Murkowski Wins Commitment from Energy Secretary to Attend Arctic Energy Conference in Fairbanks
Secretary Moniz: Myself or “Senior Leadership” Will Be in Golden Heart City
WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz today committed to Senator Lisa Murkowski that a high-level Department of Energy (DOE) official would travel to Alaska to participate in the Arctic Energy Summit in Fairbanks at the end of September.
“It’s important for those who set the policy priorities to see for themselves both the opportunity and the need for economic development in the Arctic,” Murkowski said. “The region holds great potential but we have to remember that it is also home to tens of thousands of Alaskans who want to enjoy the same standard of living as the rest of America. The more officials who hear that message directly from Alaskans, the better.”
(Senator Murkowski invites Secretary Moniz to Fairbanks—click image to watch.)
Murkowski has repeatedly pressed Secretary Moniz on the importance of recognizing the opportunities and challenges presented by the Arctic. Secretary Moniz visited Alaska in 2014 with Murkowski to attend a renewable energy fair in Chena Hot Springs, outside of Fairbanks.
Murkowski’s comments were part of Wednesday’s hearing on DOE budget proposal before the Senate Appropriations Energy and Water Development Subcommittee. It was Secretary Moniz’ second appearance before Murkowski in as many months to defend his department’s $29.9 billion budget request.
Murkowski told the secretary that she remains concerned about the direction DOE outlined in its budget request, particularly the proposed 9 percent funding increase overall despite a reduction in fossil energy research.
“Cutting investment in researching the development of methane hydrates, oil shale, and other fossil energy is a mistake in my mind and something I think we should rectify through the budget process,” Murkowski said.