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Press Release

Westerman Touts H.R. 1 During House Floor Debate

  • EMR Subcommittee

Today, House Committee on Natural Resources Chairman Bruce Westerman (R-Ark.) spoke on the House floor in support of H.R. 1, the Lower Energy Costs Act.

Below are Westerman's full remarks, as prepared.

Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of H.R. 1, the Lower Energy Costs Act.

As an engineer, I’ve learned no issue is too difficult for American innovation and ingenuity to solve when we will honestly identify the problem, develop a sound plan to solve it, and do the hard work to get the results we desire.

The truth we all know is that America has an energy crisis. Energy is foundational to everything we do, and for the sake of our future, we must solve this problem.

Energy prices in general have gone up nearly 40% in a little over 2 years. High energy costs translate throughout the economy, causing inflated prices for every necessity of life, from the food we eat, to the clothes we wear, to the roof over our heads.

President Biden has said he’s working to lower these costs, but his actions are drowning out his words. He’s waged war on American producers, shutting down oil and gas leasing, banning mineral development in certain areas, and insisting on keeping our federal regulations permanently stuck in the past.

What are we getting in return? We’re getting more dependent on the worst polluters in the world while we wreck our own economy sending our wealth and jobs overseas.

Our current energy policy favors Putin, the Chinese Communist Party, and despots around the globe over the American people and freedom. Why would our friends across the aisle continue to put the worst polluters, human rights violators, and those who wish us harm above the American people?

No more! H.R. 1 is designed to solve our energy crisis.House Republicans are ready to show the world that American energy – not Saudi Arabian, Venezuelan, Chinese, or Russian energy – is our future. American mining, American innovation, American processing and refining, American manufacturing, and American infrastructure will lead us out of this energy crisis.

H.R. 1 outlines this through a variety of measures. First, it rolls back the Biden administration’s oil and gas leasing moratoriums, giving producers certainty to produce resources safely and responsibly, right here at home.

Next, given the importance of minerals to our national security, clean energy technology, and a host of everyday uses, H.R. 1 shores up domestic supply chains for commodities like copper, lithium, and cobalt and allows us to make our energy infrastructure where it should be made…right here at home in the United States!

Every ounce we produce here is an ounce less we and our allies are forced to purchase from Chinese-controlled mines with deplorable labor and environmental standards.

And, of course, none of this is possible without modernizing the federal regulations that delay the projects we desperately need. If you don’t believe permitting reform is needed, maybe you’ll believe President Biden’s senior advisor, John Podesta, who recently said,

“We can move faster by setting tighter deadlines for agencies to complete environmental reviews. We can move smarter by making it easier to approve projects with low environmental impact. But Congress needs to do its job too. So it’s time to get back to work and pass permitting reform legislation.”

We are called to be good stewards of our resources and leave them better than we found them. That is the definition of conservation.

We cannot say our global resources are better off today under Democrat policies. China is building coal plants at a rapid pace, using slave labor to construct solar panels and develop critical minerals, while Russia is not only one of the worst environmental catastrophes on the planet, but they are also using their energy revenues to fund their war in Ukraine.

We cannot continue to turn a blind eye to these injustices and say “not in my backyard.” America drills, mines, builds, and innovates cleaner, safer, and more responsibly than anywhere else in the world.

Before American innovators and workers can solve our energy problems, we need a plan. H.R. 1 is the plan to solve our energy crisis.

For these and many more reasons, I’m proud to be a cosponsor of the Lower Energy Costs Act. H.R. 1 is the blueprint to ease the burden of this self-inflicted energy crisis on American families. H.R. 1, when executed, will make the United States more secure and competitive on the global stage. Ultimately, H.R. 1 will improve the health and longevity of our natural resources, create a better climate, and spur US economic growth and jobs…these are results we should all get behind.

You don’t have to be an engineer to solve this energy problem. I urge all my colleagues to join with me and vote a resounding yes in support of H.R. 1.

Mr. Speaker, I reserve the balance of my time.


The Lower Energy Costs Act restores American energy independence by:

  • Increasing domestic energy production
  • Reforming the permitting process for all industries
  • Reversing anti-energy policies advanced by the Biden administration
  • Streamlining energy infrastructure and exports
  • Boosting the production and processing of critical minerals

Click here for an overview of the bill.

Click here for a section-by-section summary of the bill.

Click here for a summary of the Energy and Commerce Committee components of the bill.

Click here for a summary of the Natural Resources Committee components of the bill.

Click here for a summary of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee components of the bill.