and Stewardship Act" by a vote of 394- 1. This bipartisan legislation, introduced by House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings, Ranking Member Ed Markey, Rep. Rush Holt, and Rep. Bill Flores, is a common sense plan to sell helium from the Federal Helium Reserve in a responsible manner to prevent a global shortage, protect jobs and the economy, and ensure a fairer return for taxpayers.
By law, the Interior Department will lose the authority to fund and operate the Federal Helium Reserve as soon as October of this year, resulting in an immediate 30 percent reduction in the global helium supply. H.R. 527 applies free market reforms through semi-annual auctions and establishes a three-phase plan to sell off the remaining helium in the Reserve. These reforms will ensure a better return for taxpayers, protect our economy from severe supply disruptions, and promote the development of alternative domestic helium resources so our country is prepared when the Reserve does close.
Hearing Examines Federal Impediments to Water Rights Witnesses stress importance of water rights for job creation and economic growth
On Thursday, the House Natural Resources Subcommittee on Water and Power held an oversight hearing entitled "Federal Impediments to Water Rights, Job Creation and Recreation: A Local Perspective." The hearing examined growing federal intrusion that costs American jobs and threatens to divert water supplies away from agricultural, recreational, and municipal water use.
"There have been a torrent of complaints from multiple Western States of federal laws and federal officials usurping long-established water rights in a manner that threatens entire sectors of their economies including agriculture, ranching, tourism, and municipal water supplies," said Subcommittee Chairman Tom McClintock (CA-04).
House Republican Members Rob Bishop, Cynthia Lummis, Scott Tipton and Doug LaMalfa also actively participated in the hearing.
Hearing Examines Federal Impediments to Water Rights Witnesses stress importance of developing shared energy reserves
On Thursday, Subcommittee on Energy and Mineral Resources held an oversight and legislative hearing on the U.S. - Mexico Transboundary Hydrocarbon Agreement to examine steps needed for its implementation and a legislative hearing on H.R. 1613, the "Outer Continental Shelf Transboundary Hydrocarbon Agreements Authorization Act."
This legislation implements the U.S. - Mexico Transboundary Hydrocarbon Reservoirs Agreement by lifting the current moratorium on drilling in the Western Gap area of the Gulf of Mexico. It also provides the certainty needed to develop energy along the entirety of the U.S./Mexico maritime border in the Gulf of Mexico - allowing for expanded energy development in the Gulf of Mexico to create jobs, lower energy prices, and make America more energy secure.
Click here to read more about the legislation and hearing.
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Committee Approves with Bipartisan Support Keystone XL Bill and Bill to Establish Manhattan Project National Park
On Wednesday, the Natural Resources committee held a markup on H.R. 3 and 26 other bills. This legislation would remove road blocks to allow for the approval and construction of the Keystone XL pipeline energy project.
"As we've seen time and time again, this vital energy project, like so many others, has fallen victim to Obama Administration roadblocks and delays. President Obama has held up this project for years, even though it has gone through extensive reviews. The State Department has repeatedly determined that this project would have no significant environmental impacts. Yet still, the Obama Administration refuses to act," said Chairman Doc Hastings.
The committee also approved by unanimous consent H.R. 1208, a bipartisan bill introduced by Chairman Doc Hastings, Congressman Chuck Fleischmann and Congressman Ben Lujan to establish a Manhattan Project National Historical Park that will include facilities at Hanford, Washington, Oak Ridge, Tennessee, and Los Alamos, New Mexico. The action by the Committee makes the bill eligible for consideration by the full House.
Click here to read more about the markup and other legislation considered.
Video: Meet our Members
Rep. Cynthia Lummis (WY At-Large)
Watch Rep. Cynthia Lummis (WY At-Large) discuss the abundance of natural resources in her district in our "Meet our Members" video series.
The ski industry generates $12.2 billion in economic activity annually, and public land ski areas accommodate 60% of the skier/snowboarder visits in the U.S. Ski areas are major employers in rural economies, employing 160,000 people, and help drive job creation.
From high-tech manufacturing to hospitals and scientific labs, our economy and lives in the 21st century are dependent on this lighter-than-air gas. Helium is essential to the manufacturing of computer chips and fiber optic cables, is used by hospitals for life-saving medical tests like an MRI, and is critical to national defense efforts.