05 January 2005 18:25 [Source: ICIS news]
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Tom Donohue, president and chief executive of the US Chamber of Commerce (USCoC), told a press conference here today that Congress must act quickly to enact an energy bill as it is “critical to both our global competitiveness and national security.”
Three times in as many years the US House of Representatives has drafted and passed a comprehensive energy bill, only to see the measure die in the Senate.
“We need an energy bill,” Donohue said. “And if the price of oil and natural gas doesn’t get the attention of Congress, then perhaps the movement of
This week a new Congress convened with higher Republican majorities in both the House and the Senate, and Donohue said he thinks that change will help move an energy bill.
“We’ve encountered serious problems in recent years in trying to get the energy bill through Congress,” he noted. “Many times those problems were centred in the Senate and involved Senator Daschle.” Donohue was referring to former Senate Democrat leader Tom Daschle of
“But now we have a new Congress and a new Senate,” Donohue said, “and we hope that a trimmed-down energy bill will pass out of Congress for a signature by the president early this year. We are encouraging our friends on Capitol Hill and in the White House to move on this legislation as early as possible this year, and we are hopeful that they will do so.”
Donohue spoke with reporters after previewing the USCoC’s new year economic and legislative outlook, which will be published in final form next week. Overall, he said prospects for
“Our economy could do even better this year,” he added, “if energy prices moderate some. And that’s another reason why we need an energy bill out of Congress as soon as possible.”
The Washington, DC-based US Chamber of Commerce is the world’s largest business federation and includes many chemical and plastics companies among its 3m member firms. The chamber is not affiliated with the
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