US House Committee passes Hydropower Regulatory Efficiency Act
The US House of Representatives' Committee on Energy & Commerce has given its nod to the Hydropower Regulatory Efficiency Act of 2013 to promote mini hydro projects in the country.
Streamlining the process of securing approval from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the Bill is expected to help hydropower become a greater contributor to the nation's energy portfolio.
Commenting on the passage US lawmakers Diana DeGette and Cathy McMorris, who had earlier introduced the Bill in the House, termed the Bill to be a matter of national importance.
"While there are a vast array of renewable energies -- including solar, wind and nuclear power -- in my opinion, the facts are clear.
"The future of American energy independence depends on the development of an 'all of the above' energy approach, including hydro," noted McMorris Rodgers.
The Bill was earlier passed by the US House of Republicans with a 372-0, unanimous vote in July 2012 but hasn't yet been tabled in the Senate.
National Hydropower Association executive director Linda Church Ciocci welcomed the developments and sought the full House to clear the legislation once again with the same urgency as in 2012.
"[The bill] will allow hydropower to contribute more to our nation's energy needs and economic growth," said Ciocci.