Energy-Freedom Group Says GOP’s Best Plan for Climate Change is ‘No Plan’

‘Half of crazy is still crazy…’

GOP Rep Matt Gaetz of Florida

Matt Gaetz / PHOTO: Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff (CC)

(Kaylee McGhee, Liberty Headlines) As congressional Republicans struggle to reach consensus on whether to pursue a climate-change policy in response to socialist legislation like the Green New Deal, some are urging the party not to address it at all.

Citing President Donald Trump’s commitment to rolling back burdensome, Obama-era environmental regulations, a pro-energy group released a statement discouraging GOP lawmakers from allowing their radical counterparts to dictate the agenda.

“Half of crazy is still crazy,” the Energy & Environment Action Team (E&E Action) said in a statement. “The best action on climate is no action.”

The introduction the Green New Deal bill by Rep. Alexandria Ocasio–Cortez, D-NY,  upended the conversation about climate change in both parties.

Half of the co-sponsors to a parallel, recently defeated Senate bill were either declared candidates or likely to run in the upcoming Democratic primaries for next year’s presidential election.

While legislators on sides of the aisle have dismissed Ocasio–Cortez’s aggressive plan to spend an estimated $93 trillion over 10 years as unrealistic, it nonetheless left GOP lawmakers seeking climate solutions of their own.

Even loyal Trump allies, like Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-Fla., and Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-SC, have suggested the GOP should propose its own climate change initiative.

“Climate change is real,” Gaetz wrote on Twitter. “Something needs to be done about it.”

Gaetz is reportedly drafting a “Green Real Deal” resolution that would acknowledge climate change as a security threat while avoiding calls for sharp reductions in fossil fuels, according to Politico.

But E&E Action said any kind of climate change initiative would inevitably have the same effects as the Obama policies that “destroyed large segments of this country and severely hurt the middle and lower classes.”

When Trump withdrew from the Paris Climate Agreement, energy prices were lowered and the stock market skyrocketed, it said. “Yet, some Republicans feel the need to give the far left in this country validity by publicly acknowledging a need to address ‘climate change.’ And then doubling down by introducing their own versions of the GND.”

Instead, Congressional Republicans should continue to support the elimination of bureaucratic red-tape when it comes to the environment, said the group.

Trump hasn’t signaled he would support any such initiative as Gaetz’s, but made it clear to his congressional allies that he sees opposition to the GND as a political winner in 2020.

“Make sure you don’t kill it too much because I want to run against it,” Trump told Republicans in a closed-door lunch last month, according to Graham.

Other Republicans—including Sen. Mitt Romney, R-Utah; and Rep. Greg Walden, R-Ore., the top Republican on the House Energy and Commerce Committee—said they are working on possible GOP climate approaches.

Sen. Lamar Alexander, R-Tenn., presented his own initiative, called the “Manhattan Project for Clean Energy,” which would double energy research funding and promote GOP-friendly approaches to reducing greenhouse gas emissions, like nuclear energy.

“It’s important to have a Republican message on climate change that’s clear,” Alexander told reporters after a floor speech on the resolution last month. “It’s clear why we’re opposed to the Green New Deal—it’s an assault on cars and cows and combustion—but it’s not as clear what we’re for.”

Alexander added that he believed climate change was real.

“I believe humans are a major cause of it,” he said, “and I think a new ‘Manhattan Project for Clean Energy’ is something that most Republicans could support, and I would hope most Democrats could too.”

Other climate ‘skeptics’ within the scientific community contend that media and Democrats have mischaracterized the debate, saying disagreement over the issue is not a binary ‘yes or no’ question, but rather a matter of scope, urgency and cost.

However, in an op-ed for the Wall Street Journal, E&E Action board member Steve Milloy, a prominent conservative commentator on energy and technology, slammed GOP resolutions as a waste of time.

He pointed to four reasons why the best course of action on climate change is no plan.

  • First, Milloy argued that cutting greenhouse gas emissions in the U.S. does little to affect the climate.
  • Second, greenhouse-gas emission statistics are almost always skewed and over-exaggerated.
  • Third, greenhouse-gas emissions aren’t necessarily bad, since carbon dioxide is necessary for life on Earth.
  • And lastly, any kind of climate-change policy would wreck the U.S. economy.

The left has “used the environment as a means of consolidating wealth and securing financial and political leverage,” E&E Action said.

“In fact, the only ones clamoring for the GND, Clean Power Plan, and any other other Soviet-era centralized approach to energy seem to be the Leftists Intelligentsia in this country,” it added.