GOP Votes to Repeal Climate Science

  • Published on April 7th, 2011

Well, the House went ahead and did it today, voting 255-172 to strip the Environmental Protection Agency of any possible option for fighting climate change and global warming.

The Tea Party wing of the GOP (which is pretty much everyone at this point) argued that the science isn’t settled yet. They argued that the EPA went too far. They argued that it would kill jobs. They argued that it should be Congress that sets policy, not “unelected bureaucrats” (although it was the Supreme Court and a bunch of states that reminded the EPA during the Bush years that they had to enforce the Clean Air Act, which was pretty clear on the issue).

But when it came right down to it, this wasn’t about any of that. It was about the GOP protecting polluters and repealing science.

“Repealing science”?

Yeah. They did that.

Here’s Dan Lashoff, Director of the Climate Center at the Natural Resources Defense Council, taking up the tale:

I am not making this up. Section 2(b)(4) of H.R.910…  says, in part:

`(4) CERTAIN PRIOR AGENCY ACTIONS- The following rules and actions (including any supplement or revision to such rules and actions) are repealed and shall have no legal effect: …

`(B) `Endangerment and Cause or Contribute Findings for Greenhouse Gases Under Section 202(a) of the Clean Air Act’, published at 74 Fed. Reg. 66496 (December 15, 2009). …(emphasis added)

Let me translate. Subparagraph (B) refers to EPA’s formal finding, based on an extensive scientific record, that carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases endanger public health and welfare…

On Tuesday I spoke to a Congressman who said he was leaning toward voting for this bill. He said he wanted to send a message to EPA. I asked him to consider what message he would be sending by voting for a bill to repeal science. He said the bill didn’t repeal science. We sent him the citation. He voted for it anyway.

The Upton bill is extreme and misguided in many, many ways. But for me, even after more than 20 years in Washington, watching 255 Members of Congress vote to repeal science is still stunning.

No wonder the rest of the country thinks Washington is out of touch with reality.

We warned you back in November that the GOP was launching a War on Science…

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About the Author

Jeremy Bloom is the Editor of RedGreenAndBlue. He lives in New York, where he combines his passion for the environment with his passion for film, and is working on making the world a better place.