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The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress.
9/27/2008--Introduced. Western Hemisphere Energy Compact Act of 2008 - Directs the Secretary of State, in coordination with the Secretary of Energy, to seek to establish a regional-based ministerial forum to be known as the Western Hemisphere Energy Cooperation Forum: (1) for the cooperation of Western Hemisphere on energy issues; (2) to lessen dependence on oil imports without reducing food availability; (3) to ensure that energy contributes to the economic, social, and environmental enhancement of the countries in the Western Hemisphere; and (4) to permit participating countries to cooperatively address broad challenges posed to the energy supply of the Western Hemisphere.
Directs the U.S. to seek to implement, in cooperation with Energy Forum countries: (1) an energy crisis initiative; (2) an energy sustainability initiative; (3) an energy for development initiative; and (4) biofuels studies.
Provides for the establishment of a Western Hemisphere Energy Industry Group to: (1) increase public-private partnerships; (2) foster private investment; and (3) enable countries in the Western Hemisphere to devise energy agendas compatible with industry capacity and cognizant of industry goals.
Provides for: (1) the establishment of an Oil and Natural Gas Working Group; (2) a U.S.-Brazil biofuels partnership; (3) biofuels feasibility studies; (4) regional and hemispheric carbon trading mechanisms; (5) the establishment of a Western Hemisphere energy crisis response mechanism; (6) seeking to increase U.S. foreign assistance programming in renewable energy; and (7) energy public diplomacy.