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Balderson, Hudson Introduce Legislation to Protect Energy Supply Chain

WASHINGTON D.C. – Congressmen Troy Balderson (R-OH) and Richard Hudson (R-NC) introduced the Protecting America’s Distribution Transformer Supply Chain Act, which would repeal the Department of Energy’s authority to propose, finalize, implement, administer, or enforce any energy efficiency standard for distribution transformers for the next five years. This legislation marks the continued effort to strengthen America’s energy security. 

“The Biden Administration’s new standards for distribution transformers threaten national security, grid reliability and resilience, and the continued domestic production of grain-oriented electrical steel (GOES),” said Balderson. “As one of the two Members of Congress with a GOES facility in my district, I am proud to join Congressman Hudson in introducing the Protecting America's Distribution Transformer Supply Chain Act to protect the grid and hundreds of good-paying steel jobs in Ohio.”

“The Department of Energy should be focusing on strengthening the U.S. supply chain for distribution transformers for the next five years, not further disrupting it,” said Hudson. “My constituents can not afford further energy disruptions that jeopardize their safety. I am proud to introduce the Protecting America’s Distribution Transformer Supply Chain Act in order to ensure our electrical manufacturers can continue to do what they do best, without Washington getting in their way.”

Distribution transformers, commonly seen on utility poles, lower the voltage of electrical power before it reaches the consumer. In December, the Department of Energy proposed new energy efficiency standards for low-voltage dry-type distribution transformers, liquid-immersed distribution transformers, and medium-voltage, dry-type distribution transformers. If finalized as proposed, the standards will provide little to no energy savings and further disrupt the nation’s supply chain by causing lead times to procure transformers to increase from months to years.

This proposed rule would require all distribution transformers to shift from the industry standard grain oriented electrical steel (GOES) cores–which are already 97.7 percent energy efficient and account for 95 percent of the domestic distribution transformer market–to amorphous steel cores.

Ohio’s 12th Congressional District is home to Cleveland-Cliffs’ Zanesville Works plant, one of the two remaining GOES plants in the country. The plant is located on the Muskingum River in Zanesville and employs 170 people.

Balderson and Hudson are joined by fellow Energy and Commerce Committee members Morgan Griffith (R-VA), Gus Bilirakis (R-FL), Rick Allen (R-GA), Tim Walberg (R-MI), Diana Harshbarger (R-TN), and Mariannette Miller-Meeks (R-IA) in introducing the bill.

To read the Protecting America’s Distribution Transformer Supply Chain Act, click here.

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