Murkowski Calls for Better Understanding of the Relationship Between Water and Energy Production

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska, today highlighted the direct connection between electricity and fuel production and water use. At a hearing of the full Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee, Murkowski raised the importance of understanding the amount of water needed in power and fuel generation.
“The link between water and energy is often overlooked, however a significant amount of water is needed to generate the electricity and fuel we depend on every day,” Murkowski said. “We can develop all the zero-carbon technologies we want but without a reliable supply of water, they amount to nothing.”
“At a time when our nation is increasingly seeking new energy resources, it is imperative that we have a better understanding about the demand they put on our finite, scarce, and in many regions, oversubscribed water resources,” Murkowski said.
Last week, Murkowski and Chairman Jeff Bingaman introduced the bipartisan Energy and Water Integration Act of 2009 (S.531). The bill would authorize several studies to analyze water use in the production of transportation fuels and electricity, as well as other mechanisms to improve our understanding of the nexus between energy and water.
While a first good step, Murkowski said the committee also needs to address how increases in water use efficiency can reduce energy consumption. At Tuesday’s hearing, Murkowski said further measures were needed to address that issue. 
“I looked forward to working with Chairman Bingaman over the next few weeks to address this important issue,” Murkowski said.