On Monday, Feb. 6, PA Chamber Director of Government Affairs Kevin Sunday testified before the House Republican Policy Committee regarding the state’s energy assets and the impact of rising energy prices. Other testifiers included the leadership of NFIB, the Consumer Energy Alliance, and the Industrial Energy Consumers of Pennsylvania, which followed testimony from the Marcellus Shale Coalition, PA Coal Alliance, and the Energy Association of Pennsylvania.
Sunday noted that Pennsylvania’s abundant natural resources have led this country through every major energy transition that has occurred in the past 165 years, from the first domestic oil well drilled in Titusville, PA in 1859, to today’s prolific production of shale gas and many exciting innovations in advanced manufacturing and distributed energy resources.
He also discussed how Pennsylvania’s power generation fleet continues to export power to neighboring states based on increased demand for energy, including to avoid blackouts. Sunday noted the potential to increase energy exports to allies abroad seeking to reduce reliance on Russian energy, as well as to welcome investment home from companies that can no longer afford European power prices.
In question and answer with legislators, Sunday described how a broad coalition of conservation groups, sportsmen’s associations, organized labor and businesses has come together to support reform of federal energy mandates. Yet, the Biden administration has pursued the opposite strategy, including proposing the highest amount of ethanol mandates ever. Such mandates cost drivers upwards of 30 cents per gallon of gas, increase inflation for food prices, are more emissions intensive than traditional oil refining, and threaten the viability of the few remaining refineries in the northeast. As it did several weeks ago in a public comment hearing by EPA, the PA Chamber has continually advocated for reform to the federal ethanol program.