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GOP budget amendments would ruin our health, economy, and livable climate

By Climate Guest Contributor  

"GOP budget amendments would ruin our health, economy, and livable climate"

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Of the over 400 amendments offered on the House government-funding measure, the 2011 Continuing Resolution (H.R. 1), dozens are focused on climate change, energy policy, and environmental protection. The existing language in the budget bill is already designed to deny global warmingslash and burn public health and green jobs, but the amendments would take even more radical steps to reward polluters who are killing our children’s future.

Brad Johnson explains that Republican amendments, if fully enacted, would:

- Eliminate the White House Council on Environmental Quality, the Special Envoy for Climate Change, the Assistant to the President for Energy and Climate Change, the NOAA Climate Service, the Department of Energy’s ARPA-E, National Science Foundation K-12 funding

- Block US funding for the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change and the Global Environment Facility

- Suspend enforcement of fisheries laws and construction and conservation acquisition programs of the National Parks and Department of the Interior

- Block rules for cement plant pollution, coal ash, industrial boiler pollution, water quality, climate change pollution, climate change adaptation, energy-efficient lighting, mountaintop removal, atrazine, and water conservation

Most of these amendments are budget neutral, not lowering the deficit one cent. Several defund extremely effective jobs programs that cost only a few million dollars. The goal of these amendments is not fiscal responsibility or jobs creation, but polluter protection, even though the pollution is poisoning babies, causing the elderly to suffer, and destroying America’s natural bounty.

Meanwhile Rep. Ed Markey (D-MA) has proposed amendments to eliminate billions in dollars in Big Oil subsidies, reduce the deficit, and restore LIHEAP and NIH funding, Rep. Jared Polis (D-CO) offered amendments to defend America from the threat of global warming pollution, and Rep. Jay Inslee (D-WA) proposed amendments to take $66 million from fossil energy research and development and put it into green energy programs.

Some of these amendments were first compiled and summarized by E&E News PM.

CLIMATE, ENVIRONMENT, AND ENERGY AMENDMENTS TO H.R. 1
Amdt. Sponsor Purpose
3 Tonko (D-NY) To strike language that prevents new rules under the Federal Water Pollution Control Act
4 Tonko (D-NY) To maintain funding for the Weatherization Assistance Program and State Energy Program
6 Tonko (D-NY) To strike language that would prohibit the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) from authorizing state action plans on greenhouse pollution.
10 Stearns (R-FL) To stop EPA from developing or issuing standards that list coal ash as hazardous waste under the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act
13 Rooney (R-FL) To stop EPA from using its funding to implement, administer or enforce new water quality standards for Florida’s lakes and flowing waters, which were issued in November.
18 Tonko (D-NY) To restore cuts made to the Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program (LIHEAP).
27 Markey (D-MA) To stop Interior from issuing new oil or natural gas leases on the outer continental shelf if they do not include limitations on royalty relief based on market price
29 Heller (R-NV) To reduce funding for the International Fund for Agricultural Development by $2.6 million, Contributions to International Organizations account by $44 million, Global Environmental Facility by $4.6 million, International Development Association by $136 million, Enterprise for American Multilateral Investment by $2.9 million, and African Development Fund by $19.5 million
52 Tonko (D-NY) To remove unobligated funding from Fossil Energy Research and Development and transfers those funds to the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy.
60 Markey (D-MA) To restore LIHEAP funding and eliminate oil industry subsidies.
65-66 Polis (D-CO) To allow EPA to limit greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act if it is deemed “necessary to protect the public health or prevent severe environmental degradation.”
69-70 Polis (D-CO) To allow the further expenditure of recovery act funds in order to create jobs and transportation projects
84 Pompeo (R-KS) To cut $8.5 million from the EPA
94 Sullivan (R-OK) To stop EPA from using its funding to implement its decision to allow the ethanol content of gasoline to be increased from 10 percent to 15 percent.
109 Griffith (R-VA) To stop EPA from using its funding to implement or enforce new guidance for the review of possible water pollution from proposed coal-mining projects
127 Young (R-AK) To stop EPA from regulating air pollution from Arctic offshore drilling
130 McGovern (D-MA) To remove prohibition on funding the HUD Sustainable Communities Initiative
149 Leutkemeyer (R-MO) To prohibit funding the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC)
152 Jenkins (R-KS) To prevent funding the cleanup of pesticides and PCBs from the Great Plains Industrial Park (formerly the Kansas Army Ammunition Plant)
165 Carter (R-TX) To stop EPA from using its funding to implement new air toxic pollution rules for cement kilns
169 Poe (R-TX) To eliminate K-12 National Science Foundation science & technology education funding
174 Heller (R-NV) To block the Yucca Mountain repository
180 Akin (R-MO) To eliminate funding for the Global Environment Facility
181 Akin (R-MO) To bar the use of federal funds to implement the section of the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007 that phases out traditional incandescent light bulbs in favor of more energy-efficient alternatives
192 Biggert (R-IL) To eliminate the Department of Energy’s Advanced Research Projects Agency
193 Lummis (R-WY) To eliminate funding for BLM, FWS, and USDA conservation land acquisition
193 Lummis (R-WY) To fully remove gray wolves from the Endangered Species Act (existing text from Simpson (R-ID) would delist gray wolves except for Wyoming population)
197 Walberg (R-MI) To kill the Green the Capitol initiative
198 Poe (R-TX) To stop EPA from creating a cap-and-trade program or enforcing any other regulations for greenhouse gases under the Clean Air Act
201 Labrador (R-ID) To stop EPA from issuing or enforcing final standards for air pollution from industrial boilers
202 Labrador (R-ID) To defund the White House Council on Environmental Quality
203 Labrador (R-ID) To stop the administration from using its funding to designate new monuments under the Antiquities Act
204 Scalise (R-LA) To eliminate the assistant to the president for energy and climate change (the departing Carol Browner), the special envoy for climate change (Todd Stern), and the special adviser for green jobs, enterprise and innovation (formerly Van Jones)
206 Jones (R-NC) To impede NOAA from preventing illegal fisheries activities
207 Jones (R-NC) To block penalties for illegal fisheries activities
213 Markey (D-MA) To restore NIH funding and eliminate oil industry subsidies.
216 McKinley (R-WV) To stop EPA from administering or enforcing the sections of the Clean Water Act that govern dredge-and-fill permits, i.e. mountaintop-removal
217 McKinley (R-WV) To stop coal ash rules
218 Johnson (R-OH) To stop EPA from issuing new rules for the circumstances under which mining may be conducted near streams or from conducting an environmental impact statement on the impact of the rules; e.g. mountaintop removal
228 Goodlatte (R-VA) To prevent the Los Alamos Neutron Science Center refurbishment, and to reduce the DOE nuclear budget by $20 million
241 Carney (D-DE) To stop the Department of Energy from using its funding for the Oil and Gas Research and Development Program
251 Scalise (R-LA) To stop Interior from using any funding to delay the approval of a plan or permit for energy exploration on the outer continental shelf
257 Huelskamp (R-KS) To eliminate the assistant to the president for energy and climate change
279 Schock (R-IL) To stop EPA from using its funding to re-evaluate the possible health effects of the approved herbicide atrazine
289 McClintock (R-CA) To stop Interior from issuing grants under the WaterSMART program, a conservation initiative intended to find solutions for the water shortages in many areas of the West.
300-320 McClintock (R-CA) To make a variety of changes to the appropriations given to DOE for energy efficiency and renewable energy research, including eliminating solar energy, water power, building technologies, vehicle technologies, fuel cells, geothermal energy, and biomass technologies
326 Blumenauer (D-OR) To lift the prohibition on funding community development block grants and the Sustainable Communities Initiative
329-331 Kaptur (D-OH) To bar additional funding for the operations and maintenance of the Southeastern, Southwestern, and Western Power Administrations
342 Pearce (R-NM) To eliminate the Mexican Wolf recovery program
344 Pearce (R-NM) To prevent the support of citizen suits under the National Environmental Policy Act
345 Pearce (R-NM) To prevent the support of citizen suits under the Endangered Species Act
348 Pearce (R-NM) To stop Interior from putting funding toward climate change adaptation
350-361 Pearce (R-NM) To prevent federal land acquisition programs, conservation programs and new construction by BLM, FWS, USGS, and the National Parks Service
374 Flake (R-AZ) To stop funding the Biomass Crop Assistance Program
376 Flake (R-AZ) To cut the EPA science and technology budget by $64.1 million
377 Flake (R-AZ) To block funding for the construction of ethanol facilities
378 Hall (R-TX) To prohibit the establishment of the NOAA Climate Service (NCS)
379 Reed (R-NY) To cut $10 million from the EPA support for state and tribal environmental law enforcement
393-395 Inslee (D-WA) To move $66 million from DOE fossil energy R&D budget to grid modernization, renewable energy and energy efficiency, and ARPA-E
397 Waters (D-CA) To eliminate DOE fossil energy R&D budget
401 Jackson Lee (D-TX) To strike elimination of unspent recovery act funds

Brad Johnson, in a Wonk Room cross-post.

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21 Responses to GOP budget amendments would ruin our health, economy, and livable climate

  1. Prokaryotes says:

    This related to mental health

    Fluoridation: The scam of the century

    (NaturalNews) This scam starts as follows: the CDC (Centers For Deceit Control and Procrastination) in their Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report of August 17, 2001/Vol 50/ No. RR-14 entitled “Recommendations for Using Fluoride to Prevent and Control Dental Caries in the United States, says on page 4, 5th paragraph, “that fluoride’s predominant effect is after the tooth comes into the mouth and on the surface of the tooth”.

    The question posed to the CDC, the EPA, and the Public Health officials of “why then do we have to ingest it?” NEVER gets answered.

    Then there’s the issue of INFORMED CONSENT. Every doctor knows that they can’t force any medication on an individual without their informed consent. The doctor has to tell the patient of the benefits and of any side effects of a prescribed medication. This puts the final decision to take or not take the medication in the hands of the patient. In addition, the patient has the right to question any treatment so as to make a better decision.

    Fluoridation clearly violates this principle.

    One of the arguments presented by those that push this crap is to say that no one is forced to drink the water. Yes, the fluoride comes to the tap but ultimately it’s the individual’s choice to open the tap and drink the water. Please stop laughing. This is their serious argument.

    Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/031335_water_fluoridation.html

    Did you know that the Nazi’s used in their concentration camps and other military use (even today) Fluoridation programs? Because Fluoride retards the mental health, lowers intelligence. Hence from their books its easier to control dumb people. But since WW 2 we learned that dumb people tend to have more off spring, which in turn is of conflict, when you look at the population.

  2. Prokaryotes says:

    The Tag line to this Funding cut madness is:”The fastest way to Ruin the Country (and the World btw), We want to Collapse everything!”

    “Common Sense out of the Window!”

    “We love Koch’s cash!”

  3. Prokaryotes says:

    Another day, another GOP whack at ’11 budget

    House Republicans continued their drive Wednesday to slash $60 billion from the current year’s budget, with some of the deepest cuts targeted at education and environmental regulation.

    http://money.cnn.com/2011/02/16/news/economy/republican_budget_cuts/

  4. Prokaryotes says:

    “These cuts recklessly damage programs,” said House Minority Whip Steny Hoyer. “We are talking about cutting tomorrow’s jobs.”

    The White House has vowed to veto the budget if the deep cuts that House Republican want survive, saying the president can’t support a bill that “undermines critical priorities or national security.”

    Yes, National Security Implication – Of utmost Importance, You Idiots!

  5. Gord says:

    Since fluoride is in toothpaste there really is no reason it should be in tap water. Years ago it was a different story. I remember when toothpaste was first advertised as having fluoride in it.

    This just might be a case of institutional inertia. And of course some people now derive their living from this activity so they sure don’t want it to go away.

  6. Mimikatz says:

    I really do think the GOP solution to the supposed problems of Social Security is to reduce the life expectancies of 90% of the US population.

  7. Prokaryotes says:

    “The great principle which this house ought to guard and cherish is that, when the tax collector comes to the private citizen and takes from him of his wealth for the services of the public, the whole of that money taken shall go for the purposes for which it is intended, and that no private interests, however powerfully they may be organized and however eloquently advocated, shall thrust their dirty fingers into the pie and take the profits for themselves.” – Winston Churchill

  8. Adrian says:

    Fluoridation? Seriously?
    I am hoping that Prokaryotes above is being somehow subtly sarcastic with his post.
    This is the second Climate Blog that has been used recently as an ‘anti-fluoridation’ advertisement. Coby Beck had a royal ‘to do’ over a guest post by his father (http://scienceblogs.com/illconsidered/2010/11/the_case_against_flouride.php). The source of Prokaryotes story (natural news) is hardly a reliable scientific resource and bashes, among other things, vaccines, GM crops and the ‘cancer industry’.
    Is this another blog I now need to avoid?
    Please – if you want to stress to your readership that the science and scientists should be trusted over the wafflings of deniers, cranks and quacks, you can’t be selective and think this only applies to climate (and evolution). The CDC insists that fluoridation was a seminal public health achievement for the 20th century because, well, because it was – not because they are in bed with a bunch of industrial conspirators, hell-bent on poisoning and dumbing down the population. There are issues with the practice, but (as always) the studies are ongoing and the policy will be updated as necessary. So please let’s not allow Climate Progress to be hijacked by this!
    Thanks!

  9. Prokaryotes says:

    Adrian, are we really concerned here? I don’t see how this is an advertising, for what?

    And only because i post something, doesn’t mean that i 100% support what is written. Further judging from your response, you seem not like someone who is open for a debate. Either answer the question raised or post something related to the topic.

  10. Chris Winter says:

    Once again the Republicans are all for rolling back environmental regulations. How do they plan to pay for the lawsuits that would result in a few years from coal-slurry spills and other preventable disasters? No doubt they figure they’ll enact tort reform before then…

    Dream on, GOP (Gutting Our Protections).

  11. Adrian says:

    Hi Prokaryotes.
    As I said, I don’t really think this is the place. But…
    I am always open for debate and studied fluoridation at length when a friend expressed concern and I offered, as a PhD biologist, to look into the science behind the controversy.
    I will also say that the only serious question raised above (ignoring the unsubstantiated ‘did you know’ about toxic levels used by the Nazis – an urban legend thrown around by folks like Natural News) is the one about ingestion (which, apparently, the various authorities NEVER answer – unless you go to their websites and read the citations providing the answers).
    Part of the answer is in the initial statement – “fluoride’s predominant effect….”. However, the whole answer is simply “because it works”.
    The CDC provides a comprehensive FAQ page (updated January 2011) which is a decent lead into the actual science. It is, in my opinion, a better resource than Natural News.

  12. catman306 says:

    Adrian, your criticisms of Prokaryotes make me wonder who you work for.

  13. Adrian says:

    catman306,
    who I work for?
    A large US University in cardiovascular research.
    Prokaryotes makes many excellent contributions to this blog. I am therefore surprised to see him post a link that leads to Nature News and to repeat an urban myth about Nazis and fluoridation. It isn’t science and I am irked by attacks on science (whether it is climate, evolution, biology or population health science). That’s all.

  14. bertfromoz says:

    Mike Adams, the editor of Natural News is- an unreliable narrator, to put it mildly.

    His veracity regarding medical and nutritional matters is on par with Watts or Monckton on climate.

    If you can stomach it, go over to ‘Repectful Insolence’ and have a look at some critiques of Adams’ past work.

    http://scienceblogs.com/insolence/

    It makes the climate cranks look positively lucid.

    —–
    A frustrated physician from Down Under, wondering when the checks from Big Pharma/Vaccine/Fluoride are going to arrive. Not.

  15. Prokaryotes says:

    EPA to Bar Fluoride-Based Pesticide

    Washington, D.C. – The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency today proposed to grant three environmental groups’ petition to end the use of sulfuryl fluoride, an insecticide and food fumigant manufactured by Dow AgroSciences.
    The Dow product, approved by EPA as an alternative to methyl bromide, is used on hundreds of food commodities.
    Citing concerns about children’s health and noting their current overexposure to fluoride through tap water, EPA’s decision is the second major federal action in three days to address the safety of fluoride for children. On January 7, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services proposed to reduce its recommended maximum level of fluoride in tap water from 1.2 to 0.7 parts per million (ppm), a 42 percent decrease.
    In 2004, Fluoride Action Network, Environmental Working Group, and Beyond Pesticides challenged EPA’s risk assessment of the pesticide sulfuryl fluoride under the Food Quality and Protection Act of 1996, which regulates pesticide safety. The groups objected that EPA’s methodology relied on an outdated health risk assessment and significantly underestimated children’s exposures to fluoride from all sources.
    With today’s announcement, the EPA Office of Pesticide Program has concluded that the current legal limit of the pesticide residue on food does not adequately protect children from aggregate fluoride exposures, such as drinking water and toothpaste.

    http://www.ewg.org/release/epa-bar-fluoride-based-pesticide

  16. Prokaryotes says:

    Fluoridation of water, salt, and milk varies from country to country. Water fluoridation has been introduced to varying degrees in many countries, including Australia, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Ireland, Malaysia, the U.S., and Vietnam,[1] and is used by 5.7% of people worldwide.[2] Continental Europe largely does not fluoridate water
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fluoridation_by_country

    95% of the world can live happy without extras in their tap water.

    Top 10 Common Household Toxins
    Fluoride
    Environmental Toxins
    Chemicals in plastics and other products seem harmless, but mounting evidence links them to health problems — and Washington lacks the power to protect us

    Health Hazards: Neurotoxic and potentially tumorigenic if swallowed; the American Dental Association advises that children under 2 not use fluoride toothpaste
    What You Should Know: Government studies support current fluoride levels in tap water, but studies on long-term exposure and cancers are ongoing

    Read more: http://www.time.com/time/specials/packages/article/0,28804,1976909_1976895_1976898,00.html

  17. Adrian says:

    It’s language like this that irks me – “and Washington lacks the power to protect us”…

    and

    “What You Should Know: Government studies support current fluoride levels in tap water, but studies on long-term exposure and cancers are ongoing” …..(i.e. we have no conclusive proof of a problem after 65 years of research, but we’ll keep looking for it and throwing it out there to scare you).

    and as for powerless Washington, the EPA and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services are following (indeed oftentimes conducting) the necessary research and taking steps to ensure we ‘are protected’. The CDC also updates its recommendations regularly. The previous range of 0.7 – 1.2 mg/L has been deemed probably too high and now the lower limit is being suggested.

    So, I’ll still trust the scientific consensus and ignore those who attempt to convince us something is fundamentally wrong with our system (e.g. the “Fraud and Drug Administration” from the first link provided). And I will not believe anyone who attempts to convince me that they know about fluoridation if they use the Nazi nonsense story. Give me science over scare tactics any day.

    As much as I’d like to try convincing Prokaryotes that this is not what his links paint it to be, I still don’t think this blog is the place for it, and I’ll say no more.

  18. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Well, here comes Obama’s litmus test. If he ‘reaches out’ in the spirit of ‘bipartisanship’ to these Republican…what is the correct term for these creatures. All I can think of are perjorative, even insulting, although I somehow think that the truth defence mitigates any insult. It’s like the denialists whinging on about ‘ad hominem’ arguments, when all you have done is point out that their arguments are mendacious, imbecilic, hypocritical or gob-smackingly ignorant, and, hence, the likelihood that they themselves are mendacious, imbecilic, hypocritical and ignorant are rather high. Where was I…oh, yes, Obama. He has to fight these multiple insanities and obscenities with every weapon in his arsenal and ounce of strength or he’s shot his bolt. But I don’t have a vote over there, so my opinions are irrelevant.

  19. hypocritical and ignorant are rather high. Where was I…oh, yes, Obama. He has to fight these multiple insanities and obscenities with every weapon in his arsenal and ounce of strength or he’s shot his bolt. But I don’t have a vote over there, so my opinions are irrelevant.

  20. Archie1954 says:

    There is only one place in the federal government’s budget where large cuts can be made without losing any benefits to society. That is of course, the pentagon’s funding. no one, in his right mind can justify a trillion dollars a year for the military and armaments when that equals all of the funding for such things by every other government on earth put together. It is well beyond ridiculous and has allowed the US to become deficient in everything else that American society requires to maintain a first nation level of livebility. The US is losing its position in all the areas where it used to excel, education being one of the most important. To top it off, after all the horrendous expenditures on the military it actually hasn’t won a war since WWII, unless you count Grenada. A total waste of money, that’s blatantly obvious!

  21. Mulga Mumblebrain says:

    Archie1954#20, you forgot that other great feat of arms, the capture of rogue employee Noriega, and the successful testing of various new weapons in the obliteration of several thousand Panamanians whose only crime was to be living in slums in the vicinity.