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House GOP passes “the most anti-environmental piece of legislation in recent memory.”

By Climate Guest Contributor  

"House GOP passes “the most anti-environmental piece of legislation in recent memory.”"

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On February 19th, House lawmakers passed the Continuing Resolution, or CR, that would establish funding levels for the remainder of the 2011 fiscal year.  The League of Conservation Voters (LCV) called this CR “the most anti-environmental piece of legislation in recent memory.”

LCV tracked how members of Congress voted on 25 amendments that impacted the environment or public health in a “National Environmental Scorecard” released March 1. CAP’s Matt Woelfel has the scores.

There were 86 members who chose to protect the environment and the health of the American people, earning a perfect score of 100 percent. But 74 members of Congress scored 0 percent. These legislators voted against health and environmental protections at every opportunity. They sought to eliminate protections that would keep water clean and free from toxic pollutants, and voted against measures to require the coal industry to safely dispose of ash.

Among the representatives with dismal scores was Rep. Fred Upton (R-MI). The leader of the dirty air campaign managed a meager 4 percent on the LCV scorecard, voting against a measure that would prevent the cement industry from emitting mercury into the air and one that would raise health standards for smoke, soot, acids, metals and dust releases.

If this legislation is any indication, the GOP-run House of Representatives can be counted upon to take aim at further health and environmentally-friendly clean energy initiatives, such as massive cuts to the EPA budget and battery production programs, when it attempts to pass a permanent budget for the coming fiscal year.

Matt Woelfel, CAP Energy Team intern.

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11 Responses to House GOP passes “the most anti-environmental piece of legislation in recent memory.”

  1. I think it safe to conclude that under present political leadership, inclusive of the incapacity of the Democratic party to lead the nation in a responsible manner even when in possession of a supermajority, that there is no potential whatsoever for humankind to avoid a catastophe of such magnitude as to threaten the survival of the species.

    But there is life after humankind just as there was life after the dinosaurs …

    This story has a happy ending. The loss of humankind is perhaps not such a terrible loss for the Universe. At least, humankind’s behavior indicates so much.

  2. Sumner says:

    @#1: As an undergrad with many years ahead of him, its depressing for me to admit my agreement with your statement.

    But reading CP has brought me plenty of that anyhow and I still enjoy reading it, keep up the good work Joe!

  3. KeenOn350 says:

    Epitaph for homo “sap” :
    So much knowledge, so little wisdom.
    So much technology, so little humanity.
    So much greed.

  4. TGriz says:

    Wow, best 3 posts I’ve ever seen…there’s nothing more to say!

  5. 350 Now says:

    March 3 Letter from Sen. Inhofe and Rep. Upton to EPA:
    http://energycommerce.house.gov/media/file/letters/112th/030211_Inhofe.pdf :

    “Stated plainly, EPA should seek to void the NSPS settlement agreements. The pending regulations of refineries could result in, among other harmful effects, higher gasoline and diesel prices for drivers, truckers, and farmers, while consumers could see higher electricity prices with new GHG regulations on power plants. As the price of gasoline reaches $4 a gallon, EPA should not impose higher costs and regulatory burdens on consumers as they struggle with 9 percent unemployment and an economy struggling out of recession.”

    And from the grave Kurt Vonnegut might be saying…
    “We probably could have saved ourselves, but were too damned lazy to try very hard… and too damned cheap.”

  6. 350 Now says:

    March 3 Letter from Sen. Inhofe and Rep. Upton to EPA:
    http://energycommerce.house.gov/ media/ file/ letters/ 112th/ 030211_Inhofe.pdf :

    last sentence:
    “If EPA decides to move down the wrong path, we will take whatever actions are necessary to protect consumers and the economy.”

    Remind me again, do they think we do not know who they are protecting??

  7. spacermase says:

    @1 For what it’s worth, I can also see two other possibilities in this.

    First, something this aggressive does suggest, at least in part, desperation on part of the Republicans. I’m not exactly sure why they would be so desperate (well, other than they’ve got no real challenger to Obama in 2012, and public opinion of them seems to be dropping), but I can’t really imagine them bothering with something this draconian if they felt in control of the situation. I mean, Bush didn’t try to roll things this far back, and he had both the Executive and the Legislature (his enforcement was pretty poor, of course, but still).

    Secondly, while I sincerely doubt the Democrats are actually this strategic, it is worth noting, to quote Napoleon, that you should never interrupt your enemy while he is making a mistake. Given that EPA protections polls pretty well with the average voter, it may be better for the Democrats to just let the Republicans spew all their crazy out, and then quietly kill the bill in the Senate (or with a veto, if it somehow gets that far).

    I know I’m being optimistic, but I still have some shred of faith in people, and given that I’m (hopefully) going to be living through the next 50 years or so, don’t have much of an alternative.

  8. mike roddy says:

    The Republicans always try to push through shit like this early in their terms. They know the Dems won’t say much about it in 2012.

  9. jyyh says:

    I find it hard to believe 74 representantives of the people want to diminish the amount of people, but it of course maybe they don’t want to diminish the amount of people who want to diminish the people. War anyone?

  10. Turboblocke says:

    To posts 1,2 and 3: I wouldn’t give up hope yet. Although the USA is a major CO2 producer other economic blocks are making efforts to push down emissions.