House committee votes to deny climate change
Today, Republicans in the House energy committee voted not once, not twice, but three times [all PDFs], against amendments recognizing that climate change is real, despite the broad scientific consensus that “climate change is happening and human beings are a major reason for it.” They then unanimously voted [PDF] in favor of the Upton-Inhofe bill to repeal the EPA’s scientific endangerment finding on greenhouse pollution.
The 31 Republicans and three Democrats who voted in favor of H.R. 910 have received a grand total of $343,750 from Koch Industries, an average of more than $10,000 each. Freshman Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.), Koch’s special man in Congress, tips the scales at $79,500.
But today’s vote is not the first time the Commitee From Koch went public on their science denial. Here’s a survey of the members of the committee, fueled by support from Koch Industries and other polluters, and their proclaimed opposition to climate science and climate scientists:
- House Energy and Commerce Chair Fred Upton (Mich.): “I do not say that it is manmade.” [ThinkProgress, 2/8/11] Koch Contributions: $20,000
- Energy and Power Subcommittee Chair Ed Whitfield (Ky.): “Whitfield has questioned climate science in the past, including in the aftermath of the release of the so-called “Climate Gate” emails.” [The Hill, 3/15/11] Koch Contributions: $9,000
- Rep. Joe Barton (R-Texas): “My good friend from California tries to make it clear that the science is settled. I would say it’s not settled.” [The Hill, 3/15/11] Koch Contributions: $44,750
- Rep. Charles Bass (R-N.H.): “A debate continues about the sources of this climate change, and it should continue within the scientific community.” [WMUR, 7/25/10]
- Rep. Brian Bilbray (R-Calif.): “Whereas recent events have uncovered extensive evidence from the Climate Research Unit at the University of East Anglia in England (in this resolution referred to as the ‘CRU’) which involved many researchers across the globe discussing the destruction, altering, and hiding of data that did not support global warming claims.” [H. Res. 954, 12/8/09]
- Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.): “Also absent from the discussion in Copenhagen is the climate-gate scandal. Recently leaked e-mails reveal climate scientists have a long track record of manipulating data to hide scientific evidence that contradicts the global warming establishment. And why? To bully citizens and lawmakers into supporting job-killing energy tax schemes. This scandal raises serious questions about the Democrat’s climate control plans, questions that deserve a transparent investigation, not a rush to judgement by the bureaucrats in Copenhagen.” [GOP weekly address, 12/12/09] Koch Contributions: $32,000
- Rep. Michael Burgess (R-Texas): “My opinion, for what it’s worth, is the science behind global temperature changes is not settled…Now, weather and climate are complex phenomena affected by a host of variables. In the 1970s, we’ve all seen the cover of Time magazine, the earth was cooling, the next ice age was on the way. It was the consensus of scientists at that time that that was fact and there was no point in debating it any further.” [Energy committee hearing, 3/8/11] Koch Contributions: $27,500
- Rep. Greg Walden (R-Ore.): “The emails raise a number of serious questions concerning the transparency and integrity of of U.S.-supported climate research going back more than ten years.” [Walden-Barton letter, 12/2/09]
- Rep. Bill Cassidy (R-La.): “It could just be a shift on the axis!” [House energy committee, 3/15/11] Koch Contributions: $6,000
- Rep. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.): “I think the climate is changing, but I don’t believe humans are causing that change to the extent that’s been in the news.” [Fort Collins Coloradoan, 9/19/10] Koch Contributions: $10,000
- Rep. Phil Gingrey (R-Ga.): “Climategate reveals a serious lack of integrity in the underlying data and models, such that it is doubtful that any process can be trusted until the data and models are validated and their integrity assured.” [Petition for Reconsideration, 12/23/09] Koch Contributions: $12,000
- Rep. Morgan Griffith (R-Va.): It is “reckless to pursue such an economically devastating plan in order to address a scientific theory – man-made global warming – that many scientists do not even believe is happening.” [Politico, 12/28/10] Koch Contributions: $5,000
- Rep. Gregg Harper (R-Miss.): “I’ve joined Representative Marsha Blackburn of Tennessee and the House Republican leadership in co-sponsoring H.R. 391, which excludes carbon dioxide from the definition of the term ‘air pollutant’ in the Clean Air Act. Passing this bill is essential to halting the Environmental Protection Agency’s ability to regulate carbon dioxide.” [Harper, 12/16/09]
- Rep. Leonard Lance (R-N.J.): “The disclosure of emails from the CRU is very troubling and merits a thorough and transparent investigation. Clearly there is a strong appearance that important scientific research may have been tainted by politics.” [Lance, 12/3/09]
- Rep. David McKinley (R-W.Va.): “Many scientists have disavowed past climate change research, McKinley said, and he’s waiting for valid science to convince him there’s a problem and whether man is to blame. ‘This is an issue that people are using to try to stop the production of coal and the burning of coal in America, and we’ve got to find ways to stand up and say no to that,’ he said, calling for more independent research. ‘I don’t want to listen to Al Gore tell me from a political standpoint that global warming is caused by man because I don’t think he can support it.’” [AP, 10/20/10]
- Rep. Cathy McMorris Rogers (R-Wash.): “We believe Al Gore deserves an ‘F’ in science and an ‘A’ in creative writing’.” [Whitman Pioneer, 4/9/09] Koch Contributions: $13,500
- Rep. Tim Murphy (R-Penn.): “I think it is dangerous science for Congress to declare climate theory a fact.” [House energy committee, 3/15/11] Koch Contributions: $15,000
- Rep. Pete Olson (R-Texas): “The emails that emerged from the University of East Anglia call into question the accuracy of the IPCC data.” [House floor, 12/8/09]
- Rep. Joe Pitts (R-Penn.): “Whether climate change is a man-made or natural phenomenon, we have a responsibility to be good stewards of our world and to work towards a cleaner environment.” [VoteSmart, 2010] Koch Contributions: $3,000
- Rep. Mike Pompeo (R-Kan.): “Carbon dioxide is a basic building block of our existence. Regulating that is the height of arrogance.” [House energy commitee, 3/14/11] Koch Contributions: $79,500
- Rep. Mike Rogers (R-Mich.): Now, the disturbing disclosure that climate-science researchers may have altered temperature data to justify their desired results creates a new set of concerns about this job-killing legislation. Our committee has a responsibility to fully investigate these alarming reports of altered data and to determine if the results are completely accurate and based on true science. [Mike Rogers, 12/3/09]
- Rep. Steve Scalise (R-La.): “The scientific evidence clearly is not settled on this issue.” [House energy committee, 3/8/11] Koch Contributions: $15,000
- Rep. John Shimkus (R-Ill.): “The earth will end only when God declares it’s time to be over. Man will not destroy this earth. This earth will not be destroyed by a flood … There is a theological debate that this is a carbon-starved planet, not too much carbon.” [YouTube, 3/25/09] Koch Contributions: $30,000
- Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-Fla.): “Why did we have this global cooling we were all so scared about?” [Energy committee hearing, 3/15/11]
- Rep. John Sullivan (R-Okla.): “Right now, too, they’re basing it on data that’s fraudulent. There is a culture of corruption going through the scientific community that’s not being addressed right now, and it should be.” [Envirobeat, 12/18/09]
- Rep. Lee Terry (R-Neb.): “There’s a vigorous debate about the anthropologic [sic] impact on our climate.” [House floor, 6/26/2009]
Only five Republican members of the Committee From Koch had not explicitly rejected climate science and attacked climate scientists before today, though they are now all in lockstep with their fealty to Koch Industries.
“It kind of looks like the Obama administration has declared war on Ohio and Indiana,” Rep. Bob Latta (R-Ohio) said of the American Clean Energy and Security Act in 2009.
Rep. Brett Guthrie (R-Ky.) hinted at his future rejection of climate science in 2009, when he wrote that ACES “is nothing more than a national energy tax that lacks real solutions.” Likewise, Rep. Sue Myrick (R-N.C.) argued ACES was “just a tax.” Rep. Adam Kinzinger (R-Ill.) ignored the threat of climate pollution, saying ACES “does nothing more than capping our limits on economic prosperity by trading our jobs away to countries like China and India.”
Mary Bono Mack (R-Calif.), who supported ACES in 2009, voted for the Upton-Inhofe bill “due to her long-standing concerns regarding the role of the EPA and the overly burdensome California standards.”
The Republicans were joined by three Koch-supported Democrats: Rep. Jim Matheson (D-Utah), who has received $34,000 from Koch; Rep. Mike Ross (D-Ark.), $22,000; and Rep. John Barrow (D-Ga.), $8,250.
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