Climate Funding Bill Passes House, Includes Wins For Ohio and Great Lakes

$93.6 Billion Energy and Water Development Appropriations Bill includes billions to restore the Great Lakes, spur energy innovation, mitigate and adapt to climate change, improve water infrastructure, strengthen national security, and respond to challenges created by COVID-19

(Cleveland, OH) — Today, Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur (OH-09), Chairwoman of the House Appropriations Subcommittee on Energy and Water Development, released the following statement after the fiscal year 2021 Energy and Water Development and Related Agencies funding bill, legislation she introduced and championed through the Appropriations Committee, passed the U.S. House of Representatives. The Energy and Water Development bill funds the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, Department of the Interior programs, the Department of Energy, and other related agencies. The Energy and Water Development bill was included within H.R. 7617, an Appropriations package consisting of six bills that fund federal departments including Defense, Commerce, Justice, Energy, Treasury, Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development from October 1, 2020 to September 30, 2021. A summary of H.R. 7617 is available as a PDF here.

For fiscal year 2021, the Energy and Water Development bill invests $49.6 billion in Energy and Water Development programs, an increase of $1.26 billion, or 3 percent, above the fiscal year 2020 enacted level. This funding will spur energy innovation that will create jobs and reinvigorate the economy while working to mitigate and adapt to climate change, improve the nation’s water infrastructure, and strengthen national security. The bill includes $23.1 billion for non-defense activities, $987 million below the fiscal year 2020 enacted level, and $26.5 billion for defense spending, an increase of $2.25 billion above the fiscal year 2020 enacted level.

To respond to the coronavirus pandemic and the ensuing economic recession, the bill provides an additional $44billion in emergency spending. This funding builds and repairs water infrastructure projects and modernizes energy infrastructure for a clean energy future.

“The FY 2021 Energy and Water Development Appropriations bill captures the American spirt of ingenuity and independence,” said Rep. Kaptur. “It provides the foundation of critical investments to combat climate change and is poised to be the most important climate change bill Congress passes this year. It will upgrade and strengthen our nation’s energy and water infrastructure, and it responsibly funds our nation’s nuclear deterrent while rejecting the Administration’s dangerous plan to restart nuclear explosive testing. This bill rejects the President’s drastic and short-sighted proposed cuts. Instead, it invests in important programs that keep our nation at the forefront of global energy innovation. It enables the efficient shipment of goods andprovides water, irrigation, and electricity to millions of Americans. These programs propel real economic growth.”

A summary of H.R. 7617, including a full summary for the Energy and Water Development bill, is available as a PDF here.

Summary of Provisions Benefitting Ohio and Great Lakes Region:

Army Corps of Engineers (“Corps”):

·$123.2 million for the Soo Locks project, $47.9 million over FY20.

·$59.2 million, $9.2 million over previous year, for new navigation projects on the inland waterways system (Soo Locks is eligible to compete). Huge win for Northern Ohio and all Great Lakes communities who depend on shipping on Great Lakes. One of Rep. Kaptur’s highest regional priorities as Chair of the Energy and Water Subcommittee.

·Includes report language specific to the Brandon Road project as well as $9.7 million, for certain Corps environmental restoration projects that will help Brandon Road project better compete for funding. The Brandon Road project is essential to keeping Asian carp out of the Great Lakes, which could potentially destroy the Great Lakes ecosystems and economy. This was one of Chairwoman Kaptur’s highest regional priorities for the Energy and Water Appropriations bill.

·$3 million, $3 million above enacted, for Corps harmful algal bloom research and development targeting freshwater ecosystems. Funds that will go toward combatting harmful algal blooms, like those experienced in the Western Basin of Lake Erie and its tributaries. This was one of Chairwoman Kaptur’s highest regional priorities for the Energy and Water Appropriations bill.

·Bill again included language banning open lake disposal of dredged material in Lake Erie.

DOE/Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy

·$20 million for cadmium telluride within Solar Energy Technologies

·$20 million for perovskites research within Solar Energy Technologies

·$15 million, $5 million above enacted, within Hydrogen and Fuel Cell Technologies for hydrogen/nuclear demonstration projects (Davis Besse Nuclear Power Station is part of a current partnership receiving funds).

DOE/Nuclear Energy

·$10 million for hydrogen/nuclear demonstration projects (DOE conducted research at the Davis Besse Nuclear Power Station is among efforts to receive funds).

DOE/Science

·$30 million, same as enacted, for Coastal Ecosystem Research (National Labs partnership with University of Toledo), and report language included.

DOE/National Nuclear Security Administration

·$6 million, $4 million above enacted, for graphite/Beryllium manufacturing.

·$6 million, $6 million above enacted, for a new academic center of excellence for materials science and manufacturing.

Infrastructure wins included in the emergency spending title ofbill:

Corps of Engineers

·$110 million for Investigations

·$10 billion for Construction:

o$500 million for Environmental Infrastructure

o$5 billion for Operation and Maintenance.

o$500 million for Formerly Utilized Sites Remedial Action Program.

DOE/Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy

·$3.25 billion for Weatherization, including $300 million for an innovation program and $2 million for apprenticeships.

·$225 million for the Solar Energy Technology Office to deploy solar in low income and underserved communities.

·$500 million for the Advanced Manufacturing Office:

o$125 million to implement energy efficiency measures for wastewater treatment facilities.

o$125 million to start up a domestic manufacturing conversion program.

o$250 million for battery supply chain support.

·$2.25 billion for the Energy Efficiency and Conservation Block Grant Program, which provides funds directly to counties, cities, and other localities for energy efficiency or conservation projects.

DOE/Nuclear Energy

·$100 million for hydrogen/nuclear demonstration projects (Davis Besse Nuclear Power Station is part of the current partnership receiving funds and can compete for funds).

DOE/Environmental Management

·$120 million for the Portsmouth Cleanup Site in Ohio.

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