Ranking Member Kaptur Statement at Fiscal Year 2024 Budget Request for the Department of Energy Hearing

2023-03-23 10:43

Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (D-OH), Ranking Member of the Energy and Water Development Subcommittee, delivered the following remarks at the subcommittee's fiscal year 2024 budget request for the Department of Energy hearing:

**As prepared for delivery**

Thank you, Chairman Fleischmann. I am looking forward to working with you in your new role as Chairman of this subcommittee. I know this capable subcommittee under your leadership will achieve progress for America.

Thank you, Secretary Granholm, for joining us today. I’m so grateful you not only distinguish yourself as a transformational Energy Secretary, but your presence at DOE provides real knowledge of the Great Lakes region so vital to America’s future.

The Department of Energy’s budget request is paramount to ensure American energy independence, which is fundamental to our national security.

Putin’s war of aggression against Ukraine crystalizes how essential a comprehensive energy strategy is to our economy, to national security, and to global stability. With Russia weaponizing energy to destabilize global markets, it is clear that America needs to innovate – not allow foreign adversaries to disrupt our way of life.

Over the last 40 years, America has made remarkable progress on energy independence: We have continually strengthened our net energy position and have achieved real results in pulling us out of the nosedive of foreign dependency. Over the last few years, our nation has produced record amounts of oil and gas, and we are indeed now a net energy exporter. But in this 21st century, America needs to continue harnessing new, sustainable energy sources that weren’t a focus of previous Administrations. I am so privileged to witness how Americans in every corner of our country are inventing our way forward, one energy patent at a time.

DOE is responsible for addressing the most pressing energy, environmental, and nuclear security issues of our time. The Department’s pioneering investments in science, technology, and applied systems are unparalleled. Science and political commitment have led to breakthroughs that were never before thought possible.

Funding for DOE is critical to supporting programs that:

  • enhance energy security and energy independence by reducing American dependence on foreign adversaries;
  • develop cutting-edge technologies to save Americans money and expand our global competitiveness;
  • tackle the climate crisis while growing the economy and supporting good-paying jobs; and
  • responsibly steward the nation’s nuclear deterrent while assuring nuclear nonproliferation.

Significant federal investments included in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and the Inflation Reduction Act are helping us make progress, but now is not the time to take our foot off the pedal. We need to make more progress for America, sustain investment in new energy technologies, and advance the world class research that unlocks our full scientific potential.

This budget request proposes necessary investments to continue innovations that will further push the energy revolution the American people need. The U.S., as a global energy leader, must not rely on  foreign energy sources. We must stand on our own two feet.

Progress requires investments across the board – from basic research, to energy efficiency and better using our resources to develop new, clean energy technologies, and to harden the electric grid against disasters and cyber threats.

This budget request makes a serious investment in DOE’s growing efforts to “meet the streets”, especially through its State and Community Energy Programs. I know what a challenge this will be. But achieving progress depends on engaging people and communities in new opportunities for energy breakthroughs. The tools that DOE can provide will not only help us lower our energy costs but create thousands of new jobs, cut pollution, and make us more energy secure.

America has always been a frontier nation. We ventured where others did not imagine and have the will to pursue and persevere. Meeting America’s new future is imbedded in our nation’s DNA. Our generation must advance America’s full potential to meet the challenge of a new day.

With that, I’ll close my remarks, and I look forward to discussing this request.

118th Congress