WASHINGTON – Senators Chris Coons (D-DE), Shelley Moore Capito (R-WV), Steve Daines (R-MT) and Gary Peters (D-MI) announced today that they will serve as co-chairs of the newly formed Senate Chemistry Caucus. In addition to the new chairs, Senators John Boozman (R-AR), Joe Donnelly (D-IN), John Neely Kennedy (R-LA) and Joe Manchin (D-WV) have agreed to join the Caucus.

The Senate Chemistry Caucus will provide a bipartisan forum for Senators to work together on issues dealing with the science of chemistry, the nation’s chemical business sector and their importance to our economy and the central role they play in the creation of innovative products vital to everyday life. The group will work with their colleagues in the Senate to underscore the importance of employing sound science to create effective public policy and to promote initiatives that encourage the development of chemical manufacturing and a new generation of chemists in the U.S. through world-class education and research programs.

Caucus Chairs Look Forward to New Roles

The leadership of the new Senate Chemistry Caucus brings a diverse array of political, technical and business expertise to their new roles. The Senators also represent states with exceptional research and development programs and significant chemical production.

“I was a Chemistry major in college and today I’m proud to be a Senator from the state of Delaware, where chemistry is an important part of our history and where innovative companies continue to advance the field of chemistry,” said Senator Coons. “The Senate Chemistry Caucus will provide an invaluable forum for members of the Senate to promote science in policymaking and encourage businesses to take the scientific advancements chemistry yields and bring them to the marketplace."

“The chemical industry has long provided thousands of West Virginia families with good paying jobs,” said Senator Capito. “With our abundant energy reserves, we have the prospect of growing this sector in West Virginia and across the country. I look forward to working with my colleagues to support the infrastructure and pro-growth policies that are necessary to continue to strengthen this vital American industry.”

“As the only chemical engineer in Congress, I’m thrilled to be leading the Senate Chemistry Caucus,” said Senator Daines. “As a chemical engineer, we are trained to solve problems and I look forward to doing that along Senators Capito, Peters and Coons.”

“Chemistry plays a vital role in creating the jobs of the 21st century, including nearly 30,000 jobs in Michigan,” said Senator Peters. “We can’t predict what the next big thing will be, but every day the field of chemistry is making groundbreaking discoveries that can grow our economy and improve our daily lives. I’m proud to help launch the bipartisan Senate Chemistry Caucus to encourage scientific research, spur new innovation and promote safety in the chemical industry.”

Support for the Congressional Chemistry Caucus

The leadership of the American Chemical Society, the American Chemistry Council and the National Association of Chemical Distributors welcome the formation of the new Senate Chemistry Caucus and the growing interest in Congress to better understand the intersection of chemistry and public policy.

“The American Chemical Society applauds the bipartisan expansion of the Congressional Chemistry Caucus to the U.S. Senate. Establishment of this bicameral caucus will serve as an important forum for pro-innovation, pro-chemistry lawmakers to advance the chemistry enterprise. Never have policies and legislation focused on investments in research and development, job creation, economic growth, and U.S. global competitiveness been more crucial to the success of the country.”

-- Thomas Connelly Jr., American Chemical Society Executive Director and CEO, Ph.D.

"The creation of the House and Senate caucuses come at a very pivotal moment for the chemical industry and manufacturing in the United States. Reversing a long trend, our industry is experiencing historic growth here in the U.S. that is having a very positive effect on domestic investment and adding jobs to our economy. The Senate and House Chemistry Caucuses can play an instrumental role to make sure that Congress appreciates the essential nature of chemistry and does its part to foster this resurgence of U.S. manufacturing and to promote research and development.”

-- Calvin M. Dooley, President and CEO of the American Chemistry Council

“As companies that process, formulate, blend, re-package, warehouse, transport, and market chemical products for more than 750,000 customers, chemical distributors play an important role in the life cycle of goods and provide good-paying jobs to tens of thousands of Americans. Our industry depends on Washington to put forth smart legislation and regulation that invests in our future workforce while also spurring economic growth and job creation to ensure our vital role in the economy continues for many years to come. The launch of the Senate Chemistry Caucus, much like the House Chemistry Caucus launched last year, will serve as the vehicle to bring policymakers together to make meaningful decisions about these issues.”

-- Eric Byer, President of the National Association of Chemical Distributors

Last year, Congressmen John Moolenaar (R-MI) and Daniel Lipinski (D-IL) teamed up to form the Congressional Chemistry Caucus, which has attracted more than 35 members.

For its first event, the Senate Caucus is joining with the House Chemistry Caucus to host a reception and briefing to highlight the positive impact that chemistry has on the economy. The event will take place at the Capitol Visitor Center on March 29th from 5-7pm and will feature remarks from special guest speaker Dr. A.N. Sreeram, Senior Vice President and Chief Technology Officer, The Dow Chemical Company.