230307 Coalition BUILDER Act House Natural Resources


March 07, 2023


Dear Chairman Westerman and Ranking Member Grijalva:

The undersigned associations urge you to support the “Building United States Infrastructure through Limited Delays and Efficient Reviews (BUILDER) Act of 2023.” The BUILDER Act would reduce permitting delays and create more certainty from the beginning of an agency environmental review through any potential judicial review.

Investments in renewable energy and lower emissions technologies, critical mineral mining, and forestry to transportation projects are taking four to ten years to complete permitting.  These delays serve only to impede critical improvements now and in the future.  Projects intended to diversify and drive a cleaner economy, support small business growth, and move goods more efficiently need to traverse an increasingly complex and opaque permitting process.  This process holds projects captive and sometimes ends up terminating them altogether. 

The BUILDER Act would help address these delays by setting helpful timelines for agency environmental reviews under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) and more importantly defines the timeframe during which project-level judicial review can be filed.  Tying projects up in endless litigation increases pre-construction costs and heightens investment risk.  Because of the complex NEPA process, litigation is often the tool used by certain groups to block projects of all kinds, sometimes litigating even after a project has been built.  These proposed legislative boundaries will support investment certainty without barring legitimate legal disputes brought by parties that were active participants in the NEPA review. 

The BUILDER Act would also help clarify when and at what level an agency should conduct an environmental review.  Mindful of limited agency resources, it will direct agencies to focus on projects that may have significant effects as opposed to those that do not or qualify for a categorical exclusion.  It would expressly empower agencies to use existing information and more concise documents while avoiding excessive documentation.

In addition, the bill would clarify the process for interagency coordination as well as the duties of each level of government in the process.  Better coordination will ensure applicants and the public are better informed.  It will also help create a more predictable environment concerning which agency is the lead and would establish a more organized schedule for all stakeholders.

The undersigned organizations all agree upon the need to improve the predictability of the permitting process while supporting economic productivity and environmental stewardship.  Permitting modernization has bipartisan support and the BUILDER Act would move the United States in the direction of a better, more efficient permitting process that will accelerate a broad range of overdue infrastructure and other improvements. 


Agricultural Retailers Association

American Chemistry Council

American Conservation Coalition Action

American Coke and Coal Chemicals Institute

American Council of Engineering Companies

American Exploration and Production Council

American Farm Bureau Federation

American Forest Resource Council

American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers

American Petroleum Institute

American Pipeline Contractors Association

American Public Gas Association

American Road & Transportation Builders Association

American Short Line and Regional Railroad Association

American Trucking Associations

Associated Builders and Contractors

Associated General Contractors of America

Consumer Energy Alliance

Distribution Contractors Association

Energy Equipment & Infrastructure Alliance

Federal Forest Resource Coalition

The Fertilizer Institute

GPA Midstream Association

Hardwood Federation

Horizontal Directional Drilling Association

Independent Petroleum Association of America

Interstate Natural Gas Association of America

Liquid Energy Pipeline Association

LNG Allies, The USLNG Association

National Mining Association

National Ocean Industries Association

National Stone, Sand, and Gravel Association

Plastics Pipe Institute

Portland Cement Association

U.S. Chamber of Commerce

cc: Members of the Committee on Natural Resources

230307 Coalition BUILDER Act House Natural Resources