Congressman Ron Wright has introduced a new act to the U.S. Congress that would give more power to the State Department in making energy and resource decisions for the nation.
The bipartisan legislation replaces the Coordinator for International Energy Affairs with an Assistant Secretary for Energy Resources, which would also require Senate confirmation and ensure the State Department’s involvement in the decision-making process for the nation’s global energy developments. According to a media release, the act would also support the development and distribution of its energy resources for the benefit of the United States, its allies and trading partners.
Wright introduced the resolution Wednesday alongside ranking member Mike McCaul and Rep. Vicente Gonzalez. Wright said the bill promotes the availability of diversified energy supplies worldwide and a well-functioning global market for energy resources, technologies and expertise.
“Energy security has transformed into a matter of national security,” Wright stated upon the bill’s introduction. “The consequences of Russia being able to use its energy resources to manipulate our EU and NATO allies would be catastrophic in the event of a conflict. As the world’s top producer of petroleum and natural gas, we are in a unique position to aid our allies.”
McCaul stated that this act is needed in order to advance a well-functioning global energy market with diversified energy sources.
“We need our diplomats on the front lines promoting American energy interests,” McCaul remarked. “America’s energy security and diplomacy priorities are enhanced with this bill and it also ensures a properly resourced State Department to best protect American interests abroad. As energy-rich adversaries such as Russia, Venezuela and Iran consistently exploit vulnerabilities, the U.S. must step up to advance a bold U.S. energy diplomacy.”
Gonzalez stated that he was proud to join McCaul and Wright in introducing the act and hope it promotes energy security, development and distribution across the world.
"Energy security is a key component of our foreign policy agenda,” Gonzalez remarked. “With our country’s wealth of resources and expertise, the State Department must play an increasingly important role in global energy security and development.”
“It’s critical that our State Department has the resources and mandate required to tackle these challenges,” Wright added.
Wright recently opened his new district office in at 5840 West Ronald Reagan Memorial Highway, Suite 115, in Arlington. To contact his office, call 817-775-0370.