Energy & Environment

House GOP expected to eliminate climate crisis committee

Rep. Garret Graves (R-La.) addresses reporters during a press conference on June 23, 2021 to introduce the Conservative Climate Caucus
Greg Nash

Republicans are expected to eliminate the House’s Select Committee on the Climate Crisis when they retake power in the lower chamber next year.

“We don’t see a scenario where the ‘Climate Crisis Committee,’ a creature of Pelosi, will continue to exist,” the office of Rep. Garret Graves (La.), the top Republican on the panel, said in a statement to The Hill, referring to Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.).

“Garret is committed to delivering on the energy components of the Commitment to America and will be intimately involved in making sure that happens,” the statement continued, referring to a GOP policy plan.

That plan includes bolstering oil and gas, mining and hydropower. 

Graves told Bloomberg, which first reported on the committee’s likely demise, “The climate crisis committee will not exist.”

“I don’t think that’s really consistent with what we are going to be focused on,” he added. 

Pelosi instituted the panel when Democrats took power in 2019. Previously, Democrats created a Select Committee on Energy Independence and Global Warming, which was also disbanded by Republicans in 2011. 

Current chairwoman Kathy Castor (D-Fla.) released a statement criticizing her Republican counterparts. 

“House Republicans ignore the climate crisis to the detriment of America,” Castor said.  “Republicans seem eager to go down a path of increasing sweltering hot days, gutting clean air protections, padding the profits of Big Oil, and refusing to take a serious look at the cost-cutting potential of clean energy. 

The select climate committee has held a series of hearings on climate-related issues, but major climate legislation has instead come from other committees such as Energy and Commerce.

Republicans won a narrow majority of House seats in the midterm elections, underperforming many expectations, but still doing well enough to seize power in the chamber.

The Hill has reached out to the office of Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif). McCarthy recently won a GOP vote for the speakership nomination, though he would still need to win a full House majority — 218 votes — to officially clinch the role.

Tags Garret Graves Kathy Castor Kevin McCarthy Nancy Pelosi

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