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For an issue that has only recently broken through on the national stage, climate change is getting a great deal of attention in both the Chambers of Congress. Here is a rundown of the highlights:
Florida Republican Congressman, Matt Gaetz, unveiled his rebuttal to the Green New Deal, calling it the Green Real Deal. While he only has one cosponsor so far, his framework doesn’t set targets for drastically reducing GHG emissions and rather aims to bolster research, innovation, and modernization of our national electric grid. AOC’s response? “Where’s the courage? Where’s the audacity? Where’s the daring? None of it is there. Where’s the beef?”
Representative Kathy Castor yesterday chaired the first hearing for the House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, saying “Young people all over the world are rising to the occasion when it comes to solving the climate crisis. We need to rise with them.” According to Earther, the Republicans on the committee seemed “to largely view climate change not as a crisis but as a threat to fossil fuel production and deregulation.”
Senators Edward J. Markey (D-Mass.), Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.), and Kamala Harris (D-Calif.) reintroduced the Greener Air Standards Mean Our National Security, Environment, and Youth (GAS MONEY) Saved Act, legislation that would block efforts by Trump administration officials at the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration (NHTSA) to roll back strong fuel economy emissions standards.
And one more thing, Republican Senator Joni Ernst piled on to the criticism of the President’s claim that noise from windmills can cause cancer by saying that if it were true, “I’d have church bell cancer.”
Why This Matters: Progress is being made, and we need to take a step back and see it. The fact that any Republicans are willing to openly disagree with the President on climate change and renewable energy is progress. So is the fact that the House is able to move legislation through and hold substantive hearings on climate change. But given who is in the White House and who controls the Senate, no real actions will be taken until after the 2020 election. Still, this will allow time to refine these proposals, hear from the public, and try to bring more Republicans into the fight for clean air, clean water, and (dare we say it) “real” climate action.
It’s spring in Paris, they are still struggling with COVID, and yet thousands of demonstrators took to the streets in Paris and numerous other French cities to protest climate change. The French legislature is considering a law to impose tougher measures to combat climate change, but many believe the proposals are not sufficient and so they staged marches in Nancy, Toulouse, Rennes, Lyon, Grenoble, as seen in social media posts.
Why This Matters: Because of the Paris Agreement, France is associated with climate change progress.
As California’s drought conditions are worsening, Nestle is pumping millions of gallons of water from the San Bernardino forest. State water officials have drafted a cease-and-desist order to force the company to stop overpumping from Strawberry Creek, which provides drinking water for about 750,000 people.
by Ashira Morris, ODP Staff Writer In the Biden administration’s first 100 days, the climate crisis and environmental issues have been at the forefront of the administration’s agenda. As Environment America writes in their progress report, “despite the need to rebuild many federal agencies and tackle the COVID-19 crisis, the Biden administration has already taken […]
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