Key Vote Letter to House Supporting S. 535, the Energy Efficiency Improvement Act

Tuesday, April 21, 2015 - 12:00pm

TO THE MEMBERS OF THE U.S. HOUSE OF REPRESENTATIVES:

The U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the world’s largest business federation representing the interests of more than three million businesses of all sizes, sectors, and regions, as well as state and local chambers and industry associations, and dedicated to promoting, protecting, and defending America’s free enterprise system, strongly supports S. 535, the “Energy Efficiency Improvement Act of 2015.” This no-cost, no-mandate legislation would help advance energy efficiency through reduced regulatory burden, increased transparency, and a focus on the federal government as a first mover to save taxpayer dollars on energy bills.

The Chamber is a longtime supporter of energy efficiency legislation. S. 535 would make significant advancements in energy efficiency, including:

- Under the “Better Buildings” title, establish a Tenant Star program – a voluntary certification and recognition program – to promote energy efficiency;
- Under the “Grid-Enabled Water Heaters” title, exempt from regulation certain thermal storage water heaters under Department of Energy efficiency standards effective this month; and
- Under the “Energy Efficiency Information for Commercial Buildings” title, require that federally-leased buildings without Energy Star labels disclose their energy usage data, where practical.

A recent poll conducted for the National Electrical Manufacturers Association (NEMA) and National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) found that a substantial majority of those polled—including those identifying themselves as conservative, moderate, and liberal—support measures to promote energy efficiency. Ninety percent of those polled support using energy-efficient products and believe it is important to include energy efficiency as part of our country’s energy solutions. Seventy-four percent of those polled support investing taxpayers’ dollars on energy efficient technologies, innovations, and programs if it would save consumers more money. Finally, sixty-nine percent of those polled are more likely to support investing taxpayers’ dollars on energy efficiency if those investments would not raise taxes or add to the federal deficit and would not involve government mandates on consumers.

S. 535 is an important step in promoting energy efficiency, which is a critical part of the Chamber’s all-of-the-above energy policy. The Chamber urges you to vote for S. 535, the “Energy Efficiency Improvement Act of 2015.” The Chamber strongly supports S. 535 and may consider votes on, or in relation to, S. 535 in our annual How They Voted scorecard.