Energy & Environment

House climate crisis panel outlines milestones ahead of likely dissolution

Committee Chair Kathy Castor (D-Fla.) speaks at a House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis hearing entitled 'State Perspectives on Cutting Methane Pollution' on Tuesday, June 14, 2022.
Peter Afriyie
Committee Chair Kathy Castor (D-Fla.) speaks at a House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis hearing entitled ‘State Perspectives on Cutting Methane Pollution’ on Tuesday, June 14, 2022.

The House Select Committee on the Climate Crisis, which is expected to be dissolved by a Republican House majority next year, said in a report Wednesday that nearly half of its policy recommendations have become law.

In the committee’s final report, members said that of 715 policy recommendations made in 2020, more than 300 now have force of law. Many of these provisions were part of the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law and the Inflation Reduction Act, as well as the 2022 CHIPS and Science Act and the Energy Act of 2020.

Accomplishments listed by the committee include efforts to reduce methane emissions from the fossil fuel industry and upgrades to the electrification of infrastructure. The report also mentions efforts to incorporate climate resilience into national security and military readiness.

The committee also outlined what it called future opportunities that remain undone, including a broader strategy for transmission of the increased electricity required for the greater number of electric vehicles on the road. It also calls for reforms to mining laws to overhaul the process of extracting critical minerals for decarbonization.

“Under the leadership of Speaker Pelosi, we’ve turned more than 300 of the recommendations in our Climate Crisis Action Plan into law – and we’re ready to keep our foot on the electric pedal and keep making progress on solving the climate crisis,” Chairwoman Kathy Castor (D-Fla.) said in a statement. “As House Republicans prepare to dismantle our climate committee, our progress and new report should inspire Americans to continue the fight for cleaner, cheaper energy and more resilient communities – guided by science, rooted in justice, and powered by American workers.”

The new GOP majority in the chamber is expected to dismantle the panel in January. The office of Rep. Garret Graves (La.), the top Republican on the panel, told The Hill in November, “We don’t see a scenario where the ‘Climate Crisis Committee,’ a creature of Pelosi, will continue to exist.”

The Republican “Commitment to America” plan released ahead of the midterm election called for increased fossil fuel production and hydropower, while incoming House Natural Resources Committee Chairman Bruce Westerman (R-Ark.) has said he doesn’t want to “get boxed in” focusing on climate change on the panel.

Tags Bruce Westerman Garret Graves Kathy Castor

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