Achieving Energy Independence
"I truly believe if we work together and focus on a commonsense approach...we can develop a strong bipartisan energy plan that will not only break the power of foreign oil countries and speculators, but will chart a new and promising energy future for this great nation."
~Senator Manchin, Speech on the Senate floor
Strengthening our economy depends on our nation achieving real energy independence within this generation.
As a Senator from a true energy state - the second leading producer of coal with abundant resources, a net exporter of electricity – Senator Manchin is very proud of the critical role West Virginians play in providing energy to our nation.
Moving forward, achieving true energy independence demands that we not only start realizing the importance that coal has in achieving this goal, it means we must also stop demonizing one resource and start developing a comprehensive plan that utilizes all of our domestic resources – coal, natural gas, biomass, nuclear, wind and solar - so that we can, once and for all, end our dependence on foreign oil within this generation.
We must face the fact that coal will play an integral role in producing our electricity for decades to come. Senator Manchin has introduced or sponsored many pieces of federal legislation specifically supporting coal industry jobs and our hardworking coal miners. He has also introduced several measures to ensure that America is investing in the necessary research development and advanced technologies to address the preservation of low cost electricity, clean coal production, cost effective energy practices and carbon emissions reduction.
Senator Manchin also believes that America have everything to gain by building the Keystone XL pipeline, especially since it would help create thousands of jobs right here at home and limit our dependence on foreign oil. Every state – including West Virginia – would benefit economically from this activity. That's why Senator Manchin introduced the first piece of legislation in the 114th Congress to approve the project.
If we are going to be truly secure, we must declare our country to be energy independent, and every state in this great nation must do its part. West Virginia is using every ounce of its natural resources – our coal, our abundant supply of natural gas, biomass, wind, hydroelectric, solar – all of which should be used in the most environmentally responsible way.
Senator Manchin is strongly committed to working with his fellow Senators across the aisle to develop a realistic and responsible clean energy policy for the future that balances the needs of our economy and our environment.