Hastings, McClintock Applaud Senate Passage of House Bill to Expand Renewable Hydropower Production
Rep. Scott Tipton’s Bill Headed to President’s Desk for Signature

WASHINGTON, D.C., August 2, 2013 - House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Doc Hastings (WA-04) and Water and Power Subcommittee Chairman Tom McClintock (CA-04) today applauded the Senate passage of H.R. 678, the Bureau of Reclamation Small Conduit Hydropower Development and Rural Jobs Act, which would create new American jobs and by authorizing more production of clean, renewable hydropower and eliminating bureaucratic and regulatory hurdles. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Scott Tipton (CO-03), passed the U.S. House of Representatives on April 10, 2013 with a bipartisan vote of 417-7.

“I commend the Senate for passing this common sense legislation that will result in more American jobs and cheaper and cleaner electricity. I’m pleased that there is bipartisan recognition that unnecessary government red-tape should not stand in the way of clean, renewable energy production and that hydropower plays a vital role in an all-of-the-above energy plan. Congressman Tipton has worked hard to see this legislation signed into law and I congratulate him on this important milestone,” said Committee on Natural Resources Chairman Hastings (WA-04). “The ability of the Senate to act on natural resource related bills is certainly positive and encouraging. The bipartisan efforts in the opening months of this Congress by Senators Wyden and Murkowski are appreciated.”

“I'm pleased the Senate has recognized that we can develop new hydropower resources at approximately 47,000 miles of federal conduits while eliminating duplicative and unnecessary regulatory review,” said Subcommittee on Water and Power Chairman Tom McClintock (CA-04). “This bill will also add revenue to the U.S. Treasury and give developers the regulatory certainty they need. I also want to commend Rep. Tipton for his leadership on this important bill. His tireless efforts have truly paid dividends for the western United States.”

Specifically, H.R. 678 authorizes hydropower development on existing, man-made Bureau of Reclamation water canals and pipes, cuts government red-tape by streamlining a duplicative regulatory process, and reduces administrative costs for developing these green energy projects. This would help generate thousands of mega-watts of hydropower at no cost to taxpayers. According to a Bureau of Reclamation March 2012 report, at least 373 sites conduit sites throughout the western United States have the potential for new hydropower generation. This bill would help expedite that development.

The bill is supported by, among others, the Family Farm Alliance, the American Public Power Association, the National Water Resources Association and the National Hydropower Association.

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