Energy policy has taken center stage in the new Congress. And not only there: Budweiser’s Super Bowl commercial showed millions of Americans that the answer to our energy future is blowing in the wind. As if on cue, both the House Energy and Commerce and Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committees will hold hearings this week to hear from experts in the energy industry, environmental advocacy, and think tanks on climate change, clean energy, and innovation in the energy sector. On top of that, Sen. Ed Markey (D-MA) and Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) are expected to release the first draft outlining specifics of the proposed Green New Deal, which has gained national attention, though the path forward for it remains unclear.
While climate change is getting new attention, there is little appetite on the Hill for moving a large legislative proposal. Instead, we expect Congress to prioritize energy infrastructure legislation over the next two years, while coming up with longer term strategies on climate for the future. With that in mind, AEE submitted its list of policy priorities to the 116th Congress, recommending four areas where the legislative branch can take action over the next two years to support advanced energy growth.