Inhofe Announces Amendments to The Energy Policy Modernization Act of 2015

WASHINGTON – U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), chairman of the U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works (EPW) Committee, today announced that he has sponsored or cosponsored the following amendments to S.2012, The Energy Policy Modernization Act of 2015:

Climate Regulations:

Amendment 3007 - Clean Power Plan Report on Economic and Environment Impacts: Sponsored by Inhofe, this amendment would require the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to submit a simple report to congress that contains key environmental and economic impacts of the final Clean Power Plan before the rule can go into effect. The environmental analysis must include projected GHG reductions, and impacts on EPA’s “30 climate indicators.” EPA must also consult with the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and the Energy Information Administration (EIA) to determine the rule’s impacts on energy prices and grid reliability. Finally, EPA must consult with the Department of Commerce, the Department of Labor and the Small Business Administration to determine the rule’s impact on GDP, unemployment, consumer prices, business and manufacturing activity, and foreign investment.

Amendment 3006 - Clean Power Plan Analysis on Electric Grid Reliability Impacts: Sponsored by Inhofe, this amendment would prevent EPA’s final Clean Power Plan from going into effect until the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) alongside the North American Electric Reliability Organization (NERC) submits a report to Congress assessing the rule’s impact on grid reliability.

Amendment 3148 - Protecting Grid Reliability: Sponsored by Inhofe, this amendment would prevent the federal government from taking any action pursuant to the president’s Climate Action Plan, including implementation of the final Clean Power Plan that would result in reduced grid reliability.

Amendment 3009 - Preventing Climate Policies that Increase Energy Prices: Sponsored by Inhofe, this amendment would prevent the federal government from taking any action pursuant to the president’s Climate Action Plan, including implementation of the final Clean Power Plan that would result in increased energy prices.

Amendment 3008 - Enforcing Regulatory Economic Analyses: Sponsored by Inhofe, this amendment would prohibit EPA from issuing any proposed or final rule under the Clean Air Act until EPA improves certain employment analyses under the Act. 

Amendment 3058 - Increasing Transparency for Social Cost of Carbon Estimates:  Sponsored by Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO.) and cosponsored by Inhofe and Sen. James Lankford (R-Okla.), this amendment would ensure that the social cost of carbon estimates conform to existing regulatory guidance and executive orders. 

Amendment 3082 - Blocking Coal Royalty Rates:  Sponsored by Sen. John Barrasso (R-Wyo.) and cosponsored by Inhofe, this amendment would ensure that any increase on coal royalty rates would not contribute to higher electricity prices or affect the reliability of the bulk-power system.

Amendment 3083 -  Expiration Date for Secretarial Order 3338:  Sponsored by Barrasso and cosponsored by Inhofe, this amendment provides an expiration date for Secretarial Order 3338.  The Secretary of Interior may not implement or enforce Secretarial Order 3338, issued by the Secretary of the Interior on January 15, after January 20, 2017.


Amendment 3048 - Ozone Rule Delay:  Sponsored by Sen. Jeff Flake (R-Ariz.) and cosponsored by Inhofe, this amendment would prevent the final ozone NAAQS from taking effect until Feb. 1, 2018, and would extend the review cycle from every five years to every 10 years.

Amendment 2976 - Ozone NAAQS Deadline Harmonization Act:  Sponsored by Sen. Bill Cassidy (R-La.), this amendment would delay implementation of the 2015 ozone standards until 2025 and delay the following timelines:

  • State Recommendation for Area Designations move from October  2016 to October 2024
  • EPA Final Area Designations from October  2017  to October 2025
  • State Implementation Plans from October 2018 to October 2026

The amendment would conform the preconstruction permitting process to the updated implementation schedule, change the review cycle for all criteria air pollutants from five years to 10 years, and also refrain from completing the next review cycle or proposing any revisions to the standards until 2025.

EPA Accountability:

Amendment 2995 – Increasing EPA Accountability:  Sponsored by Sen. Dean Heller (R-Nev.) and cosponsored by Inhofe, this amendment would ensure EPA adheres to existing regulatory standards.  The amendment mirrors S.110, introduced by Heller last year.  The House companion to S. 110, H.R. 352 by U.S. Rep. Sean Duffy (R-Wis.), passed the full House in Dec. 2015, as an amendment to the House energy bill, the North American Energy Security and Infrastructure Act.  

Brownfields Reauthorization:

Amendment 2991 - Brownfields Reauthorization:  Sponsored by Inhofe with Sens. Edward Markey (D-Mass.) and Cory Booker (D-N.J.), this bipartisan amendment would reauthorize the EPA Brownfields program through 2018.  This amendment would also make several enhancements, including (1) prioritizing technical assistance grants for Brownfields projects in small communities, Indian tribes, rural areas, and disadvantaged areas, (2) establishing a program to provide grants to locate clean energy projects at Brownfields sites, and (3) expanding funding eligibility for governmental entities that did not cause or contribute to the contamination.  

This amendment is based on S. 1479, the Brownfields Utilization, Investment, and Local Development Act of 2015 (BUILD Act), which is sponsored by Inhofe, Markey, Booker, and Ranking Member Barbara Boxer (D-Calif.), along with Sens. Mike Rounds (R-S.D.) and Mike Crapo (R-Idaho).  A similar version of the BUILD Act was introduced by the late Sen. Frank Lautenberg (D-N.J.), along with Sens. Tom Udall (D-N.M.), Inhofe, and Crapo in the  113th Congress and was reported by the EPW committee by voice vote on April 3, 2014.  This amendment would keep the authorization for appropriations at $250 million total.

Alternative Energy:

Amendment 3157 - Using Recycled Paper to Generate Electricity:  Sponsored by Inhofe, this amendment would amend Section 3703 of S. 2012 to clarify that facilities that use recyclable paper that has been segregated for assured destruction to generate electricity would remain eligible to qualify for loan guarantees under section 1703 of the Energy Policy Act of 2005.

Amendment #2983 – Geomatic Survey Data: Sponsored by Inhofe and cosponsored by Sen. King (I-Maine), this bipartisan amendment would allow federal agencies to accept geomatically gathered data for the purposes of considering preliminary approvals of permits. This language will accelerate permit consideration across the government.

Amendment #2981- Geothermal Heat Pumps: Sponsored by Inhofe and cosponsored by Sen. Carper (D-Del.), this bipartisan amendment would amend the definition of “renewable energy” under the Energy Policy Act of 2005 to allow federal government agencies to use thermal energy when meeting their federal renewable energy procurement requirements.

Diesel Emissions Reduction Program Reauthorization:

Amendment 3143  - DERA Reauthorization:  Sponsored by Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) and cosponsored by Inhofe, this amendment reauthorizes the diesel emissions reduction program and extends the program to 2021.