Small businesses are the beating heart of America’s economy, and a big part of the reason that our country enjoys the freedom and standard of living we know. Owning and operating these businesses, however, is no easy task.
Even in the best of times, running a small business took focus, determination, and tremendous flexibility. Now, with historic inflation, rising fuel costs, and supply chains disrupted by a pandemic and war, the challenges have mounted.
When we talk to small business owners and employees, one thing we hear over and over is that energy costs are spiraling. With them, the basic costs of doing business are rising, putting the squeeze on already-thin margins.
The global energy market has been severely disrupted by Russia’s war in Ukraine, but America has some of the largest proven energy reserves in the world. We could be doing far more to fill the gap, unleashing our domestic industry and increasing our self-reliance.
Politicians and bureaucrats in Washington, however, are holding this progress back. Federal lands are being closed off to development, burdensome regulations continue to pile up on major projects, and we are failing to invest in the education of the next generation of key STEM careers. We are letting this moment for American energy dominance pass us by, taking the opportunity to help our small businesses with it.
That’s why leaders in the energy sector have stepped up with 10 simple but effective policies that our government could implement right now—all of which would boost our production, help supply chains, and provide certainty for Americans and our allies alike.
The 10 in 2022 plan calls for:
1. Lift Development Restrictions on Federal Lands and Waters. The Department of the Interior (DOI) should swiftly issue a 5-year program for the Outer Continental Shelf and hold mandated quarterly onshore lease sales with equitable terms. DOI should reinstate canceled sales and valid leases on federal lands and waters.
2. Designate Critical Energy Infrastructure Projects. Congress should authorize – and streamline – critical energy infrastructure projects to support the production, processing, and delivery of energy.
3. Fix the NEPA Permitting Process. The Biden administration should revise the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) process by establishing agency uniformity in reviews, limiting reviews to two years, and reducing bureaucratic burdens placed on project proponents.
4. Accelerate LNG Exports and Approve Pending LNG Applications. Congress should streamline the Department of Energy (DOE) to a single approval process for all U.S. liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects. DOE should approve pending LNG applications to enable the U.S. to deliver reliable energy to our allies abroad.
5. Unlock Investment and Access to Capital. The Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) should reconsider its overly burdensome and ineffective climate disclosure proposal and the Biden administration should ensure open capital markets where access is based solely upon individual company positioning.
6. Dismantle Supply Chain Bottlenecks. President Biden should rescind remaining steel tariffs on imports from U.S. allies. The Biden administration should accelerate efforts to relieve port congestion.
7. Advance Lower Carbon Energy Tax Provisions. Congress should expand and extend Section 45Q tax credits for carbon capture, utilization, and storage development and create a new tax credit for hydrogen produced from all sources.
8. Protect Competition in the Use of Refining Technologies. The Biden administration should ensure that future federal agency rulemakings continue to allow U.S. refineries to use the existing critical process technologies to produce needed fuels.
9. End Permitting Obstruction on Natural Gas Projects. The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) should adhere to traditional considerations of public needs as well as focus on direct impacts arising from the construction and operation of natural gas projects.
10. Advance the Energy Workforce of the Future. Congress and the Biden administration should support the training and education of a diverse workforce through increased funding of work-based learning and advancement of STEM programs.
We should all be able to agree that the time has come for America to stop standing in our own way. These policies would help ease the pressure on our economy and our allies, helping untangle supply chains, combat inflation, and reduce the power of hostile foreign countries.
So why are our leaders standing by? We need your help to make them listen. It’s time for America to step up to the plate for energy. If you agree, join our team and let’s make it happen!