Bending protocol: passing bills without the votes

This is an update on House Bill 298, the “Affordable and Reliable Energy Act,” which I wrote about in an earlier post. I hope you’ve heard the news, but Rep. Hager’s sponsored bill failed to pass the committee by a 18-13 vote. Not to be daunted by the will of democratically elected representatives pushing to preserve emerging industries in their districts, Hager brought the bill back. Trick is, this time the vote was vocal. The minority supporting the bill yelled more loudly. No need to actually count votes anymore.

Again, apologies for being MIA the past two months. My schedule will be more flexible now, and I have some topics to post, including the idea of deep well injection, and the re-writing of the disclosure rule… at the simple behest of Halliburton. As the editorial staff of the Fayetteville Observer put it in their “Weekly Wrap” in which they give merits and demerits to news makers:

Demerit: For the N.C. Mining and Energy Commission, which abruptly withdrew a proposed rule requiring disclosure of chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing. The measure was withdrawn at the request of industry giant Halliburton, which says the regulation would force the disclosure of trade secrets.

The commission vowed transparency in its operations and protection for the state’s people and environment as it develops rules for fracking. But the first time a big energy company complains, it bows down and obeys. This does not bode well.

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