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December 04, 2023

Reps. Lofgren, Stevens, Sorensen & Caraveo Deliver Remarks to House Floor Regarding Four Bipartisan Science Committee Bills

(WASHINGTON, DC)— Yesterday afternoon, the U.S. House of Representatives considered and passed under suspension of the rules four bipartisan bills led by Members of the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology.

The bills passed include:

Congresswoman Yadira Caraveo (D-CO) made the following statement on H.R. 1734, the TRANQ Research Act:

Thank you, Ranking Member Lofgren.

Mister Speaker, I rise today in support of H.R. 1734, the Testing, Rapid Analysis and Narcotics Quality Research Act or TRANQ Research Act. I would also like to thank my colleagues, Congressman Mike Collins, Chairman Frank Lucas, and Ranking Member Zoe Lofgren for working with me to run this bipartisan legislation. I would also like to thank Senators Peter Welch and Ted Cruz for moving this bill through the Senate. 

As a doctor, I've seen firsthand the horrific impact the drug crisis has had on families in my community and across the country. Last year alone, more than 107 thousand Americans lost their lives to drug overdoses – due in large part to the crisis. 

Fentanyl is a drug with a very high potency that is relatively easy to manufacture. And criminals making fentanyl can add different chemicals to change its molecular structure, creating a variant that is novel and difficult to detect. 

Just in the past year, we have seen a dramatic increase in criminals mixing a common animal tranquilizer called xylazine with fentanyl. If injected, this combination can have horrible side effects, including large wounds at the injection site that have led to limb amputations.

Horrifyingly, tranq is already spreading across the country. Having seen the disastrous effect fentanyl has had on Colorado, I am proud to lead the charge to act against xylazine now to protect our families.

But one of the major challenges we face to combat drugs like fentanyl and xylazine is detecting them. These drug mixtures usually contain a very small amount of the drug and traditional laboratory methods are not designed to detect or identify new drug variants. 

The TRANQ Research Act addresses this challenge by leveraging our nation’s scientific capabilities to allow our first responders to be able to detect, identify, and better understand novel opioids and other substances. Additionally, and thanks to our partners in the Senate, the bill will help Congress conduct oversight over federal programs to respond to threats from new psychoactive substances like xylazine.

We know combating the drug crisis will take bipartisan action. I look forward to continuing to work with Congressman Collins and my colleagues to get this bill signed by the President and to keep pushing for common-sense solutions both parties can agree on to keep Americans safe.

Thank you and I urge my colleagues to support this bill and I yield back.


Ranking Member Zoe Lofgren (D-CA) made the following statement on H.R. 1713, the DOE and USDA Interagency Research Act:

I rise in support of H.R. 1713, the DOE and USDA Interagency Research Act.

This bipartisan bill, introduced by Chairman Lucas and myself, authorizes cross-cutting, joint research and development between the Department of Energy and the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Together these agencies leverage their incredible capabilities to address some of our multi-disciplinary research challenges in crop science, carbon storage, and precision agriculture technologies.

Codifying the partnership between these agencies is a testament to our commitment to combat climate change and to serve the agricultural communities like those in my district and throughout the nation.

We generated substantial momentum through the bipartisan CHIPS and Science Act, which included research support towards agriculture productivity improvement goals. This bill will sustain and strengthen this momentum, by empowering deeper cooperation between two of our top science agencies, enabling national research and agriculture capacities to fully realize the opportunities presented by new and emerging technologies.

The technologies that are being used on farms in my district are really cutting edge. For instance, on one particular farm in my district they use a giant machine to roam the field and shoot lasers at weeds. This is all done automatically and controlled by computers. We really are entering a high-tech era in precision agriculture, and the Federal government can help facilitate progress in this field through bills like the one before us today.


Ranking Member of the Subcommittee on Research and Technology Rep. Haley Stevens's (D-MI) statement as prepared for the record on H.R. 2980, the DOE and NSF Interagency Research Act is below:

Mister Speaker, I rise today in strong support of my bipartisan bill, H.R. 2980, the DOE and NSF Research Interagency Act that I offered with my colleague, Representative Jim Baird from Indiana.

The Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation represent some of our nation’s most cutting-edge research activities supporting the innovation that we require to solve our most pressing issues and remain competitive on the world stage. DOE’s and NSF’s employees and funded researchers are world-renowned scientific minds pushing the bounds of what we think is possible, making science fiction a reality every day. And both agencies' education and workforce development programs inspire the next generation of STEM innovators and help current workers learn new skills to meet the needs of a 21st century economy. Their work is critical to developing the solutions needed to our nation’s most pressing issues. The CHIPS and Science Act, that I helped author along with my Science Committee colleagues, bolstered both of the cutting-edge work that DOE and NSF were doing and set them up for success in the coming years. To ensure that we are maximizing the impact of that historic bill, we must promote cross-cutting interagency research activities.

My bill, H.R. 2980, will do just that. It will maximize the efforts of both DOE and NSF by reducing duplication and creating an open, innovative environment that bolsters the work already being done by DOE and NSF. Separately, these two agencies are already doing great things, but together? 

  • Combining the NSF’s expertise in advanced physics with the amazing work that the DOE is doing at the Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory in fusion science, including their historic ignition, will expedite making this clean energy source a reliable and commercially-viable technology.


  • Combining the DOE’s expertise in computational sciences including the scientific potential of the fastest supercomputers in the world with what NSF is doing with artificial intelligence and machine learning will be key to unlocking the metrics needed to create safe and trustworthy AI applications.
  • Combining NSF’s material science expertise with the work being done across the Department of Energy and at the National Laboratories on critical minerals will be key to not only untangling our supply chains but creating a circular economy that promotes worker safety and environmental protections while securing our economic prosperity, energy independence, and national security for decades to come.
  • And lastly, combining the work that both agencies are doing with quantum technologies will be key to unlocking the potential of this revolutionary emerging technology including for manufacturing applications and cybersecurity.

These are just a few examples of the amazing potential that fostering partnerships between the Department of Energy and the National Science Foundation will mean for our nation, proving once again that federal sciences are the key to our nation’s future and deserve robust support by Congress.

Our nation has many challenges that this body needs to solve from the climate crisis to securing supply chains to creating the workforce needed for the 21st century. And I am deeply proud of the work that the Science Committee is doing this Congress, under the leadership of Chairman Lucas and Ranking Member Lofgren on solving these issues. This bill, a bipartisan bill that was voted out of Committee unanimously, is just one example of how the Science Committee is delivering for the American people.

I urge my colleagues to support my bipartisan bill to push forward our nation’s scientific ecosystem and bolster our competitiveness on the world stage.

Thank you. 


Ranking Member Eric Sorensen (D-IL) of the Subcommittee on Space and Aeronautics made the following statement on H.R. 2988, the DOE and NASA Interagency Research Coordination Act:

As Ranking Member of the Space and Aeronautics Subcommittee, I was thrilled to lead the DOE and NASA Interagency Research Coordination Act alongside my colleague and Chairman of the Energy Subcommittee, Congressman Williams.  

NASA and the Department of Energy have enjoyed a decades-long partnership that has improved our understanding of the universe. This bill seeks to build and expand upon that legacy by advancing coordination on fundamental and applied science­. 

The collaborative research and development efforts this bill facilitates will have a profound impact for my constituents and for the rest of the country. 

As a Meteorologist, I know we need to improve climate modeling and simulation to increase our understanding of how the planet is changing and help us make smart decisions to change the trajectory while creating resilient communities. 

This takes interagency collaboration.

Most importantly, like what we see in the Science Committee, when we collaborate, we inspire a new generation of scientists and engineers. When the first humans land on Mars, they will rely on the things we develop today. 

And that’s why I urge my colleagues to support this bill.

I yield back.

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