What is FERC?
You may not have heard of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) but it’s probably had an impact on your life.
FERC is the national agency that makes many of the important decisions about energy in the U.S., particularly approving gas pipelines. Given Trump’s promise to build pipelines like Keystone XL, it’s no surprise that his administration has filled the commission with allies of the fossil fuel industry.
Even worse, Congress is trying to expand FERC’s powers, by getting rid of checks and balances from other parts of the government. Remember when President Obama finally killed Keystone XL? One bill that’s passed the House (H.R. 2883) would take that power out of the Oval Office and give it to FERC. A different bill in the Senate (S. 1460) requires FERC to make decisions about permits in less time, and gives FERC’s decisions precedence over other agencies.
This week, take action by contacting your Senators and ask them to oppose S. 1460, H.R. 2883, and other bills that expand FERC’s authority without requiring any additional oversight or transparency.
Photo: CC by Luke Jones