Initiative Releases Recommendations for New Obama Administration, “The Executive Branch and National Energy Policy: Time for Renewal”
Nov. 27, 2012
Washington, D.C. – The Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) today unveiled several recommendations developed as part of a broader report slated for release early next year by its Strategic Energy Policy Initiative, which is co-chaired by former Sen. Byron L. Dorgan (D-N.D.), former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott (R-Miss.), General James L. Jones USMC (Ret.) and former U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Administrator William K. Reilly.
The United States is experiencing a resurgence in domestic energy production. With so many opportunities and challenges facing our nation, a strategic path forward is vital. Decisions made by the Executive Branch will have important implications for the continued reliability, affordability, security and environmental responsibility of domestic energy production.
In light of these developments, BPC convened the Initiative over the past year to develop recommendations on the role that the Executive Branch can play in removing inefficiencies and redundancies in the sphere of energy policy.
“The U.S. Department of Energy and the 20 other agencies involved in energy policy each play an important role in the development and implementation of our national energy policy. But with that many agencies involved in energy issues, coordination, implementation and oversight are often difficult,” said former Sen. Byron Dorgan. “While the Obama Administration is currently assembling itself for the next four years, the time is ripe to reevaluate how our energy policy offices can be better structured.”
The report recommends a framework and process within the Executive Branch for regular review and assessment of national energy policy priorities. It calls for combining a high-level National Energy Strategy with a companion Quadrennial Energy Review. This mirrors the approach used to develop national security policy, in which the Executive Branch prepares a National Security Strategy subject to a Quadrennial Defense Review prepared by the Department of Defense.
“There is lots of good news in terms of energy. We should take action now to build on this good news, instead of waiting until we’re experiencing a crisis,” said former U.S. Senate Majority Leader Trent Lott.
“With the beginning of a new presidential term we have a remarkable opportunity to institutionalize a process for creating strategic national energy policy. The recommendations we present today establish an architecture to improve energy goal setting, policy formulation and coordination,” said General Jim Jones.
“I am aware firsthand of some of the struggles of moving energy or climate policies from my time at the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. By structuring policy in terms of both long-term strategy and short-term implementation goals, we establish useful metrics for analyzing progress,” said former U.S. EPA Administrator William Reilly.
“We are grateful for the hard work of our Energy Board and the Strategic Energy Policy Initiative’s chairs for leading this important effort,” said BPC President Jason S. Grumet. “These organizational changes are critical to improving how the nation creates, implements and reviews energy policy.”
The BPC Strategic Energy Policy Initiative draws input from a diverse group of key stakeholders, including high-level industry executives, scientists, economics, environmental representatives, labor leaders and former government and elected officials.
The Initiative will release a more comprehensive set of recommendations in early 2013.
Read the full report here.