H.R. 3301, the "North American Energy Infrastructure Act"

Bill Status: 
Passed by House
Last Action: 
Jun 24, 2014

Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI) and Rep. Gene Green (D-TX) introduced H.R. 3301 on October 22, 2013.  The bill, as introduced, replaces the current procedure and requirements to obtain a presidential permit for construction of transboundary oil or natural gas pipelines and electric transmission lines.  The bill’s new approval process effectively requires approval of all transboundary pipelines and transmission projects with little or no federal environmental review.  Modifications to existing cross-border pipelines or transmission lines would not require any approval or review at all.

The Committee on Energy and Commerce marked up the bill on May 8, 2014.  At the markup, Reps. Upton and Green offered an amendment that significantly modified the underlying bill but did not address many of the concerns that had been raised in earlier committee proceedings.  The revised language still effectively requires approval of transboundary oil pipeline and transmission projects.  Under the revised language, the relevant federal agencies must issue a “certificate of crossing” to a company seeking to build a transboundary oil pipeline or transmission line unless the project is deemed not in the public interest.  The revised language significantly narrows the environmental review process to just the segment of the project that crosses the border, ignoring the other environmental impacts along the project’s route.  The revised language also allows projects denied under the existing process to reapply under the new process, where approval is almost certain.  The Committee favorably reported the bill by a vote of 31-19

On June 24, 2014, H.R. 3301 passed the House with a roll call vote of 238-173.

113th Congress