Rep. Billy Long
Rep. Billy Long
By U.S. Rep. Billy Long

In conjunction with our Energy, Climate and Conservation Task Force, which provides policy solutions to high energy prices while reducing reliance on foreign adversaries for our energy needs, I was honored to participate in a world class round table in Louisiana on Aug. 4.

Attending were members of Congress, scholars from academia, stakeholders and industry professionals. In addition to myself, participants included Congressmen Garret Graves LA-06, Debbie Lesko AZ-08, Austin Scott GA-08 and Adrian Smith NE-03.

Rounding out the round table were Christy Alley Zenigue with South Central Industrial Association, Cory Kief with Crosby Tugs, Jasmine Brown with Greater New Orleans Inc., Dr. Kristine Strickland with Fletcher Technical Community College, Windell Curole with South Lafourche Levee District, Hugh Roberts with The Water Institute of the Gulf, Pierre Conner with Tulane University, Scott Kirkpatrick with Coast Builders Coalition, Clinton Willson with Louisiana State University, Dr. Denise Reed with University of New Orleans and Tommy Faucheaux with Louisiana Mid-Continent Oil & Gas Association.

The way to reduce energy prices is by making energy here at home. One of the most significant achievements during my tenure on Energy and Commerce was when we passed a bill allowing for the exportation of Liquified Natural Gas (LNG).

Today, the United States is one of the world’s leading exporters of LNG. This is not only good for our economy but also our national security. The more energy that is produced in the United States, the less that the we are reliant on foreign dictators for energy. We have seen this play out during the last several months, when President Biden has begged Saudi Arabia, Venezuela and other countries for oil, instead of simply allowing more drilling here at home. This benefits not only the U.S. but also our allies, who can then buy our oil or LNG.

All of this plays into building resilient communities. When we have a strong energy sector that is based on domestic production, our communities are more resilient against natural disasters.

Just look at what happened in Texas last winter. A rare freeze was too much for the power grid to handle, leading to massive power outages. Natural disasters played a major role in last week’s roundtable discussion. While in Louisiana, we got to see the different methods of adaptation used to harden the grid against hurricanes in the Gulf of Mexico. We also learned of innovative flood prevention solutions along the Gulf Coast. Real world solutions that are working I might add.

These adaptation solutions play a major part in dealing with climate change, and yet this is the part that Democrats rarely talk about. They are too busy pushing their Green New Deal agenda to talk about real solutions that would actually help Americans who are most impacted by hurricanes and floods.

So the hard-working folks in Louisiana most of who's families have lived there for decades and faced numerous horrific hurricanes are finding solutions themselves instead of waiting for government bureaucrats to act. We need to continue looking for ways to harden our communities against natural disasters, and I applaud Leader Kevin McCarthy and our host for last week’s round table and tour Rep. Garret Graves for prioritizing these issues.