Senators Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and Maria Cantwell (D-WA) introduced the Energy and Natural Resources Act, a bipartisan bill, last June that is supposed to be voted on in the Senate this week. Senator Bernie Sanders wants to make sure the bill does not pass.
Environmentalists, who are calling this bill “a pro-fracking giveaway to oil and gas interests that would commit America to decades more of dangerous fossil fuel dependence,” believe the bill will incentivize the creation of harmful new natural gas pipelines and fossil fuel exploration.
“This bill would lock in our dependence on fossil fuels for decades to come, directly undermining our country’s efforts to stave off the worst effects of climate change,” a progressive letter read.
“Our job is to move away from fossil fuels toward sustainable energy and energy efficiency,” Sanders said in a statement. “This bill does the opposite.”
— Mark Ruffalo (@MarkRuffalo) July 21, 2017
Republicans say the bill will modernize America’s energy infrastructure. Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) is hoping this bipartisan legislation will easily pass, unlike the Republicans failed attempt at passing their health care bill.
Sanders is hoping to make amendments to the legislation before it is voted on, but the changes would have to be voted on by the Senate. So far, Sanders is the only senator to publicly oppose the bill.
Over three hundred and fifty progressive organizations support Sanders in opposing this bill.