The Real Neverending Story

By | Energy | No Comments

Flash back to seven years ago, when TransCanada first applied for the Keystone XL Pipeline. Imagine how you were enjoying watching Tina Fey do her first Saturday Night Live skit impersonating Sarah Palin on the Presidential Campaign trail, reading about Blockbuster offering to buy out Circuit City in hopes of improving both their businesses, and getting your first Starbucks loyalty card. Perhaps you were seeing Michael Jackson celebrate his 50th birthday, reading your emails on a brand new iPhone 3G, and watching Britney Spears’ emotional breakdown on the news. Seven years is a long time, and the country has kept growing and evolving, but Keystone XL has continued to wait. Read More

What does “business as usual” even mean anymore?

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The long road for the Keystone XL Pipeline has been anything but ordinary. The project’s application has been left to collect dust, as of tomorrow, for seven years. To put that into perspective with other infrastructure projects, both the Hoover Dam and the Golden Gate Bridge took four years to build. Even the Eiffel Tower took only two years, two months and five days; the Empire State, the world’s tallest building for almost 40 years, was done in just one year and 45 days. It’s staggering when you think about the delays this project has been made to endure, especially considering that the current application for Keystone XL is just 875 miles long, a fraction of the 2.6 million miles of oil and gas pipeline currently constructed in the United States. It would give us the capability to transport  830,000 barrels of crude oil a day, create over 42,00 jobs, and add 3.4 billion to the U.S. GDP. Construction alone would involve nearly 1,000 companies in 47 states to build this pipeline — injecting $20 billion into our economy. Read More

Embracing the Arctic Challenge

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What’s happening in the Arctic is big. President Obama’s trip to Alaska underscores that the Arctic will play a huge role in shaping our future. And manufacturers are watching.

While the Arctic holds the promise of abundant and strategic resources, it also has one of the harshest and most complex environments on the planet. The Arctic is still very much a captivating, yet daunting frontier. Read More

Senate Energy Package Advances LNG Exports, Energy Efficiency and Other Manufacturing Priorities

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In a town where cooperation is often hard to come by, the Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee has long been a place for where bipartisanship has thrived. Regardless of the party holding the gavel, members were always willing to put politics aside and work together to tackle the challenges and embrace the opportunities provided by our complex, ever-changing energy policy.

This week is no different. Today, the committee will hold a markup of the Energy Policy Modernization Act, a bipartisan measure introduced by Chairman Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Ranking Member Maria Cantwell (D-WA). The 357-page bill addresses a wide range of issues designed to promote an “all of the above” approach to energy. Read More

Recognized Sustainability Leader Ecolab Releases Annual Report

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This week Ecolab released its 2014 Corporate Sustainability Report highlighting the company’s commitment to making the world cleaner, safer and healthier while protecting people and vital resources. A world renowned company in promoting sustainability, in 2014 alone, Ecolab was named to the FTSE4Good Index, The Civic 50, CR Magazine’s 100 Best Corporate Citizens, Newsweek’s Green Rankings and Ethisphere Institute’s list of the World’s Most Ethical Companies. Read More

Cost Consideration: Supreme Court Hears Arguments in Michigan v. EPA

By | Energy, Manufacturers’ Center for Legal Action | No Comments

Today the Supreme Court hears arguments in Michigan v. EPA, to resolve whether the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) must consider costs when deciding whether it is appropriate to regulate hazardous air pollutants emitted by electric utilities.

It’s surprising that an agency would not consider costs when deciding how to regulate. We could make cars safer by requiring that they be made like tanks. We could reduce hospital infections by requiring hazmat-style protective equipment.  But alternatives like these are usually not appropriate. It is more reasonable to approach every regulation by weighing its unique costs and benefits. Read More

Blunt-Thune Carbon Tax Amendment Reminder of Potential Negative Impacts of a Carbon Tax

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As part of the Senate’s consideration of the FY 2016 budget, Senators Roy Blunt (R-MO) and John Thune (R-SD) will offer an amendment opposing the future leveling of a carbon tax on U.S. manufacturers and businesses. The NAM has long warned of the potential negative impacts of an ill-conceived carbon tax program, particularly as other major emitting nations do not face similar cost burdens. Unilateral regulations or additional costs to address greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions will only hurt U.S. manufacturers while accomplishing little, if anything, in the way of global emission reductions.

In 2013, the NAM released an economic study conducted by nonpartisan NERA Economic Consulting, looking at two carbon tax scenarios: one levied at $20 per ton increasing at 4 percent, and the other designed to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 80 percent—an emission reduction level targeted in past legislative proposals. NERA found that any revenue raised by a carbon tax would be far outweighed by the negative impacts to the overall economy. Read More

Local Governments Weigh In on Proposed Ozone Standards

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The outcry over the EPA’s proposed ground-level ozone standards continues with representatives of the nation’s mayors, counties, cities and regions adding their voices to the debate in a letter to EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy this week.

In the letter dated March 17, the U.S. Conference of Mayors, National Association of Counties, National League of Cities, and National Association of Regional Councils, detail the impact the most expensive rule in U.S. history will have on local governments.  These four organizations collectively represent 19,000 cites and mayors, 3,069 counties and over 500 regional councils. Read More

Reintroduced Energy Efficiency Legislation Receives Bipartisan Support

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Senators Rob Portman (R-OH) and Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) reintroduced their energy efficiency legislation Wednesday, joined by 11 bipartisan co-sponsors. The NAM has strongly supported this legislation in its previous versions, and will continue to push for passage of this common sense, bipartisan energy efficiency measure that would create jobs by saving energy in industrial, commercial, and residential sectors.

The Energy Savings and Industrial Competitiveness Act of 2015 is similar to last year’s version, and sponsors say it will create 190,000 jobs, save $16.2 billion annually and reduce carbon emissions by the equivalent of 22 million cars. The bill helps to strength national building codes, establishes a Tenant Star program that encourages commercial tenants to be more energy efficient, establishes the Supply Star pilot program to encourage the manufacturing supply chain to become more energy efficient, encourages the federal government to be more energy efficient as they purchase new technology, and requires the federal government to better measure energy performance. Read More

Veto Override Falls Short in Senate, Manufacturers Hope For Action

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Today, the Senate voted to override President Obama’s veto of a bill to approve construction of the Keystone XL pipeline and even though this vote did not receive the 2/3rds approval needed to pass (failed by a vote of 62-37), it shows a dedication from Senate leadership to this important infrastructure project. This project would create tens of thousands of new jobs, opportunities for working men and women and energy abundance here in the United States. Read More