Hatch, Barrasso, Enzi introduce energy security legislation

Senators Orrin Hatch, R-Utah, John Barrasso, R-WY., and Mike Enzi, R-WY., introduced common-sense legislation to protect American jobs and domestic energy production from costly and duplicative regulation from Washington.

The Protecting States’ Rights to Promote American Energy Security Act (S.316) would ensure that oil and gas producing states are protected from redundant hydraulic fracturing regulations from Washington if state governments are already adequately regulating the practice. Duplicative regulations over American energy production will lead to higher energy costs and job losses in an already struggling economy.

“Many states, such as Utah, are doing the right thing and listening to stakeholders and communities around where hydraulic fracturing is taking place and regulating this activity responsibly. The last thing we need is costly and duplicative regulation from Washington on top of what’s already in place in Utah—especially when the existing framework has more than proven itself to be effective,” Hatch said. “This bill does nothing to stop the federal government from implementing fracking standards in states where none exist, it simply says that regulations from the federal government cannot trump state action already in place. This bill is good for American energy production and will protect the jobs that come with it. I hope the Senate will vote on this bill soon to stand up for American workers and lower energy costs.”

“Hydraulic fracturing is a principal reason America has created thousands of jobs, increased our energy security, and lowered energy costs for families and businesses,” said Barrasso. “For years, Wyoming and other western states have enforced the country’s most aggressive hydraulic fracturing regulations—regulations that also apply to federal lands within our borders. This bill would ensure that states—not Washington—can continue to lead in this important part of our economy.”

“Wyoming and other states who are already listening to the concerns of local stakeholders and communities shouldn’t see their efforts superseded by some redundant Washington power grab,” Enzi said. “This bill would ensure it is the states who continue to lead in these efforts to properly regulate hydraulic fracturing.”


Western Energy Alliance, IPAA, Wyoming, North Dakota, Colorado, Utah, and the Ute Indian Tribe remain tied up in court defending a federal district court ruling that found BLM has no statutory authority to regulate hydraulic fracturing. Rather than wasting considerable time and money on the part of the government and plaintiffs appealing the decision, Congress could simply clarify that indeed, the federal government has no authority when states are already successfully regulating fracking. We thank Senator Hatch for introducing the bill and urge Congress to pass it. – Kathleen Sgamma, President – Western Energy Alliance