Energy and Commerce Committee

Tue, 2011-03-08 16:13Laurel Whitney
Laurel Whitney's picture

House Climate Hearings: Old Dogs, Old Tricks

Hearings conducted today by the House Energy and Commerce committee showcased a battle of the scientists as members heard from a panel of both reputable climate researchers as well as some notable climate skeptics. Climate Progress listed the credentials of those who were called upon to weigh in on Committee Chair Fred Upton’s (R-MI) HR 910 - the bill that if passed on Thursday, will not only strip the EPA’s ability to regulate greenhouse gases now and in the future, but will also completely obliterate its Supreme-Court-endorsed endangerment finding. Recall back in December of 2009, the EPA officially declared that emissions of greenhouse gases effectively “endanger public health or welfare”, and therefore fall under the Clean Air Act allowing them to potentially be regulated by the EPA.

Yet the hearing made no progress on discussing the EPA’s role on regulation; it only proved that politicians are running on hamster wheels to nowhere. Rep. Steve Scalise (R-LA) repeated the “no consensus amongst scientists” mantra (bet he didn’t read the memo in front of him signed by 2,505 endorsers of EPA’s Clean Air Act responsibilities either) and played the Republican’s favorite hit tune, ClimateGate. Poor Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-VA) lamented lying awake at night worrying about such subjects as sunspots (are we still on sunspots?) and warming on Mars, while Rep. Ed Whitefield (R-KY) robotically reiterated “we don’t know the answer [as to why the planet is warming]” (no, really we do!). Over several hours, there was also the usual IPCC-bashing, debating the costs of inaction versus action, blaming land-use change corrupting temperature records, cautioning jobs at stake, warning of crushing developing-world economies, and seemingly every other denier excuse in the book (even DDT!). If this were a drinking game, players would likely be en route to get their stomach pumped after three hours of broken record climate denier logic.

Thu, 2008-11-20 08:05Kevin Grandia
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Breaking: Waxman Beats out Dingell for US Energy Panel Chair

Just got word that Rep. Henry Waxman has won the nod to head the Energy and Commerce Committee over Rep. John Dingell 137 to 122 in votes.

This is a new day for climate policy in the United States, Waxman is a leading champion in Congress of laws to protect the environment and fight global warming, while Dingell spent the last two years more interested in boosting the Big Auto lobby and fighting against higher fuel economy standards for cars.

Waxman is also well known the “Waxman Hearings” that took on the tobacco industry over their massive efforts in the 80’s and 90’s to fight and confuse the science around tobacco use and cancer rates.

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